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Hartleys Kitchen Sunday Lunch, 5th October 2014

Paul Hartley and his team put on a wonderful Sunday lunch for the twenty Mendip members who came.  The sun shone brightly for the eight topless Morgans, so members who had arrived in tin tops, wished they had brought their Morgans as well!



We were made to feel very welcome.



Moeganeers awaiting their Sunday lunches.



Paul & Linda Hartley absconding in Paul W’s Flying Morgan.


Paul and Jane


MSCC Mendip Centre News – Number 127 – August 2014



Welcome to our 20th Birthday issue of the Mendip Centre Newsletter. My thanks also to contributors to this issue for snippets and titters, namely Henry, Alan, Mike  P and Mike C.

Due to the hard work of our eventers Paul & Jane, the party was a great success with birthday cakes galore and prizes in abundance for those who succeeded in the annual awards for mileage, MOG-use and les faux-pas! Margaret was also extremely grateful to all those who entered and voted, in the annual photo competition. Full details on pages 4 to 8 with lots of photos in addition on the website.


Later in May, we followed up with a visit to Castle Combe where a good day’s racing was enjoyed in fine weather. We then entered an extremely busy month of events in June. Kicking off with Paul & Jane’s amazing Subterranean Experience at Beer caves, we then assisted Wessex at the Bristol Classic Car Show in the middle of the month, (Mendip taking this on next year). This was followed by  the annual skittles evening at Doulting. Then it was meeting up with newly formed FossilMOG for a picnic on a lovely summer’s day at Burton Bradstock and finishing off the month, with the infamous Tinney Tour steaming out to Watchet Bay. If that wasn’t enough, we were soon meeting up with LogMOG at the beginning of July for a visit to the recently refurbished Haynes motor museum and then a superb trip up to the factory with an extended stay over a 5 day period, to take in the ‘Malvern Delights’, splendidly organised by Nick and Sue. Reports on all of these events in this issue and Margaret has been busy adding photos to the website also, so do have a browse. In particular view some fantastic shots sent in by Pete S.


New MOGs seem to be catching, with Henry & Joy and Alan & Jeanne all acquiring brand new +4s. I believe others are looking and pondering, so watch this space in the coming months.


On the members’ news front, we were all horrified to hear of Ron & Kim’s accident (page 17) but so relieved that they were not more seriously hurt. Most seem to agree that their MOG, though battle worn, put up a jolly good defence.

I am sure that all members will join me in sending best wishes for a successful outcome, to our Treasurer Lyne and husband Richard, whilst he is undergoing intensive chemo-therapy treatment.


Finally, sorry to hear that Jamie B has suffered a broken leg; tut-tut you’re just too hard handed Ted!






Double Take

The one on the right is 9 years old, has a 3 litre engine and has done over 70,000 miles, many of those across Europe. The other is a brand spanking new 2 litre Plus 4. Wishing Henry & Joy many more happy years of Morganeering.


Mendip’s 20th Birthday  Party 21st May 2014

Team Williams certainly excelled in presenting the Mendip 20th Birthday party at one of our favourite haunts, The George at Nunney.

Despite rain forecast for later, 34 members assembled in the garden area, which many of us didn’t even know existed until now, to enjoy the early evening sunshine. To make it complete, what better than to sip a glass of Pimms, generously laden with seasonal fruits, and provided courtesy of club funds.



The dining room, which had only just been refurbished looked incredibly attractive, though with new tables and chairs, space is now down to just 34 diners, which thankfully fitted our number exactly. The refit had only just been completed prior to our visit which necessitated Team Williams in redrawing previously prepared table layouts at the last minute.

Our events team have certainly got it all off to a fine art; a comprehensive seating plan with each table identified by a race circuit made it easy to find one’s position on the grid! At each seating position, an individually designed table mat complete with name, menu choices and an interesting fact from 20 years ago. Think we may have Mark to thank for doing the research on those and it certainly got the chat going. (1994:Sunday trading introduced, the first Apple Mac computer…)

In addition, we had the usual balloons and party poppers to complement the event, together with photo albums and a running laptop slide show of the past 12 months.

