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Ulster Pre-War Austin Club


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Report on the Omagh Adventure July 2011


Sometimes when a run has been going for a number of years it is hard to find new routes, ideas and maintain the high standard set on previous runs. Well the Omagh boys and girls have pulled it off again this year!  33 cars turned up from as far away as Newtownards and Donegal and in my opinion this years Omagh event was the best one yet.  Good weather helps and this year it was warm and sunny, even Ken Irwin had the hood down!  The roads used seemed a little wider than usual but the successful format of using roads with grass growing down the middle, coupled with potholes and uneven surfaces was maintained!  Perhaps it was because I was driving an Austin Seven that they seemed wider than normal.  The quiet roads and fantastic scenery used are ideal for our type of cars, it is clear that a lot of thought had gone into the route.  The standard of the road book with all the information it contained, is a credit to Godfrey.  I would have thought it impossible to get lost no matter how much you try.


The museum gets better and each year there are more new exhibits.  The sight of the 1st world war aeroplane flying over the cars and hills was a novel idea that amused many of the participants.  This is Desís private collection and we are indebted to him for allowing us total access, and the effort that he puts in to ensure that we are welcome.  Des, we cannot thank you enough.


If you werenít there, this is what you missed.  We started at 10 am with tea, sandwiches and sticky buns, leaving at 11.30 we headed over Curr Mountain and then Slievemore Mountain past the wind turbine farm. Sam Marsden felt at home and wanted to stop to see how many kilowatts they were producing but we had to move on.  Going down the mountain we passed a massive turf cutting operation and it was lovely to see the new and the old forms of energy cooperating alongside. Into sixmilecross, past Dunmoyle forest and over Tullyglush Mountain we arrived at Toddís leap off-road centre for refreshments.  Toddsleap was very interesting and we only had time for a taster of the activities that goes on there.  George and Sadie McCaig have already booked in for a bungee jumping session in August, it is not too late to join them.


We left Toddsleap and did an anti clockwise loop around Ballygawley, over Bockets hill, onto Tullyvannen for a planned stop.  However our lead driver had disappeared and we carried on past Altmore forest over Crockanirvore Mountain , into Sixmilecross, through Beragh and back to base. The total route was 37 miles except for those including me, who wanted really good value for money and did  37.5 miles!


At the museum we enjoyed a beautiful salad, ice cream and apple tart, had another look at the exhibits and after several speeches, all too soon it was time to make our way home.  I heard later that that Des was giving children rides around the field in his Landrover, so clearly the Toddsleap off road experience had rubbed off on him!  I now know that the event raised £850 for our club charity which is a magnificent achievement in these austere times that we live in.


It would not have happened without a big thanks to everyone who helped set up the museum on Wed and Frid nights and cleared up after the event. To Ella and Anna who stayed behind and prepared the meal, all the ladies who helped with serving and provided food, everyone who provided tom bola prizes, Vincent and Ann Howe who supplied all the ice-cream and coleslaw free of charge. Thanks to Des for the venue and Godfrey for making out the route and the road book. I hope I have left no one out but on behalf of all the participants a big thank you for the hard work put in by everybody.

By Wesley Lamont


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