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Past Events - 2021


September Day Out

29 September 2021 - Kent Day Out - by Roger H

A number of cars met at Newlands Corner (part of the North Downs Way, on the pilgrims route to Canterbury) for a jaunt around the beautiful Surrey lanes.

Robin Gray organised not only good weather but an interesting route to a lovely pub for lunch. The roads were what we call “Chummy roads” very narrow, through a tunnel of trees usually with grass in the middle of the road.

It was good to see a couple of our Kent friends who joined us for the run. In summer our Club meetings usually entail a run via a scenic route to lunch in a pub.

We are now moving into darker nights so we will now be meeting for our regular Noggin and Natter evenings on the last Wednesday of the month at the Barley Mow, West Horsley, Surrey.


Cornish Caper - full story

12 - 19 September 2021 - Cornish Caper - the full story - by Val W

DAY 1 Sunday 12th September – The sun was shining – MG was loaded and ready to go so we set off on our journey to Cornwall. Nice drive to Weyhill, just west of Andover. Here we met up with some members of the 750 club at the Weyhill Fair Public House. After a very nice lunch we continued on our way to Wells, where we booked in at the Premier Inn. There was enough time to visit Wells Cathedral and look around the town centre before getting back for dinner.

DAY 2 Monday 13th Sept: After a good breakfast we all continued our journey – heading for Newquay. A mid-morning stop for coffee in Porlock was a must, and here we found a shop selling really scrummy homemade chocolates, not many left by lunchtime which made Porlock Hill even more of a challenge. We had forgotten just how steep and difficult it was to drive it. However Brian and Janna made it look easy in their Riley. After another rest break we reached Hotel California in Newquay – all cars and occupants arrived safely with no problems. Rooms big, beds comfortable, view from our balcony brilliant. We met in the bar at 7.00pm to dine at 7.30pm. Obviously you always wonder what the food is going to be like but no need to worry. Food for evening meal and breakfast was excellent and staff could not have been more helpful.

DAY 3 Tues 14th Sept: This was going to be a rest day after yesterday’s long drive. Sunny, blue skies, proper holiday weather. Robin led an amble along the coastal path around Fistral Bay to Newquay’s beaches stopping off at Rick Stein’s fish and chips restaurant. Others took off to explore locally in their cars, and some just relaxed at the hotel. Don and I drove off to meet Brian and Marlene Grant (members of the NHAEG who moved to Camborne several years ago). We met at The Cornish Gold Mine in Redruth, famous for its Gold and Tin mining in the past, now more famous for the Gold Shop and Restaurant. Don and Brian were a bit concerned that we had to walk through this amazing Jewellery Shop to get to the restaurant where we were served a ‘Big Breakfast’ on a shovel. A short walk around the old tin mine, now a museum, finished our visit. Off to Marlene and Brian’s house next, where we had a nice afternoon cuppa and Don had a ‘kip’ while I explored their amazing garden. Back to Newquay and the hotel for a rest before dinner.

DAY 4 Wed 15th Sept: North Cornwall Coast today, driving down to St Ives passing the most beautiful coastal scenery. Perranporth boasts one of the longest beaches in Cornwall and viewed from the headland we could see a lot of people appreciated it too. Beautiful views! Stopping off for a coffee, enjoying the driving and the views, we eventually reached St Ives. Manic! Packed wall to wall with people, dogs, pushchairs etc. We drove down to the Harbour and the cars did cause a lot of interest. Obviously we couldn’t find anywhere to park, so there was no option but to carry on – out of St Ives and back onto the road towards Land’s End. Next stop Porthcurno/Minack Theatre. We managed to park here hoping to have a look round the theatre. We parked free but they were charging to go in and look round the open air theatre. No productions on that day so we decided to have a wander and take in the views. After leaving Land’s End we carried on for about 5 miles, we came to the turning to the pretty harbour of Mousehole. Robin, Bev, Brian & Janna decided to take a look. Don & I decided it had been a long but lovely day and decided to get back to Hotel California. Following the coast road for a bit we took in some lovely views of St Michaels Mount and then headed inland for the run back to Newquay. The intrepid Brian and Janna made it back to the hotel safe and sound but unfortunately Robin’s Morris Minor, that had been playing up all day, now decided to give up completely. A recovery truck was called and they arrived back at the Hotel tired, frustrated hungry and ready for a late dinner.