Food was delicious and with very generous portions, many of us were wondering how we might tackle deserts. No doubt, one extremely happy chappie after the event was Terry & Bab’s dog who would have tucked in to the doggie bag that the staff kindly made available.




With food and banter underway, the wine flowing, Jane was soon reduced to blowing  bubbles!  No, not gone ga-ga… this was in fact a prepared celebration bubble mix intended to enhance our surroundings but of course, not easy without kids to show us how it’s done. However, any excuse for a song; was it Henry who led the way as we burst into a melodic rendition with “I’m forever blowing bubbles…”?

Soon it was time for the  annual presentations to take place. Mme Secretary, Sue introduced the formalities and also expressed our thanks to Paul Jane & Mark for organising such a successful evening. She then went on, with no surprises as expected, to present this year’s awards for most mileage, to Henry & Joy. Again in perpetuity, the most use of a MOG to events went to Mike & Angela. Then handing the floor over to Jane, some very amusing anecdotes were delivered, illustrating our dilemmas over choosing this year’s recipient of the Mendip Stones (or potatoes) for the greatest faux pas of the year. First in the running was Henry, for inadvertently shutting one of his cats in the Morgan until it eventually (and expensively) clawed it’s way out through the hood material! However, he had already picked up an award for that one at Wessex! Then there was Ted’s embarrassing discharge where he went to great expense to replace his battery only to eventually find that the culprit was an interior light left on !

Finally, we were reminded of Janet, who was unusually extremely late to a noggin last year. This was down to feminine multi-tasking, trying to bake a cake before she left home but forgetting to shut the oven door!  It was decided that this year’s recipient would be Janet, who gallantly accepted the accolade. Quite fitting perhaps on this special birthday, as the stones actually originated from Terry’s possession. He was in turn, presented with them from Wessex 20 years ago when  Mendip was first set up and had to seek permission from neighbouring centres.



Finally, it was over to Margaret to reveal results of this year’s photo competition. Despite a slow start entry numbers ended up being comparable to last year, with 59% of members voting.

Category A, the traditional line up, attracted 14 entries with the decisive winner being John P with his “Wheel meet again” photo which attracted double the votes of its nearest rival.



Category B, with 16 entries depicting the single MOG was a close run thing with the honours being taken by Terry P with his “Water Splash”. This just forded Mark’s rural entry of “Morgan Flock” by only one vote.

Category C, comprising 15 entries was again a close run thing. Babs’ “Blackpool Lights” entry was blinkered by Paul’s “Just one more horse power”. Voters may not be aware but this was the very last picture of Jane’s beloved horse Boston before he had to be relieved of incessant illness, a touching moment indeed.



As if we hadn’t eaten enough, finally it was birthday cake time. Another innovation from our organisers this year went down very well. Instead of the usual birthday cake, we were all presented with individually created cup cakes iced in a colour to match the owners’ cars! Easy to take home or eat on the spot!

It is always particularly good to record the continuing presence of several of Mendip’s founder members at the birthday party, in this case Kim, Terry and Clive. On behalf of the membership, Clive kindly delivered some extremely words of appreciation to the committee for which we were all very grateful.

Roll on next year; 21 and ‘key of the door’ and all that. What? You’ve got no door handles…that costs extra doesn’t it?


A Day at the Races: Castle Combe 26th May


An informal get together at the Combe drew 16 members to the embankment at ‘Bobbies’ where despite gloomy forecasts it stayed dry all day. We were able to enjoy our picnic lunches, view the racing with ease and stretch our legs over to the paddock. The more adventurous even walked the whole circuit!

Racing was good with a few spectacular crunches by the chicane. The Aero Morgan race was of course our highlight, with an entry of 27. Excitement was elevated by the storming performance of Keith Ahlers in his 4.6litre +8. Starting purposefully at the back of the grid, within a handful of laps he was at the front of the field, driving with a relaxed determination which saw him yet again take victory in Class A. A well deserved win for the ladies, the Class C honours going to Sharlie Goddard in her 3.9 litre +8.



