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Area Report - Windscreen Winter Issue 141
I suspect quite a lot of members from across our area went to the War & peace Revival. I bumped into John Gray a number of times who was enjoying re enacting with Chris Till and his Chaffee. Gary Cottingham told name he’d just bought another bike to add to his collection whilst Denis Matthewman bought an M37 Dodge which had come over from Belgium. He drove it almost home but the fan came off near Doncaster and punctured the radiator! Several pounds lighter he was taken the rest of the way by the AA. Anne Shipley kindly drove his Land Rover back for him. Anne and Dale had taken the Reo and along with Nev Johnson and Denis had set up a mini YMVT campsite. I took advantage of the shade offered there for a sit down and was kindly offered a much needed cup of tea by Dale. A brief report of my experience of the show with photos is on our website. 
The annual Historic Commercial Vehicle Society Trans Pennine run attracts a handful of military or ex military vehicles. In the past the club has put on a display on the Stray at Harrogate, but not this year. However, I thought I’d give the Bedford MW a long run to complete 500 miles of ‘running in’ the rebuilt engine. The drive from home to Birch Services involves some 13 miles of the M62/M60 but at 7:30 am it was fairly quiet. Happily the MW performed well over the 113 miles round trip in lovely weather. An old work friend of mine Phil came along for the ride. Phil “For me it was a fabulous experience. Wonderful to see so many folks waving away at us.
It’s not every day you get to travel in a 70yr old army lorry with a crash gearbox.” With a couple of stops en route it took us 4 hours to do the 60 or so miles to the Stray. Also on the run Richard Grange from the club would have had a long day travelling to the start from his home well north of Harrogate. He and his wife Merlyn, were in their Reo and despite going off route at Bradford enjoyed the run but did have some mechanical trouble.

Another member Mr R Newell did the full route in his immaculate 1959 ex Swiss Army Berna 2-VM. Once parked up on the Stray there’s more than enough vehicles to see as well as stalls to browse selling parts, books and models. Huntapac kindly give all entrants a packed lunch which is much appreciated.

John Gray has been spending again. His new truck is a 1943 Chevrolet, made by the Buffalo Fire Appliance Company for the US Army. This really is a good looking thing and still retains its army bonnet number and data plates. It is one of only 40 made and said to be one of only four remaining.

John says “It was on the Whiteman Army Air Base from new right through to the 1950`s then went to Leeton Fire department as on the door , through to a reserve fire department then a private owner ....then me.” He tells me he had his leg lifted by the export processes and it cost him but lesson learned.

It was a surprise to see Ian Anderson’s Tilly up for sale and as you would imagine he received plenty of calls. It sold very quickly and to someone in Yorkshire so we should see it again. The future he says is a BSA folding bike! Rather him than me.

Michael Sparks has been busy stripping Nelly, his Bedford MW, which will reappear in early WW2 brown. Ashley Walker has just bought a third Scammell Pioneer and when I met him was busy completing a large rather smart “Scammell Shed” with his son Sam. Simon Fenton kindly sent me photos of their latest acquisition a Diamond T 969A Wrecker to add to the website.

Tony Paling had a trip north to Croft Circuit where he reports there were some 40 military vehicles on show and that the site has good camping/toilets available. He and Gordon Trousdale joined the Classic Car rally at Cannon Hall in July along with several other mvs. Brian Fox and Ivor Waterhouse took their jeeps to the massive Newby Hall Classic car show which they say has a great autojumble.

They also went up the Dales to the Flookburgh steam rally at Grange over Sands which is sited on the old Cark airfield. They are very enthusiastic about this large show which is free to enter and camp and this year had about 40 mvs on show. In a pretty dry summer they were unfortunate to experience really heavy rain on the Saturday night. Brian Fox joined Graham Golder in Scarborough for their Armed Forces Day and enjoyed both the BBMF flypast and the Red Arrows.

Brian and a number of others had a trip to Jeep and Cheerful at Doncaster Aero Museum where some 25 jeeps were assembled.

Martin Laker had his new Jimmy at the Otley Transport Festival and was joined by a small gathering including Chris Smyth, but space was apparently quite limited and the military vehicles were somewhat hemmed in.

The annual Crank Down, this year planned by Chris Smyth, took place over the weekend of 21/22 September. The convoy of 9 jeeps and 2 Land Rovers and Dave Reape in his desert sand Auto Munga toured beautiful parts of the Dales rarely seen by tourists. We tackled a long stretch of green lane, part of the Nidderdale Way, out of Middlesmoor village dropping down to Scar House Reservoir.

This was my first experience of off roading and I must admit the jeep seemed to just crawl over obstacles effortlessly – a real credit to the designers so long ago. Quite by chance we covered large parts of the same route being taken by a major cycling event and amazingly some of the cyclists made even us look quite youthful! Sadly Dave Reape had to drop out at Saturday teatime at Jervaulx Abbey to await the RAC. He had been having fan belt problems all afternoon. Otherwise, apart from minor hiccups, over 200 miles would have been covered by all at the end of the two day run. For Colin and Liz Parr who join us every year, all the way from Portsmouth, in their Land Rover this was but a small part of their trip. Tony Duncan and his son James from Bury crossed the Area boundary to join us and soak up the beauty of the Dales after only recently doing the Liberty route in France with Brian and Gary Docherty.

Christmas will soon be upon us. The annual party will be at the meeting venue on the 4th. The Christmas Cracker Run is scheduled for Sunday 29th December probably starting at Lotherton Hall but check our website. 

Mike Humphreys