Past Events in 2014.
When: Sunday 13th April
Nestling in the verdant,rolling, downlands of Hampshire, Hinton Ampner House was a superb setting to celebrate our Spring Opener.
8 proper cars and some twenty or so persons met in pleasant, warm sunshine to enjoy the still beautiful blossom trees and the luscious new green growth of the surrounding southern Hampshire countryside whilst drinking fresh brewed coffee and chat endlessly.
Around 12 noon, we fired up our faithful steeds and drove a very convoluted route through the country lanes to end up at The Woolsack at Totford, some 9 miles east of Winchester. Here, after a leisurely supping of the local ale we adjourned to the charming oak beamed dining area inside and enjoyed thick French onion soup and truly excellent roast beef and Yorkshire pudding.
The gathering broke up at around 1500hrs to wend our respective ways home.
This was a great start to the 2014 season and our thanks go to Peter Fryer for his organisation. Now for the June Drive in North Wales. On 6th. to 9th.June. (see Newsletter for details)
When: 6-9th June
Where: Rossett, Wales
Our 24th Hotchkiss drive in North Wales had been arranged by Gareth & Juliette Morgan (supported by Michael Edwards) and 29 members and friends gathered at Llyndir Hall Hotel, a country hotel on the outskirts of Rossett, during the afternoon of Friday 06 June. Due to technical difficulties, only 4 Hotchkiss cars made it to the hotel (owned by Paul Hickson, Michael Edwards, Peter Nunn & Michael Scott), but these were supported by a 1926 Morris Cowley and a 1965 330 GT Ferrari. As is usual at these events, the noise levels gradually rose during dinner – but maybe the wine consumed was to blame!
Everyone woke on Saturday hoping that the weather forecasters had got it wrong, as severe storms with localised flooding were forecast for most of the day. As it happened, we had 1 early thunderstorm and then just low cloud with the odd shower during most of the day. This did not deter us, everyone completed the 76-mile round trip with no real problems – although the navigators had to be just as alert as the drivers, especially when trying to read the Welsh place names! The route took us through beautiful countryside along winding, hilly lanes, and we were refreshed with coffee at the stunning home of one of Gareth’s VSCC friends (who also had a car collection) and a delicious lunch provided by the WI. In the evening, everyone was able to relax and let their hair down at the Gala dinner.
After a very leisurely breakfast on Sunday morning, we had a gentle 20-mile drive in the sunshine to our luncheon stop – The Boat Inn at Erbistock. This charming 13th century inn is in an idyllic setting, sitting on the banks of the River Dee, and we were able to enjoy the views while supping out pre-luncheon drinks. Following lunch, it was just a short drive to Erddig, a National Trust country house, together with a stunning garden. The house is presented as it would have been in the early 20th century, and depicts how life would have been like at that time for both the gentry and their servants.
All too soon it was time to say our goodbyes to those who were heading home that afternoon (the last ‘official’ day of the Drive). A significant number of people stayed on at the hotel for one final night before they too had to leave. Our thanks go to Gareth, Juliette and Michael for ensuring we all had a very enjoyable stay in Wales.
When: 17th August
Where: Blade Bone, Bucklebury
‘Twas with heavy heart I set off for the Blade Bone this year despite having the charming company of Gill and Pam to help lift the depression. It was the first time in 26 years that that I was without a Hotchkiss to travel in and 35 years not owning a vintage car of any sort.
However, we were motoring in a Citroen 2CV6! This certainly helped the concentrate the mind but interestingly enough we made the same time for the run as in the AM2 but returning 45 miles to the gallon as opposed to the 18 which the Hotch averaged. The ‘Snail’ aroused quite a lot of comment and hilarity but at the same time, nostalgia for a surprising number of the gathered 20 or so throng.
It was a shame that only Chairman Michael Scott and Tony Curtis arrived Hotchkiss mounted. Holidays and other commitments had reduced numbers but in Hilary Ledger’s case, the night before, whilst reading in bed, she was disturbed by a burglar breaking in through her bathroom window! Hilary was understandably very shaken but otherwise unharmed but decided a quiet day at home was the best thing.
Erica And David, ever aware of their responsibilities of living in Royal Berkshire, organised superb weather, excellent food at The Blade Bone Hostelry, and a wonderful spread for us in their beautiful country garden of home made desserts, cakes, numerous cups of tea plus strawberries and cream in abundance. But perhaps the ‘piece de resistance’ was when we arrived at their house. There, blinking in the sunlight after countless years in lock ups and workshops was the Tipton 1938 686 Biarritz, back on four wheels at long last and now on the way to completion.
A splendid Hotchkiss day, Thank you both very much.
Where: Cotsworlds, England
When: Sunday 12th October
Almost 30 people met up at The Royal Sun in Begbroke, Oxon, on a rather misty murky day. Did the weather dampen our spirits? Of course not! A few of the early arrivals had partaken of sausage and bacon butties, but the majority of us just enjoyed coffee and biscuits while once again meeting up with friends. There was a good selection of cars parked up – 5 Hotchkiss, 2 Delage, 1 Citroen 2CV and 1 Morris 1000. The star of the show had to be Alan and Shirley’s new acquisition, the 1929 AM80 Faux Cabriolet, which had behaved very well on its first ‘official’ outing. It was such a shame that, due to illness, Shirley was unable to be present.
Suitably refreshed, we set off on a 23-mile saunter through the beautiful Cotswold countryside passing through Woodstock, Charlbury, Ramsden and North Leigh before arriving at The George and Dragon in Long Hanborough, our luncheon venue. Judging by the increasing noise levels in the restaurant, everyone was enjoying the company as well as the delicious lunch. After a financially successful raffle, we all bade our farewells and headed off home.
What an enjoyable day it was. We must thank Michael and Helen Scott for arranging the day so efficiently.
See you all at the AGM in February!