Piston Broke Rally
14th June 1985 - Wheelwrights MCC.
This one was held at The Raven Inn, near Whitchurch, a site of a fair few rallies and, I was told, not very far from The Cherry Tree, another multi-rally site.
It was very nice weather all weekend, which made my planned route that much easier. I had noticed that the site was on the A41 and I had passed the lower end of the A41, not too far from home, several times on my travels. So, why not hook up with the A41 down south and follow it all the way? One word - Wolverhampton. Here the road goes through the centre, and takes forever. Luckily, I was not going that direction after the weekend, as this was the first stage of my trip to this year's Simmer Dim Rally in Shetland, the next weekend.
While settling in, and recovering from the longer than strictly necessary duration of the trip, The Friday night passed amiable enough, with the entertainment spread throughout the Raven Inn, there was Sam Plank's Disco in the 'rough' public bar end and general drinking and such in the saloon bar part in the middle. There was a further section, the function room, which we didn't use that weekend.
Saturday morning, many of us visited the Raven's (almost) next-door neighbour, a reasonably priced transport café.
The friends that I was travelling up with, Neli and Snapper from the ABC, arrived and set up their tent for the weekend. They had separate tents, but decided it would just about be bearable to share one for this stage. Some other Simmer Dimmists were also using this as a starting point, (or maybe a mid-point), and we would be meeting them again in a few days.
The games went off with good humour and, since the weather was still nice and warm, the wet t-shirt contest was held outside in the pub's car park! (A couple of coaches of OAPs got some scenic views they weren't expecting on their holiday!) The evening went by with more music, beer and song, and I learnt some wonderful ditties this weekend.
Sunday morning and pretty much all the rallyists were packing up to go home, but not us. After a leisurely pack-up, we turned our vehicles North and continued our journey to Shetland.
- Phil (the Spill) Drackley
Post Script: The Raven Inn is still there and I assume is still refreshing drivers in the area. The camping area is now a Garden Centre.