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2012 HRCR Warwickshire Tour 19th Aug

This was to be the second running of a tour organised by Quinton Motor Club, but the first year as an HRCR-listed event. As the name implies, the route was to be quite close to QMC’s roots - all in the county of Warwickshire.

The start venue was at the Kings Norton Golf Club, ideally placed just off Junction 3 of the M42. The venue was just perfect: large car park, a ballroom for documentation and very tasty bacon baps - what more could one ask for? After signing on, there was time for navigator Hilary to make her own marks on the very clear and descriptive road book. 

Of great use to newcomers to the tour scene were a number of pages dedicated to explaining how a road book works and should be used. Another plus for those who were not too familiar with Tulip Road Books was that the Organisers had thoughtfully added an extra seven A4 maps to describe a few difficult junctions so no one should stray from the prescribed route. 

Dippy and crew were given a start number of 2 and left the Golf Club at 10.02 hours. Through the lanes, the route took the entrants onto the main A435 and then back to the country roads past Earlswood Lakes and Tanworth-in-Arden. 

Continuing through some of Warwickshire’s best places, we passed through Ullenhall, Aston Cantlow, Ardens Grafton and Exhall. Next came the very pretty village of Welford-on-Avon and then in the direction of the Shakespeare town of Stratford-upon-Avon, before passing Charlecote Park. 

A short run along the A46, then a left turn onto the A4117 brought the route past the famous flight of canal locks at Hatton. On arrival at Hatton Country World we were directed to a grass car park by a very efficient team of marshals. 

The sun had now joined the tour and we could enjoy the first break in the wonderful surroundings of the Country World. Leg 2 of the event was to be a short affair of just over 20 miles, but, for added interest, the keen crews could plot this section onto Map 151 by references or continue following the road book. The route passed through Norton Lindsey, Langley, Bearley, Hampton Lucy and then back to Hatton Country World. 

After another break, the tour restarted at 14.00 hours. At this point it was noticed that Dippy also needed a drink, so a detour was made along the A4117 to refuel. Now back on route, we left the main road for quiet country roads, going due north past Honiley, Barston and Hampton-in-Arden to the very smart town of Knowle. 

From here, we journeyed on via Chadwick End, Baddesley Clinton, Rowington Green and to Lowsonford. Here is the home of the famous Fleur de Lys pies that used to be made at the inn of the same name on the banks of the canal - but sadly no more. This circular route now headed back north to the Country Park for the final control of the day. 

To end the tour, the Organisers had arranged a catering company to provide a very varied and well-cooked BBQ - another new twist to a tour finish. 

Our conclusion was that it was a very well organised tour, with superb paperwork and even sunshine as well! Having lived close to the area used for the Tour for 26 years, we were very surprised to find so many roads that we had not driven on before. 

Warwickshire is certainly a county that has a lot to offer in the way of pretty villages, stunning views and houses to die for. 

Our grateful thanks to Jaci and Malcolm Hutchinson plus their team of helpers for all their hard work in making this event happen.

Our sincere thanks once again to Peter Fieldhouse for all his help in compiling this report and a big thank you to Mark Colston for providing the photographs.

Hilary and Mike Stratton plus Dippy