A good day out which we must do again. Maybe next time we’ll set up at Camp corner & catch the high speed drifts as they negotiate the sweeping right hander. Lots of pics here on the website including some superb action shots from Pete S.



Subterranean Experience at Beer:  Sun. 1st June

What a brilliant day out! Members started arriving at the spacious grassy car park at Beer from about noon onwards. With the sun shining and the sea below glistening we soon settled into picnic-by-the sea mode.





Within a couple of hours, it was off en-mass to visit Beer Caves where Paul & Jane had organised a group tour. Many of us never knew that this extensive quarry cave system even existed, though it is the largest in the country.

The special qualities of Beer limestone, buried deep below a chalk overfill, has been quarried by man (and alas women and children) over many centuries. Starting with the Romans in about AD47, one can see the typical roman arched roofing. As you move into the extensive warren of caves and tunnels, architecture typical of Saxons and Normans becomes more evident, with work finishing in the 1920’s. In all, the system occupies some 70 acres with 20 miles of tunnels; we of course, only saw a snapshot as there is still much more to be excavated and revealed in the future. Our guide kept us well informed especially with the roles and lives of the basic quarry worker compared to the Free-mason, the profits lapped up by the bishops who ran the show, tax avoidance schemes and finally the use of the caves for smuggled contraband. Methinks said guide will not be welcomed into the brotherhood anytime soon and whether he finally gets a plot in the local churchyard may also be up to debate!



Following our exit into the bright afternoon sunlight, a quick afternoon tea and then it was back to Beer and off to the Chippy. A sudden order of 15 Cod lots on a quiet Sunday afternoon, not long before closing time did not seem to phase Mr Chippy at all. It meant a short wait but the results were fantastic! This is how Fish & Chips should be… that wonderful crispy batter wrapped around a generous portion of cod… just like it used to be!

We sat and feasted, watching the evening light diminishing over the bay. Then off to the pub for  some refreshment and finally the drive back home. We made it with a few raindrops but not enough to put the hood up.

In all, the day was enjoyed by 24 members plus 2 from the recently formed FossilMOG. We had 11 MOGs, Mikes Jag and a couple of tintops. A really great day out with good weather, beautiful views, lots of interest and regular calorie top-ups…what more could one ask? Thanks to Paul & Jane for organising once more.




35th Bristol Classic Car Show: 14-15 June

A few of us from Mendip went down to help man the Morgan stand which was again ably put together by Wessex, but with a different flavour for this year. Rather than the usual line-up of gleaming machines…”look but don’t touch” , this year there were just 3 exhibits. A Dave Sapp chassis and tub, Nev’s F4 and a brand new +4 loaned by ‘Williams’ . This came with a photo backdrop to enable visitors to sit and have their photo taken against a road run back-drop. This more “hands on approach” turned out to be very successful and is summed up by organiser  Pete Turner below.



The chassis, frame and suspension demonstrations were very popular and helped dispel a few myths about Morgans having a wooden chassis, whilst the suspension arrangement baffled a few, I showed it to a young budding engineer who was very intrigued, it was quite a bit different to the standard modern day car set up.

Neville’s F type looked stunning and fitted in well with the “100 Years At Pickersleigh Road Theme.”



We took nearly 140 photos of visitors in the Williams +4 and everyone seemed delighted with the results, quite a lot got on Facebook and 1 or 2 on the MSCC Facebook pages, it would have been great to get more numbers from this but perhaps this is something that can be developed next year.

We picked up a few new members for the club and hopefully Williams sold a car or two. There was certainly a lot of interest from visitors who had always fancied a Morgan but had never sat in one; it seems that Williams may have sold the +4 from the show.



Skittles Evening at Doulting: 18th June

On a beautiful summer’s evening with the sun still blazing, but with several members already on holiday, just 26 Mendip Morganeers made it to the annual skittles evening at the Poacher’s Pocket.

The line-up included 10 MOGs, most sans side screens, 3 tin-tops and, as a refreshing change, Chris brought along her beautiful Citroen Deux Chevaux (a.k.a. Dolly).



