Arden MG Club Monthly News. Previous months newsletters can be found in the Newsletter Pages.

Newsletter April 2019


The last Club Night was not the best of weather but it didn't stop two of you turning up in your MGs, Cliff's red CGT looks very nice and David even had the roof down, well done. Again there was over 40 of us in the restaurant, what did you all think of the 'Slide Show' that Norman had put together and he was good enough to bring in 2 monitors so, everyone had a chance to see them (except when Fred was standing in front of the one on the bar!!!). Many thanks Norman.

Before I progress to the Future Events I have a very sad announcement from Chris Yates, here is his message to me:

I have not been able to attend recent meetings because Sheila has been very poorly and passed away last Thursday 4th April. Although we have only been with the club for under 2 years she enjoyed joining in the club activities and making friends with its members, we had planned to take part in many of the excellent runs and events this year. I hoped that you could make everyone aware of her passing in the next edition of your Newsletter and to this end I have attached a photograph of her at Goodwood. Her funeral will be on 1st May at St Gregory’s Church in Tredington at 11.15 am and should anyone wish to attend they would be more than welcome.”

Future Club Events:

Not a Club Event but may be of interest, the Fleece Inn in Bretforton has sent this to Nigel (who is using the Inn for his 'Sunday Adventure Run'):

Asparagus launch day on Tuesday 23rd April 2019-see below:

Cars would attend at the Fleece from about 11.30am. Other cars will include Morgan, Triumph and MG marques. Complementary light refreshments will be served and there will be entertainment from Vintage Singer Betsy Harmony and others. At approximately 12.45 cars will leave for a Navigational Scatter event based around themed Asparagus clues throughout Worcestershire. Expected return to the Fleece Inn for about 4pm-5pm when a complimentary Asparagus Tea will be served to all contestants along with a complimentary Asparagus Goody bag.

If anyone is interested let me know and I will pass the info on.

Sunday 28th April – Drive-it-Day Run:


As you will all know by now, Drive-it-Day is a nationwide activity arranged by the FBHVC to encourage all classic car owners to take their vehicles out to show that they are used and of importance to the history of the country. For many years now we have organised a run on this event and this year is no exception. Richard Avery has again stepped forward and has organised the day for us, so for the run he has booked us into The Southcrest Manor Hotel, Southcrest, Redditch, B97 4JS, where lunch will be available. The start will be from the Golden Cross, meet from 11am to be ready to leave around 11.30 and the scenic run is about 40 miles through the local lanes. There are 21 cars and 39 people booked in for the lunch, it may be too late to join in now but if you haven't booked and would like to, you need to check with Richard, the booking form is still available on the Club website.

Tuesday 7th May – Club Night:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Monday 27th May – Bidford Wings & Wheels:

Bank Holiday Monday, at Bidford airfield (off Buckle St, due South of Bidford). This is getting to be a popular event, no need to book just turn up and all they ask is for a donation into their collecting bucket.

Sunday 2nd June – Quiz on Wheelz:

We are trying a new format this year with three distinct stopping places to get out of the car and look for the clues to answer the questions, rather than looking for the clues as you drive along. We are also trying a new idea of having the run in the late afternoon on a Sunday (starting from 17.00 to 17.30), however the finish will be at a suitable venue for a meal. Please let me know what you think. Graham and Lech are working together on the quiz, so it should be good!!

Tuesday 4th June – Club Night:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Friday 7th to Monday 10th June 2019 - Weekend Away to Devon Valley Holiday Village:


Sunday 23rd June – Sunday Adventure Run:


Nigel has now organised his 'summer run' and it will start from the Golden Cross. There will be a scenic run of approximately 40 miles through some of the Cotswold's finest countryside to finish at The Fleece Inn at Bretforton, where a 'Summer BBQ' will be served. The cost for the BBQ is £15.00 which will comprise of: Homemade Burgers, Locally Sourced Sausages, Cajun Chicken Breast, Parsley Battered Corn on the Cob, Cheesey Chips, Tomato, Mozzarella and Basil Salad, Wholegrain Mustard Coleslaw Mixed Green Salad, Roasted Red Pepper and Mixed Olive Salad, Selection of Artisan Breads and a Selection of Relished & Sauces. We will be able to display our cars in the orchard and there will be seating and a bar in the barn for use by the Club.

