The National BL Day, which is held on an annual basis at Nene Park in Peterborough has become something of a Mecca for all those afflicted with “Leyland-itis”.
Many of the country’s owners’ clubs attend this meeting – and as a result, there is a fascinating mixture of BMC>Rover machinery from the Oxford/Cambridge brigade, through the Maxi, Marina, Allegro triumvirate to more modern cars such as the Rover 800, 200 and 400. All in all, if there is a BMC>Rover car you would like to see in the flesh, you will see it at Peterborough.
This year, a new club joined the fray: amusingly called, “German Group” according to the signs which marked the plot. Actually, the “German club” turned out to be the club set up by a number of keen individuals (John Capon, Dale Turley and Declan Berridge, among many others), who felt that this website represented a good starting point for a cross-model club – not so much an owners’ club, but a marque admirers’ club. Several members of the Austin-Rover mailing list clubbed together, and purchased some club regalia and decided to make our presence felt in the real world, as well as the inter-web thingy.
So why the “German Group”? The stand was organized by Alexander Boucke – a site contributor and owner of two Car of the Month winners, who happens to live in Aachen, Germany. An interesting, and ironic name for our plot!
Arrangements were made, dates were planned and a list of cars (and their owners, of course) was drawn up; a plucky bunch of volunteers, who decided to brave the August heatwave and the myriad of event visitors in order to show off their prize possessions. Not only that, but the stand also featured the famous “Austin-Rover hospitality suite” (i.e., Dale Turley’s folding camper), which proved to be a haven from the sun….
The cars which appeared on our stand:
|Year||Type of car||Owner|
|1963||Morris 1100||Declan Berridge|
|1969||Austin 3-Litre||Alexander Boucke|
|1974||MG Midget||David Jacobs|
|1974||Rover 3500S||Nick Doolan|
|1980||Princess 2 2200HLS||Kevin Davis|
|1986||Austin Montego Mayfair||Andy Thomas|
|1986||Rover 820Si||Keith Adams|
|1989||MG Maestro Turbo||Gareth Kidman|
|1990||Mini Cooper (RSP)||Ian Nicholls|
|1993||Rover 220GTi Turbo||Peter Wood|
|1995||Rover 416Si||Chris Mills|
|1997||Rover Vitesse Coupe||John Capon|
|1999||Rover 200BRM||Kevin Davis|
Needless to say, thanks to the hard work of everyone involved, the show was a great success for Austin-Rover.co.uk and hopefully. it will be the first of many, many more. Obviously, my own thanks go to those who brought their cars along, and those who visited the show stand. Let’s hope that it generated even more interest in the website, and the community that is building up around it.
Next year, we hope to see even more people join in… all are welcome
Other Show highlights
Thanks to Dale Turley for the photographs (unless otherwise stated)
Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...
Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.