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Festive Meal – Sunday 25th November 2018

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Festive Meal – Sunday 25th November 2018

Seventeen of us gathered at the Pheasant Inn in Chippenham on our usual club night on the last Sunday of the month in November.  Some people hadn't seen each other since the meal last year. 

We had a choice of two or three courses which we had to pre-order, some people had starters and some had puddings.  My main was a nut roast but most people opted for the carvery, there were lots of veggies - broccoli, swede, carrots, boiled spuds, roast spuds, yorkies, cranberry sauce, apple sauce, horseradish, mustard and two types of gravy.  It was all nice but could have been hotter.

We then had mince pies, hot drinks and Jean's chocolate minis, yum.


We had two lots of crackers which meant people had a choice of colour of hat to wear, one was provided by the pub and one by Rachel with a small treat, gift and a scratch card which saw a few wins:- Ollie - £5.00

Siobhan - £1.00

Gerald - £2.00

Iain - £1.00

Dawn - £1.00

Johnny - £1.00

Photos of people's latest projects were looked at and next year's events discussed.

It was a very enjoyable evening and at least two of us had spare for next day.  Thanks to Rachel and Dawn for organizing it.


Mini Action Day – Castle Combe – Saturday 29th September 2018

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Mini Action Day – Castle Combe – Saturday 29th September 2018

We arrived in Herby to find our pitch in a similar place as last year, almost at the end of the line of clubs stands some way away from the traders, but as people had to pass us to get to the viewing hill, it was good for business selling things and recruiting new members.

The weather was sunny but not quite shorts weather.  As usual, we were well equipped with BBQ, kettle, stove, etc.

Pepper the miniature brindle dachshund had to hide as we didn't know dogs weren't allowed - no we didn't read the ticket properly!

There were a couple of other dogs around though and later we walked Pepper around.  The marshals told us off but were soon won over by Pepper's charms.

There were lots of clubs and individual minis with many whizzing around the track as well as the usual parade lap.


Gerald and Siobhan’s Italian Job

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Gerald and Siobhan’s Italian Job

MEMBER SINCE 2018 | MODEL “Italian Job”| YEAR 1993 | ENGINE CC 1275

Complete Bodywork overhaul following 10 years of being SORN

Few non spec features:
Non- white front grill
White roof
(Very poorly fitted) sunroof

Not very watertight, rain gets in and fills the wells in the cabin and boot
Front end damage within first week of buying - careless 3rd Party
Front wheel folded at speed on a roundabout (lower arm nut came loose)
Very annoying rattle that I just can’t locate

Replace sunroof with Panoramic roof
Tint rear and side windows
Replace wheel arches with trim (personal preference)
Fit a Dash Board and reposition stereo
Add a M/C rally half roof rack

The wheel collapsing proved to be quite memorable and lost me some confidence, but “time is a great healer”

London To Brighton, just because
Riviera run sounds fun too

We have a fun twisty road near to where we live that is made for mini’s, makes me smile every time we drive along it but also looking forward to a camping trip at some point in the near future

Felt left out borrowing my wife’s all the time LOL

North Devon Legendary Grand Tour – Saturday 26th – Monday 28th August 2018

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North Devon Legendary Grand Tour – Saturday 26th – Monday 28th August 2018

As every year, Six Ex Mini Owners Club support this annual event which whilst having fun raises much needed money for the Children’s Hospice South West which helps children who are chronically ill and their families.

August 2018 saw club member’s heading towards North Devon for this 23rd year event which included Steve, Rachel, Dave, Alix, Len, Luke, Dawn, Nick and myself.  Steve, Rachel, Dave, Alix and myself camped this year away from the main group of event attendee’s, at Westacott Farm which offered more in the way of “the comforts of home” compared to that of the campsite at the Big Sheep.

The Legendary Grand Tour is unlike any other motoring event in the country because it is not confined to a field but let loose on the roads of North Devon.  What makes this event so special is that the minis, which are at the heart of this event, do not drive off in groups of 20, or 1 every 3 minutes, but in a convoy one after the other.  You could never call the LGT the biggest motoring event in the country, because it is restricted to 250 Minis, but when it is out on the open road in a convoy travelling at 30mph, it is nearly 10 miles long and can take 15 to 20 minutes to pass, so it must be one of the longest. The convoy visits many different towns and villages across North Devon, in fact, it joins some of the towns and villages together. It brings thousands of people out into the streets to watch the mini’s go by invading housing estates where people are sitting on their front lawns drinking tea and sipping glasses of wine and waving flags from behind homemade banners.  The spectators will fill lay-bys and they will be standing on bridges laughing and smiling and waving as the convoy goes by.  Over the past 23 years, the minis have been taken into the hearts of the people of North Devon and that’s how the event can do what it does and get away with it.

