Thursday, February 22, 2018

Pamela and John Hales - Part 3

Our Labour of Love - Conclusion

Dad’s car finally passed its MOT on 19th June 2008, approx 34 years after failing its last one!! We celebrated by being able to attend, and camp on what would have been Dads 93rd birthday, 21st June 2008 at the National MMOC Rally held at Stanford Hall, Northamptonshire, where the very first rally was held in 1977. It was not 100% finished, there being no back seat fitted, but with the whole loading bay vacant, we were able to take many boxes of spares to sell at the auto jumbles and recoup back some much needed funds to continue our work.

After this point we entered it in four Morris Minor rallies, also taking the blue Traveller with us as backup vehicle, (just in case!!) and winning three 1st in class trophies and a complete surprise came when we got a 1st in class for the later car too, which saw the pair of us ‘toasting' ourselves with matching engraved glass tankards!! It causes many a conversation when folks see our ‘his and hers' two cars together, almost identical registration numbers, but 10 years difference in age – LUT 533 being 50 years old and LUT 533F, 40 years old. The 4th show was a non judged show. We were parked in pride of place, cars side by side, outside the main entrance of the Gaydon Heritage Museum, Northamptonshire for the 60th Birthday Celebrations of the Morris Minor, the first production Morris Minor is here on display.

A fine pair of Travellers

Following this we applied to take part in The London Lord Mayor’s Parade 2008, for which we were accepted and warmly welcomed along with other owners of ‘rare species'! As entrants representing the MMOC we were to have a theme, ‘Minors are Forever'; we were to dress ourselves and the cars, in a style to represent the 60th (Diamond) Anniversary. It was decided we should be James Bond and Miss Moneypenny, (who'd finally got her man!), and the car was bedecked with balloons and a 60th birthday banner. It was such a thrill to drive along the route of which is the greatest parade in the UK, and ‘toast' the massed cheering crowds as we went along with my arm out of the window holding a cocktail glass, complete with cherry on a stick! The rain was torrential and I was shouting, "It may be raining, but my Martini's still dry, and I am shaken not stirred!"

So, our 'Labour of Love' was worth it in the end. Both ‘classic' cars now seem to be in demand for weddings, the first being for our daughter Alison to Tom (above), and a further two of our friends have put in their requests, which we will be pleased to do as our wedding gift to them.

We've managed to breathe life back into a heap of scrap metal, (now in concourse condition), and fulfil our ambitions far beyond our expectations. I'm sure we'll be making many more ‘motoring memories' along life's highway now as we're delighted to have our first grandson, Hayden Ray, (after his Great Grandpa) Thomas (below) joining us, after all, “It's tradition!!”

How proud we were, and Dad would have been ‘chuffed to bits', but I'm sure he was smiling down on us and the ‘Band and Drums', ‘Happy Travelling' all the way. 

Pamela and John Hales                                                         BACK TO TOP OF PAGE