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Mr No Limits - n/a
4-Aug-06, 08:08 PM
Sadly one of the founder members of the HCGB & our former President Geoff Harding has passed away.



Our thoughts go out to his family & friends in particular to his wife Mary.



Geoff's funeral service will be held on Friday 11th August in Stratford-on-Avon, anyone wishing to attend can get further details from myself.



Before passing away Geoff expressed his gratitude to having been part of the 40th anniversary celebrations at the AGM.



I personally would like to take this opportunity to say a BIG thank you to Geoff for having made it possible for there to be a 40th anniversary.





Conrad

Keith Oakley - n/a
4-Aug-06, 09:53 PM
Very sad news and our sympathies go at once to his family and particularly to Mary who has kept Geoff going through his years of illness. It was wonderful to see Geoff at our 40th anniversary AGM in february this year.



Conrad is right, it is no exaggeration to say we would not be celebrating our 40th without Geoff. When he took over as Chairman in the late 60's he inherited a club in financial difficulties, very disorganised and believing that a good rally comprised 10 craft lumbering around a field one at a time. We owe our present position to his management skills and can-do attitude to life - befitting someone who was General Manager of the North Wales and later Manchester bus companies (introducing hybrid diesel/electric buses) and who spent his war in a 4 man midget submarine trying to blow up the Tirpitz.



Geoff was also a gifted engineer, he built his first hovercraft in the early '60s, long before there was a hoverclub, construction plans and kits. He was no stranger to technical controversy. His first two craft (Wotsit 1 and Wotsit 2) were propelled by wheels, a feature which enabled Wotsit 1 to still hold the mountain climbing record for a hovercraft - the Great Orme by Llandudno. The hoverclub of the day treated the craft as a joke, until one day he got it right and Wotsit 2 started winning races. The letters columns of the mags were filled with protest, surely this was not a real hovercraft!



As chairman Geoffs encouragement of racing many craft together over a multi lap land & water course solved the controversy. Wotsit 2's water propulsion of an old outboard thrown over the back once the Renault Dauphine wheels had driven it into the water proved too cumbersome. Geoff then built with Peter Mayer a succesful fan propelled craft which he raced throughout the 70's. Geoff was Chairman of the club for about a decade and then became President, a role he filled for many years.



The club owes Geoff an enormous debt of gratitude. Without him we wouldn't have the sport we all enjoy so much.