With drinks and chats ensuing in the garden, maybe there was not a lot of enthusiasm for knocking down pins at this stage. Before long, it was time to sit for a super buffet of lasagne and/or  chicken korma, accompanied by salads, chips and rice; extremely good and plenty for all. Despite Pete’s later attempts as the sandwich board man, to tempt us with the desserts , not many had the space to fill.



As the evening progressed, it was down to the main event, this only being marred by the lack of lighting over the alley! As time passed, it was getting more and more difficult to see the end of the alley, let alone the pins! However, those who partook had a good time, with just 3 rounds to decide the supreme ‘champeens’.

The guys were headed up by Paul with 29, Nick on 24 and Mike P with 23. The gals also put up admirable scores with Frances leading on 21, followed by Babs on 18 and Di at 17.

A very pleasant drive home in the balmy, (but bug ridden, as discovered next day) night air ensued, to complete yet another good night out.



FossilMog Picnic at Burton Bradstock  22nd June

With a large chunk of N.T. car  park reserved for MOGs, we had a really super day out at this  first major event for Fossil Mog, ably organised by Graham & Kim.





45 MOGs, hailing from 5 centres including an Aero, a modern M3W and a JAP engined example, brought over 80 Morganeers and provided much interest for attendees and the public alike. Mendip were well represented with 17 members in 8 MOGs and Donald & Di’s camper van!

Above, relaxing in style… summed up by Chris with his unique bespoke wooden wine bottle and glass holder.

Hearty picnic fare, feet dabbling in the sea, walks along the coast and fish & chips to polish off the day. It doesn’t get better than this in Moggy England on a perfect summer’s day!





The Tinney Tour 2014: 29th June

Once again Henry & Joy delighted 62 members of both Mendip & Wessex, this time with a steam train ride from Bishops Lydeard down to Watchet. This was followed later in the afternoon with a tour of Bishops Lydeard Mill including of course the customary afternoon tea. Mendip’s attendance made up 35 of the total with 15 MOGs, the TR and one T/T.





The weather started showery with umbrellas to the fore but soon cleared. It was just as well that we had a carriage all to ourselves as the train was packed to capacity, Now maybe many were thinking just how shall we spend 3+hours in a tiny town like Watchet? The answer became clear with Henry’s well researched “treasure hunt”. This readily provided the solution and took us to parts of Watchet that we would never normally have sought out. The time really flew by and made the trip all the more interesting and enjoyable. Joint winners, were Sue & Nick and Nat & Clive and despite a tie-break question (Which Engine brought us back…Norton Manor) no-one managed the answer so they had to share the bottle of Morgon wine.



Janet also collected a prize for doing… not quite so well!

Our arrival at the mill was thankfully after the public had departed which was just as well as we did the sardine trick with MOGs in every conceivable space. A restored grade 2 listed mill, run by the very friendly team of Mr & Mrs Back, the exhibits were most interesting and varied, being mainly focused on rural trades scenarios. Also a few surprises with even a Model T on display together with a penny farthing and many other relics of a bygone age. The gardens, created and tended by Mr Back, were stunningly beautiful. All profits go to a range of worthwhile charities.

Despite numbers, Mrs Back took it in her stride and served tea and some of the best scones for miles throughout our visit with no undue queuing. A very relaxed outdoor seating area with the water wheel gently turning and glooping its contents into the mill-stream below; all-In-all, a lovely end to a lovely day.

I myself had a pleasant surprise from Jane, with the presentation of a yummy decorated cupcake to celebrate my birthday which happened to be on the day.

Thanks to Henry & Joy, with co-ordinating support from Paul & Jane and Jon & Elaine to bring us yet another memorable event.




Haynes Motor Museum with LogMOG: 6th July

Fourteen Mendip Morganeers were delighted to accept Logmog’s invitation to join them for a guided tour of the recently refurbished Haynes Motor Museum. With variable weather including torrential showers we were pleased to be indoors during the afternoon.

The usual delights were on offer in the museum and following the tour we were able to come and go freely. I hadn’t realised that Haynes no longer publish their famous motoring manuals due to the complexities of modern cars precluding much home fettling.



