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Out and About - in retrospect - Ditcham Hill Climb

No ‘Out and About’ this month. With this second lockdown more scanning of colour slides and black and white negatives has been undertaken. Some of the b&w pictures were from a hill climb meeting in 1973 at Ditcham Hill Climb.

Ditcham Park and school lies up a valley south-east of Petersfield, off a lane from the B2146 beyond the hamlet of Old Ditcham.

The 880 yard course began with a straight, climbing gently to a sharp left hander. From there the gradient steepened around a fast 250 yard left-hand curve into a right-hand hairpin and a long left hand curve to the finish.

The events were mainly run by Chichester Motoring Club the first meeting took place in June 1968 when six-times Hillclimb Champion Tony Marsh set the best time of the day in his 4wd March-Oldsmobile in a time which was not approached again as single seaters were banned from then on. The full distance could not be used for the second meeting but there were plans for a return road to be finished for 1969, together with the installation of Armco barriers at the hairpin. These were coupled with spectator improvements and the start line was re-sited to give the full 880 yards.

I visited the course a couple of times and finally in September 1973 I entered what I believe was the last event run. At the time I had MG Midget my times weren’t exactly competitive!


Route of hill climb highlighted.