Classic vehicle enthusiasts turn out in force for rally

Motorbikes and bicycles from the past were one of the features of the rally.
Motorbikes and bicycles from the past were one of the features of the rally.

Grampian Vehicle Restoration Society’s annual rally on Sunday provided a double boost for the organisation.

The event at Oldmeldrum Pleasure Park - the society’s 49th - attracted a record 290 exhibits and the society also received a boost to its membership.

It was a special day for society member Adam Craigmile, from Westhill, who celebrated his 100th birthday this year. He was presented with a cake, card, and the Ben Groat Award for services to the classic vehicle club.

Society secretary Alan Sharpe said they were delighted with the success of the rally.

He added: “We were blessed with beautiful weather which attracted a record-breaking number of exhibits.

“We also attracted an extra 32 members which is a major boost for the society.”

Mr Sharpe said that there were growing interest in the classic vehicle scene.

He said: “Two years ago we had around 100 members but now we have about 180 which highlights the growing interest in these vehicles.

“It’s a great social event for everyone. These days when people retire they think about doing-up an old car.

“We have exhibits from a wide area, from the North of Scotland to Fife.”

The society’s chosen charity this year was Breakthrough Breast Cancer and the Oldmeldrum branch of the organisation had a stally at the rally.

Entry for exhibitors and the public was free and funds for the society were raised through raffles, bric-a-brac and other events.

Public car parking was organised by Staff and Cadets from 877 (Inverurie) Squadron Air Training Corps.

The society is now looking forward to its 50th anniversary next summer.

It was formed in 1964 by a group of Inverurie Academy former pupils, together with some enthusiasts from Oldmeldrum district, who wanted to establish a motor club.

On the 27th January, 1965, the first recorded meeting of the club was held and a committee appointed. Only four days later, one of the first events, which included driving tests, was held in Kemnay. Several other rally-type events followed and in July, 1965, the name “Garioch Motor Club” was adopted. During August of the same year the first vintage rally was held and of the 16 vehicles on the programme 12 took part.

The run began from a farm on the outskirts of Oldmeldrum following a route through local villages, returning to Oldmeldrum where tea and sandwiches were provided in a small garage in the grounds of Redgarth Hotel.

These were the beginnings of the now well-established annual rally.