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ANNUAL MEMORIAL MEETING FOR SIR HENRY ROYCE, ELMSTEAD
22 April 2004

Ninety-nine years and fifty weeks after the first meeting of F H Royce and C S Rolls we gathered outside Sir Henry's last home in West Wittering to give thanks for his life and works. On 4 May it will be one hundred years since these two gentlemen met in Manchester and the rest, so they say, is history! Just one thought though, their Company name became official on 12 December 1904 and had not Charles Rolls insisted otherwise the name could have been Royce-Rolls. However that does not roll off the tongue in quite the same way, so well done Sir Henry for agreeing.

Lots of these event write-ups start with a weather report, include the numbers, comment on the food etc. Well this one is no different.

By half past ten on a glorious sunny Thursday morning numerous Club cars were on parade. In the drive of Elmstead West, in the drive of Hattons, in the drives of kind neighbours and in Elms Lane itself, a total of twenty-four in all. It could even have been more Club cars had the Secretary not travelled in Martin Coomber's PIII, Teddy Nash accompanied Ron McAllister in his R Type and Paul Lewis had dropped his Spur into Taylor's for a quick check. Once again the Reverend Clifford Hankins led a short service in front of the commemorating plaque on the front wall of Elmstead East. Clifford said he sought to say something a little different each year and tried again so to do. He praised the excellence of Sir Henry's work which included a mention that that work had stood our country in good stead in times of peace and strife.

We were kindly invited, for refreshments, into the garden of Hattons by David and Jackie Gray again this year and an eagle-eyed member counted sixty-four members and guests. Must be close to a record! Just before the majority dashed off to the Spotted Cow, Jackie was presented with a bouquet of flowers in thanks for their hospitality and David said a few words in response.

The Spotted Cow at Hunston, a new venue for us, turned out to be absolutely ideal with reserved parking, lots of dining space and really good service from the new Managers.

It was a great meeting with the full range of the Club marques with each decade represented from Chess Ferrier's Silver Ghost through to Tony Leach's Arnage.

Ted Meachem - Section Secretary


The Service   Drinks at Hattons
The roadside service outside Elmstead was filmed by the BBC.   Drinks and canapés on the lawn at Hattons.
The old ones   RR 20hp  and Shadow outside Elmstead
A scene reminiscent of the early thirties at Hattons.   RR 20hp Doctor's Coupé and RR Corniche by the historic gate.
Ted thanks the Grays   Poised for fun
Ted thanks Mr and Mrs Gray for their kind hospitality.   Enjoying a drink in the sunshine. Photos: Ian Burt