Booking and payment is essential to Nigel as soon as possible as he needs to provide the venue with the numbers for the food.

I will load a booking form onto the Club website.

Tuesday 2nd July – Show Night:

A social evening where you can show off your pride and joy and win some prizes, so make sure you have cleaned, polished and waxed your car.

Sunday 7th July – BMC & Leyland Show, BMM, Gaydon:

We will again have a display at this show at the British Motor Museum. I will be asking for bookings nearer the time but it should be free to enter (when booked) which gives access to the show and both museum buildings. There has been a good turnout the last 2 years.

Saturday 20th July – Badsey Flower Show:

Steve will again be looking for support for the excellent show (can you arrange better weather this year Steve) and maybe we can talk Alan & the Team into another 'food tent'. More info nearer the time.

Sunday 28th July Chairman's Picnic:

Advance notice, to be confirmed.

Tuesday 6th August - Club Night:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Saturday 11th August – Brailes Show:

A regular event on our calendar.

Sunday 25th August – Broughton Castle Transport Show:

This is a new show which we think we should give a try and this will be in place of the Plum Festival. The location is just outside Banbury and we may organise a scenic run to get there. More details soon.

Monday 26th August – Pershore Plum Festival:

This will no longer be a 'Club Event', however anyone can book to attend, Alan will have bookings forms nearer the time.

Tuesday 3rd September - Club Night:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Tuesday 1st October - Club Night:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Sunday 13th October – Malvern Festival of Transport:

One of the last outdoor events of the year, lets hope for better weather than last year.

Tuesday 5th November - Club Night:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Other Events:

Sunday 12th May – Cwm to Coast: Sandville Court in Ton Kenfig (CF33 4PU) and finish at the Grove Golf Club in Porthcawl (CF36 5TA), a two course Sunday Lunch is available at £15 per person. Details Bridgend MGOC, contact: Stuart Taylor on 01656 662213 or email at

MGCC Midland Centre Welsh Rallye - 17th to 19th May 2019:This year's Rally will be based at the Hands Hotel in Llangollen and will again be a 2 night event. I'm told the run on the Saturday will be slightly shorter than last year and will have an additional short cut if required. Further details from the Midland Centre.

Saturday 7th & Sunday 8th September 2019 – The Peaks to Lakes Run: The Cat & Fiddle, Peak District to Wrynoes Pass, Lake District. Details from Norman Verona, email: .

Message from Norman Verona: There are a few places left on the Peaks to Lakes Run for September (now 2 separate events). The Saturday will be the run around the Peak District and Sunday will be the run around the Lakes. Participants can elect to do the Peaks only, the Lakes only or both.

Other Matters:

Those of you who read the Newsletter may remember the comment in Graham's 'What Have I done in My MG' that there was a Jeep pedal car in the background of one of his photos. He has sent a follow up message: “I found the picture of my jeep I was looking for . . .

The observant may notice the Austin badge. We had a few of these kicking about because at one time we made a plastic version of it as a safety feature for export cars to the American market.”

Thanks Graham, who else had a pedal car like that when they were a child or did you buy one for your child, or even make one (have Liz & Chris got a photo of the Bugatti to share with us?)

Phil Bawn has sent me another of his devilish car recognition quizzes:

Here’s another car recognition quiz if you want to use it as a filler, they are both from the same factory made in quantities but oddly the same car came out under two different badges, long before the badging of Nuffield products etc.


I have still got a bottle of Old Speckled Hen left for the first correct answer I receive.

What Have You Done With Your MG This Month:

This month John Philps has sent in this article:

What did I do this winter?


I changed the seats in my MGC. This is a tail of interesting advice and knowing the right people who know the right people.

The C seats are not the same as B seats as the floor pan in the C is different due to different front suspension and a rather large engine.

The reason for the change was to add head rests and also reclining seats, not available for the C (68/69) only coming in for the B in 1972.

What prompted me to get on and change the seats was an incident that happened to an old friend of mine Brian Rainbow. Some of you will know him as Chairman of the MG Octagon club and he runs the pre MG 1956 natter at the Blue Boar every month.

He was returning from an MG event in his B GT one Sunday and stopped at a set of lights at a temporary road works and was hit from behind by a white van, the driver was on his phone!!

