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April 2019
April 2019

April Meeting:

This month I was speaker and gave an insight as to James Gordon-Bennett Jnr - the things he did and his legacy plus a look at the annual Gordon Bennett Classic Car Rally held the first weekend in June.
 
Many know the expression “Gordon-Bennett” as one of incredulity but few knew where it came from and the many good thinks James did with his incredible wealth. We will not go into James’s private life and antics but in sporting terms he did many things – including setting up events in motor racing, ballooning, football and yachting. The idea of international motor racing around a circuit can be credited to him as well as being the force behind the starting of racing on the Isle of Man which led to the TT races.
 
On a more newsworthy front for the family newspaper business, he sponsored Stanley going to Africa to find David Livingstone as well as an ill-fated expedition to the Arctic. Many places are named after him – islands and places in the Arctic, roads in Paris & Warsaw, a lake in British Columbia etc. There are clearly many reminders of Gordon Bennett, many of which will last forever.
Portrait of James Gordon Bennett, Jr..jpg
Other Events in April
April was a busy month:
7thApril - The Daffodil Run – 
Thames Valley Centre was again well represented with at least 8 cars taking part plus Bob & Gill joining us at Bournemouth for our overnight stay – again we thank Roger Clark getting such a great hotel deal. For a change the weather was good for both the journey down and return. Thank you to the Bean Car Club for another enjoyable event.
April 2019 203
 
 
 
 
28thApril – Drive It Day-
This year’s Drive It Day was really well attended with 19 cars out on our run – thank you to the Morris Club for turning for joining us in such great numbers plus those from North London. This year the route was based upon visiting some of the Midsomer Murderslocations and then ending at Halton House. 
We all know locations but even locally we discovered some “hidden” gems of village locations – many have commented that they will be revisiting to have more time to explore. Arriving back at RAF Halton Ian Hough and the team there, laid on a very informative tours or the house, lunch in the Officers Mess and then visits to the Trenchard Museum and the James McCudden Flight Heritage Centre. Having visited the former during a previous road run to RAF Halton several of us visited the latter – it is truly fascinating. Bearing in mind I live within a few miles of Aylesbury and work there, I never realised the that the Link Simulators were built there with around 2,000 people employed building them
April 2019 350 April 2019 353

We are so grateful to the RAF for allowing us to visit RAF Halton - to Ian Hough, the staff at Halton House and all at the museums for providing us with an excellent time.
  
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
 
Meeting Venues
We are going through a period of change of meeting venues – please always check with Bob Hughes, myself or any of the Committee members if you are uncertain.
 
4thJune – Evening Road Run- start at 6.30pm starting from Little Chalfont public car park – finishing at The Jolly Woodman
 
2ndJuly – Provisional - Bekonscot Model Village Visit – 6.30pm. Partners and visitors most welcome to join us for this private evening tour - £6.50 per person to include refreshments. Advance booking essential with David Coulton asap please!
 
6thAugust – Ladies Night at Harleyford  - from 6.30pm – please pre-book with David Coulton
 
Future Event
 
The Littlewick Show – Monday 26thAugust
Book the date in your diary and come along – book online at:
thamesvalleyclassiccars.org.uk/LittlewickShow
 
March 2019
March 2019

March Meeting:

As our first speaker of the year we welcomed back Richard Poad from the Maidenhead Heritage Centre. 
 
Richard has become somewhat of a regular speaker at our meetings – his range of talks are really interesting and the information conveyed well. Our March talk was headed The History of White Waltham Airfield.
 
We all probably pass the airfield at some time during the year and regularly see planes coming in and out as we go along the M4, A4 and A404 – also flying over our Littlewick show site.In 1928, the de Havilland family acquired the land and formed the de Havilland School of Flying which opened in 1935. The MOD requisitioned it for use during World War II and in 1940 it became the HQ for the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) whose members were responsible for the delivery of all aircraft to and from RAF stations. During the war years the ATA achieved a remarkable 309,000 aircraft movements enabling the RAF to concentrate exclusively on operations. The lady flyers of the ATA flying from White Waltham included Amy Johnson
White Waltham has been a civilian airfield and the home of the West London Aero Club since the early post-war years
 
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas      
Any queries or uncertainty regarding meetings and location – please contact Bob Hughes or any other Committee member
 
4thJune – Evening Road Run- start at 6.30pm starting place TBC
 
2ndJuly – Concours Night
 
6thAugust – Ladies Night at Harleyford  - from 6.30pm – please pre-book with David Coulton
 
Future Event
 
Hyde Heath Fete and Classic Car Display – 12.00pm Saturday 11thMay
The fete is a really popular traditional event attracting large crowds - with up to 150 cars on display we hope for a great day – all welcome. No pre-booking – please arrive before 12.00pm. For further information please do contact me
 
