Alison “Lady Godmother” Gibb
Unerringly British and polite, and with a wicked sense of humour, Lady Godmother never seemed phased by anything that would affect lesser mortals, such as enduring constant trouser dropping by The Pro or receiving unsolicited amorous overtures from King Sir Sir James… She was unfortunately less of fixture in recent years since she moved back to the UK, but her importance to the MH3 has never diminished.
Lady Godmother very sadly succumbed to esophageal cancer in 2018. A huge loss for the Madrid H3and all who knew her.
Angel “Pie-Eyed Piper” Del Pino
It was so fast and felt eternal all at once, when Pie-Eyed Piper collapsed without any warning. My brain couldn’t comprehend what was happening and suddenly I felt abandoned, alone and confused.
Only three months before I’ve shared the grief of losing unexpectedly a good friend and a hash-mate, ASH, and now it was my turn to know what it means to lose a loving partner and a friend. We were just getting to the good part of our lives with new projects and the old habits like the Sunday hash activity!
He was not much of a hasher – I use to say – as he’d rather stay in his rose garden on Sundays and yet, when on the hash, he took care to integrate, try to be useful and keep preferably onto the run’s “tail”. Intuitively he knew his best role on the hash was to head for the “Head”, like setting runs he was so good at. He wasn´t much of a beer drinker either but loved to join Twice-a-Day in a long-tail supply of softies.
It was a very hot July Sunday that day and we struggled, Bush Warmer and I, through the woods of El Escorial when suddenly Pie-Eye Piper appeared from the opposite direction obviously fatigued from a steep hill climb. The next minutes were tragic and only Bush Warmer had the courage to launch for an aid search and rescue operation. Thank you Bush Warmer.
My life with Angel became a memory now and I live with hope in my heart to endure the best I can this difficult life transition and adjustment to Angel-less existence.
He is already greatly missed by many and for me it’s like the moon when the sun goes down just so I know he´s always around.
Footfalls echo in the memory
Down the passage which we did not take
Towards the door we never opened
Into the rose-garden
(T.S. Eliot. Four Quartets)
Goodbye my Angel and god bless.
Bryan “ASH” Stringer
ASH started on the MH3 in 1994, and clocked up 760 r*ns and an astonishing 194 Hares (24% hare-to-r*n ratio) over the years. In that time he had been GMH. RA, Scribe, MOM… But perhaps more importantly, he was the standard-bearer for the traditional Hashing values of yore and was the mentor of many of our past and present Hashers. He was and remains a MH3 legend, a “Rockstar with a stamper” as someone called him.
Master Hare (despite favouring Alternative Means of Transport whenever possible), inventor of the Gorilla Run (19 kms waist-deep through rivers anyone?), co-organiser of Pan-Iberian Hashes (Aracena, Cazorla, Alora, Despeñaperros…), master short-cutter, master Beer Stop setter (why bring a small knife to cut the oranges when a large hunting knife will do…), partial to a vino colapso/brandy or three, one of the founder members of Team Stealth Ninja, loved ogling Hash totty, rock music and a huge etc…
For many of us, the date 12 March 2017 will be etched into our Hash psyche as it’s the day we lost ASH on a Hash r*n in Hoyo de Manzanares. He collapsed while on a shortcut (obviously!), 100 yards short of the Beer Stop. It was a beautiful spot with a spectacular view… many of us remember our final moments with him in our respective conversations mere minutes earlier. He was his jovial self, offering greetings followed by “…darling” and “…my man” as always. He is very missed by everyone who knew him.
