Events (2008) pt 3

Stars & Stripes

Christine McGuire and Tim Holland have provided the following reports, but not photographs unfortunately.

"Stars and Stripes, the American show was held at Tatton Park to coincide with Independance Day in July. Tim and I met some friends from Manchester area, as no-one from our area seemed interested in attending. They had already been to Tatton Park the week before to a 40's event.

There was a reasonable turn-out of US military vehicles but this show would benefit from a larger MVT presence.

Terry Mitchell from Macclesfield won "Best Vintage Harley" with his long-time friend, his ex-military WLA45, a true biker.

It poured-down all weekend!

One week later...

War & Peace Show, Beltring

Tim and I went to Beltring accompanied by Bob and Sandra. We met the others down there. After an eventful trip, having blown the head gasket in our beloved Lucky Strike Chev, we arrived on Friday the 11th July. The show field was relatively sparse and the ground very dry, this was a pleasant surprise considering the rainfall we'd already had prior to this. By the middle of the next week the show field filled up with the usual and "unusual" vehicles and people we have come to expect at this huge event.

Tim changed his head gasket (the one on the truck that is!), ably assisted by Richard Hot-Stuff Chadwick and made possible by Mark Harvey, another Chev Nut from Woolston, Southampton. He happened to have one in stock at home, which he brought to site so Tim could do the job and we could get home. The sun shone on the righteous that day and every other day whilst we were there, a few teeny-weeny showers helped to dampen the dust but all-in-all we enjoyed much better weather than the folks back home.

Besides the usual attractions we were treated to an air-show by a P-51 and on another day a Spitfire gave us an excellent display, we began to think he had nowhere-else to go, goosebumps all-round!

The trip home was uneventful thankfully, although it's always sad to leave such a good show, we never cease to be amazed at the effort some people put into their displays, costumes and fabulous dioramas.

The War and Peace Show is simply massive and well-worth a visit for persons of all ages, we love it!"

Thanks Christine and Tim.

Windermere Air Show

Stuart Reid sent this report from the Windermere Air Show that was co-ordinated by Simon Gregg. "Thanks are due to Simon for arranging our visit to this event and the use of his Dad's superb field for our camp and off roading track. A few vehicles engaged 4wd and made it to the top where there was a great view down Windermere. Simon had also been busy preparing the luxurious his and hers facilities, a wall and a hole. Tents started going up on the hot and humid Friday afternoon. The water tight integrity was tested in the torrential downpour, thunder and lightning later in the evening as we sheltered, barbied and sampled Boyan's tiffin. We left the wet camp to dry out on Saturday morning and left in convoy to the glebe, Simon's Dodge, 2 motorbikes and lots of Jeeps. We were well positioned to enjoy the activities in the arena and Air show, which included the Dakota, Spitfire, Hurricane, Chinook,Yakovlevs, Hawk and Jet Provost. The good weather lasted all weekend, lots of visitors showed interest in the vehicles and were given the opportunity of sitting in them. After returning to the camp on Saturday evening the BBQ's got going again including a superb spread laid on by Angela and Frank, Angela had also braved the air show in some wonderful vintage swimwear. After the BBQ the world was put to right accompanied by Mr Jack and Mr Daniels. Various topics including how long a chicken can run around for, after having his head chopped off and how many seconds the space shuttle Challenger went up for before exploding (73). Sunday was another hot and busy day with more vehicles and troops arriving. The RAF Falcons display team dropped in, as did the Chinook and Sea King. From 3 vehicles last year to a well-attended event this year, Simon is now planning even more for next year."

Penaemawr

The weekend event at Penaemawr was organised by a local councillor, Vivienne Mooney. She visited Rawcliffe Hall looking for ideas last year and booked the North West Military Collectors on the spot. Apart from MVT members in the North West Collectors, there was only myself, Geoff Brogden and Tim & James Hardy turned up, not forgetting the MVT member of the Home Guard, David Wild. OK yes I did forget! The weather for the weekend was predicted to be bad but overall it was quite acceptable. The campsite was passable but was not solely for our use as it was a camp site for the general public as well. Friday night was spent with the NWMC under their dining shelter; Geoff is a member so I joined in. The wind came up on Saturday evening while we were out at the organised dance and blew a number of tents down, and caused some damage to others. The NWMC battles on Saturday and Sunday were held on the beach, and raced against the incoming tide. Gary's Jeep, armed with a gas powered 50 cal, was close to being stranded in the water during one of the battles. Apart from the battles there was not much else to do; the village seemed closed apart from one or two shops supporting the event with staff dressed in 40s period clothes. I was surprised there was no real support from the MVT. I expected the North Wales MVT to be there in force but perhaps they had something else to do. I know Vivienne is trying to grow the event so I would suggest she talk to the local MVT and get their support. Other ideas to keep the visitors to the event occupied may then be forthcoming. 

Twinwood Festival

Graham Broomfield has sent me this report on the Twinwood Festival of Music.