The Littlewick Show – Monday 26thAugust
Book the date in your diary and come along – booking information available shortly
 
February 2019
February 2019

February Meeting:

That dreaded word AGM came around again and I am pleased to say that our meeting was well attended. The formal part of the evening was swiftly concluded, the financials agreed and the Committee re-elected despite theintensecompetition to replace us!
Moving swiftly on from the AGM we once again had Bob’s competition “The Price is Right”  - with pictures and price clues of the many auction items Bob had spotted over recent months you would think that us bargain hunting Austineers would be good at spotting the correct auction results – sadly not the case. The competition is entertaining and clearly shows some of the anomalies at auctions – something you expect to do well does not whereas another one you feel has little value goes well above estimate
Thank you Bob for providing a good evenings  
   
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas      
Any queries or uncertainty regarding meetings and location – please contact Bob Hughes or any other Committee member
 
2ndApril– Gordon Bennett – the 1903 race and the commemorative Classic Car Rally held each year
 
7thMay– To be confirmed – possible visit to Bekonscot Modl Village
 
4thJune – Evening Road Run- start at 6.30pm starting place TBC
 
Future Event
The Daffodil Run - 7thApril 2019
Entry information will be sent out early in the new year Booking to take part closes on 15thMarch.  

 
28thApril – Drive It Day – road run with lunch and visit to Halton House (TBC – further info to follow) Contact David Coulton for further information.
 
Hyde Heath Fete and Classic Car Display – 12.00pm Saturday 11thMay
The fete is a really popular traditional event attracting large crowds - with up to 150 cars on display we hope for a great day – all welcome. No pre-booking – please arrive before 12.00pm. For further information please do contact me
 
January 2019
January 2019

January:

As in previous years we do not hold a formal January meeting as the Centre’s annual dinner is the following week. However, on 8thJanuary we had an informal “Noggin & Natter” at The Royal Standard - this was really well attended – providing a great opportunity for the Committee to formalise our meetings agenda for the coming year.
 
Annual Dinner – 12thJanuary– Roger Clark once again organised a highly successful and enjoyable dinner at Ellesborough Golf Club. We are all extremely grateful to Roger for all the effort he puts in to make this such a great annual event – 68 attending this year! For a change we abandoned the traditional speeches and presentations but instead had a popular local singer performing songs from the 50s 60s. It made a nice change and enabled dancing for those inclined to participate. We all look forward to our January 2020 dinner.
 
New Year’s Day at The Bottle & Glass
Whilst not a Centre event several members did make the journey to the Bottle & Glass at Stone, near Aylesbury and had a really good morning – lots of cars and conversation
 
Bicester Heritage Scramble – 6thJanuary
Again nothing was formally arranged by the Centre but several of us made the journey on what turned out to be a lovely day. The Scramble is so well attended – claims are that 7,000 people attended and I can well believe it! Some great cars including a good smattering of A7s. 
   
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Any queries or uncertainty regarding meetings and location – please contact Bob Hughes or any other Committee member
 
5thMarch– Richard Poad returns to tell us about the history of White Waltham Airfield
 
2ndApril– Gordon Bennett – the 1903 race and the commemorative Classic Car Rally held each year
 
7thMay– To be confirmed – possible visit to Bekonscot Modl Village
 
Future Event
The Daffodil Run - 7thApril 2019
Entry information will be sent out early in the new year
 
28thApril – Drive It Day – road run with a possible visit to RAF Halton (TBC – further info to follow). We will be commemorating the 80thanniversary of the start of WWII as part of our run and the optional lunch at village pub. Contact David Coulton for further information.
 
Hyde Heath Fete and Classic Car Display – 12.00pm Saturday 11thMay
The fete is a really popular traditional event attracting large crowds - with up to 150 cars on display we hope for a great day – all welcome. No pre-booking – please arrive before 12.00pm. For further information please do contact me
 
December 2018
December 2018

December Meeting:

Our meeting was well attended with over 25 members and guests. We were pleased to welcome back Richard Poad, Chairman of Maidenhead Heritage. This month Richard provided an interesting talk entitled “The Dunkirk Little Ships”.
 
The talk covered boats from the Thames who were part of "Operation Dynamo" and worked on the evacuation of British and French troops. 
 
A description and timeline of "Operation Dynamo" was discussed; the fate of some boats and the vast difference in sizes. Boats being towed both into Dunkirk and Dover, holes in the waterline of boats stuffed full of mattresses, arriving at Dover laden with troops then turning back to pick up more troops still with the holes plugged. 
 
