SHIRLEY HOSPITAL CARNIVAL versus THE VETERAN CAR CLUB

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SHIRLEY HOSPITAL CARNIVAL versus THE VETERAN CAR CLUB

The organisers of the Shirley Hospital Carnival announced in the motor Press that they would stage a run for early cars during the Carnival Week of July 4th-9th. We applied for details, anxious to know whether any pre-war car would be eligible, or whether there would be the accepted pre-1905 proviso. Some years ago the “Kent Messenger” used to hold an excellent annual run for any pre-war cars, and had this event not been discontinued, obviously the Vintage S.C.C. would have swelled the entry in a most interesting manner. We hoped that the Shirley Carnival Run might be something similar, and understood that it would comprise a run of some 16 miles, terminating at the Shirley Stadium at Birmingham on July 8th. In a letter dated June 17th the organisers inform us that they have reluctantly been compelled to drop the event, owing to the action of the Veteran Car Club in notifying the Shirley Hospital Carnival committee that if the proposed rally took place a protest would be sent to the R.A.C. That the rally and run has been cancelled indicates the awe in which the R.A.C. is universally held. We greatly respect the Veteran Car Club and its administration, but we should like to know on what grounds they objected to the Shirley Rally. Certainly the Shirley secretary refers to the rally as an ” Old Crocks’ ” rally, and if any intention was afoot to dress up drivers and cars to encourage the comic element the Veteran C.C. was wise to intervene. But if the clash of dates—the Veteran C.C. Ramsgate Rally was due on July 8th-9th—was the sole reason for objecting, we feel that a kinder action would have been to persuade the Shirley people to admit any pre-war car, when their entries should have been quite promising, and Ramsgate would still have had the bulk of pre-1905 cars. Moreover, the original date of the Ramsgate fixture, as given in the R.A.C. Calendar, was July 22nd-28rd. Enthusiasts for pre-war cars put in such a lot of good work restoring their cars to gooa order that it seems a thousand pities that any opportunity for them to drive with a definite object in view should be discouraged, the more so when charity

would benefit therefrom.