"Nine members of the SC MVT took a trip down to what was Twinwood aerodrome in Bedfordshire to the Glen Miller Festival of music. Twinwood was where Glen Miller left on that fateful flight to Paris and never arrived. This is my first visit to this event having persuaded by Helen that I would enjoy it, which I must confess I really did. Let me say that this is not a vehicle event more a celebration of Glen Millers life and music. Despite this Tim and Bob traveled the 300 miles from north Lancs in their 1940s vehicles which not only says a lot about their vehicles but also their stamina doing it in one day. The weather was unusually kind to us on the August Bank holiday weekend and allowed maximum participation on all four days. There is non stop music on every day featuring Big bands, Western swing, Country and many others including our favourites the Swing Commanders and the Jive Aces. This event is specifically aimed at those people who like the music and the dancing of the 40s and boasts two stages and two dance floors. There are museums created in the old RAF buildings which were of great interest to our group. I believe this event appeals to the ladies more than the men especially as 90% of the stalls were selling ladies 40s clothes. The men just walk round soaking up the atmosphere imagining the roar of the B17s' engines. The highlight of the weekend was the prolonged visit of a lone P51 Mustang over the main arena. It stayed for about 10 minutes performing rolls and climbing turns then diving down to about a 100 feet. The Merlin Engine's noise  brought me out in goose bumps. A great event, well organised and well attended. As Helen said, I would enjoy it, and I did. I would definitely go again but I would because I love dancing as well as the vehicle appreciation side of the hobby or should I say calling."

Thanks Graham, sound like a great event, but not really for vehicles.

Saddleworth 40s weekend

Graham has provided a further report on the Saddleworth 40s weekend.

"The much anticipated Saddleworth event took place on the 8th, 9th  and 10th of August in the village of Uppermill which is about 7 miles to the north east of Oldham in Lancashire at the foot of the Pennines. Uppermill is a beautiful village that really enters into the spirit of the 1940s event. The streets are decorated with bunting and best of all the pubs join in with festivities putting on period food and employing DJs to play forties music all day long, there is even a space specially set aside for people to dance. My report on Twinwood emphasised that it wasn't a vehicle orientated event. Saddleworth is quite the opposite as it is a must for any one who owns a vehicle or just wants to look at the 60 or so exhibits ranging from D Day to Desert Storm. There is something for every enthusiast. Whatever era, whatever country of origin, Saddleworth has it all in spades.

On the Friday night we went to the ad hoc dance behind the Waggon pub where a DJ  plays music whilst people dance on the car park. Cars are banned from the car park for the whole weekend as the format is repeated on Saturday and Sunday afternoons and is always well attended. I have avoided talking about the weather up to now, but except for Friday night it hardly ever stopped raining all weekend. The people who were in caravans or mobile homes were OK but the campers had a rough time of it but thatís the weather we have had to put up with all this summer. There was a Dance held at the local community centre which was sold out. A live Big Band provided the music and a good time was had by all. For those who arrived late like me it was standing room only but fortunately close to the Bar. 

The highlight of the weekend must be the convoy (or do I mean road run) on the Sunday morning which stretches for miles winding its way up Standedge to the Carriage House pub at the summit of the Pennines, where moderate refreshments are consumed. I rode in the back of Richard's Mack truck at the head of the convoy managing to keep dry on the way up but got drenched on the way down as did Keith Broom and his merry band of despatch riders who did a magnificent job as usual. I am not naming names for political reasons but a big, big, thank you to all those that planned and made the Saddleworth event happen. You know who are and you should be both pleased and proud of the attendance and the success of the event, may it happen again next year (without the rain please if you can organise that)."

Thanks again Graham. Contributions like this will see me out of a job.

Salute to the 40s - Rawcliffe Hall

Events had been cancelled the week before and the week after, but on the weekend of the Salute, we had dry weather for a few days before which meant we were on. Friday saw people arriving from early morning onwards, until by the end of the day the site was full to busting. Quick thinking was needed to find spaces for people to camp, but we managed it eventually. That night the marquee was packed for the Karaoke that attracted some good and some decidedly not so good singers onto the stage. Stars of the show had to be Gary and Bob, but followed a close third by a lady from the campsite whose voice sounded like a strangled cat, but got a standing ovation! The world has gone mad.

Saturday arrived warm and muggy, but still dry. Yet more people arrived; where can we put them all! The answer was someone's front lawn. Unfortunately when the owner arrived home they did not see the funny side. After 5 minutes of effing and jeffing form the owner Tim calmly moved his stuff to another spot. A road run was led by Dave Salisbury with a team of local Jeep owners acting as marshals. About 40 vehicles went on the run around Singleton, Elswick, Inskip, St Michaels and back to Rawcliffe Hall stopping at the Ship for a quick beverage. The manager had been forewarned so when we arrived, the main car park was clear for us. The marquee was full that night as The Crown Top Kings, Andy Eastwood, and Jill Daniels entertained us, with support from the Sue Ryder Land Girls. An excellent night's entertainment.

Sunday opened the gates to the public ....and the rain clouds. The fashion show in the marquee was not affected, but the parade in the arena was rushed through. A break in the rain eventually allowed the Huey to fly in and land. This was the main attraction for some people there. Do you know flying one of those in the rain can wear out the leading edge of the rotor as the rain acts as a sandblaster due to the speed of the rotor? Dave McCoull requested a photo of his REO with the Huey. His wish was granted. (See below.)  Unfortunately the Huey had to leave in the rain; I hope no damage was done to the rotors. The battle by the North West Collectors Association improves year on year. A story in two parts and plenty of explosions kept the crowd gripped with excitement. The Oscar for the best death should be awarded to Sam whose death throws when shot for the final time should be used as lessons in acting school. The public supported the event well and hopefully they enjoyed their time with us.

Thanks to everyone who attended. Those that brought unusual vehicles always attract attention. This year they included Lewis's amphibious GAZ, Roy's genuine Kubelwagen, and Karl's Kubelwagen copy from America, and Indiana Jones and his father in a Chinese built wartime BMW copy sidecar outfit, looking just like on the film set. The event was better attended than last year which can only be a good thing. Roll on next year - someone else may be organising it.