[ S V V S Evening
Meeting - The Plough, Bletchingley - July 2004 ] ::
Plough (7) on the A25 in the
village of Bletchingley has again been our most popular venue for an
SVVS evening meeting. The following text is based on the SVVS Magazine
report by Chris Cuss and photos are by Bozi Mohacek and Tony Oakes.
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Once again we enjoyed a packed car park for our July meeting. As has
happened before, it was perhaps too packed as a number of 'Cruising
Cars', mainly of transatlantic origin, appeared together with an
unaccountable number of Volvos, and also a huge turnout of M.G.'s.
Disregarding the two former categories I noted 52 cars belonging to our
members and 19 others worthy of note. Regrettably the 'Plough' is
somewhat lacking in some respects. Members will remember when it ran out of
beer; - this year they ran out of glasses. Anyway our
interest was in the car park and in that aspect the Plough is unbeatable
and they had remembered to mow the grass.
It is always a pleasure to welcome a new member so we start by listing
Jeremy Shackel who brought his TR3 and joined on the evening. Several
others took away membership forms, as they had not remembered their
chequebooks. One, whose name escapes me, is an ex-airline pilot friend
of Derek Wright and came in a Reliant Scimitar. Running through the
unidentified-as-to-ownership list and in no particular order the
following cars were recorded. The Borgward saloon that we also saw at
the Six Bells, a Mercedes drophead coupe of the SL variety, an Austin
two door coupe from the 1950's that could have been an Atlantic, a large
pre-war Austin, a Lancia Flavia, an Austin 7, MGB's of both drophead and
GT varieties, a pair of post-war Bentley saloons, the one Volvo that I
shall mention was the sports coupe type that appeared in the TV series
'The Saint', the large Ford that we have seen before that I believe to
be an A type, a frog-eyed Sprite, a Mini Cooper, a Jaguar, and a
three-wheeled bubble car wearing a Trojan badge.
The list of our members' cars starts with an apology to Graham Martin.
Not only did I fail to identify his Standard 8 last month. This just
goes to show what a good job my predecessor did in keeping the records
tidy. Talking of Desmond he had chosen the most modern of his trio of
Amilcars, the 1927 Grand Sport to bring to the meeting. Another member
with a selection of cars is Tim Harding who chose to
give his 1929 Alvis 12/50 Beetleback a breath of fresh air. Bryan Pooley
arrived in his 1987 Alfa Romeo Spyder 2 litre whilst the only Austin
that I noted this month was the 1953 A40 Somerset driven by Colin Fytche.
Our Bentley Boys were out in force with the score three to Cricklewood
and two to Derby. Starting with the oldest we enjoyed the sight of David
Smart's 1924 3 litre whilst Ian Maclennan and Guy Talbot both brought
their 1929 4½ litre cars the latter being a supercharged Le Mans type.
The two post-vintage cars were David Locket's 4¼ litre saloon and John
Chapman's 3½ litre Thrupp & Maperley drop head coupe. A small brown
device almost hidden in the grass turned out to be Bozi's 1921 Citroen
Model C Cabriolet. So slow is this vehicle that the 'Plough' is the only venue
that Bozi can reach and return home from on the same day.
Nicolas Woolett had left his 1950 mark 1 Dellow on the tarmac of the car
park, which I thought strange for a car designed to be used in off-road
trials. Chris Geary was using his Riley engined Healey Tickford for the
first time this year and another first for this year was Tony Oakes 1930
Humber 25/70 saloon. Jaguars were represented by two XK 120's, one owned
by our chairman Mike Erroll and the other by Clive Bracey who also
managed to bring along his Chevy engined Cobra replica. J. W. Maxwell
exercised his immaculate XK150 whilst Lionel Higginson brought his E
type roadster. Incidentally there is an exhibition devoted to the E type
starting at the Design Museum in Butlers Wharf any time at all, indeed
by the time that you read this it will most probably have started. Alan
Benewith brought the younger of his two Jowetts, the 8 hp saloon dating
from 1938 whilst Nigel Walder arrived in his superb 1934 Lagonda M45.
And so the moment cannot be put off any longer when I have to try to
list all the M.G.'s; twelve in all that appear in my records. Vaguely in
order of age they were: Robin Smart's 1947 TC, Hon Ed Alderton's 1947 Y
type saloon, John Hill's 1947 TC, Bert Batten's 1951 TD, Dave Kilner's
1952 TD, Colin Mulford's 1954 TF, Graham Roach's 1959 MGA fixed head
coupe, Ron Smith's 1963 Midget, Lionel Higginson's 1971 BGT, Alan
Rothwell and Graham Childs both brought 1972 B roadsters and finally Roy
Welch's BGT. Moving on we noted Michael Harvey's 1980 Morgan 4/4 making
its first appearance this year in contrast to John Sheldrake's N.G. that
has attended just about every possible time. We had two vintage Morrises
attend; the 1923 bull nosed Oxford of P. Dingle and the 1928 flat nosed
Cowley of magazine distribution wizard Chas Moody. R. C. Drew brought
his 1971 Minor 100 saloon. Rileys were rather thin on the ground with
only six to report this month. The oldest was my 1930 9 hp tourer
followed by John Manvers' 1934 12/4 Falcon. Brian Lloyd Jacob exercised
his 1935 12/4 Lynx that suffered a lack of rear illumination on the way
home. Graham Brown of shock absorber fame brought his 1937 12/4 Adelphi.
Rarest of the post-war Riley models was the RMC but we had two of them
attend, owned by Dave Keen and Viv Landon.
Derek and Jacqui Wright arrived in their Rover 110 and Don Bingham in
his 1933 Singer Le Mans. In past years we have been over-run by Triumphs
at this venue. Not so this year with only three noted; Clive Mellor's
1935 Gloria, Terry Mistry's 1947 Roadster and Roger Horstman's 1968 TR6.
Finally we record Don William's 1927 Trojan drop tail tourer and Fraser
and Linda's 1938 Wolseley 14/56 saloon. We now have just one more
open-air meeting before returning to the 'Hand in Hand' for the winter
Bert Batten brought Eric Hall along as a passenger. Whilst I am not sure
whether Eric has ever been a member he has attended our meetings on and
off for as long as I can remember. He started his motoring career with a
Riley and then had a number of quick cars including Austin Healeys and
currently still owns a Healey Silverstone. Eric was a keen cyclist but
sadly was knocked off his bicycle last autumn and suffered massive head
injuries that left him unconscious for some days. When he came to he
found that he had lost his sight due to brain damage with little chance
of its returning save for a miracle. We do hope that Eric will feel able
to come to our meetings with Bert whenever he wishes. Both Mike Erroll
and the writer have had first hand experience of how a simple journey
can turn into a life-changing event so we need to give Eric all the
support that we can.
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