“ASH my dear… it has to be the Beer Stops you organized “with table” and “A drop of Chardonnay???” And of course I will remember the introduction to areas of the sierra that were further afar and always with that special, hidden charm… that bonhommerie at the car park, your intelligent conversation, and those hours we stomped gleefully behind the runners, and not so gleefully as I moaned about my divorce. I remember those fascinating entrepreneurial skills of yours that took you to the lesser known corners of Africa, and that brought other Northern European hikers to the lesser known corners of Madrid. And the way you could “cheerfully make your point”, and your loyalty to “La Conch” and your admiration for her excellent cooking. I never had the pleasure of haring with you. I guess I knew it was just going to be…too long and too hard.” by Bush Warmer
“As a hare he was a poacher turned gamekeeper – he knew his trade. He could hold, turn, and bewilder the best FRB, sending them in neatly, pre-prepared anti-clockwise spirals if he wanted to. He was an absolute Ace of a teacher of the trade. He knew where, and how and why to set a checkpoint or a H5, or a checkback. He was, in fact, the thinking man’s Hasher. Aye, I’ll miss his welcoming “Snoggers, my man” salute, as I’m sure we’ll all miss his endearing ever-so-British style. ON UP, ASH!! On, On!!” by Snog The Goblin
Thank you, ASH, for all you did for the Hash. Thank you for all the runs you set over the years. You always planned and prepared them so well, knowing that this was essential for everyone’s enjoyment. Thank you for the away-runs in places like Despeñaperros and Aracena. We got to know new places in Spain, new hashers and new dishes. Thank you for your extremely witty, entertaining and eloquent circles as RA. You were the best! Thank you for the interesting conversations we would have on the run or walk or even sitting at a ‘terraza’ along the way. Thank you again and I’m sure you are still entertaining wherever you are. RIP. Sir Sir Culchie & Marina O’Hare
“How we’ll miss the serious kissy face! How we’ll miss the shuffle up to the top of the wibbly wobbly escarpment, then the ball-breaker run and the On On at the Gurugú. Or the run starting on the 114 bus route for the convenience of the Alameda Mafia and the Fat Man! Ash, who had the most hares, not necessarily on his head! How we’ll miss the small libations of the vino collapso variety and the soirées Chez Zamenhof courtesy of La Conch! We won’t miss quite so much the sartorial elegance of the now legendary orange polo shirt and bush hat. But, basically, we’ll miss you Ash and all you gave to (and got from) the Madrid Hash. And now you’ve made your final short cut back to the car park in the sky and the celestial down downs with other well remembered Hashers, we’ll just miss you!.” by Godmother
Who art in heaven
Hallowed by thy trail
Through valleys and hills
15 kilometres of thrills
3 beer stops without fail….??
A man with flour..
And SUV power
Would lead the eager pack
They followed with passion
In a chaotic fashion
But somehow made it back” by Eveready
Chris “Ding Dong” Bell
“Ding Dong” Bell was a huge personality on the Hash in the 80s and early 90s, famed for his overly long runs (although they would be pretty much par for the course by today’s standards).
He was involved in the organisation of the Hash for many years as RA, MOM (Master of Music, at the time a crucial position…), Dray and number of other roles.
He was often seen trundling into the car park in a taxi, fully suited up, straight from work…He was the driving force behind Madrid H3 organising the Eurohash in 1993 and was thereafter known as EuroDong until he left for Brunei in 1995, where he lived for many years.
Chris had struggled after suffering a stroke a few years ago, and died in 2015.
Nigel “Kermit” Backhouse
Kermit will go down in Hash history as bringing a class act to the Circle. As RA, he based his own theatricals on the popular 1970s British talent show Opportunity Knocks, turning the applause of the TV audience’s “Clapometer” into the “Crapometer”, a non-scientific gauge to elect “Shit of the Week”, powered by the rowdy cheers of the Hash Circle.
Always entertaining, Kermit encouraged audience participation and succeeded in making the toilet seat the much-loved trophy it is today.
Much imitated but never equalled, Kermit will be sadly missed. Kermit’s house parties are the stuff of legend as he would generously give up his house to debauchery and misuse by the Hash and the British Embassy at the same time… Many great times were had by all, although I don’t think many can remember what had gone on…
Kim “Dirty Old Men” Hughes-Hallett
Kim “Dirty Old Men” Hughes-Hallett was very much a Hash child as she was brought up on the MH3 by her parents El Porteño and Manuela, looking on with joyous fascination as Hashing chaos unfolded around her.