A good line up outside of about 20 MOGs, including (much to our surprise) the one pictured left. This beautiful Plus 4, recently drooled over by so many enthusiasts at the Bristol Classic Car Show, is now in the ownership of Alan and Jean. Even though their previous Plus 4 was still in its infancy, this new model with the GDi motor and some tasty trim did the biz. Can’t think of a better way to celebrate a Golden Wedding! Congratulations to you both.



Below: Hey, Dave…it’s nice to get them perfectly aligned for the photo shot, but did you realise that they have been fitting reverse gear for quite some years now? What’s that you say? Oh… it never saves that much petrol surely!



Malvern Delights: a trip away for a few days

Following an invitation from the factory for a visit, the initiative was taken up by Sue and Nick to extend Mendip’s stay into 5 days. What fun we all had and what choices we had to spend the time each day. As well as co-ordinating the trip, they had gone the extra mile (or two!) in researching places to visit together with distances from base. We were spoilt for choice and it made it so much easier to plan ahead. So a big thank you to you both, from all who participated.

On the Wednesday, the day of the factory tour, we had 19 people booked in with most meeting for lunch at The Bluebell Inn, near Malvern.

Getting there was certainly a run to remember for us! As we were travelling some way behind a cattle lorry on the M5. I suddenly noticed what appeared to be a brown haze coming from under the lorry and then as our windscreen steadily turned the same colour, it was apparent that the occupants must have been “taken short”! Soon after Mike & Julia came tramping up behind and must have wondered why we turned off so early! “Sh*t upon from a great height” as the saying goes.

Following lunch, it was a short run to the factory where we were treated to a guided tour by a very entertaining and knowledgeable “Mike”. A few bargain purchases from the factory shop followed and we made our way to the Abbey Hotel, our base for the next 4 days.

The next couple of days were spent in a variety of ways. Day one saw some go trekking the Malverns taking in some amazing views. Nine of us went to Hampton Court Castle (not Palace) and gardens. Interestingly, we decided on a scenic route which yours truly led, but somehow I managed to arrive last without seeing any of our group along the way! We had a lovely day perusing the gardens and taking in a tour of the castle. The owner, spotting our modes of transport, even invited us to park up in front of the castle for photo opportunities.

A little incident to recount on the return journey to the hotel. As we pulled away from traffic lights by the A438 at a place called Trumpet, Terry & Babs failed to move. He shouted out to ‘carry on’ as the top of his brake lever had fallen off and he couldn’t release the brake! Well, I thought, “if anyone can fix anything… it’s Terry”.



And fix it he did. We were even more surprised when after exiting Ledbury some  5 miles later, there they were about to come out of a side junction ahead of us. Problem overcome and finding a short cut, beating us on the road!

The next day various groups took in several N.T. establishments including Croome Park, Brockhampton and the E.H. site at Witley Court Hall. The day rounded off with our own dining room back at the hotel where 15 of us shared a large oval table with much wining and dining.



Saturday was Shelsley Walsh day and we all set off in good time to join the throng of MOGs at this famous hill climb. We were joined by Graham, Mike C, Nigel, Peter, Fran and Pat & Tony from Bogmog. Even more special today, as Chris was taking his Le Mans +8 up the hill for the first time. Lucky co-drivers were Yvonne for the first run and Sue for the second. Thankfully no mishaps and I believe that Chris managed to beat his personal target times.  Altogether a great day, staying dry despite poor forecasts earlier in the week. Some very quick times were witnessed with hot machines in the hands of hot drivers. We even had entertainment including the lovely voice of Elles Bailey (Henry’s sister at Williams) with her supporting band.



The rain did come however overnight but quickly cleared again for Sunday, where we all returned to the factory to enjoy the centenary of the buildings at Pickersleigh Road. The aim was to try to get a car from each year of production, but I’m not sure of how close they got. Terry & Bab’s Nut Brown 4/4 was on display representing 1981. Visitors would not have known that the car only made it due to Terry’s determination in the preceding few weeks. Following a trip to Waddeston, the engine failed to start at the beginning of June. Now Terry had planned to do a leisurely rebuild in the coming winter but was now faced with a MOGless summer. So burning the midnight oil right up until a couple of days before our trip, the car received a re-sleeve back to standard, new pistons & rings, reground mains, a new head, oil pump, water pump, camshaft, clutch and gearbox overhaul … Phew! (He even found that the valve timing on the old camshaft had been about 10 degrees out and had to get a vernier sprocket to sort it out!) She’s sounding good, so hopefully, many more miles of carefree motoring will be wrung out of this rebuild.

