AVCMC  FanMail

July 2018



From The Driver's Seat

By Joe Janssens

My mandate as Chairman of the AVCMC is coming to an end and so is the current AVCMC committee. Please make a special effort to attend the AGM which is scheduled to take place on the 19th July and please submit your nominations for members of the new committee in order to continue the successful running of our club. We need you to attend and give your input on what you think the club could do in the new year. Please step up and avail yourself! 

The chairman’s yearly report will also be presented at this meeting and it will highlight all the events that were organised in the past year. 

Thank you to everyone for their involvement and participation in all the events.

The Financial Statements and budgets for the following year will also be served for approval. Please assist in growing our membership and public awareness to further this aim.

My thanks to each member who’s support I enjoyed during this past term, as well as all the committee members passion and enthusiasm which they expressed in the exercise of their respective functions.

The sale on the first Thursday of the month noggin of burgers, boerewors rolls or hotdogs which helps raise some much needed funds for the running of our clubhouse has been well supported.

This month’s event, the “Bonnets up” at the Ploughman was well supported and so was the bring and braai that followed. We had requests from several members to repeat this “bring and braai” more often at this venue as it is quite enjoyable and a lot of fun as fires, plates and tools are supplied. (Picture below)

Thank you Patrick for hosting this event.

Joe Janssens



Through The Windscreen

(This is what lies ahead)



For Your Diary

Local Events

Thursday 5 July - 5 to 8pm - Supper at the noggin
Food will be sold on the first Thursday of each month
It might be hot dogs or hamburgers.

Thursday 12 July - 5 to 8pm - Motoring DVD during the noggin

July - Visit Damant Lodge
Date and details to follow.

Thursday 19 July - AGM and Supper Night
Nominations for committee members are called for. See the note below
Please bring your own drinks and a plate of eats - times are hard!

You must be a paid up full member to vote.
We regret that subs are to be amended as follows:
R350 for local full members who live within 50km of Port Alfred
R250 for country full members who live more than 50km from PA
R150 for associate members (no vote)
The constitution needs to be amended to accommodate country members and a letter will follow to that effect.

Saturday 28 July - 9am to noon - AVCMC Museum

Saturday 11 August - Bathurst Country Affaire

Events Further Afield

8 - 11 August - Magnum Rally - Mpumalanga area
This will be the SAVVA National Rally - the 50th anniversary.

9 - 14 June 2019 - 50th Milligan Rally



Birthday Congratulations


6  Roger Darkes
7  Alastair Kennedy
7  Jimmy Kamffer
23  Colette Kaiser
25  Alan Pike
30  Frank Bowker



Nominations For Committee - AGM on Thursday 19 July

Please consider possible candidates.

The following committee members will be standing down and are not available for re-election:
Ron Gush, Rob Wallis, Keith Schroeder and Roger Darkes

Standing down but available for re-election are:   
Shirley Martin and Joe Janssens (from Chairman but available as a committee member).

Standing for re-election are: 
Norbert Drager and Peter Viner  

Edits / writes the newsletter. The job does require a little computer savvy. Guidance will be given in the use of MailChimp, but the new scribe might choose a different format. 
(As agreed at the 2017 AGM, it is time for me to step down. The Club needs fresh ideas and I'm running on empty. It has been a fun portfolio which I have enjoyed for nearly 7 years. Long enough! Many thanks to past committees and all who have supplied articles and photos, covered events and generally made the FanMail editors job a pleasure. Ron)

Classic & Sports Car Insurance Placements
“We Drive Classic Cars”
We insure them with Great Care.

Approved Broker: Mercedes-Benz Club South Africa

Tel: 031 701 0226 l Cell: 082 781 4410


A Division of Smythe Financial Services cc Authorised FSP No. 16054




Roger Darkes has found a supplier of very nice caps, embroidered with our AVCMC logo which we are offering for R100. Exceptionally good value. Numbers are limited.
Place your orders with Shirley Martin.
No cash (or preferably eft) No cap.



The Dashboard

(This is going on right now)




by Dave Hawkins


Basil James Laidlaw, born 19.4.1914, bought a SINGER 9 at the Rand Easter Show, being held in Johannesburg over Easter, 1939.

The agents in Jhb were Len Simmons (Pty) Ltd at 21 Eloff Street, who advertised this “popular 4-SEATER SPORTS CAR as being available in a range of new colours for cash or on terms"

The advertised price in the UK for this model was £169.00

Chassis number J26301R (where J depicts year of manufacture = 1938)

Engine no 5312H and Car no 102R

Robin Throp, from the Singer Owners Club ( SOC) in the UK, confirms that factory numbers started at 26300, which means this car was the first off the production line.

With the onset of World War in August 1939, very few cars were made resulting in only one or two being in use today. The SOC register lists only 3 or 4 world wide.

