President's Report - April 2008

Greetings All,

Sue and I did an easy four-hour drive to Leeton on Good Friday, to participate in the Peugeot Easter Pageant. In lovely sunny autumn weather, we stopped for lunch on the bank of the Murrumbidgee River at Gundagai. Heading west through Junee and Narrandera, we encountered locust swarms so by the time we reached Leeton in mid-afternoon the front of the car was looking pretty messy. Fortunately we found a local carwash (well patronized by other visiting Pugs) and the 306 was restored to glorious cleanliness for the concourse display the following morning.

We stayed overnight in the Historic Hydro Motor Inn, originally built in 1919 to house senior personnel involved in development of the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area. The original single rooms are now converted to comfortable en suite rooms with doors opening out to a large veranda. The stained glass window in the foyer was fabulous. Few members may know that Leeton is based on a layout designed in 1915 by Walter Burley Griffin, with planned residential areas arranged radially around the town centre and a strong emphasis on parks and gardens. Sound familiar to Canberrans? Not surprisingly, some of the prominent buildings, including the Roxy Theatre, have a strong art deco character.

Speaking of prominent buildings, there is a menswear shop in the main street of Leeton called "Brad's". For dinner we joined another 80 or so pageanteers at the Leeton Hotel, which included a charity auction of donated Peugeot memorabilia that raised more than $800 for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Sue and I entered into the spirit of the auction and came away with an armful of treasures including a Peugeot watch, 203 owners manual, 504 workshop manual, some keyrings, posters, a T-shirt and a new Executive badge for my 505 (the current one is illegible).

The next morning we joined nearly 50 cars for the concours display, watched Peugeot related films in the Roxy Theatre and enjoyed a packed lunch in the park. After lunch we watched the SunRice Festival parade in the main street, which featured a number of the best cars from the concours as well as an eclectic collection of other vehicles, people and animals. Sadly Sue and I had to return to Canberra that afternoon, but we thoroughly enjoyed our brief Leeton experience.

Congratulations to Paul Watson and the PCCV for organising a wonderful pageant. Next year's pageant will be held in southern Queensland. Meanwhile, back in Canberra, last month's club meeting at the Canberra Services Club was hastily transferred to a nearby restaurant due to a power failure. No real drama - we wandered over to Manuka shops and settled into Rucchi Indian Restaurant for drinks, dessert and a chat. Let's hope we do better this month! The next club meeting will be at Canberra Services Club at 8 pm on Tuesday 22 April.

Keep on Pugging,

Brad Pillans

Picture of Brad