Kim got her name one Hash out in the well-trodden Gurugú area behind Alcala de Henares. She found herself walking along some shortcut with Ash and El Porteño, who were in deep discussion about the attributes of certain Harriettes. After some time listening, she was heard to mutter “dirty old men”…… Can’t really argue with her comment, but her name was born.
Dirty Old Men was never much of runner, but very much enjoyed the other side of Hashing. Enduring memories of Kim are her ability to suck flans like a vacuum cleaner and to stick her fist in her mouth at the drop of a hat.
She eventually ended up working at the Hash watering hole, Larry’s Bar, which, as luck would have it, bore the name of her father, El Porteño.
It was with huge sadness that Kim lost her fight against cancer in January 2012. She had a smile on her face and kept her sense of humour until the very end, joking with everyone as she always had. She has left a huge void and is greatly missed, but her laughter and her beautiful smile will last forever.
Noel “Green Cross Code” Waterfield
(1936-2014) On the 10th of August 2014, the Madrid H3 received the incredibly sad news of the passing of our dear friend and Hashing companion Green Cross Code. Although he’d left Madrid some years earlier, he and Pauline “Old Spice” were a constant presence at celebration r*ns, Away Hashes, Camping Hashes and pool parties, where he could be found waxing lyrical about England rugby, the Leicester Tigers, curry, travelling around the world and camping.
His first run was the “Old Gits Run”. He turned up attired totally in green and was a bit taken aback to be included in the line-up of old codgers for the day. He wasn’t too sure about the Hash after that first run, and mentioned to Old Spice that he’d met a number of incredibly strange people… but that he’d give it another chance. That’s all that was needed and the couple became regular members until they left Spain, and continued to visit regularly afterwards.
Green Cross Code will be forever remembered for the Hypothermia Run in La Cabrera. At the end of a long run and struggling against the freezing elements – while attired in nothing more than a vest a shorts, and not an ounce of fat to be seen – he proceeded to run straight past the car park in a hypothermic daze. He was caught and swiftly bundled into a car with a blanket and some brandy, and a legend was born…
Travel well my friend…
John “OAP” Wright
My husband, John Wright (Hash name: OAP), died suddenly on 21st August 2012, aged 81.
I introduced him to the Hash when we started “courting” and he loved it. Unfortunately, consistency in continuing what he would start with great enthusiasm wasn’t his forte – he decided one rainy day in Asturias that he had been there, done that, got the T-shirt (several, actually), and was going to hang up his Hash gear. However, he kept in contact enough to know and to take an interest in what we were all doing, and there wasn’t a lot that I decided not to tell him when I came home.
We set a lot of runs together and strange things happened sometimes, like the time we set a run only to find, when the Hashers set off, the beginning of the trail had been eaten by a flock of sheep and there was no sign of where to go. It got us a down-down, of course, but I’m not sure whether anyone believed our protestations. His sense of mischief meant that we never once set a hash run without resorting to Other Means of Transport, usually the car. We were only discovered once in all that time.
OAP was never a natty dresser, successfully being awarded various down-downs for Hash Fashion, usually because of holes in the T-shirt, shoes that looked as though they’d been rescued from a clothes bank, and shorts that reached below his knees in the years before Rafa Nadal had hit his first tennis ball.
His nickname came about because he was the Oldest Active Participant on the Madrid Hash – nothing to do with OAP in the ordinary, boring sense – I can say that now because I’m one of those myself (in the boring sense). He was immensely proud of his name and would tell anyone who would listen why he had it. One or two dastardly Madrid Hashers tried to make him relinquish it once he had stopped hashing (because they wanted the name for themselves), but we weren’t having any of it. He was the OAP, and would only relinquish the name when he died – and so it was to be, though I don’t know whether anyone else officially holds it by now. I hope that if anyone does, they will live up to it well. Diana Grayland (a.k.a Lady Di).
Terry “Sandwich” Keefe
Incredibly sad news arrived in July 2017 that another of our historic Hashers, Sandwich, had passed.
