Organized by John Sprouse, Solent Motor Cycle Club at Titchfield, Hant, Aug-Sep 1976
We travelled down at different times but all met up at the rally site, pitched our tents and had the usual dinnertime drink in the pub which was quite a distance from the site so we took the bikes. We spent the rest of the afternoon walking around the site talking with assorted friends, looking at bikes and telling tales. The weather was good, it was the hot summer of '76 so was the general atmosphere. We cooked our evening meals earlier than normal as we had quite a walk to get to the watering hole.
We were, as was our habit, leaning on the pub door when 6 o'clock came. Seats obtained, our corner secured and pints to hand as the establishment started to fill up. The evening passed as they normally did, talking of the last couple of rallies that you had done, recounting and embellishing events, planning future weekends and generally taking the pee out of one-another, getting up to go to the bar or toilet and bumping into a friend you haven't seen for a while and consequently get chatting away to them for 20 minutes or so. Then to come back to your seat to find someone else sat there talking to another of the group. The place was heaving by 21.00 and a lot of people were sat on the ground outside. Eventually the evening came to an end.
In dribs and drabs we started to wend our ways back to the camp site, all strung out along the road. I was with Alan Giddens and as we passed a house he heard a noise off to our right. On investigating we found one of the rallyists who was known as "Dougie the Orifice" - if I recollect right he was from the Merseyside area - on his hands and knees up the gravel drive way of this house, well the worse for ale. We picked him up by the arms, one each side, and he said something that we couldn't understand.
"Don't worry Dougie old lad, we'll soon have you back to the tents!" said Alan as we got him back onto the pavement. After a few paces he broke free and shot off back up the drive way. We followed to find him on his knees again. Alan clicked it first. He was looking for something. We flagged one of the passing bikes down and got him to shine his headlight up the drive and yes! Dougie found what he was after - his false teeth! He picked them up and put them straight back in! He had staggered five or six feet up this drive and had been sick and out they popped!
Another legend had been made.
- Les Hobbs