Maps, compass, good footwear and not a GPS in sight? Welcome to the world of orienteering past.
Tuesday Retro’s ongoing A-Z series of hobbies enjoyed in our region has now navigated its way to O is for orienteering.
And we’ve tracked down and located these evocative pictures from The Star archives. Undoubtedly, they’re top(ographical) images.
They show everything from the City of Sheffield Orienteering Championships at Rivelin Valley in 1977 to 20-year-old Crookes lad Andy Kitchin winning the British Senior Men’s Orienteering Championships in May 1986. Well done, son.
“With its proximity to the Peak District and successful clubs, Sheffield has long been a centre of activity for orienteering,” says Frazer Johnson, sports development manager at Sheffield Hallam University which briefly set up a National Centre of Excellence in the activity in the late Noughties.
“It’s a great sport because it’s a mix of real athleticism – you have to be fit to take part, no doubt about that – with problem solving. I think it’s that combination that makes it so popular. It’s an incredibly challenging sport. And it gets you outdoors in the fresh air too. Plus a lot of the time competitions are held amid real breath-taking scenery which makes it a bit special.”
This region is also today home to one of the country’s most successful clubs. South Yorkshire Orienteers has more than 200 members ranging in age from toddlers to pensioners. More than a dozen of them have represented Great Britain in international competition.