Sample Magazine


The weather held good for our annual trip to Rylstone Gardens, so we were able to park on the lawn. Altogether we had nine Minors, one Austin Seven, one Austin 10 van, and a Rolls Royce. All attracted a lot of attention; the Rolls, of course, people wanted to see the interior and the engine, the Minors for their different styles. The thing that really took my eye was the rustic seat covers in the Austin 10 van (Island registered). Potato sacks covered the seat backs, not new, well worn and torn! Recycling at its best!
The gardens in the café looked fabulous as usual, as one who has just 51 containers to plant, feed and water, I take my hat off to Lin and Tony. Most partook of tea and cakes, and perhaps a round of Crazy Golf, others listened to the band playing on the Bandstand. I, unfortunately, had to leave early, an early shift the next day. Still, they will soon be a thing of the past.


Our September meeting will be held at 8.00pm on Thursday 8th of September, at the Woodman Arms, Station Rd., Wootton. Please come along, and feel free to bring along any interested friends. Any visitors to our Rally that are still on the Island are also welcome to come along, for a drink and a natter.

Dan in as imported condition

Having lived in such a dry climate for nearly 40 years, the Westy had no rust to speak of either Bodily or Underneath. Between Oct 2010 and February 2011 a programme of refurbishment was undertaken, as necessary. This included a full windows out respray, as the Paint work, whilst perfect was very faded and sunbleached. It is finished in the original Westfalia colour, Sierra Yellow with the addition of a Pastel White roof and window pillars. A new engine was fitted. 5 New Tyres and replacement brightwork and bumpers complete the Exterior.

Newly refurbished cab

The Westfalia camping interior is virtually original and complete. All that needed replacement in the rear was the headlining and flooring. Also new Canvas was fitted to the original "Pop - Up" roof. The front seat covers and door cards and all Curtains were also replaced to make the restoration complete. He has now been named “Dan. “Dan the Van!!
Before finishing my little story about Dan. I must thank those who helped make it all possible! My Daughters Katie and Hayley for encouraging me to go ahead with my dream - and who no doubt plan to borrow Dan, in the future! Hayley especially for choosing the brilliant retro curtains! My friends in the IOWMMOC for regularly putting up with me chatting about the project, and offering tips and advice. Club member and good mate Alan who travelled all the way with me to Wales last year to check out the VW and offered me advice that was second to none. Alan also went with me to bring the Westy to the Island earlier this year, Thanks Alan! Final grateful thanks go to Will from our Club, who has spent ages over the past months helping me to put all the finishing touches to the Westy, and spurred me on to help make Dan look as he does today! Will now knows more about Westy's than I do! You've been a real friend, Will. Thank you!
I am understandably proud of our Westy, Dan He often goes out for trips around the Island, hopes to attend many Car Shows and Rallies, and of course, most of all he is looking forward to enjoying what he was built for - Camping, both on the Island and further afield. The Garage has been adapted recently to enable Dan to fit, and to keep warm and dry. He now happily shares life with Enid the Convertible and Timmy the Traveller!! He is already one of the Family!!

Waiting at Gunwarf to come over to island for first time

Barry Allen
NOTE. I failed to notice that there was a second page to this article, my apologies to Barry


I have been reflecting on nearly four years of owning a Morris Minor, and the ‘pro’s and con’s’ of buying a fully up together example as opposed to one needing some tender loving care. I have always loved cars, all the way back to childhood. My earliest car memories, which go back to the late 1950’s, and early 1960’s, are of my parent’s Opel Rekord, purchased new in 1955 when my father could not even drive, driven to Southampton by my uncle, and shipped to Ghana, where my parents were located at the time, and where I later was born.

