WelcomeWelcome from Tom Purves, Chairman of the Royal Automobile Club
As Chairman of the Royal Automobile Club, it is my pleasure to welcome one and all to the world’s longest running motoring celebration. The vast number of entrants, from across the globe, who continue to participate in the Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run supported by Hiscox pays testament to the ever-growing popularity of this event.
In true tradition, the Run takes place on the first Sunday of every November and commemorates the Emancipation Run of 14 November 1896, which celebrated the passing into law of the Locomotives on the Highway Act. It was this Act that raised the speed limit for 'light locomotives' from 4 mph to 14 mph and abolished the requirement for these vehicles to be preceded by a man on foot. The early law required the man on foot to carry a red flag but that requirement was abolished in 1878. The Locomotive Act was still widely known as the 'Red Flag Act' and, to mark this milestone, a red flag was symbolically destroyed at the start of the Emancipation Run, just as it is today before the start of the Run in Hyde Park.
In 2017, more than 120 years after the very first Run was held, the event aims to follow in the footsteps of last year’s success, which saw one of the best finish-rates to date. As ever, the Run represents a rare opportunity for participants to take their extraordinary automobiles on this historic 60-mile journey from Hyde Park in central London to the seafront in the Sussex resort of Brighton. Few events in today's international calendar can claim such individuality, personality and character as the Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run supported by Hiscox, where over 400 examples of pre-1905 manufactured vehicles enter the pioneering spirit and engineering ability of the early motorist.
I would like to express my thanks to our title partner Bonhams for their continued support. Their sponsorship over the years has been an invaluable contribution to the growing success of this very special event. We are also extremely grateful to our other supporters: supporting partner; Hiscox, official partners; Gatwick Airport and Harrods, official suppliers; Abels Moving Services; Brighton and Hove City Council; Chopard; Hagerty Classic Car Insurance; Hattingley Valley; Honda Drift Bridge Group and RAC Motoring Services, and manufacturer patrons; Renault, for their valued support. My thanks also extends to all volunteers including the VCR Steering Group as, without their time, effort and support this Run would not be able to take place.
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