Under development – February 2021

Harlequins Orienteering Club was founded on April 1st at the Area Youth Office, Kinver, on 1st April 1968. The name Harlequins was given to the new club because of the foundation on All Fools Day and possibly also to avoid naming the club after a place, which might prove a hostage to fortune later.

The origins of Harlequins OC had been lost in the mists of time for several years. Although a few of the original members are still around, some of the personal recollections contradict each other. There was some confusion over whether HOC was independently founded or had evolved from the earlier Halesowen & District Orienteering Club, which ceased to exist soon after HOC came into being. Did HDOC become HOC? Did they amalgamate? Or did HDOC fold and the members join HOC? With the 40th anniversary looming, extensive research by then webmaster David Williams and AdHoc editor David Nevell, amongst others, uncovered the truth.

The results of the two Davids’ research can be viewed by following the links below. The foundation webpages include scans and transcripts from documentary sources:

Foundation David Williams’ webpage dated January 2006

Foundation – The Truth David Williams’ follow-up webpage dated June 2007

HOC History (well, the first forty years anyway) David Nevell’s four-part history of the club, first published in the January – April 2008 editions of AdHoc. Individual clubs do not exist in a vacuum and this piece puts HOC’s evolution in context with the development of Orienteering in the UK.


01 Apr 1968 – Foundation of HOC

22 Sep 1968 – First open event at Kinver

13 Jan 1969 – Effective amalgamation/absorption of HDOC

May 1969 – First Badge/National event at Wyre Forest

Apr 1970 – First club newsletter

1981 – First night street event

Apr 1983 – Newsletter titled AdHoc

1983 – First Springtime In Shropshire

1983 – First June Jaunter

1988 – First Bewdley International Mountain Marathon

c1993 – First use of OCAD

1995 – HOC has a website

1999 – Launch of SMILE (Saturday Morning Low-Key Introductory Events)

Nov 1999 – HOC’s first use of SI at Ribbesford Woods

2005 – Launch of MADO Initiative

Logos A selection of Harlequins logos through the years.

News Archive Old news items

Photos Photo archive (old format page)