Day 5 Thursday 16th September: Less driving was suggested today, so out came the cars and we headed North towards Padstow! After waiting about 20 minutes we eventually got a parking space and immediately had a call from Robin to say he had broken down again so decided to leave before we put money in the meter. We parked up with Brian & Janna, Malcolm & Francis in a side street. At the house we had parked alongside was a mad sitting in the garden under his umbrella having a cup of tea. He was very interested in the cars, he had been the owner of an Austin 7 several years ago and Don and Malcolm had a good old chat. Others had gone in different directions and Robin’s car was struggling again. Don and I decided lunch was calling so headed out of Padstow to find somewhere to eat. Stopping at the first Pub we found it was one owned by Rick Stein. We decided he had enough money without taking ours, so we carried on along the coast. We found a lovely Tea Rooms. Cornish Pasties and Salad, Scones with Jam and Cream for afters, and low and behold the owner talked “Cars”. He had bought an Aluminium Racing D Type Jaguar. He had raced in the past but was a busy man now running the Tea Rooms with his Family and had not had a lot of time to restore it. We were invited to go back next year to see how it was progressing and maybe have a ride in it! Heading back towards Newquay we took breaks at several viewing points enjoying the beautiful scenery.

Day 6 Friday 17th September: Do your own thing today! Oh we did! We visited Charlestown, a very unspoilt working late Georgian Port built to export the local copper (and later china clay) and now the home to tall ships and period film sets. Next a 5 mile drive to Fowey. It was suggested we parked in the Pay and Display at the bottom of the hill and did the level walk of about 400 m to the harbour, which we did. Lovely lunch there with Brian and Janna, Ruth and Ken, Robin and Bev, two dogs and Uncle Tom Cobley and all !!!!!! It started to rain just as we left the restaurant so Don and I decided to wiz back as we had not put the hood up on the MG. We took the wrong road didn’t we! Soooooo steep! Out of breath and exhausted we eventually got to the top. Ooops! No car park? By now it was pouring down. We eventually found a car park – not ours – but we were told a minibus would be along in a bit and it would take us to the other car park! Sure enough it turned up and eventually we got to the correct car park where we found Ken and Malcolm had kindly put the hood up on the MG for us. Thank you both so much.

Day 7 Saturday 18th September: So ………….. We are told “no need to rush today”. We paid our bills and signed out of the Hotel. We enjoy a visit to the superb Llanhydrock House. Apart from the fact that I didn’t have the current Nat Trust Card with me so it was like the Spanish Inquisition getting in! Once in it was worth it. Next, I didn’t have my navigational hat on that day because these roads kept popping up that weren’t where we should have been at all! Raining and lost didn’t bode well! Anyway, if we hadn’t got lost we wouldn’t have found the great place where we had lunch. Don wasn’t too happy when he saw all the ‘gremlins’ (Don’s word for Children) there, but my goodness they were certainly having fun on a wet day. Bumper Cars, Bowling Alley, Snooker, Slot Machines, Funny Mirrors, Food, Bar for mums and dads to relax. It had the lot! And a nice takeaway bar for people who were lost!!! Leaving Llanhydrock House we followed the explicit instructions given to us and found the Premier Inn – No Probs! Robin had booked a meal for us all at The Abinger Hatch in Honiton. Great place, the staff were very accommodating, getting Brian his Beer as soon as he arrived. We were all looked after well, there were 17 of us! It was very well organised and the food was great.

Day 8 Sunday 19th September: Heading home today. Quick trip to Stourhead House and Park (N.T.) Lovely place. Beautiful Gardens and House. Delicious Ice Creams. Just one upset, one of our party was attacked by a concrete bollard that was hiding in the bushes, didn’t do his car a lot of good, but after some discussion the National Trust Rep assured them the damage would be taken care of! Rest of the drive home was uneventful, not too much traffic, managed to avoid Stonehenge, and stayed dry. Good result. Great time had by all I think, but it was nice to get back to your own bed.

Thanks Robin for another great adventure. Can’t wait for the next one.


Cornish Caper

12 - 19 September 2021 - Cornish Caper - by Roger H

Eleven cars set off for an end of summer holiday. We met in the small city of Wells for an over night stop. The next day we drove through Somerset, then onto the north Devon coast and onward to Newquay.

The lovely weather proved an absolute bonus. Most of us decided to take a rest day and walked from the Hotel round to Fistral Bay beach. Surf was up and we watched the surfers from a well known fish and chip restaurant.