There is an incredible reaction from the children who drag their parents out to watch it year after year.  They cheer and dance when they hear the mini’s coming, their Mum’s and Dad’s, Nan’s and Grandad’s smile and wave as they go by.  Maybe it brings back a few memories of a time when they had a mini and how the whole family squeezed into one to go on holiday.  It is amazing to think some of those children who originally waved at the convoy all those years ago now have children of their own who come out and watch as it goes by.  This year the crowds were even bigger than normal and we especially noticed this on the drive out from “The Burrows” on Saturday night which ended up in Appledore.

This year the Six Ex Member`s raised over £450.00 towards the charity whilst dressing up as “Cardinals” in their mini’s for a third year.  Some of the reactions we got were amazing and the local newspaper even wanted us to pose for a photo for the magazine.

Despite the weather being awful on the Sunday we all had a great weekend and look forward to attending the event next year on the Summer Bank Holiday in August.  We look forward to seeing you there!

Rich Clark

The Gloucestershire Vintage and Country Extravaganza – Friday 3rd – Sunday 5th August 2018

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The Gloucestershire Vintage and Country Extravaganza – Friday 3rd – Sunday 5th August 2018

The Vintage & Country Extravaganza returned for its 44th year at South Cerney Airfield for this sprawling event packed show and the weather was absolutely fantastic with 25-30 degrees certainly called for shorts and t-shirts and even sun cream for some.

There was Vintage displays of nearly 700 classic cars, including over 70 Classic American, 230 Motorbikes, scooters, 70, 30 miniature steam engines, 90 stationary engines, 70 full size steam engines, model engineering, 200 Tractors, over 80 Buses and Coaches, 120 Military Vehicles, 240 Emergency and Commercial Vehicles, 60 Industrial Trucks, 50 vintage Caravans and a large model Aircraft flying display.  Also a Live Arena with non-stop demonstrations from steam to dancing tractors and much much more. Plus the opportunity to drive a steam engine and see the spectacular Showman’s Engines.

A Vintage Fun fair with the popular Fairground Organs, 'electric yachts', waltzers, big wheel, Punch and Judy, steam-driven 'gallopers', traditional penny arcade games, plus a ride on a model stream train, or ‘Chuffy the train’, and traditional games.

The Cotswold Dog and Cat Home from Cambridge in Gloucestershire, hosted the now ‘famous Dog Show’ with categories such as Scruffiest Mutt, Quickest Sit and Waggiest Tail, plus the Countryside Arena featured ferret racing, rare breeds, animal conservation, alpaca’s, shire horses, horse logging, sheep shearing, falconry displays to sheep dancing and reptiles!

A massive trade stand area with over 100 trade stalls, models tents, craft marques and specialist displays of memorabilia from a bygone era.

There were plenty of food and drink ‘pit stops’, a firm favourite was the vintage tea room with regular music and 1940s inspired Lindy Hop dancing.  Plus live music from songstress Betsy Harmony, performing a delightful selection of 1940s songs from Andrew Sisters to Vera Lynn, to a right old ‘knees up’ sing-along plus regular sets by the ‘Steamed Up Brass ’

Jump4Heroes, The Royal British Legion Extreme Human Flight Team, parachute display team descended into the arena on all three days of the event.  They support and raise awareness of the Armed Forces charities.  There was a vintage bus offering free rides around the showground on all three days.

There was camping for those who wanted to stay for the weekend and enjoy the evening entertainment at the bar.

All profits from the 2018 Gloucestershire Vintage & Country Extravaganza will be donated to regional and national charities


Atwell Wilson Motor Museum Road Run and Classic Vehicle Show – Saturday 14th – Sunday 15th July 2018

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Atwell Wilson Motor Museum Road Run and Classic Vehicle Show – Saturday 14th – Sunday 15th July 2018

If you are not too familiar with the local area the Road Run, which is hosted on the Saturday before the show, is a great way to explore.

We did the drive and enjoyed it but we didn’t get all the quiz answers, then it was back to the museum for a BBQ in the evening sunshine.

On the Sunday bacon butties and cups of tea were the first order of the day after the club gazebo was assembled which was much needed later on in the day to keep out of the sun.

The weather this year was extremely good and some of the members brought their other ‘A’ series cars, including a 1275 Wolsey and a Midget to park near the club.  It looked like there were more classic cars in the rear car park this year.

The museum and other stands were selling second hand parts and we managed to get some old tools and some refurbish-able parts.

The museum itself is always worth a visit, especially as they have a few mini’s, including the gear less prototype.  Of course, there are lots of other cars that you wish you could have as well.

After walking around the show cars in the main car park it was time for an ice cream, before more tea and sausages at the club stand.


