Annual Dinner 2023 Report

The Club met once again to enjoy our Reunion Dinner, now an annual event, at the Radstone Hotel near Larkhall where 70 members were welcomed by Chris Paton who had been installed as the new Chairman of the VSMA earlier in the evening at the AGM.

We returned to the Radstone again this year as they had looked after us so well last year and the venue is ideally placed right next to the M74.

Unfortunately there were some empty seats as some had to call off due to illness. Sadly missing from the proceedings was outgoing chairman Bob Baillie who had taken ill earlier in the week and was at home recuperating and hopefully will be feeling well again soon.

The day started in the early afternoon as there was work to do setting up for the AGM and also finalising the table plan for dinner.

Charlie Young, the newly installed treasurer, had brought along the last remaining club clothing and some of his own books and was asking not for a payment but only for a donation. He raised £85 for club funds.

Before our meal was served Nancy Crichton presented a bouquet of flowers to Adele Paterson in recognition of her 18 years service on the board of directors as she and husband Duncan have both decided it is now time to step down.

As always there was a good mix of rallying and racing buffs and a few hill climb fans joining together for an excellent meal and several refreshments.

A new and popular innovation this year was an “all ladies” table to sit alongside the normal “all men” table.

Hugh MacKinnon had brought along his ex-works Mini Cooper S to display at the front door of the hotel and once again we had the on-screen display of photos taken from the Club’s website with almost every photo being connected in some way with those in the room.

Our guest speaker was Peter Scott who has had a quite prolific career in rallying as a co-driver at all levels right up to the very top with many national and International wins. He has also competed as a driver in local events. Peter is originally from Derry in Northern Ireland but now lives in England where he and his wife Victoria had travelled from to be with us.

In attendance were several important regulars of the Veteran’s Dinner including founder of the Club and Honorary Vice President, Jimmy McInnes. Our Honorary President, Sir Jackie Stewart, had sent his apologies as he had a previous engagement but he sent his best wishes for a successful evening.

Once again there was a souvenir programme with a centre spread detailing the guest speaker’s background story but also there was an excellent article written by Mike How on the career of Gerry Birrell and the recently installed memorial to Gerry and the other five drivers who perished at the infamous Six Freres corner at the Rouen-Les-Essarts circuit in France in 1973.

Click on the image below to view the Programme.

The directors have agreed that provided there is the support then the event will be held every year. Provisionally we are looking at 15th November 2024 but when a firm date is set and a venue decided we will make an announcement.

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