Admit it, you've missed these missives, haven't ya?, haven't ya...?

Yeah, I know, I know, it's been yonks since the last one - back in March actually! I'd apologise for the lengthy gap, but I'm not that kinda guy, so tough. Anyway, it's not like there's been much to remark on, is there....can you imagine it? July Rant - Covid....October Rant - Covid....Christmas Rant - Covid....zzzzzzzzz.... Actually there was one club event that did come off, and that was the Northern Run in August, organised superbly and with immaculate timing by Yours Truly. Although it could just have been just blind luck, who knows? Apart from that highlight it's been a crap year for stuff. No garage days, no Yorkshire Run, no AGM, no anything! Hey ho.
Still, here we are in early 2021 and fingers X'ed, things might just start to open up now people are getting jabbed, and if these vaccines are as good as hoped. Although I've heard it said by conspiracy theorists that it's not a vaccine at all but a tracker microchip, so Those In Power will know your movements at all times. Really? They want to know where you're going?? Can you imagine the boredom and ennui in the Govt Tracking Centre.... "Hey Gary, I see that Norm's been to Morrisons twice this week!" "Is that right, Keith? How much must that fat git be eating? Why does he never go anywhere interesting....same as the other 60 million people in the country"....yaaawn....

Well we might all have been locked down on and off, but it's been fun watching the police getting into a tizz over this and that. Started with them going over the top using drones to see what people were doing in Derbyshire, and then progressed onto catching speeders on empty roads. As they said, speed kills, apparently even when there's no-one else to have an accident with (and yes, I know people could kill themselves, but that's Darwinism in action and should be encouraged). I was also amused when locals living in touristy places started blocking roads to stop people getting near their beauty spots. Good grief, what did they think these visitors were gonna do, knock on their doors and breathe on them? It's the scenery and Great Outdoors these people were coming for, not a game of Monopoly in the parlour! I remember thinking the locals'd be mad keen for visitors to return later and spend their money though. You gotta remember, a lot of these visitor-type people live in large towns and cities and the only green they normally see is on the out-of-date food in the fridge, so in some ways you couldn't blame 'em. Matter of being reasonable and keeping it all in perspective really, innit? Although I guess that in itself is unreasonable, because most people are a bit thick when it comes down to it....

What else? Oh yeah, there's that Brexit thing been happening, with the will-they-won't-they get a deal. And Remainers saying how terrible things would be when we left, and Brexiteers saying how terrible it would be if we didn't. Actual result - there's positives and negatives to either. That's life. And what's good for one, will be pants for another. Things happen over which you've no control, so stop worrying about them!
Then we've had the SNP banging on to the EU about independence and "we'll be back, keep a light on"? How's about they respect the result of the last referendum and get on with running the country they so profess to love, and maybe concentrating on the important stuff, to whit, sorting out the Covid thing, before even thinking of anything else? And I'm sure Nicola's not got a crystal ball, so can't really and truly say Brexit will be disastrous for Scotland.... what's wrong with waiting and seeing how it pans out and deciding about independence then? You never know, it might be better! And if it isn't? Well there's nowt to stop us all rejoining the EU again!

Yeah, OK, what's this got to do with the club....well nothing, but it IS the Chairman's Rant, so just enjoy something that's got nothing to do with cars etc. for a change! ....Oh alright, if you insist, we'll do the boring, sleep-inducing *@%&! now....

First up, this year's AGM. Hmm. I don't know what we'll be doing about that yet. I can't see there being a Stoneleigh in May - not enough time to get it all organised, given that Boris will only be announcing his Roadmap To Freedom on the 22nd of Feb. They might hold the Kitcar Show later in the year, so maybe we'll do it then. What your fave committee peeps WILL be doing though, is having a get-together once we're allowed to do meets indoors and hospitality venues are allowed to open, so we can toss some ideas about and see where things might be heading.
Last year I mooted having the AGM at a "proper" location - i.e. a hotel or conference centre somewhere, where we wouldn't have to bugger about with a tent or find someone to make burgers for the starving mob, and maybe have somewhere to stay over if anyone fancied it. We were thinking of "sharing" with the Lancia Motor Club at their AGM in July, and things got to quite an advanced stage before the virus hit and it all went to crap. It's still a possibility, but I think we need to do one final Stoneleigh one and see what you lot think first....not least cos we've already paid for the marquee
Yeah, the committee. The way it's supposed to work is that all committee members have to stand down each year at the AGM, and the members present get to vote on who makes up the new committee (this can include those who've just stood down). Last year we couldn't do that due to us not being able to hold an AGM, so we all continued in post. It may be we have to do the same again this year - hope not, cos this isn't supposed to be like some military coup where you lot don't get a say! - although at the last time of asking everyone had stated their willingness to continue, apart from Simon, our Regalia guy, who can't do it any more. We'll be asking for nominations for his replacement, so get yer thinking caps on and decide if you'd like to step up to the plate! I'd also like to ask if anyone's willing to take on the Secretary role that I'm also doing, along with being Chairman. It's not particularly difficult to do both, but it's a bit....I dunno....improper? I think we need a separate voice as Secretary to support or restrain the Chair....a voice of reason, you might say, or a bit like a king and a court jester. You decide which is which

I'm hoping the two drive-outs come off this time around - Yorkshire one in June, postponed from last year, and the Northern one in August, which could well be a re-run of the Kielder route we did in 2019, but hopefully drier (well it couldn't be any wetter!). Haven't spoken to a hotel yet though about that.
Other events - we've been invited to the Lombard Rally Festival in Northumberland in July, which could be fun (see the Events section for info). And anyone thinking of maybe holding a Fully-Vaccinated Garage Day? I've also got an idea for a track day but it might not come off....leave that one with me.

Club funds - we still seem to be doing OK here, so we (that is, me, Treasurer Mark, and Vice-Chair Griff) have revisited the remanufactured clam catch thing. It's at the Feasibility Study stage, i.e. we're trying to get some costs, once we find someone who can actually make the things! I did speak to FCA Heritage, who've started remanufacturing various old parts, but this one's not on their list. Shame. Again, watch this space.

Congrats to Robin T-M and Chris Jarvis, who managed to get the shower cap manufacture off the ground (and if you attach a few strings to it, you really can get it off the ground - makes a great kite!), which is fantastic. Big Thanks to them both, with an honourable mention to Dave Evans who was also involved. Cheers!

More Congrats to both Hawk and LB, who continue to produce kits and parts for us lucky lot to enjoy, despite the problems of Covid, Brexit and mithering customers (note these are not necessarily in order of aggravation )

And wouldn't be one of my Rants without me touching on values of our cars. All I can say is that the classic car scene is as buoyant as ever, if not more so, and we fit nicely into that category - and t'other day I read an article about people going crazy splashing out on supercars up to £150K in value, which again, is something we fall into, if not exactly near the top end of that range. So make sure your insurance valuations are correct! And talking of values, anybody got any idea why that genuine Stratos at Tom Hartley hasn't sold yet? It's been there for yonks! Is it a bad 'un, or is it overpriced, or what??

Right, that's me done for now....the floor is yours

Chairman Norm