Parlington Rally :: Rally of the Tests, Thumbs Down!

Brochure Extract from the Upcoming Rally

Rally of the Tests
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Another sad tale; earlier in the year I met with Peter Scott a notable local Rally Driver who also runs Bretts Fish Restaurant in Headingley. Any how turning to the rally rather than the fish suppers. We spent some time researching the prospects of making the estate roads around Parlington the venue for a stage in the soon to be run Rally of the Tests, a latter day reminder of those terrific RAC rallies of the nineteen fifties! The estate managers were informed and initial feedback was favourable, therefore further work was undertaken, by Peter and the organiser Fred Bent. [yes I know what a name for a rally enthusiast!] All seemed on course for the occasion in November this year.

The event is described here from the event brochure:

Ten years ago in deepest darkest Oxfordshire the idea to recreate the golden age of 1950’s British rallying, by running an event in the style of the RAC Rally of Great Britain, was conceived. Popularly known in it’s day as the “Rally of the Tests” the concept was to follow in the wheel tracks of the early events in period cars. For authenticity auxiliary distance measuring devices were banned and crews were encouraged to wear 50’s clothing. A team of elderly motor sport mystics, some of whom had retained at least a few of their faculties, were assembled, long discarded motoring magazines recovered, oil stained history books scrutinized and ancient memory banks scoured for long forgotten rallying stories.

Today I received an email from Peter Scott, telling me that the original enthusiastic approach by a member of the estate managers staff, has been terminated by her removal from the team dealing with the matter and the new player is putting so many jumps and pitfalls as to render the idea dead in the water! So whereas I was looking forward to telling you all of this great event coming soon, not least an opportunity to get some great photos in the estate of the old rally cars, I have to report that it is not going to happen.

Oh dear, what fun it would have been to watch such cars as an old TR4 in full rally regalia thundering along the Fly Line, an opportunity sadly missed!

One last point, I know that there was a strong interest in mechanical road devices, going back to the beginnings of the motor industry, by the Gascoignes. I am sure that Colonel Richard Frederick Trench-Gascoigne late of Lotherton Hall would have voted in favour of such an event. After all he and the then young Bill Burlingham, [Chauffeur, but not driving on the occasion] wound up crunched into a tree on Parlington Drive in one of the old colonels more exotic V8’s. [As told to me by Bill at the Lotherton Hall earlier this year.]

Sorry you will miss this event Colonel, from your very special high placed seat!

p.s. There’s a good review of Peter’s restaurant in Headingley here: