RREC Central Southern Section
Past Events

held at the Southdowns Country Hotel, Trotton, West Sussex - 11.30am Sunday 5 December 2004

The Chairman, Tony Leach, opened the meeting by welcoming around one hundred and six members and especially Philip Hall from the Management Committee. The Chairman read out a letter from Hunt House addressed to John Bray congratulating him on thirty years' membership of our Club. Philip Hall presented John with his badge and John responded.

The Secretary, Ted Meachem, read out apologies for absence from Eri and Annie Heilijgers, the Denne Family, Peter and Grace Jupe, Mark Tidy, Geoff Allo, Tommy and Dot Welham, Colin and Alvida Hatherly, Peter and Diane Cameron, David and Jackie Gray, Tony Parsons, Peter Collingwood, Colin Barrell, Ronald and June Hazell. He also read out a very complimentary and grateful letter from Fred and Monika Fruth.

The Chairman asked the meeting if he should sign the (previously circulated) minutes of the Annual General Meeting held 7 December 2003 as being a true record. There was full agreement from the floor and the minutes were duly signed. There were no matters arising.

The Chairman, Tony Leach, began his annual report by saying that it had again been rather a special year because it was the Centenary of the formation of Rolls-Royce Motor Car Company following the meeting of Charles Rolls and Henry Royce in Manchester. He said the Section had organised twenty-four events (not including the National at Kettering and the Charterhouse South of England Rally) several of which were repeats of other years where we met for Sunday lunches: Simon Buck had organised an excellent cruise to the Panama Canal and then, with Dick Lees, organised a visit to P & A Wood during a two night stay at Downs Hall Country Hotel: new events included Goodwood Aerodrome, Southsea Castle and D Day Museum, and Charleston Farmhouse near Lewes: this year's Section Annual Rally changed from the Wye Valley Rally to the Severn Vale Rally at the eleventh hour and was very ably run by David and Anne Steel. Tony said he hoped the venue change for the AGM (due to unreasonable wine prices at the Hilton) met with the approval of the majority of members. He went on to say that none of the meetings and events would be possible without the dedication and hard work of the Committee members who have served for the past year. His thanks to all but particularly to Dennis Windows for producing the Magazine, to Michael Marriage for looking after the finances and lastly but by no means least to Ted M the Secretary supreme. Finally he thanked all the members for their support by attending the events of the last year - long may it continue.

The Secretary, Ted Meachem, started his annual report by saying that the South of England Rally this year will be at Bradfield College near Reading on Sunday 15 May. A really splendid new venue which, it was hoped, would attract members from the wider South of England: the National Rally would be held at Kelmarsh Hall, Northamptonshire, on the weekend of 11-12 June and no doubt Philip would tell us a little more about this venue: there were a few vacancies on the Section Annual Rally to the Channel Islands in September next year: a list of those members booked to date was on display and it would be nice to fill the whole of the Highfield Country Hotel again. Ted said that the organisation of Section events is very much a team effort led by the BW's of the day and so to them and to all those other unsung heroes, he would like to give his thanks and appreciation.

It was at this point that Ted realised that he had started his report with page two and so to some embarrassment he continued with the start of his report!

He said it had been another busy time for the Section in this Centenary year of Rolls-Royce: there had been lots of very varied events for members to take part in, both at home and abroad: the membership continued to grow with the last mailing to over 420 addresses and we continued to attract members of the Club who live outside our territory of West Sussex and Hampshire. The response to this year's contribution letter had again been marvellous, 165 members had responded already with almost £2,000 in contributions. On behalf of the Committee Ted said a big 'thank you' to the members for their support.

He went on to say that unfortunately Ian and Jennifer Burt were not able to be with us as Ian's kidney problems had taken a turn for the worst and he was in hospital at present. Ted had spoken to Jennifer a couple times and sent our good wishes: our thanks to Ian for maintaining the Section website with all the event write-up's and pieces of Section news. The Section website could be accessed directly on ChichesterWeb without a password or going through the main Club site, the web address was printed in every magazine. Ted referred to the 2004 Programme, which had been distributed today and also asked if there are any topics members would like raised at the Club Conference in March next year. He concluded his report by asking if there were any questions from the floor? There were none.

The Editor, Dennis Windows, said a few words about next year's magazine, which would be in colour and invited copy from the members.

The Treasurer, Michael Marriage, said that the Section finances were in very good order. Michael ran through the previously circulated figures and asked if there were any questions on the Accounts. There were none. He gave thanks to John Tudor for examining the accounts. Adoption of the accounts was proposed by Jack Pennell and seconded by Dennis Windows. Accepted unanimously. Re-appointment of the Examiner was proposed by Simon Buck and seconded by Dick Lees. Accepted unanimously.

At this point, Chairman Tony presented Michael with an engraved, cut glass decanter (and a bottle of Port to go in it) as a small token of the Section's appreciation for looking after the finances for the past few years. Michael was standing for re-election to the Committee but not as Treasurer.

The Chairman then asked all the prospective candidates for the new Committee to stand. Simon Buck, Doug Groves, Andrew Honour, Tony Leach, Dick Lees, Michael Marriage, Ted Meachem, Maurice Pitchford, David Steel and Dennis Windows. In the absence of any further nominations, it was proposed that the present members be elected en bloc. Proposed by John Bray and seconded by Peter Parkinson. Accepted unanimously.

Andrew Honour said that a lot of work had been carried out on the 2004 Centenary colour photographic publication of the Section events which would run to fifty pages: it would be produced by the end of January by the same printers as the Bulletin.

Peter Princep asked, from the floor, for opinions on the recent Brian Sewell TV programme - none were complimentary!

Philip Hall addressed the meeting saying how pleased he was to attend and to see so many Club cars in the car park. He said that Hunt House were having several staff changes: archive space was being increased due to an influx of records from Crewe, Jack Barclay and H R Owen: hopefully AX 201 would stay housed at Hunt House for some time: there would be a special Centenary supplement with the Jan-Feb Bulletin: no Euro Rally in 2005 but Norway the year after: Broughton House had been an excellent National venue but could not take us for 2005: the DVLC was trying to introduce an 'ownership tax'. Commenting on the letter, Philip said that Fred Fruth's return to Austria was a great loss to our Club: he also mentioned the two changes of CEO at Goodwood. Philip said Hunt House had co-operated in the Brian Sewell programme but that the televised version was quite different in format and tone to what was expected and he had sent a letter to that effect, but to date had not received a reply. Philip concluded by saying that David Dudley and David Evans were standing down from the Management Committee at the next AGM.

Chess Ferrier asked, from the floor, if there was any progress on the acquisition of the three cylinder car - unfortunately not much! Clifton Spencer asked about value - priceless!

Tony thanked Philip and then gave details of the lunch arrangements with Ted and then closed the meeting at 12.40pm.

At a short meeting, the new Committee elected Tony Leach as Chairman, Ted Meachem as Secretary and Andrew Honour as Treasurer.

Ted Meachem - Section Secretary

The Committee   Christmas Lunch
The re-elected committee.   Christmas lunch. Photos: Andrew Honour