The total Singer Roadster population, covering all models, world wide, exceeds 500 cars with a 4AD of 1954 being the last, now owned by David Freeth, who as past chairman is now the archivist and technical adviser for the SOC.

Basil and his younger brother, Leslie Stewart Laidlaw, both lived in Cape Town and used the car up until 1990, when Basil died and left the car to his brother.

Leslie lived at 121 Silvermine Village, Sun Valley, Fish Hoek and first registered the car into his name in 2001. His neighbours were the Orfords, whose son Steve lived in Jhb.

The car was in desperate need of a full restoration and work began in 2002 when the car was completely dismantled by Neville Dredge of Classic cars in Kommetjie. Somehow the front and rear fenders and running boards were lost or stolen and had to be replaced with second hand items from Trevor Cornelius, a restorer in the UK. Nicholas Symons, in Cape Town, was the insurance agent who arranged for the items to be imported.

The restoration was completed in Novemebr 2002 at a total cost of R67308.00.

During 2005 the car was sent to Jaguar Classic Restorations in Ottery for the making of a new soft top, side shields and tonneau cover. A new carburetor and headlamps were fitted at a total cost of R42000.00.

Sometime later the motor was stripped for a complete overhaul and for quite a while the car stood on blocks, under cover. Leslie got sick and the day before he died sold the car to Steve Orford, whose parents orchestrated the sale.

In 2012 the car was transported up to Jhb. at a cost of R5000.00 and was slightly damaged in the process. Work on the motor needed to be completed.

Ian Holmes, chairman of the Vintage & Veteran Club, recommended that J B Morrison do the work. This was done at a cost of R77768.00 after which the car went to Sandton Auto Electrical for the wiring to be upgraded and various intruments and switches to be replaced. Cost R15799.00.

Steve Orford then drove the car a few times but not being a true vintage car enthusiast decided to sell it and placed an advert in the March / April issue of the SOC magazine, intending to sell it to a collector in the UK.

Dave Hawkins, also a member of the SOC, saw the advert. He immediately contacted Steve, and made an offer to purchase at the asking price.

It was brought down to Port Alfred by road trailer on the 24th May 2018 and will be housed in the Albany Vintage and Classic Car Museum, along with two other Singer cars. A 1934 singer Le Mans, and a 1952 Singer Roadster 4AD.

There is also a 1949 Singer 4A available for restoration, bought on an auction when the museum in V D Bijl Park closed down.

Singer were the third largest car producer in Brittain during the 1930’s with their Singer sports cars doing very well in rallies and races all over Europe. The factory was eventaully taken over by the Routes group until the last Hillmans and Singer Vogues were built in the 1970’s.

(Many thanks for this article, Dave. A fascinating account of a very unique car. A beautifully restored treasure to park in our Museum. Ron)



Our Generation

sent in by Joe Janssens

We, the people that were born between 1940-1980 are the blessed ones.
Our life is a living proof:

While playing and riding bicycles, we never wore helmets.
After school, we played until dusk. We never watched TV.
We played with real friends, not internet friends.
If we ever felt thirsty, we drank tap water not bottled water.
We never got ill, although we used to share the same glass of juice with four friends.
We never gained weight although we used to eat a lot of rice everyday.
Nothing happened to our feet despite roaming bare-feet.
Our mother and father never used any supplements to keep us healthy. 
We used to create our own toys and play with them.
Our parents were not rich. They gave us love, not worldly materials.
We never had cellphones, DVDs, play station, XBox, video games, personal computers, internet chat - but we had real friends.
We visited our friend's homes uninvited and enjoyed food with them.
Unlike your world we had Relatives who lived close by so family time and ties were enjoyed together. 
We may have been in black and white photos but you can find colourful memories in those photos.

We are a unique and the most understanding generation, because we are the last generation who listened to their parents.



MGB GT For Sale

 Contact Ricky Cooper at
 Asking R65 000. Thought to be a 1972 model                                                         3/3


The Rear View Mirror

(Past Events)



Bonnets Up - Sunday 10 June

By Charles Pellew

This event is held regularly and all members are invited to participate. This year points earned at the event will go towards the trophy for the best “Restoration of the Year”.

Participants assembled outside the Memorial Hall on a cold overcast day.

Seven cars were entered and left at eleven o’clock led by Mike Legg in his Morris Minor. Our wives and members from the club joined the outing increasing it into a joyful group.

Arrangements had been made to hold the event at the Bathurst Agricultural Museum. A parking area was allocated and some tight reversing of cars was undertaken without any mishaps. Once the cars were parked all bonnets were raised and the owners traipsed off to the nearby Ploughman’s Pub. A warm fire welcomed everyone to the “Bring ’n Braai”. Liquid refreshment was available at the bar.

Members who had entered their cars in the competition watched and waited anxiously for the adjudicators return to announce the winner. Eventually the Chairman arrived and announced that the winner was the 1973 Peugeot 404 Automatique. The owner was thrilled and surprised.

