PAG logo


Stilton Cheese Run 2011

Alan and I had perfect weather for the Stilton Run. Having rendezvoused (?) at Kings Lynn, we had a clear run to Oakham (all manner of interesting diversions en route) and after some 'left a bit/back a bit/ over there a bit' shenanigins, found the lead-in to the Old Wisteria Hotel Car Park (safe because you have to be a "thinker" to find the way in!).

Allocated a twin bedded room, we repaired to the Bar to see what was available in-house for an evening meal. Save for the receptionist (now wearing a 'bar-maid' hat) there was no one else in the Bar and having already the perused the town on foot,we concluded that we would fare best at the "Rutland Chinese" restuarant - despite having made no booking for the Saturday night.They were "full", but a function room above was empty. We were the first 'overflow'diners , followed by around twenty others. We chose the "set meal for 2 (or more)" and spent a very happy two and a half hours, receiving course after course complete with 'hot towel' finger wipes. Try as we could, we could not defeat the menu!

Sunday arrived with clear blue skies and the Chinese Grand Prix. We watched the first 20 laps, went for breakfast then got back to the room in time to see the closing 5 laps - what a bonus! The Satnav declared 9 miles from the Old Wisteria to Quenby Hall and along some delightful "white" roads. This was fine until we found ourselves hemmed in by a Road Cycle Race with road closures, marshalls and spectators - the appearance of 2 Pembletons was not on the programme! Detours through gated roads (satnav indicating " you are in a field somewhere, perform a U turn") eventually found us at Quenby Hall having run 19 miles of the 9 mile journey.

No more Pembletons, but lots of interesting other cars (I'd never see a Siddeley 20 Laundalette before), with many people happy to chat (whilst others were sniffy and didn't - an open Mercedes' passenger responded to my "Good Morning!" by raising the electric window (as you would, in an open car). The route was as chaotic as ever, many roads identified as " Leaping Lane"or whatever,with not a hint of a nameplate and most definitely no road number. Having gained a tail of expensive Classic cars (with passengers and satnavs) we stopped and joined behind them, but they didn't know where they were going either! At Uppingham, we pulled in to a service station to refuel - few pumps were working, so it was necessary to pull round the corner, whilst the second Pembleton refueled. What was round the corner? The HarleyDavidson showroom, doing a "coke and burgers" promotion. It seemed like the entire contents of the showroom came out with lots of "Look at that", "That's surely not a bike engine" - and then another comes chugging round the corner.

Next stop was the Hog Roast at Bulwick and another chance to view the cars closely. The Pembletons were again very popular, with one chap saying that he's come to see the Pembletons again - last year there were 6, how come only 2 this year? The rest of the run, through Oundle and on to Stilton was a gloroius, sweeping route, culminating in tea, plum and walnut cake with Stilton at the Hotel. Once home again, we'd clocked up 275 miles on our Boys' Day Out - an exceptionally successful trip.

Mike Meakin

Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional Valid CSS!