Brian’s B had head rests and these saved him and Rosie from the serious consequences of back lash

I have seen other Cs where the seats have been replaced. However they tend to be of two types either from a Mazda MX5 or MGB seats, usually from the Owners Club. If I was going to change them I wanted them to be as close to original looking as possible so I was not going the Mazda route.

I had great fun ringing around trying to find out if B seats would fit. I received some interesting and wonderful advice.

The Owners Club said their seats would be OK “they have sold many to C owners”, in a later call, a different person, told me quite a few had been returned.

Other advice I was given was “only MGB GT seats would fit the C”, and “post 1976 B cloth seats would fit”.

Due to the difference in the C and B seats if you put in B seats you will have to change the C steering wheel so you can get your knees under the wheel. I had just changed mine to an original wheel so did not want to go back. Anyone want a wood rimed Moto-Lita steering wheel???

I decided to go the DIY route and went to Ebay and found a pair of 1972 B seats for £25 plus £15 postage. I stripped them down only to find they had different Head Rest holders. Single post and double post. Ugh. They sent me another free of charge, great. However it was a good job I had a spare as I found that the reclining mechanism on one was broken so I swapped the bases.

I measured the C seats and worked out the difference in the height was at the front and was 4cm. I took the bases to a man in Alcester (thanks Lech, knowing someone who knows someone) who cut them down and re welded them.

A quick rust proof and paint and they went off to be covered. In my research on good trim people the name of PJM Motors kept on coming up. Again a name from someone who knows someone. They deal almost entirely in MG trim and can provide just about any finish. Sandra who answers the phone but really organises the place went through everything, what sort of leather, sending me a couple swatches to compare with the current seats, what type and colour piping etc. Sandra said it would be 3 weeks and exactly 3 weeks later she rang to say they were ready.

Now they are fitted and the C is ready to go and yes just in case you did want to ask the tank is full. The only problem being I have had a knee operation and supposed not to drive for 6 weeks Ugh..


Before and after.

John Philps

Thanks to all the contributors, please keep sending me your stories, even better with a photo or two.

My MG:

As promised last month the story from Nigel who has opened his wallet and splashed out on another MG:


We waved goodbye to Stephanie's Mini, then began discussions on what we were going to do next in the way of cars. It was suggested by way of mutual consent, to look for an MGB GT giving us some cover on wet runs and as a second vehicle, we would be Tax free with cheap insurance and it would also increase in value. We went through all the usual channels such as Autotrader, Gumtree (etc) and on ebay found several likely cars but nothing seemed to hit home. That is until I found the advert which just seemed to click. I had a good feeling about this one. My first bid was rejected and several other bidders came on the scene. I left a message for the owner one Saturday night and disappeared to the pub. We had been there about an hour when my phone rang and it was the seller. We discussed what he wanted price wise, to which I made him an offer which he accepted on the promise to keep the vehicle until we arrived to see it and complete the deal.

On the Tuesday morning Stephanie and I set sail for Pontypool in South Wales. We eventually found the place and in dicussion with the owner who was an MG enthusiast found he had had it for four years but two of those it had been garaged and never seen the light of day. He was a Builder starting up on his own and had just moved from Bristol to South Wales and needed the money to help in the new buisiness.

We did the deal there and then and being a man of his word had refused a higher offer until we had seen it.

I drove it back home across the Brecon Beacons and we made it back safely, it ran quite nicely.

I then did some TLC on her and wrote to DVLA to find who the other owners had been, although I had quite a large piece of History on her I wanted a bit more. Having wrtten to the addresses of the last four owners one phoned me quite delighted I had the car and bothered to get in touch. I am very pleased I did for when he had it in 2012 he had a complete renovation carried out, Leather seats, Trim, New S/S Exhaust, a complete Engine overhaul including an unleaded Head, New suspension, New instrumentation, Respray, the list went on. On looking through the History I have found all the Receipts of the work carried out and it all matches. He sold it when his wife died, as they were active in his local MG club.

I have since found it started life as a British Leyland company car at Longbridge so she has come back to the Midlands.

Havok our Red Roadster now has a sister! AWK !



Stephanie was complaining of her mascots the two Dogs Winston and his mate Churchill kept falling off the back seats - they now have safety belts to keep them in place !! We look forward to some runs in her.

Nigel & Stephanie Hook.

Thanks Nigel, I look forward to seeing at this years events, although if it is the wet weather car hopefully not too many events!!! 

Happy MG'ing