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Barrels only 45 minutes late!
By Geoff Hodgkinson, Co-Editor

August 29, 2011: The weather stayed good for the 4th World Tour of the Hatherleigh Tar Barrels on Saturday, when over 40 members of the committee, plus offspring and relatives, turned the charity pull into a family event that was no less fun for being that. The Crossways Inn at Folly Gate, the starting point of the pull, gave the barrels a great send-off, with spectators clapping the team out on their 10 mile journey. 'Thanks' Wendy and John, for hosting the start. Then it was off along the back lanes via Toad Island to the Green Dragon at Northlew. At times 22 were on the ropes to get the barrels up those steep hills on the road from Folly Gate and, what with refreshment breaks interrupting things at intervals, the barrels arrived at The Dragon some 55 minutes behind schedule. Landlord John and chef Neil were unperturbed and a superb curry awaited despite the delay. 'Thanks' John and Neil, for your great hospitality. Departure time saw chaotic committee photos being taken outside the Dragon, and then it was off for the return to Hatherleigh. Dusk was falling as the barrels reached Gribbleford where a further treat awaited - pasties and cookies courtesy of Dougal, Mark and Helen. The final mile was walked in near silence. Reinforcements were waiting just outside the town with torches to accompany the barrels for the final 500 metres, a spine-tingling procession up Bridge Street to the Square where the barrels arrived at approximately 9.15pm. The event was held primarily to raise money to buy barrels. Surpluses will be shared amongst local good causes. The Tar Barrel team thank all those who supported the 4th World Tour. More pictures online soon.

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