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Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb - September 2008
Meets, Shows and Events
Scanning through the events page on the NSRA web site, 'Model A Keith' had posted an invite for rodders to attend a day out at the famous hill climb circuit in the Midlands.
With the weather a complete wash out this summer it was a welcome surprise to find this Sunday a clear fine day. Three of us were to make the trip up country (well for us), so leaving home at 9 o'clock I drove onto Reg's house, met up with him and we proceeded onto Rich's home at Wickwar. So now the three rods - an 'A', a 'B' and a Dorset aimed towards junction 14 of the M5 motorway.
Cruising at a steady 70 mph all was well until junction 12 when the motorway warning signs were showing 40 mph and that the outside lane was closed. We all pulled over into the inside lane and joined the slow moving traffic. After what seemed like ages we were diverted off at junction 11 as the whole northbound carriageway was closed. The police were sending everyone into Gloucester - we headed off in the opposite direction towards Cheltenham.

Three in line we followed Rich through the countryside and tried to rejoin at junction 9, but here we still found the road closed. After losing the A-road for a while (another story) we regrouped and headed off onto the B4079. We did see some glorious countryside and eventually reached the circuit at about 12 o'clock. That meant 3 hours to cover about 80 miles..
We bought our discounted NSRA tickets (thanks 'Mrs Keith' - she had been sat waiting for us all morning) and proceeded to the allocated spot. Here we met Keith and three other rodders who had turned up. Sorry I didn't get your names, but after that trip it was just nice to get out and walk for a while.
Needing refreshments we headed to the food/drink area. The frustrating trip had got to all of us, but here the view more than made up for it. With separate bar, canteen, and hot drinks stands I think with the 103 years this event has been running they seem to have it sussed. And this was just the pit area. The whole scene reminded me of a smaller scale Goodwood, with vehicles from the 1930's upwards all around. Many were waiting for their practice run up the famous twisted hill.
At about 1 o'clock practice stopped for dinner and we looked over the newly restored watermill and grounds. This is an ideal place to bring the wife as I'm sure they would not be bored, the views alone being worth the trip. Later we walked the hill, and with toilets, refreshments, and seating all along the track I think the owners have the total package for a good day out.
After watching the timed runs and various classes you do get to realise most of these cars are road cars driven to and from the track, the owners just getting as much pleasure as they can. Next a trip around the car park seemed a good idea, and we were not let down at all - from E-types to Rollers to one off's and the odd Bugatti thrown in.
One car that stood out was a Bentley look-a-like with Jag power and many hotrod touches (see pic). As time drew on after a good day out we headed back to the west country, this time missing the motorway completely. Thanks to Keith for organising the visit - I'd recommend all rodders to attend a hill climb meeting as I think you would be well impressed.

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