SELBY AND DISTRICT MOTOR CLUB
The origins of Selby and District Motor Club go back to the 1950’s when car and motor cycle enthusiasts would meet, however during 1963, they affiliated to the RAC in order to run a road rally by the name of The Three Swans Rally, the first event that the club organised that invited members from other clubs. The Three Swans incidentally also form the club badge and originate from the origins of Selby and are depicted on a stained glass window in the 900 year old Selby Abbey. The club had various meeting places during the early years.
During 1969, the opportunity arose to rent a disused RAF building on the wartime Halifax bomber base at Breighton some 8 miles east Selby and 16 miles South East of York. The site was very attractive in that in addition to the building there was a substantial amount of concrete available for club auto tests, Gymkhanas etc. outside the front door, sadly much of that, as with many other old airfield tracks have long since disappeared.
The building needed much restoration work including laying on water and electricity supplies, digging cess pits, and converting small rooms into larger ones etc. All the work required was done by the members themselves and the club became one of a small minority in the area to meet in its own purpose adapted premises.
A bar licence was granted soon after.
During the mid 1970’s the opportunity presented itself to purchase the clubhouse along with a substantial and suitable area for car parking. The members of the time dug deep and raised the purchase price with financial loans from members topped up with a bank loan, and so the club became the proud owners of their clubhouse.
The club has always boasted a friendly atmosphere where any new faces are always made welcome.
A decline in membership in the early 1970’s prompted the committee of the time to organise a ‘Rallying For Beginners’ series with the intention of recruiting new members by giving them a free five night insight to rallying rules, regulations, car preparation, navigation etc. The series was so successful that the membership has hovered around the 200 mark for years after that.
The original Three Swans road rally lapsed but was revived during 1977 and ran every mid January until 1987, (a victim of the current road rally rules).
The Three Swans was always keenly contested and usually formed rounds of all the regions road rally championships, it was always classed as the ‘one to do’, the weather conditions on the Yorkshire wolds and moors inevitably testing both the organisers and competitors alike. The last road rally was run in 2006.
With the demise of ‘road rallying’, the club turned it’s attention to a single venue stage rally, the first one offered during 1987, the event ran many times after that on various venues including, Melbourne and Elvington, and formed a round of the Shell Oils League, ANCC, ANECC, Teesside MSG and Humberside MSG rally championships at various times.
The club has an excellent competitive following, this being reflected by them being winners of the keenly contested and prized Shell Oils League in 1985 and 1987 with a number of second places.