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Ulster Pre-War Austin Club


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Spring Run 17th April 2010:

A Report on the SPRING RUN 17TH. APRIL 2010.

We had been carefully watching the weather forecast for over a week before the event and Saturday gave rain so we felt quite down but as the big day came closer things began to improve. What better weather could we have had when we arose early on the morning of the 17th. When we arrived at Junction 12 on the M1 we were pleasantly surprised to see that the Omagh Men were already there and were supping their morning cuppa. What early risers these men and women are! Shortly after the remainder of the 17 cars booked in all arrived and at approximately 10.45 we headed off on the first leg of our run for tea/coffee, scones and biscuits at the Priory in the centre of Benburb. The run through this part of Co. Armagh was beautiful even though the Apple Blossom was not out . On crossing the Weak Bridge over the River Blackwater we had to enter Tyrone which pleased the Omagh drivers but soon we returned to “The One Fair County in Ireland”. The Priory is situated in a beautiful location overlooking the Blackwater Valley with views far beyond Armagh City and the twin spires of the Cathedral could be clearly seen. We had planned for a two hour stop here which just flew in as there is so much to see and do in this beautiful place but first things first and that was to look after the inner man with the sustenance provided by the Priory staff. Many comments were expressed on the beautiful scones and tea/ coffee served and I overhead my wife say to the casually dressed gentleman “Is Father Raymond here?” To which he replied “ That is me”. You see we had asked the lady who we dealt with and who made all the arrangements for us if she would give a talk but she explained that she was also a housewife and mother and had weekends off and that Father Raymond would do so if he was around. This he did and proved that he has a wealth of knowledge and kept his audience enthralled with his anecdotes and it was great that members felt able to ask questions which were welcomed and wittily answered by our host. After this some went for walks to the Castle and the river whilst others visited the craft shops and attended the throwing of a vase on the Potter’s Wheel by Susie Crooks, who hails from the Mid West of America. Sadly it was time to move on so at 2.00 p.m. the vintage horn was sounded and all 17 engines were fired up and we departed for the remainder of our trip through Co. Armagh. This leg of the run took us to the outskirts of Armagh City and along the main Armagh Portadown Road for a few miles before we turned off to skirt along the Castledillon Estate and passing close to the Obelisk erected by Sir Capel Molyneux in 1782 to commemorate the winning of independence by the Irish Parliament in 1782. We are now near the end of this lovely tour and are only a short distance from The Famous Grouse Restaurant where dinner has been reserved for 4.30 p.m. The meal served was up to the usual high standard of this excellent establishment.

Mention must be made and thanks given to Godfrey Crawford for assistance in planning the route, for printing the route instructions and for acting as official photographer which we look forward to seeing and I am sure many will be on our new website which has been so professionally built up by our own Paul Armstrong.



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