SOUTH EAST SCRIBE NOTES
Since writing my last report we held a virtual South East Section AGM. A very full and detailed information pack was sent to all members together with a voting form to complete. Members were also given the opportunity to submit items under Any Other Business which would then be answered at the virtual AGM on Sunday 22nd November 2020. I’m pleased to report that we had a good number of voting forms returned. There was just one item for AOB, sent in by John Morris, which was a proposed vote of thanks to all the committee. Thank you John it was much appreciated by the committee. We held the virtual AGM by an on-line MS Teams meeting (similar to Zoom) where a small number of members joined the committee. The main business of this meeting was to report the results of the voting forms. Your committee was voted in for another year unchanged.
There was an interesting piece in the last Gazette by Stephen Curry about the two different versions of VCC logo used in the Gazettes. The first was a cloverleaf design and then the one we are familiar with today which is used on all VCC paperwork and also on the brass car badges. My Wolseley has another version of brass badge which says The Veteran Car Club, Founded 1930. Does anyone know when this badge was produced and when the design was changed to The Veteran Car Club of Great Britain?
The Calendar in the Gazette has many events listed for 2021 but I wonder how many will be able to go ahead. Hopefully later in the season events will be able to take place without a problem. In the past year most of our cars won’t have ventured out of the garage but have probably been fettled or very well polished during their year of lockdown. But what about your trailer? Many trailers live outside where damp will get into the brakes and other moving parts, while sunlight attacks the tyres. Before you next use your trailer please give it a thorough service and check the condition of the tyres. Tyre manufacturers recommend that tyres are changed at 10 years of age. How old are your tyres? The ones on my trailer are now 15 years old so really need renewing even though they look perfect and have plenty of tread. A blow-out on a single-axle trailer could be a total disaster so I will be replacing the tyres before I use the trailer again.
Last year I’m sure we were all inspired by 100 year old Captain Sir Tom Moore who raised almost £33 million for the NHS. Captain Moore has written a book about his life called ‘Tomorrow Will Be A Good Day’. A very interesting read and there are a couple of little snippets in there that may be of interest to VCC members. Tom Moore came from a family of builders and his grandfather, also Thomas, built a large detached home for his family in the Yorkshire village of Riddlesden, which he named “Club Hook”. Tom’s grandfather always loved horses and used them in the family business to tow wagons and carts. He had the finest shire horses and treated them royally in an immaculately maintained stable. At Club Hook the garage for the grandfather’s beloved De Dion Bouton automobile was designed as carefully as his stables and he even had stained-glass windows installed. People said he treated that fancy French vehicle much like he treated his horses. It was polished to within an inch of its life and never allowed out in the rain. The family joked that fresh water and hay was prepared for the car each morning and at night it was bedded down in straw. I wonder what model De Dion it was and what became of it.
The other interesting snippet is about Tom’s motorcycle racing using Scott Flying Squirrels. A picture in the book, which the family has widely circulated to the press, shows Tom astride his motorcycle while holding two of the many trophies he won. One of these is a superb model of what looks like an 1890’s Benz motorcar. At first I thought it could have been the VCC Lord’s trophy but Stephen Curry checked this and a couple of other trophies our Club owns but it’s none of these. It would be interesting to find out what this trophy was and where it is now.
In my last notes there was mention of the registration T300 which was originally on a 1904 Wolseley but is now on a modern BMW. Our editor added the note that the registration T300 and BMW are owned by VCC member Gareth Firth. I can add a few more details of T300 that I gleaned from the old registration ledgers held in the Devon Records Office. T300 was issued on 30th May 1904 to a 6 ½ hp Little Wolseley that was described as 2 seated car coloured green and picked out with fine primrose lines. The weight was given as about 8 ½ cwt, and intended use was given as chiefly professional. The first owner was John Harley Gough MD, Glenallon, Torquay. On 27th March 1906 the colour was changed to red with black and primrose lines. On 28th October 1907 there was a change of owner to Elliott Woodbridge of 81 Newport Road, Barnstaple. The next change was on 8th July 1912 when it was transferred to George Stephen Ware of Northgate, Barnstaple. It was described as painted red, picked out with white and black lines. Maybe it had been re-painted again, or maybe the primrose lines had faded to white? On 18th August 1917 the entry was cancelled with the note ‘Non-Compliant’. The same day a new entry was made with the owner recorded as Frank and William Henry Bray (Bray Brothers) of Braunton. The car was now described as a 6hp Wolseley one cylinder, modernised green, with a weight of 7 ½ cwt. On 2nd January 1918 the details were changed to say it was now a lorry with a weight of 15 cwt. So, just like my own Wolseley T1058, T300 was converted to a lorry during the First World War.