The ladies commandeered a table closest to the fire and from the laughs and chattering obviously had an enjoyable outing as well.

(Congratulations to Charles on this well deserved award!  
Many thanks for covering this event in my absence. Ron)

1946 Wolseley 1460 owned by Peter Viner

Unfinished 1958 Riley 1.5 owned by Keith Schroeder
(Love it! Hey Keith, with that wonderful sense of humour you just might get nominated for Scribe!! Very nice! Ron)

The winning 1973 Peugeot 404 Automatique owned by Charles Pellew

1977 VW Cabriolet owned by Norbert Drager

First public appearance of this 1950 MG TD owned by Rob Mears.
It took 4 years to complete

1941 Chevrolet Coupe owned by Bruce Yendall



In The Boot

(Useful Baggage and Tools for the trip. And some accumulated junk)



Yamaha and Honda Motorcycles for sale

R59 000.00 each.  We live in Chintsa East, just outside East London.
Contact Edwin on 0829629520                                                    1/3



Bank Charges

If you deposit cash or a cheque directly to our bank account, please add R50 to cover the bank charges. You can pay cash directly to our Treasurer, Shirley, at no extra cost. But not to the bank. The Club can not afford the bank charges for cash or cheque deposits.

If you pay by EFT or bank deposit, please remember to reference your payment with your name.




Opinions expressed in this newsletter are those of the authors or contributors and are not necessarily those of the AVCMC nor it's committee nor officials nor of any affiliated club.




Chairman:                                  Joe Janssens       083 235 1101               

& Clubhouse Manager              
Peter Viner           046 624 3552 or 072 825 9258
Events:                                       Roger Darkes       046 624 2874 or 082 373 8181
Secretary / Treasurer:                Shirley Martin       071 675 4570
Grahamstown Rep:                    Norbert Drager     046 622 6282 or 072 765 6448
Fanmail Editor:                           Ron Gush             046 648 3186 or 083 272 1961
Members:                                   Keith Schroeder   046 624 4114 or 082 412 3378
                                                   Rob Wallis            082 334 0354         

Other portfolio holders:
OD Inggs Co-ordinator:              Peter Viner          046 624 3552 or 072 825 9258
SAVVA rep and Vehicle Dating:  Dave Hawkins     046 624 2214 or 082 453 2618
Webmaster:                                John Austin-Williams
                                                   (contact via Ron Gush for web content)


Tailpipe - 49th Milligan, some thoughts

by Ron Gush

I was in denial for 2 weeks before the rally. My Austin temperature was rising a bit more than usual. A few bubbles could be seen rising in the radiator when hot. The water looked a bit more oily than usual (in a side valve?). But it was running sooo nicely! Two days before the rally I bit the bullet and replaced the faulty cylinder head gasket. It was touch and go to get it finished in time - the valves needed lots of grinding and the new plastic suction cups don't work. Superglue does.

We set off on Saturday and slept at Joubertina. Into Oudtshoorn by lunch time on Sunday for scrutineering, rekindling old friendships and making some new ones.

It was weird not having Dave McNeill there. He was in hospital having a couple of stents inserted in his arteries. We were worried about him and we missed his banter and Daphnes quiet smile when she looks at him. But I'm happy to report that he is back and full of nonsense again (actually, nonsense is spelled s..t). Daphne says that he should have had his pipes cleaned out long ago. The red wine did not work!

The Protea Riempie Hotel was very comfortable and the food excellent.

We came 4th on the 1st day. Actually tied for 3rd but the decider is in the last marshall point. We were very happy. Our little Austin was only beaten by 2 big Mercs and a Jag.

Whenever we were not rallying, Pam was crocheting squares for our grandsons school charity drive. We figured that she was going at one square per 22 miles!

The Fancy Dress was "Hats and Ties". Philip and Shirley Roux won a well deserved award as Charlie and Mrs Chaplin.

Final Results:
1st Andrew and Annalie Murphy
2nd Pat and Maggie Whelan
3rd Colin and Anne Meyer
4th Neville and Susan Koch - also won the Oldest Car prize,
    and First American car
5th Ron and Pam Gush - also won the Most Incontinent Sump award
    and the First British Car (there were 2 MGBs and a Morris Minor)

Ja, my Austin is burning / leaking oil. Much more since the de-coke...

There were a few gremlins with the data loggers. I stress that these are my misgivings about the technology and this is definitely NOT a criticism of the Milligan, which must be the premier rally in South Africa.

Veedol Oils (big in USA and now penetrating the SA market) and Lokhose (Andrew Murphys company in PE) were sponsors and also donated numerous very nice prizes.

Well done and a great big THANK YOU to Hannes Geyer and his team who put in a huge effort to make this event, and all Milligans, so remarkable.

We look forward to the 50th Milligan in the 2nd week in June 2019.

Our contact details are:
PO Box 2057, Port Alfred 6170


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