He had not been on the Madrid H3 for some time, despite living on the outskirts of Madrid all these years, but he was a constant presence on the Hash in the 90s.
Indeed, he is depicted in the famous Old Gits R*n photo with many other MH3 luminaries at the time… He received his Hash Handle due to his penchant for carrying a sandwich or bocata at all times given his voracious appetite. Hence, he would often be found tucking in halfway around the r*n…
Leigh “Marathon Man” Richardson
Marathon Man was a hugely respected and avid Hasher in the late 80s and 90s. He got his name due to the fact that he had run a half marathon or two, something not too common among Hashers at the time (and looked at with grudging respect albeit also a degree of suspicion that he might actually have committed the ultimate sin of “training”…)
Marathon Man, alongside wife Knickerless and dog Sambo, was incredibly active on the Hash, constantly organising events such as quiz nights, whisky tasting evenings, parties in general and the annual summer pool run that they would host from their house in Fuente El Fresno. He is also to blame for introducing his offspring Chatterproof, Donkey Punch and Nice Boy to the pleasures of Hashing…
Apart from his ever-present beard, he is famed for his Downhill Run, a run that was – as you may gather from the name – totally downhill and tested more than a few knees and ankles. Also a member of the infamous Spice Boys, whose sole performance in Rancho Texano was marred by a hapless gunman, who made a vague – and failed – attempt to hold up the Hash Annual Dinner. He then promptly organised the “I Survived Rancho Texano Run” from his gaff…
Marathon Man sadly succumbed to pancreatic cancer in November 2015 and is hugely missed by all of us who knew him.
On On my friend!!!
Roland “Roland Rat” Price
Roland Rat was introduced to the MH3 rather grudgingly, having been begged to attend by Tim Rat, who needed a chauffeur. In fact, Roland Rat claimed at times that this was his sole reason for going. However, his real love for Hashing came to light as he unselfishly attended the Eurohash in Madrid in 1993 on the pretext that he’d have to represent Tim Rat, who could not. His generosity seemed to have no bounds.
He soon became an avid member, especially as the Hash seemed to combine elements that he held dear: the countryside, good humour and beer!
He also soon realised that it was a useful way to get other people to walk his dogs, although this invariably led to the dogs constantly getting lost on the r*n given the attention span of your average Hasher.
Roland Rat always had a smile on his face and had a good word for anyone. It’s obvious he’d never been to a Hash committee meeting. In short, he was a joy to be around.
Roland Rat passed away in 2003 after fighting leukaemia for many years.
Pedro “Stiff Nipple” Acevedo
Stiff Nipple was an avid Hasher and had completed 380 runs when he decided to leave us – mission accomplished! He got his Hash name one sunny spring day out near the ultralite airport. We were all in the circle after the run and Pedro had been given the Hash Tits the week before for some odd trivia, so the then-GM Tight Fit called him into the circle to give them away to some other deserving member. As Pedro stood in the circle, he was absent-mindedly twiddling the nipples with both hands. The pack was in hysterics as he continued to twiddle while telling his story, completely oblivious. The RA at the time promptly named him STIFF NIPPLE!
He quietly passed away in his sleep one weekend with firm plans to Hash on the Sunday. It was completed unexpected and a huge shock to everyone. Several months later, on a fair September day, Stiff Nipple’s wife Rosaaaah showed up at the run site in San Rafael – Stiff Nipple’s favourite forest. She’d brought along Stiff Nipple’s ashes to spread them there. Before the runners set off, Rosa took off downhill into the wind and started flinging the ashes around, at which point Tight Fit remarked, “We’d better get upwind… don’t want to get a piece of Pedro in our eye!”… Hysterics ensued…
We also made an attempt to plant a tree in his honour during a Hash on Cerro de San Pedro. Unfortunately, the tree was autochthonous to more tropical climes – not a windswept hill in northern Madrid – and barely survived long enough to be consumed by the local cattle…
We all have very fond memories of this well-loved Hasher.
