Broadland MG Owners Club – A Brief History by Jeff Pittman
The origins of Broadland MG Owners Club are still very clearly in my mind and suitably documented in “Enjoying MG”, the magazine of the national MG Owners Club.
On my return to UK after working abroad in the Royal Air Force, I found myself posted to RAF Wyton in Huntingdonshire (just a stones throw from the national HQ at Swavesey. Living in Great Yarmouth meant commuting every other day as I was on a shift pattern of 24 on / 24 off; not the kind of shift that would be accepted nowadays, but nevertheless it worked and I adapted to it okay.
During my spell at Wyton, the national Club HQ and Staff became a regular stop-off on my way back to Great Yarmouth, where I could browse the shop, chat with the work force and become evermore engrossed in the world of MG cars.
During May 1988, I received a telephone call from a chap named Harry who was the secretary of the MG Car Club in our area, and he invited us (and anyone else with a sports car) to join him at an event called Sports Car Sunday, held at Blickling Hall. It was here that Sue and I met Steve Shepherd and a few more MG enthusiasts that lived in and around the Great Yarmouth district. The seeds had been sown….
By the time it came for the annual rally of steam (and soot) at Strumpshaw, I had already decided that there was more to owning an MG, other than sitting in a far flung field, with the threat of soot falling on the soft top and upholstery…. and so it began. I made contact with Paul Sayer of Norwich MGOC and Andrew Church of Norfolk MGOC and explained my rationale for starting a Club on the coast and received very good support from them both in my efforts to get official recognition.
At an arranged meeting at Swavesey, I discussed with the National Club how we intended to set up an affiliated Club on the coast and after lengthy talks, Broadland MG Owners Club became affiliated to the National MG Owners Club, with the nomencular of 0912. (Area 09, club 12).
It was fortunate that at the same time as BMGOC was established, there was to be an Air Show at RAF Wyton and Broadland MG Owners Club was invited to attend and provide a static display. On 9th July a convoy of MG cars set off from Great Yarmouth, picking-up at Norwich and set off for Wyton air base. The Station Commander agreed to assess the cars on display and Richard Monk was awarded “Car of the Show” for his black V8.
Over the next few weeks, we carried “BMGOC” posters in our cars, and every time we saw an MG parked up (anywhere) it was left a poster under the wiper blade, informing the owner / driver that BMGOC was meeting at The Grange. The first official Club Night was held at The Grange hotel on the Caister by pass on Wednesday 20th July and “Enjoying MG” records that 15 cars were on show that night. The club-notes for “Enjoying MG” had to be at HQ by the 4th day of the month prior to the month of publication.(They would have been submitted by 4th July)’. The first recorded entry in “Enjoying MG” just happens to be in Edition 8, Volume 8, in the year 1988.