The above co-ordinates are meaningless. During the day there is free 3 hour parking near N 51° 44.780 W 0° 58.567 except on Tuesdays, which is market day. Elsewhere parking is mostly limited to one hour, which may not be sufficient for your quest. Not all locations you may want to visit are accessible 24 hours a day. You may want to do some research before you start; you will need collect some information and solve a puzzle or two along the way, visiting a number of micros en route. Some of these may be of a sort you’ve not come across before, but of one thing you can be sure – not one is a 35mm film canister.Please replace all micros exactly as found, and as some are in high-muggle areas please take care not to be observed doing so.
Before you start you will need to decode The Grid to obtain the values of R to W - you will need these to locate the cache.
On the way round you will need to make some notes, so please bring a pen and paper. A digital camera may also help you, but is not essential.
You are about to embark on a walk of well under 2 miles, some of which can be done by push bike if you must, and are prepared to lift your machine over some obstacles and to observe several ‘no cycling’ areas along the way. Buggy friendly yes, with the same proviso about lifting over obstacles. Wheelchairs, sorry no. Don’t even think of trying it in the car! You will need to cross several roads, so please take care.
You will need to be particularly observant (and may want to make notes or take photographs) outside two buildings along the way with a common theme. Tip – they both provide a service, but are not places of worship.
Start your quest by making your way to the oldest surviving inn in Thame. This is a three storied, half timbered building constructed around 1300, sometime town lockup and leper asylum, used as a jail during the Napoleonic wars, and now a smart bistro specializing in 50 different exotic and traditional sausages. If local knowledge doesn’t help, you may need to do some internet research before you start, or just ask the locals! Count the total number of chimney pots and double them to give you A.
Now make your way to N 51° 44.806 W 00° 58.604. How many times is the Phoenix Trail labelled? The answer is B.
Now make your way to the Players Theatre in Nelson Street. THIS STONE was laid on 1Eth D 19C3.
Now, things are hotting up - be particularly observant and make your way to N 51° 44.DB(B-C) W 0° 58.E(C+D)(A-E). How many kingfishers? The answer is F. Nearby you will be able to see a poignant memorial to a dog killed in a fire. The number of letters in the dog’s name will give you G.
Your next location is N 51° 44.DC(BxG) W 0° 58.E(F-G)A. Here you need to find a micro, which will contain further instructions. Follow these until you find yourself at a place where the number 212568 is significant.
Once at this place create a mark on your GPSr, and then walk (don’t ride) north east until you are 380 feet (114m) from your mark. On the way you will need to do the following:
1 – observe a plaque erected in 1951. It carries two ranges of dates. Add all eight digits in the first range together, and then add the resulting two digits together to give you L.
2 – count the number of globes to give you M.
Now make your way by the shortest possible route to N 51° 45.(M-H)(A-F)(C+J) W 0° 58.(K+E-L)(A-L)(C+J). Don’t count any more globes, but keep your eyes peeled! Here you need to find a micro with a difference. Once you have it in your hand, one of the following statements should be obvious:
1 – A cut above the rest
2 – Under new occupation
3 – A fish out of water
4 – A stitch in time
Go to one of the following locations, depending on which of the above applies:
1 – N 51° 45.088 W 0° 58.834
2 – N 51° 45.063 W 0° 58.906
3 – N 51° 44.957 W 0° 58.767
4 – N 51° 44.936 W 0° 58.624
Here you will see some numbers in Roman numerals. Count the 2nd one down from the top on the left to give you N, and the 5th one down from the top on the right to give you P.
From where you are standing you should be able to see St Mary’s parish church (if you face in the right direction!). Make your way to the north side of the church. I had problems getting a good fix at the next point, so here is a special hint [Va yvar jvgu gur ebovafbaf naq gur yg pbybary]. Locate a mini-micro containing the co-ords of your next destination.
Here you will find a small but ostentatious red brick building. Count the number of black crosses along the front façade, and add the resulting digits together to give you Q. Now, being safety conscious and keeping a sharp look out, make your way to N 51° 44.(N+J)(Q-E)(A-F) W 0° 59.(D-N)(B+C)(P+G). Here you need to locate a small container, which will contain a surprise and a bit of a twist. Due to indifferent reception here, the spoiler picture applies at this point.
Some of the locations used for this cache are very public, so please be discreet and respectful. Please replace all micros as found, and above all please join in the spirit of the game and do not give away any information to other cachers. Enjoy!