Despite an atrocious weather forecast as hurricane Bertha swept across the south through the night and early morning, over 150 Land Rovers made the journey to Beaulieu for this year’s Simply Land Rover on Sunday 10th August.
By mid-morning the worst of the rain had passed through and Land Rover owners could enjoy increasing spells of sunshine as they displayed their vehicles in the grounds of the National Motor Museum.
As well as meeting other like-minded Land Rover owners, participants were free to visit all the features of the Beaulieu visitor attraction, including the National Motor Museum, World of Top Gear, Beaulieu Abbey, Palace House and the extensive grounds and gardens.
Car clubs present at the event included the Solent & District Land Rover Club, which put on a good display of its vehicles and the Discovery Owners’ Club.
Beaulieu also partnered with the Land Rover Experience, West Country, to offer Simply Land Rover entrants and attraction visitors the opportunity to try Beaulieu’s very own off-road Forest Drive either in their own Land Rovers or as a passenger in a Land Rover Experience vehicle. This proved to be a very popular activity with the early morning rain offering ideal conditions for the course. There were 90 drives by participants driving in their own vehicles and a number of visitors either driving or having a passenger ride in the Land Rover Experience vehicles.
Throughout the day Beaulieu’s visitors had the opportunity to vote for their favourite vehicle on display in the People’s Choice Awards. The winner, who received a Beaulieu Trophy from Beaulieu’s Managing Director, Russell Bowman, was Chris Dello from Poole with his silver 2013 Land Rover Discovery. Chris purchased the vehicle as a write-off last year after it had been in involved in a crash and re-built it with the help of his friend Simon Ball at his garage premises, S&B Motors. During the day, Chris twice took his Land Rover round the Forest Drive – as the coating of mud confirms!
A delighted Chris said: “I was really surprised to have my Land Rover voted the People’s Choice, it was certainly the muddiest.”
A special award was made to a children’s kit Toyland Land Rover, built by John Pilling from Chichester. John received a Land Rover mug and his grandchildren, who accompanied him, had a selection of goodies from the Beaulieu gift shop.
Simply Land Rover is one of the popular Simply rallies which has rapidly expanded to include a wide variety of themes covering many makes and models. The date for Simply Land Rover 2015 is the 9th August. For more information please visit www.beaulieuevents.co.uk