The E.R.A Club Dinner
The newly-formed E.R.A. Club had a very nostalgic assembly of pre- and post-war E.R.A. drivers at its first dinner, at the Public Schools Club in Piccadilly on March 2nd.
Organised by the Hon. Sec., Barry Eastick, himself an ex-E.R.A. owner, A. F. Rivers-Fletcher took the chair and Raymond Mays and Humphrey Cook were guests of honour. Mays delivered a moving speech, recalling how he had initiated the E.R.A. project, recalling episodes from the old days, as when Tony Rolt's Zoller blower seized solid between his legs, and captured the carefree but deadly earnest atmosphere of those days, when top-line drivers earned perhaps a mere £3,000 a year and it was all that much more fun.
Tommy Wisdom replied in an amusingly brief speech of thanks, saying that when he drove an E.R.A. he spun it twice and he regarded these cars as too high, too short and too fast! Rivers introduced the drivers present, excusably getting a bit mixed over some of the historical facts.
The pre-war E.R.A. drivers included Raymond Mays, Lord Essendon, Humphrey Cook, Leslie Brooke, Kenneth Evans, Tommy Wisdom, Reggie Tongue, R. L. Brooke, Tony Rolt and Ian Connell, the post-war E.R.A. exponents being represented by the Hon. Peter Lindsay, Syd Day, Bill Moss, Peter Waller, David Good, Martin Brewer, Gordon Chapman, John Bolster, Michael Christie, John Broad, Bob Gerard, Duncan Hamilton, David Hampshire, David Good, David Kergon, who had flown over from Germany to be present, Dudley Gahagan, Brian Shawe-Taylor, Jack Williamson, Douglas and Peter Hull, Geoffrey Kerr and Barry Eastick, also Joan Gerard, the only lady driver amongst the men, in the regrettable absence of Kay Petre.
The old E.R.A. Trophy, of R1A E.R.A., was on loan from the B.R.D.C., and Ian Jackson brought along his splendidly detailed model of the ex-Ansell E.R.A. Phillip Mayne, Philip Turner, Roland King-Farlow and others who were active in the pre-war E.R.A. Club were present, along with many other celebrities.