Showing posts with label London to brighton classic car run. Show all posts
Showing posts with label London to brighton classic car run. Show all posts

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

The 29th London to Brighton Classic Car Run


Sunday was the big day! We were up at 5am (Andy and bunnies) and 6am (me) and headed off to the start at Brooklands at 8am.

(all photos by the way, were taken by me, at Amberley Museum, our stopping off point and at Brighton where the run ended)

We got there in plenty of time, but the sat nav instructions, sent us to the wrong gate and after being given a slap on the wrist, we were sent off to 'the other side'. That was fine, but we didn't know where the other side was, and we were meant to be checked in forty-five minutes before we were due to set off for Brighton. We passed many other cars coming away from the place we had ended up, so assumed they were on their way to Brighton already, but after a few conversations later in the day, realised that they had all been in the same boat as us!

1967 Ford Mustang


We then spent a while driving around hopelessly lost. We stopped at a carwash and asked there, but the men working there were Polish and didn't really know what we were talking about, but one did have an inkling we were talking about the place 'old cars went' and pointed us in the general direction of Brooklands Road. We double checked at a petrol station and they did the same thing, so off we went.

1958 Mercedes 190

1958 Mercedes 190


Anyway, finally we got there and I was feeling really harried. We were late being there, and then saw The Queue of Doom to check in. We joined the back of it and were soon checked in and furnished with our packet of 'things', including participation certificates, guide book, participation brass, plaque, pen and fridge magnet with our participation number, this was what really impressed Andy! Andy attached the plaque to Meirionwen’s bumper and we were ready to go!

This was actually taken at the first stop off point, I was far too stressed to take a photo before we went!



We joined the line to be waved off in front of Concorde, by a dapper chap with a moustache, apparently at the start of the actual Brooklands race track! At 10am, we were off.

Oh my, it was stressful! Andy tried resetting the tripometer as they recommended, but it all went horribly wrong after we thought we took a wrong turn, so I was trying to follow the guidebook, look for road signs and put up with Andy yelling at me to, JUST TELL ME WHERE TO GO! Don’t tempt me, thought Melanie.




We had periods of calm and periods of bickering and shouting all the way to the stop off point at Amberley Museum. I swear there should be an award for those who make it to Brighton without arguing, I bet there wouldn't be many in the running.

You may recall my tale of Meirionwen's windscreen wiper flying off on our way to Wales last year? This time Andy's window winder flew off. The horn has also pinged off randomly before now!

1971 Chesil Speedster 356 and 1961 Austin Healey 3000 MkI


It was nice seeing all the other cars though, and even though we had been warned not to follow another car, I did take comfort in seeing a classic in front of us. But it was a bit hairy when I saw we had classics following us! I wouldn't do that if I were you, I thought.

There was much hilarity from both sides when we spotted cars having to turn around or that had started going the wrong way as they corrected themselves, as we were doing it too and exchanged many a look of helpless confusion with other cars! Andy suggested it might be the old Meccano trick, throwing in some confusing or wrong instructions to add to the spirit of adventure.

This was my favourite car of the day other than Meirionwen, a 1962 Alvis TD21 Series II.



We finally got to the first stop off point at noon and parked up and got to look around the other cars and meet some of the other people taking part. We met some nice classic car custodians and members of the public too, before we were off on the final leg of the run.

1953 Citroen 11BL aka Hannah Maria

There was an odd bit of doubling back at the start of the second part of the route, so we left Amberley Museum, taking a left turn, and went a little way before coming back past the museum again, for safety reasons. As there was doubling back to be done, it meant we would be passing other cars doing the same as us and I read in the guide book that we were encouraged to wave at other participants of the run, and after a few polite waves with no response, we upped the ante and started waving madly, which prompted frantic waves back and laughs from other drivers and navigators!

I must say, part two of the run was remarkably pretty, passing through astonishingly beautiful villages, West Sussex is a beautiful part of the country, but do you know, we got all the way to the outskirts of Brighton, without me realising my camera was on the back seat and NOT in the boot, so I could have taken pictures! I was so peeved. So yes, I realised as we reached Brighton, and got caught in traffic, that I had my camera, so took a few pictures then.