Wherever possible the history of each boat at the evacuation and up to the current day was illustrated along with deeds of daring and sacrifices on the part of the owners and crews. Many of the boats can still be seen on the Thames and in particular at the annual Thames Traditional Boat Festival 
Thames Traditional Boat Festival 
 
Boxing Day at Sarratt
As in previous years our Centre was well represented – I spotted 4 members cars plus others from members of the Morris Club who are regular visitors to our meetings. Perhaps the most welcome sight was to see our “Catering Manager” Vic Hodge having his Box Saloon (see photo) back on the road after a complete engine rebuild – all we need now is Little Nellie (the caravan) and we are back in business with coffees and bacon baps.
 
Vic Hodge and his Box Saloon
Despite the wet conditions underfoot, the number of cars on display continues to increase – not sure why so many moderns (some of which you can still buy new – well almost) are allowed on this part of the Common where space is so limited and should be kept for genuine classics. The general public were present in considerable numbers, showing how popular it is for them to come out on Boxing Day to see our cars. A great event to end the year.
   
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Any queries or uncertainty regarding meetings and location – please contact Bob Hughes or any other Committee member
 
5thFebruary 2019– AGM followed by Bob’s “Price is Right” Quiz
 
5thMarch– Richard Poad returns to tell us about the history of White Waltham Airfield
 
Future Event
The Daffodil Run - 7thApril



November 2018
December 2018

November Meeting:

Our first meeting at our new venue – Huntswood Golf Club. We thank the team there for making us most welcome. Our guest speaker was Brian Newman who came to tell us about Bekonscot. For those not familiar with Bekonscot, it is the world’s oldest and original model village. Opening in 1929 you can imagine many of the early visitors came in Austin 7s. With over 80 years of history and a huge model railway system plus 1.5 acres of immaculate gardens with finely detailed model buildings, it is a wonderful little world tucked away from the hustle and bustle of today.
  
In a 1930s time warp you can see how England used to be – features in the six little towns include coal mines to castles, aerodromes to farms, docks to cable cars, race courses to fairgrounds. Brian was able to provide us with a good inside into the Villages history and how the buildings are constructed – even down to a “wrecked” 7 at the garage.
 
Hopefully, we will be able to arrange an evening visit to the Village so we can learn and see more about Bekonscot.
 

2019 – It is now that we are looking at ideas for our 2019 programme – please come forward as new ideas are always welcome
 
“Lest We Forget” Road Run – 4thNovember
To commemorate the 100thanniversary of the Armistice and indeed the 100thAnniversary of the RAF, we linked up with our North London colleagues to undertake a morning Road Run which ended at the Red Lion, Little Missenden for the annual Herbert Austin birthday lunch gathering.
 
Sadly, whilst numbers at the Red Lion were really good, the Road Run only enticed 9 cars to do the full route but still we had a great run in good weather. Our photo taken at the start includes the Model T driven by “Huffy” back from the Middle East – not the best car for a cold day such as we had!
   
Starting from Chesham the route took us through villages in East Bucks up to the Vale of Aylesbury for coffee at the Orchard View Farm Shop and Café – everyone appeared to agree a good choice - hardly anyone being aware it existed! Following coffee we headed back through the hills around Great Hampden and on to Little Missenden. On route, at various war memorial locations, one person from the memorial had been selected and a potted history provided. Hopefully, the full stories will provide interesting reading. Thank you to those who did support us on the run – perhaps and hopefully more will come next year when we look back at 1939 and the 80thanniversary of the outbreak of World War II. 
    
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Any queries or uncertainty regarding meetings and location – please contact Bob Hughes or any other Committee member
 
8thJanuary 2019– No formal meeting – just an informal get together “Noggin & Natter” – this will be held at The Royal Standard – from 7.15pm
 
5thFebruary 2019– AGM followed by Bob’s “Price is Right” Quiz
 
Future Event
12thJanuary- Make a note – Thames Valley Centre’s annual dinnerwill once again be held at Ellesborough Golf Club. Please do join us for a great evening – visitors most welcome.
October 2018
October 2018

October Meeting:

We again had a guest speaker, Will Templeton. Will and indeed his wife as well, are Volunteers at the Chiltern Open Air Museum. They spend many hours at houses on site explaining the histories of the properties to visitors.
With over 30 already rebuilt houses and other buildings plus many more in store, Will was able to give us a greater insight into the Museum and its buildings. Clearly, from his talk, the buildings in store will take many years to rebuild and need massive sums of money to complete. Hopefully, when we go to the Museum next we will see the ongoing progress being made.
 
