Barnsley Minors Barnsley Branch Morris Minor Owners Club

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    2017 Branch Rally  (for Branch rally entry form 2018 see below)

    After many years at Elsecar Heritage Centre it was decided that for 2017 we should seek a new venue for our annual rally. Elsecar, of course, is strong in other attractions, but the increased cost of the site was be-coming a problem. The suggestion of Graves Park, the largest of Sheffield’s many parks, was inspired and it turned out to be an excellent venue for us. I had been rather anxious that the Friends of Graves Park, a very active group deeply concerned with the welfare and preservation of the park, might not be too enthusiastic about having lots of old cars parked in that lovely area but in fact they turned out to be very welcoming and their chair, Caroline Dewar, accepted my invitation to come along and present our awards. Prior to our event there was the Highland Fling in the area of the park that we would be using and Mick, Richard, John and George produced a four Minor display that gave a foretaste of what would be happening in a couple of weeks time.

    A three car convoy left our house early on the Sunday morning. I was leading in Merlin, Doreen followed in Sku and Iain brought up the rear in Gaffa his works van. (Gaffa still carries stickers for some Scottish islands that were visited on honeymoon some eleven years ago). Through Chapeltown, onto the motorway, the lower deck of the Tinsley viaduct and various city streets bringing us to the ring road where we came to an island indicating a right turn for Graves Park and at the bottom of here was the park entrance which was shared with that to the Animal Farm, our own Barnsley Minors sign was placed here and we entered the park and joined a busy scene with vehicles being unloaded and gazebos being set up. There was the large one for Rally Control, the tombola and the cake stall, smaller ones for Saint John Ambulance and Peter and Jonathan on the gate. Gerald had his own sales gazebo and Iain had one for a Fairmile Restorations display.

    A new idea of Mick’s was a welcome archway under which all cars had to pass to enter the site. Richard, with a very small team of marshals (was it one or two?) arranged all the cars in four lines with one of these being devoted to other classics, some 14 in number. A separate display of larger vehicles included Mick’s camper with teardrop caravan and Darren Scriven’s unusual Land Rover Discovery with trailer and not too far from the main entrance were the Morris cars but only three of these this year. Altogether, we had 70 vehicles on the rally field which would seem to be a big drop on last year’s 99, but seventy is still a very good number for a branch rally and we can see ways of building up on that for next year.
    An unfavourable weather forecast may have deterred some entrants from coming but apart from one shower at lunch time we enjoyed a day of excellent weather. The animal farm was worth a look round with some interesting characters to meet and from our high point of the park there were some distant views. Our position was certainly a contrast to the confines of Elsecar Heritage Centre and of course we are very dependent on favourable weather in the beautiful location. I feel that we may be returning there but this will depend on feedback which we always take into consideration.
    Well done to everyone who took the trouble to go round the displays and vote. There were 48 Minors vying for attention but it was Gillian Shaw’s Forestry Commision van which was considered to be outstanding and Gillian now has our ‘Best Minor’ shield to add to what must be a groaning sideboard. There were 19 classics ranging in size from a modern Trike belonging to a neighbour of Richard’s, to Alfie Bettney’s well-known Silver Spur. There were four Vauxhalls in this line-up and it was a Wyvern belonging to John McDermot of Rotherham that was picked out here. John Sutcliffe of Halifax has been supporting our rallies with his Morris Oxford for many years and it was good to have him take our Special Display award. Gillian had to come forward again to accept the ‘furthest travelled’ award, the raffle prize was a folding garden chair (not sure who got that). Mick thanked Caroline for presenting the awards, presented her with some flowers and thanked us all for coming, this bringing the proceedings to a close. Cars streamed out of the park, gazebos were dismantled and vehicles loaded up. There was a special check to see that our area was just as tidy as when we arrived and then it was off home after a very enjoyable and satisfying day.

    Many Thanks to Barrie for this report (more or less as it appeared in our June newsletter)

    For a fantastic array of photos of all the cars present at our rally, see the Potteries branch website www.potteries.mmoc.org.uk go to rally pictures, 2017, Barnsley Branch Rally. Many thanks to the Potteries Branch.

    Branch Rally

    Rally-Entry-Form-2018

     

    Branch Rally - sparesEach year we usually have a special display showing some other aspect of vehicle preservation

    • 1999 Was our first event with no special theme.
    • 2000 Classic Wedding Cars.
    • 2001 Historic Local Transport (mainly buses).
    • 2002 Caravans and Campers.
    • 2003 Ex Police Vehicles.
    • 2004 Classic Motor Bikes.
    • 2005 Military Vehicle Trust (unfortunately this display did not take place).
    • 2006 Morris Motors.
    • 2007 Minor Transport. (A special display of vans and pick-ups).
    • 2008 LCV’s
    • 2009 No theme.
    • 2010 Classic Bicycles
    • 2011 Classic American Cars
    • 2012 Morris Cars through the decades (Wortley Hall)
    • 2013 No theme – just a very well attended, excellent rally (Elsecar)
    • 2014 No theme – just a very well attended, excellent rally (Elsecar)
    • 2015 No theme – record number attended (125 cars), excellent rally (Elsecar)
    • 2016 No theme – just a very well attended, excellent rally (Elsecar)
    • 2017 No theme – our first time at Graves Park, 70 cars, an excellent day
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