Wiltshire Armed Forces and Veterans’ Day – Saturday 30th June – Sunday 1st July 2018

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Wiltshire Armed Forces and Veterans’ Day – Saturday 30th June – Sunday 1st July 2018

Back for its 14th year at Trowbridge Park the Wiltshire Armed Forces day was a great Sow for all the family with a very large children’s play park.

The aim of the weekend is to celebrate serving personnel, their families, veterans and cadets of our armed forces.

Showing support for the Armed Forces provides a much valued morale boost for the troops and their families. You can find out more about what they are doing at home and around the world by visiting the official sites of the Royal Navy, British Army and Royal Air Force.

There was lots to see at the show itself with car clubs, stalls selling everything, displays from serving, retired and veteran military personnel, marching bands, children's entertainment,  flypasts, including The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight carrying out a Lancaster flypast, re-enactor's, static vehicle displays, trade stalls, fair rides, and more.

On the Sunday there was a Parade of Standards followed by Drumhead Service and Beat Retreat.4

The club stands were in a great spot for minis and they got lots of interest from the general public as well as other would be nice to see more members for the next show.


Mini Cooper Register National Mini Day – Beaulieu – Sunday 10th June 2018

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Mini Cooper Register National Mini Day – Beaulieu – Sunday 10th June 2018

Beaulieu was a special day for us as we joined the club members for our first road trip and second club stand show.  The weather on the day from what we remember was reasonable with some sunshine albeit a little cold.  We packed up “Flintoff” our little 1275 Tahiti, loaded Freddie (our young 2 yr old) and set off for Salisbury where the group arranged to meet.  With Iain first to the car park, Jean not far behind then Dawn & Nick, we all formed a nice little mini convoy and headed to Beaulieu, certainly a highlight of our day, being part of a club and having a mini reliable enough to take us there with no scares along the way.

Upon reaching our location (through some lovely scenic roads in the new forest), we were directed to our pitch where the more experienced team members set about erecting the “Dome”.  Breakfast was soon underway and tea flowing with precision organisation.  A nice little chit-chat and we set about looking around the magnificent set of minis on display.  We especially focused on several nice pick-ups which we have a special interest in with our slowly progressing rebuild of Gerald’s Dad’s 1979 pick-up.

Beaulieu as you would expect had lots on offer and we were able to negotiate a decent discount through mini spares for all the parts needed to progress our rebuild.

As the day progressed lots more tea a picnic lunch, Freddie meeting the group for the first time and being sociable for a change and to be behaving well (whoop).

The show had so much to offer and location was a good first outing for us, we have to say we thoroughly enjoyed the day, the only downside being we would have liked to have joined the team for a pint on the way back (non alcoholic for Gerald being nominated driver), but with Freddie flagging felt home was the correct course of action.

Looking forward to our next trip, and with so many great cars on display we bit the bullet and invested in a nice little 1275 “Italian Job” in British Racing Green, but that’s a whole new story!!

Siobhan & Gerald

International Mini Meet – Portugal – Thursday 17th – Monday 21st May 2018

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International Mini Meet – Portugal – Thursday 17th – Monday 21st May 2018

Nick and I met with friends Jackie, Robert and Stephen at the ferry port in Portsmouth.  We sailed across to Santander where we then drove the minis across Spain into Portugal.  The journey took longer than expected and we arrived at our villa we had rented in Costa Nova in the wee hours.  Luckily the lady we rented it from waited for us to arrive so we could get straight off to bed.

We did some sightseeing for a few days before going to the IMM which was being held about half hours drive away.

It was fairly hassle free to find our way in to the camp site.  We set up both tents by mid afternoon on a nice spot near the facilities which were not too bad although they do tend to not have toilet seats in Portugal!

It was a fantastic weekend, gorgeous weather, plenty of things to do and lots of partying taking place. 

Those BMW things are not very well thought of out there, sensible folk are the Portuguese!!

After taking down the tents and saying our goodbyes and of course buying next year’s tickets for the IMM being held in Bristol it was back to the villa and a few more days sightseeing before heading home.


Riviera Run – Saturday 5th – Monday 7th May 2018

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Riviera Run – Saturday 5th – Monday 7th May 2018

Attended by Dawn, her grandson Ian and his friend Lee. Nick only came down for the day as he had to get back home as he had double booked, so he came in the BMW.

The camp site in Pentewan Sands just outside of Redruth is beautiful and well worth going to, the caravans were all facing the sea and very comfy.

A lot of activities were on, there was plenty to do and nice places to eat.

The boys of course got very drunk one night and had an incident which we won’t go in to, but it involved a lot of falling about.

ME? I never get drunk!!

Looking forward to going again next year.