2012 Park Hill Tour to North Devon – ‘Part Deux’ by Dave Symons

Tuesday 19th June 2012 – Chittlehampton

After the first day’s escapades and some surprisingly seasonal sunshine the tourists headed to the beach for some light entertainment – namely beach cricket, football and crazy golf. Lasting memories of this excursion include the untimely and ruthless removal of the Major’s toe, victim of a horrific Barton-esque lunge by Symons Snr. May it forever remain buried on the sandy shores of Woolacombe.

Some Shearer-esque finishing (and celebrating) from Mr Barford later we were on the crazy golf course, watching Phil play the same shot again…and again…and again. One can only assume he was distracted by the party of 12 year old girls playing the hole behind.

OK, cheap laughs. I know…I’ll try to do better…

After showcasing our ineptitude at an array of sports, we were joined by two new arrivals – Mr Martin Williams and Milky. Buoyed by this influx of raw cricketing ability we took to the field in the Chittlebowl. This ability struck fear into the hearts of the opposition as Martin, full of excitement after a wicket, clubbed himself in the toe whilst rehearsing a shot before hobbling to the crease. Milky’s innings meanwhile, composed a fluent 3 before being bowled by a chap who managed a solo total of 12 (twelve!) wides. Cue two fully deserving tracksuit nominations.

For the second day in a row, Williams-the-Younger left with the most respectable figures – one over, one maiden, one wicket. Disgraceful. Chittlefolk – hang your heads and get back to building that wicker man.

Prior to the main event of the day – a pint of Tribute whilst watching England take on Ukraine in the Bell – some acrobatics on the boundary from Rob led to a large ‘SNAP’ and an untimely end to the Chittlehampton innings. Suspecting a bout of South African attention seeking put down to a lack of interest in the unfolding European Championships, Rob’s leg was propped up and he was promptly abandoned with only the madcap Chittle groundsman for company. Moving precariously (but moving nonetheless) around the Bell, ligament or tendon damage was predicted and little more said. More on that later…

All that remained after an England victory was the daily rituals of the awarding of the tracksuit and result of the secret mission. A hard fought battle between Martin and Milky saw the self-toe-harming emerge as the victor, before Dan graciously agreed to don the chavtastic item of beauty…before throwing a midnight tantrum and dispersing hat, bottoms and jacket across a Barnstaple Wetherspoons. Very un-Special Pres-like behaviour.

The secret mission saw Phil successfully locate, purchase and build a Lego policeman, a feat we all believed would be beyond him, before presenting it to a satisfied Sock and delighting in compounding Milky’s day with a Pablo. A tour a few local pubs and a Jedward mask later – it was almost Wednesday.

It was remarked that, whilst it was written in the Tour Rules that tourists must wish the Special Pres a pleasant and restful evening, it was extremely difficult to do so whilst he was charging down Barnstaple High Street screaming like a banshee. Might be a different spot on the tour committee for you next year, Mr Ransom! Suggestions welcomed…