Brighton Early

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Hear Ye, Hear Ye, the RAC London to Brighton Veteran Car Run takes place on November 5, starting from Hyde Park, London, from 7.30am and with the first of the International entry of hundreds of pre-1905 cars arriving on the Madeira Drive, Brighton, by about 10.30ann. The RAC insists that this enormously popular and very entertaining happening, which it has organised since 1930 (it commemorated the Emancipation Run of November 14, 1896 when for the first time horseless-carriages were legally permitted to run at speeds of over 4mph) attracts crowds of over one million along the route. Certainly great numbers wave to the occupants of the early primitives (never “Old Crocks”) as they chug, puff or roar towards the finish. It also emphasises that this is not a race, the average speed stipulation being 20mph.

The RACMSA is justly proud that Her Majesty the Queen once entered a 1901 Daimler that had been driven by King George VI and owned by King Edward VII, and that HRH Prince Michael of Kent has driven at least six times on the Run, in veterans ranging from an 1899 Wolseley to a 1904 Mercedes, including the 1903 GB racing Napier. It also says that Terry Wogan, Gloria Hunniford and John Dunn, etc have gone on the Run, which is irrelevant from our viewpoint… Specatators at this year’s Run are advised to park off the road, for example on the easy-to-park-on areas from Crawley onwards (official stop, from 9.10am) rather than impede the old cars on the road. Brighton is usually congested but it is better to arrive there before the first runner than further congest the route. Londoners may prefer to park in a side street and watch the climbs of Brixton Hill from about 7.40am onwards.

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