Wiltshire Tour Day 4
Monday 25th May
In order to allow the crews to load up in time for the blow-down dinner, a shorter day of 24.7 miles was planned for Sunday, to Fovant Badges and Salisbury Cathedral. Turning right out of the gate, we passed over Salisbury race plain, passing the race course of Horse racing fame, then along the chalk Valley, again another beautiful day. A long climb then followed, then a steep down-hill of 15%, before pulling in at the lay-by to view the World War 1 badges, made by soldiers at the time, using local Chalk. It was at this time that I was able to ride in Steve Baldock’s beautiful model R that he has just completed. Retracing the route up the hill, a sharp exhaust beat could be heard, music to any steam man’s ears, despite slightly leaking glands due to the gland clips being slightly too short, something Steve will address soon in his meticulous manner. Basil Craske with the model K too had similar ideas, but coming back down the hill at highly elevated speed, the pilot light blew out, then as speed slowed, reignited, followed by a boom of the burner full of fuel re-igniting! Despite this, all were able to press on to The Ship Inn at Burcombe, where a two course lunch for £9 a head was enjoyed by all! A short trip followed to Salisbury Cathedral in convoy, it was at this time that then our pilot light decided to go out, amid much smoke! We were soon away again, passing through the Cathedral close before parking up again. Basil Craske decided to pose his model K in front of the Cathedral, and I understand a number of good photographs were taken. A good look around the Gothic designed Cathedral, with the tallest spire in the U.K, was done by the full contingent, many regarding this as one of the major highlights of the tour.
It was but a half a mile or so back to the hotel, where cars were loaded in preparation for the blow-down dinner that evening, the event seeming to finish barely after it had started.
Once again, we sat down to a three course meal at the Rose and Crown, where a number of awards were given out, the majority in the style of rubber ducks! Steve Baldock received the Learner Duck award for his outstanding achievement with his new car, Basil Craske the speedy duck award for his high speed efforts, John Dyke the lame duck award for breaking his car, and Dudley Watts the super driver award, having covered more miles than ever previously before, a fantastic achievement. A special thanks must be said to all the people at the places we visited for their co-operation, as well as Peter and Sarah Hounslow, without whom, the event would never have happened. A fantastic three days was had by all, many saying it was not long enough, and much leg pulling being undertaken regarding the intended deviations in the route instructions!
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