Signon and breakfast
Fleming MG Midget
Waite BMW 2002
Petrie/Jones Bond Equipe
Houghton Alfa Romeo
Bax Smart Roadster
Hemmingway / MCIntyre MGB
Chatham Honda CR-Z
Prentice/Wall Audi TT
Millar /Telford Astra
Bald Lexus NX300
Honey Farm Café Bus
& the Garage....
Always wanted a Porsche, but a Porsche tractor was not the image in my head!
Petrol cans in every shape and size (but are they full?)
Phillips audi TT
Waite BMW 2002
|Rally of the Borders – 24 September.
Story & photos Jim Paterson, Andy Thomlinson
weatherman is not always right. Sunday 24th was to be horrendous
storms. The tail of Storm Nigel was crossing the Atlantic and forecast
to hit Scotland for our event.
However, dry and brightening sky welcomed some 30 crews to the start of
the Rally of the Borders. Perhaps the sight of our crews in their
steeds gave Nigel a fright causing it to swerve away. Whatever it was
we were thankful it did.
Jim Paterson delivers the Drivers Briefing
After refueling of cars and crews (great breakfast at Elginhaugh Farm
diner) we headed south, using. many little known roads not used on our
previous events taking us across magnificent countryside, passing
and visiting new and unusual places.
Paton Mercedes SLK
Waving the start flag was Karen Wilson. First off was regular entrants Chris and Mary Paton in their 2000
Mercedes SLX, seen on recent tours, followed by Helen Kirkness and
Fraser Watt in a 1978 MGB/GT. Tony Fleming in his 1970 red MG Midget is
another regular with Ruairidh reading the roadbook. All the way from
Lydney in Gloucestershire, made Graham and Sally Waite in their 1972
BMW 2002 the farthest travelled to our event. It was great to see the
couple again and catch up on previous rally stories. Another familiar
car from previous tours was the ’69 Bond Equipe GT4S of George
Petrie with Janet Jones on the route. This car is fitted with the later
Triumph Spitfire engine giving it a bit more power.
John and Lillah Houghton returned with their ’75 Alfa Romeo
GT1600. I would apologise later at the drivers briefing for again
misspelling Alfa as Alpha on the entry list. Kevin and Ann Bax continue
their saga of oil leaks on the ’72 Healey, so turned out in
Ann’s Smart Roadster. A good plan B. Regular Ken McCrombie
brought his ’70 Ford Lotus Cortina Mk2 with Scott Cornett on the
roadbook. Geoff Hemmingway joined the MGB team in his ’74 MGB/GT
V8 with Sam McIntyre calling the route.
Crombie/Cornett Lotus cortina
Thomlinson Subaru WRX
Main / Stuart Mercedes 320SL
McGibbon/Brown Lancia Fulvia
New members Campbell and Susan Chatham arrived in their 2013 Honda
CR-Z, standing for 'Compact Renaissance Zero' an early hybrid sports
coupé. Roddie Main brought his trusty ’95 Mercedes 320SL
from Inverness, with John Stuart, much closer from Galashiels, guiding
Roddie round the route. George and Jean Shand in their Seat headed off
next followed by new members Andy and Janet Thomlinson in the 2016
Subaru WRX Sti. Andy is normally found behind a camera taking great
photos of many events, not always cars!
Cobb Toyota MR2
Rodger Mercedes 450
We were delighted to see Ann Head again, after her husband George
passed away back in February, return in her 2004 BMW 318 convertible
with Rogan Mackay navigating. The 2004 Toyota MR2 of Cobb crew,
Stuart and Jennifer have been seen on many previous tours and folded
the hood down, daring the skies to rain! Craig McGibbon loves his
’72 Lancia Fulvia Coupé arriving with his regular
navigator Karsten Brown. Charles Rodger is another regular in his
’77 Mercedes 450 SLC, this time with Julian Livingstone
navigating. Top down too for Rueben Phillips in his 2004 Audi TT, with
daughter hope on the roadbook.
Phillips Audi TT
Massie Jaguar XK
Forbes Porsche 911
Glen Volvo 122S
The pair have successfully completed several tours in the car. Duncan
Massie arrived ready for any weather in his 2007 Jaguar XK Coupé
with Drew Scott on the maps. Great to catch up with Drew after a long
break from events. Ann Prentice was driving the 2007 Audi TT of
Louise Wall, who was map reading this time, another crew top down
challenging the skies. A special welcome to Jock Millar and Linda
Telford in Linda’s 2007 Vauxhall Astra. Jock usually seen in his
MG Midget returns after replacing worn out parts in his own joints.