Together with a fantastic display of MOGs of all description we were also treated to some spectacular stunt flying displays and even a fly past by a Dakota accompanied on the ground by a rendition of “Land of Hope and Glory” from the visiting male voice choir. Touching stuff indeed.

So that was the end of the very aptly named Malvern Delights; enjoyed by all who went, lots of laughter and the warmth of the Morgan fraternity. Thanks again Sue & Nick.. Lots more pics on the website



Noggin at The Blue Bowl: 16th July

A delightfully sunny evening attracted 30 members  and 11 MOGs to the July Noggin at The Blue Bowl, West Harptree. Even though some claimed to be still trying to shake off the extra pounds in weight gained from the Malvern Delights trip, it wasn’t too evident, from the cleared plates at the end.



Of special mention this evening, was a birthday for our Joint Secretary Nick, and he was presented with the now customary decorated cupcake complete with candle.

Following the meal, many retired to the coolness of the pub garden and were greeted with a super.




Steady sales continue especially with ladies’ sky blue polo shirts. Gay to increase stock of plain ones to try on for size before purchase. Still a small stock of pottery items and badges; when they’re gone…they’re gone! Be quick!



Mendip Link

 All contributions from your experiences are welcomed for the mutual benefit of  members. Just try to keep it as short and to the point as poss.




Guano on the mohair?… Browsing the “talk-morgan” site recently, a thread caught my eye on how to deal with bird droppings on your mohair hood. A worthy contribution came from Steve Simmonds who of course made the things.

Basically, scrape the lumps off with a spatula or old CD; wash        with water; when dry, brush or vacuum. To clean, use 303             Fabric/PVC cleaner or TEX’AKTIV Fabric cleaner. Follow instructions to the letter. Reseal with 303 Fabric Guard or with TEX’AKTIV Guard.

Scratched chassis plates?… Your highly polished chassis cover plates may be getting scratched, as they are in just the right place for the vertically challenged to scuff with their shoes when gaining access or egress. Good old Solvol Autosol is the answer; rub it on as hard as you like and it will buff to a restored shine.

My easy-up hood recently failed to latch as the allen-headed set screws that secured the female part of one of the bonnet type catches, had fallen out. Easy to fix gaining access with spare wheel removed. I found that the other side was also loose. Worth tweaking when you next remove your spare .




Committee Business

A committee meeting was held on Monday 21st July.

¨ Finances still healthy

¨ A.G.M. to be held at The Mendip Inn, plenty of room and promise of fixed price 2 course menu. A few other changes to events so view or print off a screen-print selection of the events calendar from website.

¨ Membership renewal form to be modified to allow optional entry of birth-date ( DDMM only) to enable celebration, if members’ birthday falls on an event day. (until now this has relied on hearsay or  those who we happen to discover by chance)

¨ Seeds have been sown with the factory to  obtain an exhibit for next year’s Bristol Classic Car Show which Mendip will be co-ordinating. (Helpers will be needed at the event!)

¨ Next Year’s Committee: With the basic 3 years of office coming to fruition for the current committee this November ( not forgetting that Jane & Paul already exceeding this, being in their second term), it’s  time to think about the future.

¨ Regalia Officer, Gay and Treasurer, Lyne will not be re-standing for election. The remainder are willing to carry on for the next year either in their current roles or may consider side-ways moves to accommodate the wishes of any new blood. Nomination forms will be produced in due course.

Note that we MUST have a Treasurer and Secretary as a bare minimum to survive. All positions may be shared roles as joint officers with the exception of the Treasurer, though the Treasur er’s partner is welcome to attend committee meetings as an ob server without voting rights.

New blood is always welcome; there are no precedents to fol low; bring your own style and enjoy the experience.














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