The happiest little car that ever there was!

1959 Austin Healey Sprite MkI

Yes, I went with leopard! And had my red petticoat peeking out an inch or so from the hem.









All was going smoothly until we dropped down into Brighton and the directions appeared to be wrong, as there was no left turn to be taken. I thought I had read the directions wrong, but the little racing green Frog Eyed Sprite behind us went wrong THREE times too, ending up in the Marina every time, so the driver told me when we were all finally at Madeira Drive, so I know it wasn’t me and my ineptitude at reading directions.

Finally, we were going along Brighton seafront and I knew exactly where Madeira Drive was, which was the finishing point, and we got there, but the marshals just stared at us, as they leant on the barriers blocking the road off! Is this not the way in? we thought, so drove on and got tangled up in the horrendous roads of Brighton, with people beeping angrily at each other and shouting at others, it was hideously stressful, particularly being in a classic car, but we turned around eventually and headed back to where the marshals were and then they decided to act and lifted the barrier to let us in.

Brighton Pier.
We were wondering if these two sitting looking out to sea took part in the run ... that would certainly explain their body language and the distance apart they're sitting!



Finally, we could breathe properly and start to relax and were instructed to park up next to a beautiful Mercedes. We had a chat with the custodians, who were really lovely and said they'd been doing it for the past fifteen years on and off.

1969 Mercedes Benz Pagoda 280sl



As I emerged from Meirionwen, I heard a little girl speak up. "Mummy, look at her dress!" then, "Mummy, look at her DRESS!" followed by, "MUMMY! LOOK AT HER DRESS!!!!" I think she liked my dress, hehe!

We met more people on the run and some other members of the public and took part in the Best Period Dressed Competition, which was between us and about six other couples, but again: nothing. *sigh* what can you do?



So, would we do it again? Once home, we thought: no. Next morning, Andy says: yes, as he wants to actually leave from London, and as it leaves Greenwich next year, who knows!

* * *

After our Brighton adventures, we are now mentally preparing ourselves for the next trip: Weston Super Mare. I have no idea what it's like there and wasn't even sure where it was until the Gilbern club said the next National Day was to be there in early July. 

I'm looking forward to it though, we get to take Meirionwen to meet up with all her brothers, sisters and her cousins again! It'll be novel to not hear people ask what she is and to mistake her continuously for an Aston Martin!





Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Flamingo Girl

On mothers day we went to visit my mother but she didn't answer the door, which sounds bad, but I should clarify that she didn't answer the door as they don't have a doorbell and they were in the garden. But, rather than try the door and let ourselves in, we hopped back in the car and set off on a drive to find somewhere nice to enjoy the picnic we'd packed.

This was our picnic view. Pretty isn't it. I love the south of England.


It was somewhat windy and I got rather windswept.
A note about curly hair. I love my curls with a passion but have to admit that when curly hair doesn't want to play ball, it will go all out to fight you. Myself and my curls - constant battle of wills!

I decided to combine as many flamingos as I could manage into one outfit on this day, because I thought it was way overdue. I wore my charity shopped orange and pink chiffon scarf in my hair, flamingo stud earrings and my me made jacket with the flamingo brooch my sister got me for my birthday. I might have named it Ralph.


Add to that my flamingo cardigan and flamingo skirt with a Hell Bunny belt, eBay petticoat and my patent heels. My flamingo handbag was also with me but that was in the car.
And yes, I was sinking into the grass! Practical shoes for grassy countryside? Nooo, not when you have patent shoes to wear.

I think I need more flamingos in this outfit though, I'm thinking it isn't quite enough.
I think flamingo shoes would finish this look off nicely. And maybe a necklace. And a charm for my bracelet.


We passed this verge of beautiful flowers on the way home.


* * *

In other news, we're starting to get information through regarding this years London to Brighton Classic Car Run! I mentioned to Andy that it would be fun just after last years event was over, so we signed up for email alerts for when this years signing up started.

