Tom Dooley with his son Andrew outside the gates of Buckingham Palace.

BRSCC North Western Centre Chairman Tom Dooley was on the guest list at the Queen’s Garden Party last week at Buckingham Palace having received an invitation from the Lord Chancellor in recognition of his long service to motorsport.

Tom attended the prestigious occasion along with his son Andrew, whose wife had nominated Tom and completed all the necessary paperwork. In total, more than 2,000 guests attended the Garden Party from across all spheres of life and Tom felt quite in awe of some of them.

“I felt a bit of a fraud, one of the gentlemen I was talking to had been in Bomb Disposal for 28 years, including during the Irish troubles. Another lady I spoke to had raised many thousands for lifeboats whilst living almost as far from the sea as you can get. All I had done was enjoy myself as a member of BRSCC for 61 years!

It was interesting to see inside the Palace before going out onto the terrace and gardens. We had a two hour wait before the Queen joined the Party. She had a very punishing schedule last week -State opening of Parliament, D-Day commemorations in Normandy then onto Paris. When does she get to do the washing?

When the Queen did arrive the Gentleman at Arms appeared looking like "Beefeaters" from the Tower. They formed a loose avenue through the assembled throng through which her Majesty walked stopping occasionally to speak with "chosen" people. I certainly was not amongst that group.

Am I being a dismal Jimmy to say "been there, done that" when I cannot think I really deserved to be there in the first place?”

Well Tom, you may not have defused any bombs or raised vast sums for charity but for volunteering to run motor racing meetings for over 61 years we think your place on the guest list was more than merited.


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