Established 1976

Following hot on the heels of the Singleton show is the annual trip to
Kinsale for their International Rally weekend. Once again we were
surprised at the number of cars registered to make the trip. For some reason
this event gets more and more popular every year. We had 29 vehicles
registered for this yearís visit, add to this the fact that accommodation is
harder to get for groups. The town has become very popular with the
Americans again, so we were unable to use the Friars Lodge this year.
Rather unfortunate because we had 17 to 19 rooms in one location and
good parking to go with it.
Having agreed a deal with Stena Line again, we had to reorganise
ourselves to their new timetable, with most opting to travel out on the
afternoon sailing due to the fact that the overnight crossing now left at
11.45pm and arrived at an alarmingly early 4.30 in the morning! Ireland
would still be in bed at that time and any hope of a breakfast en-route,
would no doubt have to wait until arriving in Kinsale. Not many chose this
option, nearly all the cars crossed over on the lunch time ferry. The new
timetable would get us all over to Rosslare at about 4.30pm, which would
gain us a good two hours. Needless to say the ferry was delayed and we
didnít sail until just after 2 o/clock. All that earlier rushing got us exactly
nowhere. Tuff! Apparently the ferry ran through some lobster pot floats
and the ropes became tangled in the propellers. She had to wait for a diver
to arrive and cut her free of the ropes.
Having told the overnight hotel we would be early, we now arrived at the
same time that we used to do. No gain there then. Luckily the family that
run the hotel are very amenable and took it all in their stride. Suitable fed
and watered we set off for Kinsale on the Thursday morning, threading our
way through a Garda road block. The local behind me got pulled over but
Iím not sure what the checkpoint was looking for and I didnít wait to find
out either.
We had a nice top down drive to Youghal, for what has become a
traditional stopover for a coffee and a scone and a natter to break the
journey. We had all day to get to Kinsale after all and the weather was very
pleasant. It was a good day for a leisurely drive and enjoy the scenery.
Notice I didnít say roads; they have deteriorated nicely since our last visit!

This year we were staying at the opposite end of the town to our previous
stays, with the majority spread between two hotels by the quayside.
Thursday night we met up with our Irish hosts for a fish and chip supper
before adjourning for an ale or three. Friday was a free day with a good
number opting to go to Cork for some retail therapy and although it was
hotly denied, a visit to a large Ann Summers shop!!
Saturday is the main day with the rally entrants lining up and filling the
main shopping road. The locals are very understanding, and very few
complain about the restrictions imposed on them for the morning.

SHVR take over the start line . Others just chill out in the sunshine!
Malcolm Davies brought his Alvis along.  Behaving, just, at the lunch break.

We certainly were lucky with the weather over the weekend and there were
certainly a good number of red faces and arms to take care of. Still, we
mustnít grumble, it makes a change to have such a good spell of weather to
play in. The Saturday run took in some beautiful scenery as we looped
around the coastal roads. I love the names of some of the villages

 whoever thought them up had a good sense of humour, Irish place names must
translate in Gaelic I assume.

A group of Swiss Morganís joined us.

 Follow the Irish car, he knows the route!

Saturday night is the dinner and prize giving evening in the Yacht Club. It
was well supported by a good number of the Kinsale members, more than
the organisers were expecting. Sounds like an SHVR event!!
The Sunday is a lower key day with a later start at the Yacht Club, where
they provide soup and finger food before the start of a shorter run in the
afternoon. Then back to Kinsale for a last buffet evening.

Lounging on the sun terrace.  The cars all gather on the quayside.

Following on from a last night buffet gathering, it was back to the hotel for
a nightcap, or three in some cases-names can be supplied for a fee. Then it
was time to head off to pack the bags ready for the return journey to the
ferry for some and back to the Horse and Hound for the early morning
ferry travellers. Farewells were made at the Blue Haven over a coffee with
our Irish hosts, before the migration north for the way home again.


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