RREC Welsh-Section Week-end

The annual week-end rally of the Welsh Section of the Rolls-Royce EC took place on April 22nd-24th, organised as usual by Arnold Lewis. A line array of cars of this illustrious make, many of them recent models, Bentley included, assembled at the Abernant Lake Hotel in the wilds of Llanwryd Wells for dinner on the Friday. They had come from as far afield as Greenwich, Loughborough and Tunbridge Wells, etc. On the Saturday the cavalcade made its way to Aberystwyth by way of the hilly Ahergwesyn-Tragaaron road, where we photographed some of the cars on the 1-in-4 double-hairpin stretch, above the river Tywi. All of them climbed without difficulty, although Rogers’ Daimler E20 shed two child passengers and a dog as a precaution. It was appropriate, with talk of the pending Silver Jubilee celebrations of the RREC, that the only non-Rolls-Royce-Bentley on this run should be a Daimler.

The oldest car taking part was Joe Rides’ sprightly 1919. 40/50two-seater from Stourbridge, which was seen to have three external control levers (Barker dipping headlamps?). The most recent was a Silver Shadow II and although more recent Royces predominated, a back-braked Twenty was present and we noticed a Silver Wraith bearing the Reg. letters EVE. As the drivers tackled this tricky road it was apparent that the older cars were the more hushed, perhaps because the automatic-transmission cars were in “hold-low” gear, causing the engines to rev., particularly that of the Shadow II. We followed the impressive procession in nearly the next best thing, an Automatic BMW 528. The objective was Aberystwyth, where members were welcomed at the Town Hall by the Mayor and Deputy-Mayor, the latter a R-R enthusiast, and were then privileged to be shown over the very fine Library of Wales, where the cars were parked in front of this impressive building, looking out over the sea – a majestic setting. Some R-R literature, including correspondence from The Hendre, a pre-war “Rolls-Royce Bulletin” etc. was on display. Afterwards the cars returned to the Hotel via the Devil’s Bridge Mountain Road. At dinner, to which my wife and I were kindly invited, we heard from lt. Col. Eric Barrass, OBE, the RREC Secretary, of the Club’s forthcoming headquarters in Northants and talked of many other R-R topics. The rally dispersed on the Sunday, after a look at the Sugar Loaf on the Black Mountain road. – W.B.