2019 – It is now that we are looking at ideas for our 2019 programme – please come forward as new ideas are always welcome
 
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas      
Any queries or uncertainty regarding meetings and location – please contact Bob Hughes or any other Committee member
 
NOTE: WEDNESDAY5thDecember– Guest Speaker from Maidenhead Heritage - The Dunkirk Little Ships
 
8thJanuary 2019– No formal meeting – just an informal get together “Noggin & Natter” – this will be held at The Royal Standard – from 7.15pm
 
5thFebruary 2019– AGM followed by Bob’s “Price is Right” Quiz
 
Future Event
12thJanuary- Make a note – Thames Valley Centre’s annual dinnerwill once again be held at Ellesborough Golf Club. Please do join us for a great evening – visitors most welcome.
September 2018
September 2018

September Meeting:

What would September be without Auction Night and our ace auctioneer Bob Hughes. Numbers attending were reasonable but sadly fewer people seem to be bringing items along. A reasonable profit was made and we thank all of those who donated their proceeds – hopefully next year’s auction night will be better supported both be sellers and buyers.
 
2019 – It is now that we are looking at ideas for our 2019 programme – please come forward as new ideas are always welcome
 
Other Events
September was a relatively busy month with such as the Goodwood Revival and Kop Hill with various members attending.
 
The Amersham Heritage Day was another tremendous success with the town full of people, attractions and the excellent display of Classic Cars plus other vehicles. Our Town Council should be commended for the great job they do in putting on this event.
 
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas      
IMPORTANT – VENUE CHANGE
Due to changes at Burnham Cricket Club we are sadly likely to be moving to a new venue. Whilst we will try to keep everyone advised it is recommended that you contact Bob Hughes or any other member of the Thames Valley Committee to check the location of our next few meetings. Hopefully, matters will be sorted shortly. 
 
6thNovember– Guest Speaker - Bekonscot Model Village & Railway – “The World’s Oldest Model Village”
 
4thDecember– Guest Speaker from Maidenhead Heritage - The Dunkirk Little Ships
 
8thJanuary 2019– No formal meeting – just an informal get together “Noggin & Natter” – this will be held at The Royal Standard
 
Future Event
12thJanuary- Make a note – Thames Valley Centre’s annual dinnerwill once again be held at Ellesborough Golf Club. Please do join us for a great evening – visitors most welcome. 
August 2018
August 2018

London A7OC - Thames Valley Centre

August Meeting:

Our Ladies Night at Harleyford is always popular and this year was no exception - a really good number of members and guests attending. Whilst the weather was somewhat cooler than the previous weeks it was still pleasant and we did manage a couple of trips on the boat.
Once again our hosts at Harleyford Golf Club made us most welcome and put on a really great buffet – thank you once to the staff at the Club House.
 
The Littlewick Show
Bank Holiday Monday saw us once again gather for our annual car display at The Littlewick Show. Following the poor weather on the Sunday we were extremely pleased to have good weather on the Monday. The range and quality of vehicles was really impressive with over 250 on display. The Car Show has continued to be strongly supported at the Knowl Hill venue despite there being at least two other such events in the area.
 
The Committee would like to thank all the members and friends who helped us over the two days – not least Vic Hodge who provided much welcome coffees and bacon baps from his caravan.
 




























The results for the Austin Classes are detailed below:
Class  A     Austin 7s up to 1930   
Position Entry No Model Owner
First A1 1928 A7 Tourer John Emmerton
Second A3 1927 Gordon England Cup Derek Brown
Third A6 Austin Seven Derek Fox
 
Class  B   .  Austin 7s 1931-35         (Chrome Radiators)   
Position Entry No Model Owner
First B5 1933 Tourer Kim Smith
Second B6 1934 Box Saloon Richard Tatton
Third B3 1934 Box Saloon Chris Parkhurst
 
Class  C    Austin 7s 1934-39    (Painted Radiators)    
Position Entry No Model Owner
First C6 1937 A7 Opal David Coulton
Second C5 1936 A7 Ruby Roger Clark
Third C1 1936 A7 Ruby Geoff Pelling
 
Class  D    Austin 7 Specials    
Position Entry No Model Owner
First D1 Austin Seven Special Graham Thomas
Second D2 Austin Seven Special  Ian Huff
 
Class E   Vintage Austin Register Cars
Position Entry No Model Owner
First E6 Austin 12/4 Clifton Barry Mullroy
Second E4 Austin 12/4 Burnham Keith Wright
Third E10 Austin 12/4 Mulliner John Symmonds
  
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Whilst most of our meetings will be based at our new home (Burnham Cricket Club) there will be evenings when we have Road Runs to other pubs as well as the occasional “Noggin & Natter”evenings at other locations so do keep in touch.  If you are coming to any meetings and are unsure as to where to come please check with any member of the Thames Valley Committee
 
New members and visitors are very welcome – whether you have an Austin 7 or not or just have an interest in Classic Cars – we will be pleased if you can join us at our monthly meetings or on such as Road Runs. 
 