1957 Opel record

 Why a German car – at one of the peaks of the British motor industry – with lots of local suitable choice? I suspect the influence of my uncle, who loved cars as much as I do, as my father had no interest in cars whatsoever! Also a factor might have been the drive for export at that time – which meant that British car buyers could not easily buy brand new locally produced cars.
From these early beginnings I have developed a fascination with all things mechanical, especially involving wheels, and particularly motor cars! So I was very interested when in 1996 a work colleague purchased a 1969 Smoke Grey Morris Minor two door saloon, which was called ‘Millie’, and drove her to work and back from Appley to Newport for the next seven years! So, off and on, I was aware of Millie, saw her parked up, being driven by my colleague Debbie, and we had the odd conversation over the years about the trials and tribulations and the joys of owning such a car – as you do in the work place - until one day Millie got put away because the head gasket had blown, the windscreen leaked like a sieve, and other work was needed. Millie was laid up in Debbie’s garage for the next four years, until one day I asked Debbie about Millie, and this led to me taking her on and promising to look after her – and Debbie could not bear to watch when Millie was removed and transported away into my ownership!
Now this is the thing. As you can see, there was a lot of emotion, shared knowledge and interest in this particular car, which is an Island registered example, and has a local Island history, and just seemed to come my way, and felt right! So, more than three years down the line, I have spent a lot of time and money on Millie and thoroughly enjoyed myself doing so (apart from the money side). Underneath and mechanically she is now completely sound – and I have regularly used Millie to drive from Newport to Ryde where I now work. Her bodywork and overall appearance is acceptable and tidy enough, but she does look an old lady when parked up alongside other pristine examples, and it would cost a lot more money to get Millie looking her best.
So I have been reflecting on this. By researching, looking carefully, traveling to where the opportunities are, I could have acquired a very good example of a Morris Minor for a similar amount that I have spent on Millie over the years, and possibly or probably better than Millie is now. Indeed, if I now want Millie to be a very good overall example, I will have to spend even more money on arranging for someone to do this for me, and she will never in my lifetime have a market value that will reflect this expenditure.
But what have I got? I have a very reliable Morris Minor that I use a lot, that I am not too precious about, which feels old and historic, with massive character, and has helped develop my bodywork and painting skills (as far as that goes!), makes me feel good that I have kept my promise to look after the car, and is something I am not afraid to use. If I paid £6000 for the very best example I can afford - and you can pay double that and more I know - I would not take it out in the rain, I would be afraid of deterioration, and I would worry about my ‘investment’.
So when weighing up the pro’s and con’s of buying a fully restored Morris Minor as opposed to one needing some tender loving care, in this particular case I love what I have got and what I did to get here, and I have to say I am still tempted to one day go the whole hog with Millie, and have her body work restored and painted professionally regardless of the lack of economic validity. I almost feel silly to admit this, but, like Debbie did before me, I have an emotional bond with this car which I

find difficult to shake off! However, in concluding, I do believe if you can leave emotion out of it, you should buy the best classic car you can afford.
I will finish with two examples from the wider classic car world that I think make this point- from Classic Car Weekly.
There is an advertisement for a 1935 Austin Ruby.
‘£6000 - No offers. Just had full restoration with no expense spared, new interior fitted, many new parts, registration valued at £2750 in year 2000. MOT Inspector said best he’d seen for many years’. I think the person selling this car, or previous owners, may well have spent more on restoration over the years than the sale price! In the right circumstances, I would look at this one!
Compare this with one for a ‘Riley RMB’.
1951, £1500, Stripped ready to work on, chassis has been started but not finished’. Although not the same model, and a RMB may be rarer, there is a good usable RME is in the same paper for £4950, and I think it would cost much more than £4950 to even replicate the good usable example of an old Riley out of a pile of bits you paid £1500 for.

Jonathan Lewis

IOWMMOC RALLY article in August Newsletter. I must apologise for getting the company name wrong, for our printer and Rally sponsor. It should be WIGHT BUSINESS SERVICES, not supplies.