Dave “Muted” Martin
The driving force of the Madrid Hash was without doubt DAVE MARTIN. Although he wasn´t on the first run, when he heard that some people from oil companies and the Embassy had tramped along the Madrid Countryside in May 1984 for 20 minutes he summoned the guilty ones to his house in LA MORALEJA This first unofficial committee meeting ended at 7 in the morning with empty bottles of port and bacon sandwiches and DAVE joined them on the second run. The MADRID HASH was now going places……
DAVE got things moving. I could always see him in the car park coming up with ideas for down downs and who should be the G.M., the R.A., the MOM, the HORN, the HASH CASH, the SCRIBE……………………
One of Dave´s great introductions was the “50 MUG”. This was a 2 litre silver tankard filled with the golden nectar, to be drunk when you completed 50 RUNS. Needless to say hardly anyone ever drank it down in one but it must be noted that many harriettes of the day had a real go!!! When DAVE left Madrid he promised that if any hasher drank the beer in ONE he would return and engrave the Hasher´s Name on the Mug……..I just wonder where that mug is today.
Sadly DAVE died in January 2014, and his funeral was attended by some ex Madrid Hash families. The Madrid Hash sent flowers with this note:
“You hashed in other parts of the world but you were our Founding Father. Because of this, many people were introduced to hashing and enjoyed their time in Madrid. Some followed your example and went on to found Hashes in other places. Many more just continue to love hashing wherever they are. Since you left Madrid, hundreds, if not thousands, have discovered the joys of Hashing here. Even today some people you knew are still running with us and remember you well. Your legacy lives on. Thank you Dave! On On Forever! MADRID HASH HOUSE HARRIERS”.
Stephanie “Safe Sex” Barnum
We remember talking to Stephanie at a typical Hash party about life and love and meeting the right person. Quite soon after, she met Paul who became her husband and who she introduced to the Hash. They hadn’t been married long when she became ill with cancer.
A memorial plaque was placed for Safe Sex at the British cemetery in the south of Madrid, prompting some outrage as it was assumed by non-Hashers that it made reference to the fact that she had died from some kind of STD… We’re pretty sure that she’d have found that hilarious…
Christine “Krasher” Fernandez
Never frightened of hard work, Christine (known affectionately by her staff as “La Jefa”) was accomplished at every job in the bakery, kitchen and front of house. She also managed to bring up 4 children and still found time to become a reliable, regular and loyal Hasher.
She rarely missed a week and brought the kids along with her. As she was so well organised it didn’t take long before she was volunteered into becoming an On-On Sec. Together we i.e. Brenda (aka Wilma) became a dedicated team for a full 5 years.
Hashers and friends commented that Christine never had a bad word about anyone and conversely they never had a bad word about her.
She obtained the privileged Hash name of Krasher from the then RA (Flintstone) for some obscure reason that is probably better left in the annals of history. Suffice to say that the local body shop was pleased to see her on some Monday mornings.
I recall returning from a Hash near Somosierra down the N-1. On approach to the exit for Santo Domingo, where we both lived, the whole of the world’s F1 fans poured out of RACE bringing the N-I to a standstill. We could have walked the short distance but clearly not an option, so we simply switched off in the middle of the carriageway, Christine found some sandwiches and snacks originally intended for the kids and magically found a crate of Mahou. The kids played happily and we had a most enjoyable picnic much to the bemusement of other car occupants. Days later Christine confided that she’d helped the Hash Dray carry the remains of the beer for the next week.
I can’t recall if the body shop was visited that Monday.
Wilma (me) was/is proud to call her my dearest friend and still miss her after 20+ years.
That´s where I first met Campbell, we both played for an all-conquering Saturday morning college football team called the Bodyswervers in the 1970s. Soon after that we both made our way to Madrid.
Campbell discovered the Hash in the summer of 1984 because he was working at the embassy at the time. He was craggy, curly haired, liked a beer and a cigarette. When he told me what he got up to on a Sunday afternoon I told him I thought he needed a psychiatrist.
Nobody was safe from a down down when Campbell was around.