2ndOctober - Guest Speaker – The Chiltern Open Air Museum – established in 1976 there is a great story to tell
 
6thNovember– Guest Speaker - Bekonscot Model Village & Railway – “The World’s Oldest Model Village”
 

Future Event
Sunday 4th November
After the success of our first WWI Run (albeit spoiled by the weather in the latter stages), I felt it opportune to look at undertaking another Run for this year - marking how significant 2018 is.
As you will appreciate, it is the 100thanniversary of the Armistice (11thNovember). 2018 was also the Centenary year of the founding of the Royal Air Force (1stApril). Herbert Austin’s only son Vernon lost his life on 26thJanuary 1915.
With North London’s Herbert Austin’s Birthday lunch being at the Red Lion in Little Missenden on 4thNovember, with Keith’s agreement and support, I am putting together a Run which will finish back at Little Missenden in time for lunch. 
For those who might only wish to participate in the second part of the route, you could join us at the coffee stop - I would provide the whole route in advance.  
The format will be a route starting from Chesham at just after 9.00am, coffee stop on the way - between Wendover and Princes Risborough. We will visit various villages and towns stopping, if you wish, at the War Memorials where information will be given upon at least one of those named. There are interesting and indeed sad stories to tell.

 
May 2018
May 2018

Amersham Fair Organ Museum

Our visit to The Amersham Fair Organ Museum proved to be a very popular event with over 30 attending. As somebody said in a review – “A secret gem hidden in an industrial estate, it's more a collection of working organs than a museum”. The people behind the museum have done a brilliant job in saving the organs and keeping all in such excellent working condition.
 
As can be seen from the photo the organs are beautifully decorated machines – more a piece of art - and belt out raucous tunes to which we listened with a cuppa and some excellent cake. The explanatory talks about each machine provided a great insight into their history, how they work and the variation in pipes etc. It was fascinating to look around the backs of them to see how the music is fed into the machinery and that the tunes primarily come from the folded stacks of card.
 


A really great evening and we are grateful to our hosts at the Museum for entertaining us so well.
 

The Daffodil Run – April 8th

Bearing in mind the relatively poor weather on the Sunday for the latter part of the run to Christchurch, we had a really good weekend. Monday’s weather for the run home was even worse.

This year we again had in our trusty group from the Thames Valley, three Rubies, our Opal and an Austin 10 plus Ray Bickerton in his Morris 8. Additionally, 4 further members/friends came down in their moderns to enjoy the ride stopover at the hotel Roger Clark had again so well arranged.



We all had a great time despite the weather, with most of us still picnicking outside at lunchtime – albeit looking a little miserable! Even the donkeys did not trouble us this year – to wet for them perhaps? Thank you to the Bean Club for organising the event.   
 

Hyde Heath Classic Car Display – 12thMay

Firstly, the good news, the Spitfire was able to undertake the much appreciate flypast but only due to it being just as the fete opened – immediately thereafter the rain started and gradually got worse through the afternoon. However, we still had over 100 cars with Keith Wright’s car winning “Best Austin”. We thank all of those who came along and stayed for so long despite the worsening weather.
 

Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas

Whilst most of our meetings are based at our new home (Burnham Cricket Club).  There will be evenings when we have Road Runs to other pubs as well as the occasional “Noggin & Natter” evenings at other locations so do keep in touch.  If you are coming to any meetings and are unsure as to where to come please check with any member of the Thames Valley Committee
 
New members and visitors are very welcome – whether you have an Austin 7 or not or just have an interest in Classic Cars – we will be pleased if you can join us at our monthly meetings or on such as Road Runs. 
 
3rdJuly – Evening Road Run – 6.30pm start Great Missenden Car Park– finish at Burnham Cricket Club around 8.15pm Details of supper available to follow. Please encourage friends etc to contact us and join in this pleasant evening run
 
7thAugustLadies Night at Harleyford– from 6.30pm. Weather permitting; enjoy a boat ride on the Thames. Please contact David Coulton to confirm if you are attending and for any further information that you might need.
 
4thSeptember– Auction Night with Bob. Please do come along, bring items to sell and we need people to purchase them!
 
Future Events
 
The Littlewick Show – August Bank Holiday Monday – 27thAugust
Yes the show is on and again at Knowl Hill (as per last year) – the site is on the A4 just after Littlewick Green as you go from Maidenhead towards Reading. We are all looking forward to another great year for the Classic Car Display. Book in now online at http://thamesvalleyclassiccars.org.uk/LittlewickShow/Register
 
March 2018
March 2018

March Meeting:

For our meeting the evening was the second part of our talk upon Maidenhead’s Motoring Heritage. Richard Poad of Maidenhead Heritage Centre provided an extremely interesting talk primarily covering Vanwall Cars. The talk was particularly relevant as 2018 is the 60thanniversary of Vanwall winning the Grand Prix World Championship, being the most successful season for the team in its relatively brief history.
 
