I was saddened to read the obituary of my boyhood hero Sir Nicholas Williamson in the February edition of the magazine.
I used to live in the same village in Berkshire as Sir Nicholas, and some of my fondest memories of that period are those of him roaring about the village in his Bugatti. From a village point of view, however, Sir Nicholas had a more important function: he used to drive the fire engine for the volunteer fire brigade.
The village of Mortimer is split into two parts, the smaller at the bottom of the hill, where the fire engine was stationed, and the other, larger part, at the top. When the alarm sounded, the crew rushed to the station by any available means, and the tender, driven by Sir Nicholas, would rush up the hill in a fashion best understood by those who had witnessed his competition driving.
I was never sure whether or not there was an official ‘Best Time’ for the hill but I would be surprised if it didn’t exist!
I AM, YOURS ETC,
John Hill, Long Sutton, Hook, Hampshire