Procol Harum

Beyond
the Pale

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Procol Harum fans' party at Zoetermeer (nr. Amsterdam) Holland

Two railway-oriented birthday surprises for The Commander pictures thanks to Inger Viklund


Fans sang 'Happy Birthday on Sunday' rather than 'Happy Birthday dear Gary', because it was only 26 May, or early 27 May, at the time. Then a veil was drawn aside,
and a magnificent cake was revealed: check the faces of Matt Pegg and Gary Brooker for an indication of the the surprise factor!

Between Matt and Gary, Stefano Ciccioriccio from Rome, whose generosity enabled this cake to be made (and who
thereby upstaged his previous present, the huge bottle of champagne with 'Gary 69' on it in Swarovski diamonds)

Webmaster Jens ready to take a photograph, and Kapellmeister Hockley waiting to see where the Commander will insert the ceremonial cake-knife

The cake is modelled on a clockwork Hornby 1950s 0-4-0 tank engine, to which the local designers added (somewhat paradoxically) a tender.
But people in the picture (including George Martin, Tito Davila, Jonas Sjoberg and Peter Christian) are gazing over the top of the
edible railwayana at something possibly even more surprising ...
 

Gary reaches out for a second present ... a presentation case containing a pewter loco and fifrteen items of pewter rolling-stock, their freight
being the letters G B (a musical symbol) P R O C O L (space) H A R U M (then a brake-wagon). This came all the way from America, in the care and from the
imagination of George Martin, as depicted in the previous shot. Andrea Ciccioriccio, Matt Pegg, Josh Phillips looking on

In this photograph the pewter train is easier to read. 'Hornby' is of course the nickname by which Eric Clapton addressed Gary Brooker,
for reasons familiar to readers of Frank Key's excellent book (of which there's a copy in the Brooker loo)

Lastly, Gary is pictured with the nameplates from either side of the comestible locomotive,
which was chopped up by the management of Clooneys, and devoured by the Convention
(except for the buffers, which GB wanted to take home 'for the Memsahib')

And, even more lastly, the images sent for guidance from BtP's Bristol office to the cakewrights in Holland.
The locomotive is based on a Hornby model of an LNER 0-4-0 loco (which never had a tender).


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