Vanwall was established by Tony Vandervell in the early 1950s, initially racing with a series of modified Ferraris. The first actual Vanwall was built for the new Formula 1 regulations in 1954 at Cox Green, Maidenhead. The first race win was the 1957 British Grand Prix at the Aintree Circuit with Stirling Moss and Tony Brooks sharing the drive. The following year saw the team’s greatest success with Moss and Brooks each winning 3 races in the season and securing the Constructors Championship for Vanwall – being the first British team to do so. Moss and Brooks finished second and third in the Driver’s Championship – won by one point by another Englishman – Mike Hawthorn. The top 5 drivers in the Championship were all British. The following photograph is of Stirling Moss in his Vanwall at the 1958 German Grand Prix – sadly he retired from that race. 
 
Vanwall F1 & Stirling Moss - 1958 German Grand Prix Formula 1 - photograph
 
1958 was to be the last great season for Vanwall as Tony Vanderwall’s health was failing and he was advised to rest. The last racing Vanwall was an “unwieldy” rear-engined machine produced for 1961 which although it did show some promise when raced by John Surtees its development was stopped. 
  
 
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Whilst most of our meetings will be based at our new home (Burnham Cricket Club) there will be evenings when we have Road Runs to other pubs as well as the occasional “Noggin & Natter”evenings at other locations so do keep in touch.  If you are coming to any meetings and are unsure as to where to come please check with any member of the Thames Valley Committee
 
New members and visitors are very welcome – whether you have an Austin 7 or not or just have an interest in Classic Cars – we will be pleased if you can join us at our monthly meetings or on such as Road Runs. 
 
22ndApril – Drive It Day – Our World War I Run revisited
We are proposing a run similar to our last WWI Run so make a note in your diary – details next month
 
1stMay Amersham Fairground Organ Museum– 6.30pm for 7.00pm prompt start. £11.00 per person to include teas/coffees and cakes. Partners and guests most welcome. Please book with David Coulton
 
Hyde Heath Fete and Classic Car Display – 1.00pm Saturday 12thMay
The fete is a really popular traditional event attracting large crowds - with up to 150 cars on display we hope for a great day – all welcome. No pre-booking – please arrive before 12.30pm. For further 
information please do contact me
 
5thJune – The Pann Mill, The Rye, High Wycombe – 6.30pm -last year we heard about the Mill – now we intend to visit the Mill in High Wycombe and see it working. Pub afterwards TBA

 
February 2018
February 2018

February Meeting:

Yes it’s that month when we have our AGM – fortunately, we had Bob’s “The Price is Right” quiz after the AGM so it could be our good attendance was down to the latter.
 
At the AGM our Chairman was able to report another good and active year with highly successful events such as The Littlewick Show, Auction Night and as reported last month, our Annual Dinner. Additionally, our monthly meetings were increasingly well attended – perhaps somewhat due to the variety of speakers booked and things we have done such as Ladies Night at Harleyford and the evening Road Run. Having to move premises late in the year did initially worry us about finding somewhere suitable but we are delighted with our new “home” at Burnham Cricket Club and the hospitality of Michelle and her team. 
 
For 2018 we have several really good speaker evenings as well as the chance to do some interesting visits –  1st Masy at Amersham Fairground Organ Museum and 5th June the Pann Mill in High Wycombe. There are some changes to our programme so an updat3ed version has been published. If you have not received a copy of the new programme please contact me and I will either email or post one to you.
 
All Officers of the Committee volunteered to continue and were duly re-elected – following which the AGM was closed.
 
Post AGM we had Bob’s excellently presented Quiz – guessing the auction price of cars and motoring related items – Morris’s were particularly well represented this year! It was amazing how much some items achieved whereas items you would have expected to sell well did not.
 
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Whilst most of our meetings will be based at our new home (Burnham Cricket Club) there will be evenings when we have Road Runs to other pubs as well as the occasional “Noggin & Natter” evenings at other locations so do keep in touch.  If you are coming to any meetings and are unsure as to where to come please check with any member of the Thames Valley Committee
 
New members and visitors are very welcome – whether you have an Austin 7 or not or just have an interest in Classic Cars – we will be pleased if you can join us at our monthly meetings or on such as Road Runs.
 
3rd April – At Burnham Cricket Club – Note: Change of agenda with our programmed meeting now being Searching for the Million Pound Mercedes.This month will see the return of John Bond to tell us the follow up to his previous fascinating talk on Uncle George’s car collection which included this spectacular Mercedes
 
The Daffodil Run - 8th April
Have you booked? To book in to take part in the run or for further information contact David Main – bccdaffodil@hotmail.com or call 0118 934 1670
Sunday Night accommodation: Please contact Roger Clark (01494 729290) if you have not already booked.
 
