I have known Andy for more than 20 years, since he joined our rally team here at Protec Motorsport; and he has been around ever since. First of all as co-driver for my son, Mark Durham and then he teamed him up with 5 times Scottish Rally Champion and British Rally Champion David Bogie. Lately Andy has still been a valuable team member sitting along side our driver Tom Naughton on the BTRDA Gravel Championship which saw them crowned Production Cup Champions in 2014.
Andy just loved his rallying; he was forced to take a break as he battled Leukaemia for the last 5 years and it was a tremendous relief to see him beat the disease. Throughout his battle he never lost his cheeky chappy persona and was always up for a laugh.
Many people just saw the happy-go-lucky Andy, but he was also a very generous guy and cared about the younger boys and girls coming into the sport of rallying. When Steve Davis had the idea of creating the Bear Cubs Rally team over in Dervaig, Andy was one of the first people to offer some financial help, and he didn’t even want the name of his company on the car. That was a side of the man most never saw, and over the years many have benefited from his generosity.
When he was taking a break from co-driving on rallies he joined the rest of the Team at 2300 Club to give a little back to sport helping to organise the Tour of Mull rally.
We both shared a passion for a nice single Malt and I’ve nursed many a hangover after “sampling” some of his finds….including one particular night on Mull when we courageously decided we would try a shot from all the single malts on the top shelf in the Macdonald Arms starting at the left side and working our way across … I think he manged to get a third of the way across … (but only think !), before we decided we should maybe try and stand up and leave before it was necessary to carry us out …!
Away from rallying Andy was a successful businessman running a windows and door company near Wigan, and devoted father to son George and daughter Olivia. Since the cancer he was taking more of a back seat in the business to spend more time doing what he wanted to do not what the stress of running a business wanted him to do. Over the last 3 years he has spent a great deal of time in Spain, and only two weeks ago decided to make Mull his permanent home, over in Dervaig. He was looking forward to integrating into Island life with his partner Sarah Everett.
I have so many memories of Andy like the time he called me up from Mull one year when he was doing the rally with my son Mark … ”Boss we need another reccie car, the one we brought up here is a write off” … I said “Are you both alright?” … he said “yes, no problem … I’m fine … I was the only one in the car … I couldn’t sleep so went for a bit of a run over Mishnish Lochs … and fell off the road at ‘Tree bend’!!!” … he got a good bollocking for that one, but it was impossible to stay annoyed at him for long … he wouldn’t allow it …
He is going to be very much missed by all who knew him … R.I.P. Andy