Sue’s Scribbles Summer 2013
Firstly I do apologise once again for the lack of Scribbles (did I just hear some applause)??
The middle of the year went badly for us as we lost Chris’s Dad after a relatively short illness while we were away helping with the marshalling at the National Rally, Cornbury. I know that most of you know about it so I won’t dwell on that any further.
If I try to cover the middle of the year quickly then I won’t bore any of you reading this!!
The National Rally:
This was the most prodigious event with over 2000 cars attending, it really was something to see, and if I can say this with being of the marshals on the ‘Organising Team’ it was hard work, quite often frustrating, but just brilliant when it all came together on the day!!! A superb weekend, which brought most of the Morris Clubs together for a wonderful conglomeration of all things Morris. We even had an amazing Air Display by some Tiger Moth planes which had been built at Cowley during World War Two, this took place over the main Arena just to finish it all off!! The amount of Minor owners that travelled and a lot came in their Moggys from overseas, including Europe, USA, Australia and South Africa was incredible!!
Bridlington & Wolds Branch Rally:
This year as always was a fab ‘party weekend’; more people come and stay for the weekend every year. I really just want to thank all my fellow branch members for the brilliant effort and hard work they put in – from getting the place ready for the Friday night when most people start to arrive to organising all the fun and games we have, Boules, Dominos, Darts and all the other silly things they dream up to keep everyone occupied while the beer and wine flows. Our Saturday Road Run always goes down a storm and this year was no exception! Then they help clear up on the Monday too! Well done Guys!!
North York Moors Railway:
Nine branch members represented us at The North York Moors Railway, Classic Car & Vintage Vehicles Weekend 20th Anniversary. Five of us decided to camp near Grosemont and do both days. The weather again was cracking! Chris and I along with Lotti got to the campsite just after lunch on the Friday (Charli was left behind due to there being cattle and sheep on site) only to find that poor Dave had, had to go home again for their awning poles that had somehow been over looked in the packing and were still in the loft!!!
We eventually got the ‘happy homestead’ set up and then all headed into Whitby for a really excellent fish and chip supper and a wander along the front, it was good to see somewhere so busy!
The following morning was early doors to get to the station and get a parking spot reserved for ourselves and the others who were coming straight from home. We managed to get the very corner plot so with Banner pinned onto the wall everyone could see that Bridlington & Wolds Branch had arrived!! Mike and Maureen came along with their Traveller also Fozzie and Ann. Grosemont Station is the best one to be at really as it has a proper tarmac car park instead of pot holes and cinders which can be quite rough on the cars! We rode the steam trains to Pickering and Goathland, vehicle owners who take part get a half price concession on tickets this makes it a much cheaper affair for travelling on these lovely old trains filled with nostalgia, the trains drop off at the different stations so that you can have a wander around for an hour or so to see the other classics parked at them before travelling on. It was at this event that we saw Doris our Pick-Up for the first time before we bought her ten years ago. We were joined at the camp site on the Saturday night by friends who had taken part in the MOT UK and were winding off their week by doing the NYR, so Sunday our little corner was packed with Morris Minors!! All too soon it seemed that it was Sunday night and time to pack up and come home. A really successful weekend and once again our display of Morris Motors was a major attraction, so much so that we have already booked our display space again for next year!
North East Branch Rally – Tanfield Railway:
Chris and I never miss one of these and ofcourse Lotti and Charli always go too. This year the NE branch had moved to a new venue from the usual Stanhope Railway. My first impression when I got there was totally Catherine Cookson country – we were high up on a hill with the most glorious views. Again a road run on Saturday, this time it was to a Mining Museum, there is some sort of fascination for me about this heritage as the life was so hard for what seemed very little reward. This branch always push the boat out with a theme night for the Saturday, this year it was Andy Capp and Flo – well can’t you just imagine????….we were entertained by a 50/60s singer and did lots of dancing and singing along ourselves. Grant always does a Saturday night BBQ this year not only sausages but the most wonderful hot roast pork too.
Branch Trip to the Isle of Wight
At the end of last year after our Branch organising the Bar to Bar Run to Filey Bay on the 1st of September for the past three years, it was felt it was time to let someone else take it over if they wanted to (sadly there were no takers) and our branch members would do something different. It was quite a few years ago that some of us had attended the Isle of Wight rally. So we asked around and in the end there were ten of us who decided to make a weeks holiday out of it. We booked some static caravans on a really nice site at St Helens only a few miles from Shanklin and also Ryde. A year seemed quite a long way away but it soon came round, it also coincided with mine and Chris’s 10th wedding anniversary.
We decided to get an early Ferry on the Friday morning so we set off and travelled through the night, it’s always a lot quieter on the motorways then certainly for a Morris Minor!! We got to the terminal at 5am but our boat didn’t sail until 6.30, it was a warm balmy morning so the hour wasn’t a problem and we just wandered round having a good stretch after the 200 + mile journey. Luckily we managed to sweet talk the crew and get aboard the 6am boat, because of our small size they packed us in amongst all the heavy goods vehicles supplying the island with products. We landed on the sea front at Ryde at 7am, all ravenously hungry (must have been the sea air on the boat)! The priority was off to forage somewhere for food. A very dour bus driver pointed us to a Wetherspoons pub just up the road so after a hot welcome breakfast it was off to find our digs. One of the chalets was ready when we arrived so everyone descended to it with all our bags and baggage’s until the other unit was done.