Our Rally will soon be upon us, and there follows a few notes so that you can be kept better informed. REMEMBR it costs you nothing to attend, so please make the effort. This is made possible by generous sponsorship from Tim Lang of Minor Magic, Taunton, and Wight Business Services, Newport.
Saturday 3rd September: Fun Run starting at 2pm (assemble by 1.45pm please) we will follow the usual format of interspersing Island cars every so often in the cavalcade, so that it is not too easy to get lost!
Meet at IOW Steam Railway public car park, Havenstreet for a run to the Isle of Wight Owl and Monkey Haven. We have been given free parking and free entry (normally £7.95) to this excellent attraction. We do ask that you purchase a cup of tea or coffee and maybe a snack in the café on site in order to make sure that we continue to enjoy such generous discounts in the future. Later in the evening we will have our usual Barbecue at Havenstreet starting at around 6pm.
Sunday 4th September: Site opens at 9.00 am
The main event: on arrival you will be able to purchase an attendance plaque. For the campers or early arrivals the day could start with one of Havenstreet café’s superb full English breakfasts. Cars may park where you want – perhaps in branch groups. We hope this will add to the fun of the rally. We expect to have Vintage Bus rides and trips on the Steam Railway will be at group discount rates (£7.50). We will also have an all makes Auto Jumble with over 20 stalls expected.
We hope you have a good crossing and look forward to meeting old friends, and making new ones.
After the rally, those staying on the island are invited to join us at the Woodman Arms, Wootton for an evening meal.
Have you got any unwanted but new presents at home? Check all those old corners and cupboards, ferret out those odd items you will never use, and donate them to our raffle at the Rally. I am sure each and every one of you has a gift given by a well meaning relative that you will never use, so let someone else use it instead.


Sat 3rd-Sun 4th Sept. IOW Branch Rally, Havenstreet Railway.
Fri 15th – Sun 18th Sept Goodwood Revival
Sat 17th-Sun 18th Sept IOW Classic car show, Newport, Ryde
Sun 25th Sept Hampshire Branch picnic, Watercress Line, Ropley.
Sun 16th Oct. IOW Bus Museum Running Day, Newport Quay
11th, 12th, 13th Nov. Classic Car Show, NEC, Birmingham

A circa 1973 Fisher Holivan Caravan, two berths, ideal size to tow behind a Minor. Up until 1984 it had done around 6,000 miles, but has not turned a wheel since the early 1990’s. Can be seen on the Island £100. Call 01983 721383.


Several people, not only those with Classic cars, have commented to me that it is scandalous that it is now a requirement of law to insure a vehicle even when it is off the road. I have pointed out to them that if the vehicle is SORNed, then you no longer need to insure it. This fact seems to have been missed by many. It is not even really clear on the leaflet that comes in with your licence renewal.
However, is it best for the Classic owner to not insure their car even when it is SORNed?
Generally, Classic car insurance is reasonably cheap compared to mainstream vehicles, and is often tailored to suit. For instance, you may find that it covers vehicles undergoing restoration, plus the workshop and tools being used. Imagine that you are welding on your car, it catches fire, burns out the car, garage, and all the tools it contains. You may have Household insurance, but I bet you will not get far trying to claim off that. An Agreed Value Classic Car policy will probably cover all of the aforementioned disaster. So, before cancelling your insurance when you SORN a vehicle, consider whether it is in your best interests.


If you have not checked out the new Club Blog site yet, then I urge you to do so. Alan has made a really good job of it, it is arranged so that it is easy to follow, and is regularly updated.
Each publication of the Club Newsletter is being fed onto it, and it has the added advantage that photos can be uploaded. Alan has even inserted them into Newsletter articles, so it makes for a better presentation.
I am sure that as time goes on it can only get better.
If you have anything you would like to see on it, why not give Alan the details.

P.S. I have been passing on any adverts I get so they go on the Blog, and chances are they will appear there before the Newsletter is published, so keep an eye out for bargains!