22nd April – Drive It Day – Our World War I Run revisited
We are proposing a run similar to our last WWI Run so make a note in your diary – details next month
 
1st May Amersham Fairground Organ Museum – 6.30pm for 7.00pm prompt start. £11.00 per person to include teas/coffees and cakes. Partners and guests most welcome. Please book with David Coulton
 
Hyde Heath Fete and Classic Car Display – 1.00pm Saturday 12th May
The fete is a really popular traditional event attracting large crowds - with up to 150 cars on display we hope for a great day – all welcome. No pre-booking – please arrive before 12.30pm. For further information please do contact me
 
David Coulton Tel. 01494 775967
Email address: davidcoulton@yahoo.co.uk 
 
January 2018
January 2018

January Meeting:

Despite the 1st Tuesday being the 2nd of January and our not having a formal meeting, we had 10 of us go to the Royal Standard for a “Noggin & Natter”. Beyond discussing events such as Boxing Day at Sarratt and various Classic Car gatherings in New Year’s Day the evening provided us with the chance to finalise our programme for the coming year.
 
2018 looks to have several really good speaker evenings as well as the chance to do some visits to such as the Pann Mill in High Wycombe. The programme was circulated at our annual dinner with copies available at meetings. If would like a copy of our programme please contact me and I will either email or post one to you.
 
Annual Dinner – 13th January
Once again Roger Clark did a terrific job in organising the dinner at Ellesborough Golf Club – this year he managed to even get decent weather for the evening! With 61 attending it was a really good event – the food was excellent. Even Roger’s jokes were quite good this year.
As is customary we had prizes to award with our Road Run won by Geoff and Carol Pelling (see photo). The Concours Award went to the Morris 8 of Den Jarrott – we do allow the Morris Club to win our events! To Roger and to his wife Carol (head of Finance) may we all say a big thank you for working so hard to make the evening so successful and enjoyable.
 
 
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Whilst most of our meetings will be based at our new home (Burnham Cricket Club) there will be evenings when we have Road Runs to other pubs as well as the occasional “Noggin & Natter” evenings at other locations so do keep in touch.  If you are coming to any meetings and are unsure as to where to come please check with any member of the Thames Valley Committee
 
New members and visitors are very welcome – whether you have an Austin 7 or not or just have an interest in Classic Cars – we will be pleased if you can join us at our monthly meetings or on such as Road Runs.
 
6th March – At Burnham Cricket Club – Part II of “The Motor Manufacturing History in Maidenhead” – the talk will be commencing 7.45pm sharp as there is a lot of history to cover.
 
3rd April – At Burnham Cricket Club - Gordon Bennett – the story and the 2017 Rally
 
The Daffodil Run - 8th April
Have you booked? To book in to take part in the run or for further information contact David Main – bccdaffodil@hotmail.com or call 0118 934 1670
Sunday Night accommodation: Please contact Roger Clark (01494 729290) if you have not already booked.
 
Hyde Heath Fete and Classic Car Display – 1.00pm Saturday 12th May
The fete is a really popular traditional event attracting large crowds - with up to 150 cars on display we hope for a great day – all welcome. No pre-booking – please arrive before 12.30pm. For further information please do contact me
 
David Coulton Tel. 01494 775967
Email address: davidcoulton@yahoo.co.uk 
 
December 2017
December 2017

London A7OC - Thames Valley Centre

December Meeting:

For our last meeting of 2017 we welcomed another guest speaker from Maidenhead Heritage Centre. Our talk for December was provided by Richard Poad the Chairman of the Centre.
 
We have all probably heard of the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) and in particular the exploits of the brave flyers moving planes between the airfields, factories and maintenance units during the war. Based at White Waltham just outside of Maidenhead, this was truly an important part of local history. Richard brought to life the story of this civilian organisation which made an enormous contribution to victory by taking over the ferrying tasks previously undertaken by service pilots.
 
During the war, 1245 men and women from 25 countries ferried a total of 309,000 aircraft of 147 types, without radios, no instrument flying instruction and at the mercy of the British weather. Frequently they were presented with a type of plane they had never seen before. Having seen the small instruction book with flying notes for each type of aircraft you quickly realise the lack of training these pilots – just written guidance sheets.
 
The best story of their exploits probably being the case of a lady pilot who delivered a Wellington bomber (flying alone) – upon landing the ground crew searched the plane as they could not believe this small lady had delivered the plane single handed. The most famous female ATA pilot, who also lost her life in service, was of course Amy Johnson but luckily many of these ladies survived and some are still active today.
 