Takes we humans a bit more recovery time than swapping parts on
the classic car! Event organiser Ralph Forbes brought his 2007 Porsche
911 with Willie Macleod on the road book, to see how it is really
Pulling up the last departures were new members Brian and Brenda
Collins in their 2016 Honda CRV, so should be able to handle storm
Nigel if it should hit us. Another new crew Douglas and Gail Bald
arrived in their 2019 Lexus NX 300, while regular touring crew Gordon
and Isobel Glen, usually seen in a Rolls Royce Silver Dawn, this time
brought their 1968 Volvo 122S fully kitted out Monte Carlo
Historique car. Linda Forbes and sister Janice Lowe set off in the BMW
X3, handy if you have two dogs to carry as well.
|Last but not
least was Ton Niven and Karen Wilson in the 2005 MGF, today with a
Tom taking no chances should storm Nigel break on top
Leaving Elginhaugh Farm, the name comes from a Roman fort built
in the 1st century only half a mile from our start, the most excavated
timber built fort in the Roman Empire, we set off on stage one. Passing
through Carrington village we arrived at Temple village. The name
"Temple" refers to its historical connection to the Knights Templar. In
1237, the town name was recorded as "Ballentrodoch", from the Scottish
Gaelic Baile nan Trodach, which means "town of the warriors", again a
reference to the Knights Templar. The roadbook caution was real, the
speed bumps being some height, more an alpine climb for low slung
Built by the Romans
but still the main route south from Edinburgh for many centuries
afterwards. Parts of Dere Street remain and can still be traced on the
ground near the Aisle. Andy Thomlinson in the Subaru found time
to take a photo of it today.
Driving into the borders we passed Soutra Aisle, the House of the Holy
Trinity at Soutra, founded by the Augustinians at the request of King
Malcolm IV in about 1160. It was one of the three most important
hospitals in Scotland.
Sited approximately mid-way between Edinburgh
and the Border Abbeys and served by what was at the time the most
important road in southern Scotland, Dere Street.
Poppy Scotland Sportive
Pushing on toward Humbie village we picked up the ‘Herring
Road’. The fishwives in the 18, 19 and early 20th centuries would
arrive with their cured Herring from Dunbar, 11 miles north on the
River Forth on their way to Lauder market, some 17 miles ahead.
We proceeded along the north side of the Whiteadder Reservoir. Some
crews met the Poppy Scotland Sportive cycle event raising funds for the
Eventually we reached the town of Duns, with the Jim Clark Museum being
an optional stop to visit. The town also offered coffee shops for those
wanting a refreshment, and fuel stations for petrol.
took us south from Chirnside, home of Jim Clark, heading toward the
English border at Norham. We crossed the Ladykirk bridge over the River
Tweed into Northumberland. A few miles on we reached our lunch stop at
the Chain Bridge Honey Farm. The cafe is housed on a classic Bristol
Lodekka double-decker bus, serving tea, coffee, cold drinks,
sandwiches, homemade cakes, scones and Doddington Ice Cream. You could
watch the honey combs being stripped and the honey put into jars in the
small factory unit next to the café. Also on site was the
‘Garage’ with a collection of classic tractors, caterpillar
diggers, even a steam traction engine, all being restored.
headed over the ‘Chain Bridge”.
|The Union Chain Bridge or
Union Bridge, a suspension bridge that spans the River Tweed between
Horncliffe, Northumberland, England and Fishwick, Berwickshire,
Scotland. It is four miles (6.4 km) upstream of Berwick-upon-Tweed.
When it opened in 1820 it was the longest wrought iron suspension
bridge in the world with a span of 449 feet (137 m), and the first
vehicular bridge of its type in the United Kingdom.
|Back in Scotland we headed north west toward Coldingham, taking in
magnificent views across the River Forth, spotting Edinburgh on the
Pentland Hills in the distance, and Torness Nuclear Power Station
We crossed the Pease Dean Bridge spanning the Pease Dean
ravine. Designed by architect David Henderson, it opened in 1786. It
was the tallest bridge in the world at the time of construction.
It’s four arches stand at 130ft tall. Now the bridge stands in
the Pease Dean Wildlife, an ancient semi-natural woodland, full of
wildlife and nature.
Back over the Lammermuir hills, taking care over the cattle grids and
looking out for sheep wandering across the road over the moors.
Reaching Gifford we were on the home stretch through Pencaitland to the
A68 and a short sprint to our destination at the Stair Arms hotel.
A delicious high tea rounded of what turned out to be a great day
touring, some 140 miles where we proved the weatherman’s dire
forecast of storm Nigel rains, which was thankfully wrong.
Lookout for our end of season High Tea at the George Hotel in Perth on
Sunday 3rd December, where stories and tall tales of the years tours
and a peek at the 2024 events, amongst friends and colleagues is a
great run up to the Christmas season. Put the date in your diary
Published 26 September