Triumph Appreciation Wirral

and friends

This is why we love cars!

Wirral Classic Car Club Annual Rally, 2016

Jopie on the right, with her three passengers who won best in class recently on the Wirral Classic Car Club Annual Rally, 2016.

Peter Broadbent - 'Best Restoration'

Peter Broadbent of Triumph Appreciation won 'Best Restoration' at the Gawsworth Hall Youngtimer show on 30 May Bank Holiday with his lovely Titan Green TR7. Well done Peter!

The Way things Were

When triumph appreciation began it wasn't fashionable for the different Triumph models to club together. There was a club for Stags, one for Dolomites, one for TRs, one for the big saloons and so on. It was a need for one club for all models that created the unexpected growth we saw in the early years. The timing, quite accidental, was however perfect, soon we had approaching 100 members, a number that has declined in recent years for good reasons, but new growth is always welcome.

Amongst the first members were some great men and women, made of just the right stuff to build a good club around.

You should of course never mention names I know, but here goes anyway! Robin Bird was then a full time motoring journalist and photographer for the 'Wirral Globe'. It was he who publicised our cause in the first place and who excelled himself by following up our activities with regular articles and pictures in the local paper. This got us well know locally and one year we were the organisers of the now defunct Classic Car side of the annual New Brighton show.

Gill an Ann Owen and son Geoff own with Barbara his wife were very experienced in top quality restoration, the cars they restored always went to go on to win prizes at the most prestigious events. Furthermore they were also great mechanical engineers who could be relied upon with every aspect  of your car. Geoff is also particularly good at inexpensive suspension and brake tweaks that make old cars feel much more modern. The family now own and run the Llangollen Motor Museum which is always a treat to visit.

Two other couples, Brian and Jan Blundell and Allan and Lydia Swann joined forces and took on organised outings to shows plus looking after some regalia we had embroided with our logo.

Dave Evenett concentrated on organising rallies mainly into N Wales. John Irving was dedicated to creating an effective area at shows with bunting and his portable noticeboard that always carried photos, news of our activities and which regularly drew attention and conversation.

Stuart Montador, the owner of a garage in Birkenhead where he still trades, joined us from the very beginning. Stuart is highly regarded for his ability to diagnose as well as fix tricky problems, also his reliability and reasonable charges. As well as having restored two or three triumphs himself in the past, he has also made a number of interesting and successful engine transplants including putting a fuel injected 3 litre, 6 cylinder Vauxhall Senator motor into his 2000 saloon.

Peter Dunne is a sheet metal worker. He is one of the best welders in the business and the restorer of many Triumphs, all of which have gone on to win prizes at concourse events. Carole Dunne and Sharon Montador still regularly organise our annual Christmas Dinner which is always appreciated.

From the beginning a newsletter was published and mailed every month to the members. This helped to make every member feel part of things by keeping them all informed, since we have only one business meeting a year, open to all and at which we plan events. Otherwise it is a spontaneous, easy going, no-clique club which is popular with a lot of wives as well as men.

For many years now we have been very indebted to Ray Fields and family who between them have put together the news letter for us. These days about once every three months has been sufficient.

Previously John Sykes of TR Bitz covered all the cost of postage of our newsletters for around fifteen years, this greatly helped us in keeping our membership fee both level and nominal. We have greatly appreciated their support in many ways.

Adventure in Wales

On Sunday 18 Jan at 11am eight foolhardy stalwarts gathered in the snow of the Tudor Rose Car Park. Six from Triumph Appreciation and two from the Chester MG and Triumph club, the latter in their MGB GTs and the former in their.. err, modern tin boxes!

After some good natured banter and admiration, particularly for Sam Evans recently restored MG, we all set off with Bob Whiting taking the lead and Dave (that's another fine mess you got me into) Evennett as his navigator! The route went into Wales via Queensferry, Harwarden, Ewloe, Northop and up onto the Halkyn Mountain. From there we went to Babell, Gorsedd and through Whitfield to Berthengam from where we dropped down to the coast road close to Prestatyn.

Once in Prestatyn the route took us left at the Cross Foxes into Fforddlas Road, from where we accessed a very steep climb called appropriately 'Hillside'. Having come off the mountains earlier there was now no sign of snow in Prestatyn and Bob thought the climb up the hill would be ok. Well it wasn't! Fortunately Peter Broadbent with his passengers Arthur and Jan Blaze were able to turn back as were Andy and Ailsa, but by now the rear wheel drive MG had gamely progressed so far up the now icy hill that turning back became out of the question when we saw the remains of the last car that had attempted the descent, the wreckage of an almost new Mercedes Benz on the verge at the side of the road.

Bob kept the engine turning at 2500rpm and in 2nd gear, with wheels spinning madly the MG continued to defy logic, continuing to creep slowly forward. Dave was all for jumping out to give a push but Bob wouldn't hear of it, which was just as well as he would surely have just slid back down the hill again. More anxiety was felt as approaching the summit the road went steeper and was reduced to half width by another car that had slid out of control into the bank. However Bob's nerve held and with steady hand and foot he eventually managed to safely complete the ascent!

We stopped at the top and finding we had a mobile phone signal were relieved to learn that the others were all safe and sound. After Bob had giving them new directions, we all set off to find the Red Lion in Llanassa and were the first to arrive. After about twenty minutes we started to worry about the others, especially when we found they were out of phone signal, however it wasn't long before they found the welcome haven.

Peter and Bob had parked their cars up a slope in the pub car park but Andy and Ailsa chose to park over the road, only for Ailsa to find her shoes lacked sufficient 'tread' to enable her to walk up the incline and into the Red Lion. Needless to say the heartless amongst us stood amused at her plight till Dave gallantly decided to go to her aid!

Once inside we all enjoyed the fire, the beer, the food and the service. The Red Lion in Llanassa is a good place to visit and the village itself delightful. I think we should be heading that way again but next time it will be on a warmer day.

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