We all thank Richard for a fascinating talk and look forward to further ones by members of the Centre during the coming year.
 
Boxing Day at Sarratt
As I say each year, to me Sarratt is the last event of the year for our Classic Cars. Whilst the weather conditions were very wet overnight, the surface of the Common was surprisingly good and cars had not too much difficulty in getting on and off. Numbers were perhaps down a little on previous years but still there was a great turnout of all types and ages of vehicles. It was a really enjoyable albeit bracing morning. Our picture shows member Roger Clark inspecting the Berkeley – we are not sure if he was looking for the small engine or indeed for his next classic car! The Austin tow truck looked superb.
 
Forthcoming Evening Meetings & Agendas
Whilst our meetings will generally be based at our new home (Burnham Cricket Club) there will be evenings when we have Road Runs to other pubs as well as the occasional “Noggin & Natter” evenings at other locations so do keep in touch.  If you are coming to any meetings and are unsure as to where to come please check with any member of the Thames Valley Committee
 
New members and visitors are very welcome – whether you have an Austin 7 or not or just have an interest in Classic Cars – we will be pleased if you can join us at our monthly meetings or on such as Road Runs.
6th February – At Burnham Cricket Club – AGM followed by Bob’s “The Price is Right” Quiz – a chance for you to see how good you are at guessing at auction prices.
 
6th March – At Burnham Cricket Club – Part II of “The Motor Manufacturing History in Maidenhead” – the talk will be commencing 7.45pm sharp as there is a lot of history to cover.
 
4th April – Gordon Bennett – the story and the 2017 Rally
 
David Coulton Tel. 01494 775967
Email address: davidcoulton@yahoo.co.uk
Dated: December 2017
 
Gordon Bennett Irish Classic Car Run - weekend of 2nd June
June 2017
Due to other commitments, I am a month late with my write up of our experience in Ireland. For several years we have wanted to take part in this Run and this year was the opportunity. We took our “7” Opal to Holyhead by trailer to save a day each way. Taking the early Friday morning ferry to Dublin was ideal - with the Tall Ships in Dublin and it being the Irish Bank Holiday weekend, the city was extremely congested to drive through especially with the “7”. Having taken us one hour to cross Dublin, we managed to get onto the motorway to Portlaoise – the base for the Run and where we stayed for the four nights.

The Friday evening saw a gathering at the County Hall for a civic reception - many of the cars taking part being displayed for the public to have a look around. Austins were well represented, mostly much larger models - the only 7s – a Special and a Big 7. As can be seen, our Opal is the little of the “Little & Large” Austins in my photo.   

 
The second day was the first road run of the weekend (covering nearly 100 miles) – with over 140 cars starting from Treacey’s Bar and going to the medieval city of Kilkenny. Parking the cars on the lawn in front of the Castle made a terrific sight and attracted a lot of attention from the many tourists in the city. The evening saw all the entrants get together and enjoy the Gala Dinner.

Day Three is the big event – driving much of the original figure of eight Gordon Bennett route of 104 miles with stops at places of interest and those associated with the original event, including in Kildare where the Car Club did a brilliant job in getting all the cars parked up in the compact old centre.

Day Four – is the leisure run which took us to the Irish National Stud and time to visit the exceptional Japanese Gardens there. These are musts to visit in our view.
 
The following day we departed and decided to come back through the Wicklow Mountains via the Sally Gap – which is pretty steep for a 7 and extremely remote – especially on a windy and wet day – we only had sheep for company at the top! Coming down from the mountains and continuing back towards Dublin we decided to visit Powerscourt Gardens – you can see why they were voted number 3 in the world’s top 10 gardens by National Geographic. Our route back to Dublin port avoided going through the middle of the city – by coming up from the south along the coast roads made it a lot easier and is something we would recommend.

If you are considering doing the Gordon Bennett Classic Car Run we would recommend it – the people are wonderful, great food and lost of chat – plus some really interesting cars (including the Titanic Rolls Royce). Be aware, this is Ireland - the weather can go from sunshine to rain in minutes and back again!

Ladies Night @ Harleyford
July 2016
This year our Ladies Night at Harleyford benefited from good weather and a great turnout of members and guests from the Morris Club and North London – most coming in their old cars. We were made most welcome by the golf club’s staff who in particular arranged for our cars to be at the Clubhouse rather than in the car park – attracting interest from golfers as they came off the course. Several took the opportunity to take the boat trip and see the new marina which opened this year – it was also good to see the Alaska in the “flesh” having Richard the owner giving us a talk about it back in March. Once again the Golf Club’s catering team came up trumps and provided an excellent buffet. Great evening and enjoyed by everyone.