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Silverstone MG90

The event formerly known as MG Live, was renamed MG90 this year to celebrate 90 years of MG. Perhaps this was the reason for a change of weather.  No rain, just lots of sunshine with very light winds. How did the Magnettes respond to the summer weather? 20 cars attended each day, resulting in a full reserved parking area but no overflow. It was good to see new owner Mike Swinn from Sheffield in his 1956 ZA FKS 550, plus one car from The Netherlands and one from Germany.


The impressive ‘Timeline’ consisted of 90 cars ranging from a 1924 14/28 to the current MG3 and included 4 Magnettes: Peter Cadman’s ZA, John Beesley’s ZB, John Harris’s ZB Varitone and John Taylor’s Mk4 Farina. Two other register members also had cars on show: John & Lou Shorten’s 1931 F2 Magna and Tim Perkins’ 1936 TA Midget Tickford Coupe. Overall our register supplied 6.67% of the cars on the timeline – not bad for one of the smaller registers.

Whilst Magnettes were standing on display, Paul Batho and Anthony White were participating in the auto-tests (Old timers read Driving Tests) to prove that our graceful old ladies can still hitch up their skirts and perform elegant pirouettes. Paul claimed victory saying that Anthony led his car astray by taking a wrong turn.

In the main marquee we occupied a position on the centre aisle directly opposite the main doors, possibly the best spot available, and next door to ‘Old No. 1’ loaned to the club by the Heritage Motor Centre museum at Gaydon. As you may have noticed in Safety Fast, a prize was available for the best decorated stand and the theme for ours was ‘From Wedding Car to Rally Car’. Ann & Martyn Collett’s ZBV took centre stage bedecked with ribbons, bows and flowers and was surrounded by pictures of other weddings, particularly Bob Hough’s ZB doing the honours on a snowy day – a true white wedding. Tim Perkins’ ZB was shown towing his caravan while the small children in the back of Tom Strickland’s ZBV were enjoying a family day out. The newly purchased pull-up screens also showed just how versatile the Magnette is with rally cars and recent events in addition to more weddings.

With all this activity what were the highlight memories of the weekend? In no particular order, there was the pedal car T-Type built by John Beesley for his granddaughter. With 2 granddaughters he has built two of them! The wedding car had the wrong beer cans tied on behind it but this was corrected when a visitor kindly presented Ann & Martyn with a collection of Speckled Hen cans – sadly empty. Sunday was Northamptonshire’s day with no less than 6 cars from the county. Finally it was good to see our President Lou Shorten on the stand. She and John travelled from Norfolk with the F2 Magna on a trailer despite Lou’s recent illness.

Text by John Harris

Pictures Cynthia & John Harris and Stephen Tickell

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