Some decided to have a nap, or have car bonnets up to inspect their hard worked engines while the more intrepid sleep deprived of us decided to go and get our bearings and find a pub for that night’s meal, and also to do some forward planning for the week.
The following morning we found the most amazing little farm cafe tucked away just up the road to have breakfast, in fact it was so good we went every day!!!
The IOW branch always have a trip out on the Saturday afternoon to some point of interest on the Island, this year it was to the Roman Villas which is an archaeological site that has been preserved and made into a visitor centre. We assembled along with around another 40 Minors at the Haven Street Railway and made the short run to it of about 11 miles.
Dorothy and I could have stayed all afternoon but the others quickly got bored of looking at old relics (no puns please)! So we went off to Shanklin for a look around and a paddle.
Sunday was Rally day, it never ceases to amaze me how many cars turn up from the mainland for their event, the IOW Ferries are the most expensive in the world but it must be lucrative as they run constantly every half hour! Can I have some shares please!!
The weather was glorious; so after we had parked up in our designated spot it was off to peruse the auto jumble and car boot. We had a ride on the classic open topped bus, what a good driver he was with no synchromesh on the gears and the twisting narrow roads to contend with, us on the top deck just had to keep ducking the tree foliage!!
The day ended up with prize giving and ofcourse Mike won a Trophy for his very pretty Traveller.
For the rest of the week we toured round the Island with the ‘must do’ trip to the Needles, the ride in the chair lift down the shear drop to the beach is not for anyone suffering from vertigo (some took this in their stride – others didn’t) see photos!!!
There is a boat trip round that takes you out to these wonderful rock formations; we had an excellent commentary from our Boat Master about the history and wild life that inhabit them. The sea was such a clear blue you could almost see the bottom. Fabulous!!!
A visit to the Isle of Wight Pearl Factory and The Waltzing Waters were also on the agenda, one of which proved to be more expensive than the other for some of us (yes you guessed it The Pearl Factory)!both were a good half days entertainment.
When Chris and I have been to the island before for the rally we have only gone for a couple of days so have never had time to do the ‘Tourist Attractions’ bit but it is amazing what there is to see there.
The weather was so glorious that the more intrepid of us swam in the English Channel almost every day while the others watched eating ice creams to keep cool as the temperatures hit 30 degrees most of the time!! One certain person among us did lose his car keys while swimming in the said Channel along with our Chalet key and a house key these are never to be seen again despite every attempt to trawl the sea bed but to no avail!! Luckily Mike had a spare key that would start any Moggy (except his own) so at least we weren’t stranded on Shanklin sea front for the rest of the holiday, and also luckily we managed to find a very nice man in Ryde who was somewhat of a ‘key anorak’ that managed to find exactly the blank we were looking for and cut us two more for the princely sum of £15.00.
The night of our Wedding Anniversary the gang organised us a surprise party at a local pub, beautiful flowers, cake – the whole works, including secretly decorating our chalet with a banner and cards!! It was certainly a lovely night to remember.
All too soon we seemed to be packing to get the Ferry home, the only saving grace was that the day we were leaving the weather changed dramatically and the heavens opened!! This is a bit selfish really as that weekend was the IOW Festival with several thousand camping in tents!!!
Never try to travel up the country on a Friday – with all the traffic and the odd accident it took us 10 hours!!! Hey Ho small price to pay for such a great time!!
Area 2 Regional Rally:
Once again our branch members were out and flying our flag in the lovely setting of Chatsworth House. This yearly rally hosted by Area 2 alternates between Chatsworth House and Hardwick Hall, both venues are within the Derbyshire area and well worth a visit. This year I’m pleased to say all the scaffolding had gone from the front of the house as the last time we were there it was shrouded in blue sheeting for renovation. For all of you who have never been it is a magnificent place to visit and very dog friendly (Lotti enjoyed it thoroughly) It’s some years since Chris and I actually last did the house tour and it is worth going round but it does take up most of the day so a look round the shops there is about all we managed. You could also spend a fortune on all the lovely things on display! There is always a Concours event at this rally, sadly for the past few years Concours entries seem to have been down (there are usually 4 Concours event a year) but just lately with the new addition of the Modified Concours Class it does seem to be gathering a bit more momentum. What denotes the Modified Concours cars is that as long as they are original spec on the outside you can have a V8 under the bonnet (well perhaps not but I think you get my drift)! Any way for further info on Concours if you are interested you can contact Richard or Christine Lee, there contact details are in Minor Matters. The weather was kind for once as most years for this rally it can be cold, windy and often wet so the hood was down all the day!!
Gaydon – 60 Years of the Traveller:
This event was held in Warwickshire at the Gaydon Heritage Motor Museum, a most interesting building as its round! It houses the very first Morris Minor off the production line and also a cracking Moggy Fire Engine plus many, many more interesting vehicles and motor engineering examples. (see pics).
Although Chris and I don’t have a Traveller ourselves we went along as part of the official Marshalling Team. There was an early morning run on the Sunday from a hotel in Oxfordshire to the Museum which around 30 cars took part in lots of 5 so they didn’t clog up the roads too much! It was a great weekend I have never seen so many Travellers that spanned the different years. There is some great regalia to commemorate 60 Years of the Traveller available from the Derby office also one of the pics that we have on the sight is an official one and are available to buy again from the Derby office.
Next? Well it’s off to man the Centenary Stand at the NEC Classic Car Show for 5 days. More about this next time.
Hope that this ‘Whistle Stop Tour’ of events that our branch members have attended over the summer months has been of some interest.