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RREC CENTENARY CELEBRATIONS AT VILLARCEAUX, FRANCE
Weekend 8-9 May 2004

Over one hundred Rolls-Royce and Bentley motor cars from France, UK, Belgium and Holland congregated at the huge Villarceaux estate for the only official RREC organised centenary event on the continent over the weekend of 8-9 May 2004.

Located halfway between Rouen and Paris in the Ile de France region the Villarceaux estate is immense and covers a total of 815 hectares, however, the superb setting of the landscaped park or 'domaine' only forms 64 hectares. Here the buildings comprised an 18th century chateau, 15th century manor house amongst 16th century parterre gardens and water features.

Although the weather was in the main quite atrocious with heavy rain and a cold wind this did not prevent many members from attending, or the throngs of public visitors on each afternoon who were keen to see the cars that were displayed in various parts of the estate.

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars and P&A Wood both had a presence with stands providing information and special motor cars, such as the famous 'Gasque' Phantom with beautifully intricately painted interior. Other exhibitors included Jaeger-Le Coultre watches, Hennessy cognac (with very welcome free consumption for participants), Lalique mascots, Orient Express and expensive, unique Rolls-Royce jewellery from Holland.

The winning car of the Concours d'Elegance was a 1921 Silver Ghost Barker tourer owned by N Stow, a member of Surrey Section. This was a fitting end to that Section's rally to the area the previous week.

Many participants, including a small contingent from Central Southern Section, stayed overnight on the Saturday some forty miles away just outside Paris at the rather splendid, if somewhat pricey, Trianon Palace Hotel adjacent to Versailles.

Andrew Honour - Section Committee Member


Villarceaux  
Trianon Hotel
Cars outside the Trianon Hotel, Versailles.
Couryard display at Villarceaux.
Braving the rain at Villarceaux. Concours winner. Photos: Andrew Honour