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Impressions of the first ever South of England Rally (SOFER for short) held in the grounds of the National Shooting Centre Bisley near Woking in Surrey 6-8 August 2004
Well its was hot, damned hot but there was much shade to be had under the wealth of trees on the site. Fast registration, superb rally pack including pin, patch, key ring , pen , bottle of beer and a bottle opener to open it (nice touch) all courtesy of Claridon shipping. Everyone also got a glossy history of Bisley ranges book to stare vacantly at through the usual Saturday morning hangover. Excellent food in the pavilion if you were prepared to queue but loads of other conecssion stands if you weren’t . 3 huge walk through bars in the main Pavilion including the live music sound stage which on the Friday night featured the best live covers band I’ve personally ever seen (‘Live and Kicking’) who churned out superb renditions of crowd pleasers like ‘Radar Love’ and ‘Black Betty’plus various other relaxing bars dotted around the site to chill in the shade and watch the rally go by.
Scalding hot showers and plenty of them. Nice selection of trade stands, 3 organised rideouts on the Saturday (short , medium and long). Lots of fun and games on the Saturday afternoon including the frozen T shirt contest
Commiserations to the owner of the tent demolished late Saturday night when a gas bottle exploded and sympathies to the guy who tried to put the fire out before the fire engines arrived and got taken to hospital with burns for his efforts.
Oh and the weekend gave birth to a new entry in the Oxford English dictionary – ‘The Bisley Wave’ , as a result of fending off a plague of wasps - hopefully a one off due to the hot weather !
All in all hats off to the organisers and if anyone had any doubts that this wasn’t set to become a prime fixture in discerning HOG members rally calendars – trust me you were wrong
Snake NF HOG 211