The following days saw the cars scurrying through the highways and byways from Padstow to Lands End and most places in between including St Ives, St. Michael’s Mount and the famous Minack theatre. One couple made it to the Lizard.

The days seemed to rush past and it was soon time to leave the hotel, with spectacular views up the river Gannel estuary, and make our way to an hotel in Honiton for the night and homeward bound the following day.

It was a lovely holiday and thanks go to Robin Gray for all the effort that goes into one of “Robins holidays”

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Beach Barbeque at West Wittering

18 August 2021 - Beach Barbeque - by Judy

After coffee on Chiddingfold Green we followed a beautiful route (thank you Robin) through some very narrow lanes to West Whittering Beach. The place was packed, I have never seen so many visitors there.

Robin set up the new Cub BBQ on the beach and the sun came out Hooray! After lunch we walked along the beach and the Spit and enjoyed the afternoon and the Company.

How lovely to get out again and do what we do best. A Spitfire (from Goodwood?) flew over and even did a roll. Was that for us?

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Dorset Durdle Dawdle

5 to 9 July 2021 - a Dorset Durdle Dawdle - by Jane

Day 1: Ten cars set off on the Dorset Dawdle. The Cranberries farm, holiday complex, is technically in Devon but let’s not ‘split hairs’! It was actually eleven cars as an interesting and early Peugeot car was brought on a trailer by Les and Ray Bayliss.

Most cars met at the Wilton House Garden Centre for coffee. Then everyone dawdled across country for lunch at the Fiddleford Inn, Fiddleford. We then drove another very scenic route to our holiday destination.

Day 2: We drove into Lyme Regis. We spent the day exploring the town including along the ‘Cobb’ made famous by Jane Austin in her book Persuasion and often used in ‘Period films.

Day 3: Saw us drive to Colyton to catch one of the vintage trams into Seaton. There is an interesting collection of electric trams running along the river estuary. Since we last visited Seaton a bright new terminus has been built, a stones throw from the seafront. A few of us met up to have crab sandwiches on the seafront before the return tram ride.

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Day 4: We ventured into Charmouth and walked along the beach looking for fossils. Mary Anning made this coast famous for the large and varied fossils she excavated in the soft cliffs. The only fossils I found belonged to the car club!(I speak for myself!) In the afternoon we visited Sea Town (not to be confused with Seaton) and West Bay.

Day 5: Our return journey via the A303 incorporated a visit to Sparkford, to visit the Haynes Motor Museum. Thanks to Robin Gray for organising such a lovely holiday, he even managed to arrange good weather for us!

Please note : All Covid precautions were taken, in full, by both the holiday complex and by all individuals participating in the event.


Welsh Wander

14 to 17 June 2021 - a Welsh Wander - by Jane

Ten cars of varying ages set off for Wales, meeting for lunch at the Burford garden centre, then onto Llanerchindda Farm, Cynghordy near Llandovery.

The weather was very kind and offset the scenery of the Brecon Beacons in their full glory. We were made very welcome by our wonderful hosts. Each day, following a hearty breakfast we were briefed and given a route for the day. We were back for tea and cakes in the afternoon followed in the evening by a wonderful Welsh dinner.

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Day 1 took us on a trip via Carreg Cennan Castle for morning coffee and a look round. Then on to the Black Mountain, through the Brecon Beacons and a lunch stop at the visitor centre. We returned via the Epynt Ranges. The scenery was enhanced by beautiful sunshine and big sky’s. We drove about 95 miles.

Day 2 took us to the Welsh town of Llandrindod Wells which serves as the seat of Powys County Council. We drove on to Penybont village stopping at the Thomas Shop and Cafe (for morning coffee!). The museum shop was a mix of old and new recreated with original shop fittings and a collection of artefacts, which some of us remember from our childhood. This included an old Laundry and Pressing room. The buildings were interesting. This was a nostalgic experience of how shopping used to be. Well worth the visit.

We then drove onto to Hergest Croft gardens. We enjoyed a lovely walk and a spot of lunch, of course! The garden holds the national collection of maples and birches plus some 80 ‘champion’ trees. It was a treat to walk amongst the trees and enjoy the cool shade. The drive was around 102 miles.

If you like small lanes, big scenery and good food this is the trip for you. A big thank you to Judy for organising the event.

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Please note : All Covid precautions were taken, in full, by both the hotel and by all individuals participating in the event.


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