We entered Meirionwen in January, on the day sign ups started and are now getting emails and letters through, as the event is in June, so that's exciting ... and daunting, as I am Navigator Extraordinaire! They are the words of the organiser, not me. Andy contacted them about me getting a namecheck somewhere in proceedings, as currently it's just driver and car who get name checked, never mind she who has to get those two there. Mind you, with my sense of direction, we may end up somewhere completely different! Anyway, the organiser got back to us and said I shall be listed as Navigator Extraordinaire in the guide book ...

There's also a best period dressed competition, but after the Tilford saga, when there were very few people dressed up and we lost to a couple in uniforms, I am not hopeful. I believe I shall be wearing the same thing as I did then though, as I have a fascinator style hat for that outfit and otherwise would have to make one as I really, really want to wear a hat.



Unless that is, I can make my vintage Harrods pillbox hat work with my green dress that I wore on Drive It Day. I just had a play and not only is the hat in question moulting but it's also at odds with my today, very wild hair, so again, I am not hopeful! Better the hat you know, than the hat you haven't worn since you had longer hair and have no idea how to wear it with shorter hair.
I'm now wondering if I have any green ribbon so I can make a matching hat for the green dress ...

Interestingly, the two dresses are the same style, but for some reason, the green one looks more voluminous in the skirt area and therefore more fifties, while the leopard seems to fit more for early sixties, before the decade became the sixties and Meirionwen is from 1963, so Andy thinks I should tone the skirtage down a tad.



Phooey, now I don't know what to wear. I was all set for leopard but now have a green dress hankering.

Also, I shall be wearing different shoes as I still haven't had my kitten heels re-heeled. When was that Tilford event that I lost the tappity part of my heel? September and still I haven't taken them to the cobblers.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

It's Christmas!




I love Christmas.
I love December.
I actually prefer this time of the month as I love the run up more than the actual day I think, as I thrive on the anticipation.


These are some of our decorations, taken at about 6.30am this morning.
Odd that our sofa is plunged into darkness here!

That's Elvis Tree on the left, it was once white but has now gone an odd bronze colour which I am fine with, but it drives Andy nuts.
On the right, in the window is Elderly Tree. Andy got this the November after we met, so his place would be Christmassy when I visited. It's a little tired looking without the decorations, but it feels wrong to leave it in the cupboard or throw it away, so we have two trees! Three if you include Yarn Tree.

Yes that is a mesh gate in front of the tree protecting the side table.
Bunnies.
🐰 🐰
Enough said I believe.
But I want to replace it with a portion of low picket fence, it'll look nicer.




As ever, atop the tree is Bataella the Snow Bat.


These are the bunnies decorations, taken a bit later, hence daylight!
They have stockings and I crocheted them a garland.
Once upon a time I made the bunnies paper chains.
They waited roughly ten days before tearing them down and eating them.
This is just their sleeping pen by the way. It cuts down on sleepy-time shenanigans. When we go out, an extension is added and the rest of the time they free range all over the place and on the furniture.


My lovely Father Christmas decorations.
Note that the one on the right is stood on a house. 
I feel he is bordering on being scarier than Krampus.



This camel was a cat sitting gift from the Middle East and he comes out every Christmas.


And here's Wilf wearing Andy's Christmas hat.
A pumpkin is for life, not just Halloween.



In other Christmassy news, we watched what I think is one of my favourite Christmas films over the weekend, the 1949 Holiday Affair, starring Robert Mitchum. We also saw the 1947 Miracle on 34th Street and will likely watch the 1994 version some time this week.

And of course, we still have Bad Santa to watch!
Yay for Billy Bob Thornton!
This one is Andy's favourite Christmas film, and oh he is annoyed they made a sequel!



And in non-Christmassy news, Meirionwen is all booked in for next years London to Brighton classic car run!
How exciting! I am to be navigator, despite me getting terribly travel sick if I try and read while in a moving car, and we may end up in Scotland rather than Brighton as my sense of direction is shocking, but still, exciting!
I am peeved though, that there was no room on the application form for the name of the navigator, just driver. The only spot to even mention my name was in the fifteen words or less box for details about driver and car. Meirionwen took up the whole fifteen words all by herself.


Oh and yes, I have worn tinsel on my head like a hat, so it's officially Christmas!