12th August 1983 - Guildford MCC
Held a little further away from their home turf, the Guildford MCC's rally this year was held in Hambledon, Hampshire.
Hambledon is known to some as the 'Cradle of Cricket'. It is thought that Hambledon Club, one of the oldest cricket clubs known, was formed about 1750 and took on the responsibility for developing the laws of modern-day cricket – including such introductions as length bowling, the addition of a third stump, and the regulation of bat width! There was no cricket going on this weekend, as far as we knew, and certainly not in the field behind the pub, at which the rally was based, which was fairly overgrown in places, but also had a slope in the middle so steep that some bikes couldn't get to the flat bits at the top.
I'm glad it didn't rain that weekend, as that would have made getting in and out quite interesting. Several people didn't want to chance the slope, so they stayed at the bottom. This meant they were closer to the pub, which was apparently the regular haunt of one of the members of the group Status Quo, (they all came from the Woking/Guildford area of Surrey), but I can't remember which one.
The proximity of the pub, the lay of the field and the good weather all led to the decision not to have a marquee. There was a hut that housed the disco equipment, but the all-too-local residents, (which may or may not have included the aforementioned musician), meant that it was never going to be too loud, or go on very late.
On Saturday, being local to the area, my club decided to go for a little ride to a pub we regularly used for camping weekends, but we made sure we were back in time for the games at which our tallest member managed to win the throwing contest, as he often did.
The organisers managed to find one flattish bit of field big enough to use for tug-of-war and there were presumably a few other games, (possibly including a hill-climb?), but neither my memory, nor my photos, recall them.
There was enough time for a few drinks in the pub before the music started up again, and a good time was had by all.
- Phil (the Spill) Drackley