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2015 Ludlow & the Marches Classic Tour 11th Oct

Ludlow and The Marches Classic Tour
11th October 2015

Dippy was all set up and ready to go, a full service, new wheel bearings, suspension joints and a small repair to the bonnet. Richard at my local garage did say he had given the car a bit of a tune up and this certainly showed.  Dippy was cruising like a dream up the M5 to Ludlow overtaking was no problem I could have almost been caught for speeding.

It was 165 miles to Farden where I was having an overnight with Elaine and Malcolm Oxborrow. Start the day off right; don’t have your alarm clock set on 12 hour mode if you want to get up at 6.00 am not 6.00pm, first mistake of the day.

It was a warm autumn morning for the start of the event and for the second running of this event there was a very healthy amount of entries which says a lot about last years tour. 

The start venue as last year was the Ludlow Brewing Co, not a good time to start drinking but a special bottle was given as a event memento to all the participants. There was a great atmosphere fantastic bacon butties or
Danish pastries, with lots of chatting between old friends and new. Tours like this bring a lot of people together with a common interest it doesn’t matter if you have got a Wolsley Hornet, Irish Clan or Hillman Avenger Tiger we all have one thing in common, to follow the instructions and get round the route without making a mistake or getting lost.

As a driver this time I was in the happy position of being able to chat instead of studying the road book to make sure a wrong turning was not taken out of the start. The road book was beautifully put together with just the right amount of local information, especially the way it was indicated on the tulip section.

The words Kerry, Woodpecker, narrow and bumpy or tight uphill should have told me something. My late husband Mike Stratton would have been in his element driving the roads on this event, as I am sure a lot of the ex-rally drivers enjoyed themselves, albeit with their wives. 

As an old lady (and a bit crazy) of 71, I was well pleased with myself to drive the event.  The first part was the longest being 42.4 miles, nice to do a long section while still fresh and the WI ladies at Dolfor Village Hall did the event proud with their cakes and scones, eat your heart out Mary Berry they certainly kept up the standards of the WI.

The second section took us to lunch break at Rhayader. This was a section of 30 miles, instructions included cattle grids, no sign posts, NO hand brake turns please very acute! All good fun. The roads were beautiful with the autumn colours starting and with the sun now out, the oranges and reds of the leaves were stunning. 

We now come to the penultimate section some 38 miles to The Baron at Bucknel for the afternoon break. Well it was for some but as we were arriving the last car was just leaving the car park. Hmmm me thinks we had been a little off route looking for Knucklas and were now running rather late. Not the drivers fault. A twirl in the car park and off to complete the last section to the finish 18.9 miles, which was the proverbial sting in the tail, such fun to drive, even if my shoulders and arms were getting tired. 
I have to thank Elaine, Malcolm and all the marshals and everyone connected with the tour for making the event a memorable one, without people who are prepared to give up a lot of time and energy to put on events we would not have our fun days out. We all love our old cars and it is so nice to be able to bring them out for a run round our beautiful country. See you all next year. 

I know Dippy really enjoyed himself and now has to go to bed for a while after a good clean.

Hilary car 28 and a not too dirty Dippy