A very warm welcome to the Dorset Group of the Austin A30 and A35 Owner's Club
A website dedicated to all things Austin A30 and A35 related within the Dorset Group. Please note that all of the pictures have been submitted by
Club Members. If there are any pictures on here that you own and have not given permission to use, then please get in touch and I will take them down from the website. Thank you. I decided to build this website for several reasons. The first was to try and raise the profile of the Dorset Group and to try and bring it into the 21st century. The second was to try and get everyone to share his or her experiences of the Group throughout the years. The third was to try and collate all of the archive material into one logical place. The fourth was Rob Stanley sort of talked me into it. But, whatever the reason you are here I hope you enjoy the site and please tell your friends and family. I couldn't have put anything like this together without the help of Rob Stanley and Kim Henson who have been a great support throughout. Also, thank you to Henk Keulemans for allowing me to use quite a lot of his photographs in the Archive sections. I will try and keep the website as up to date as possible, so please keep checking back for news, events and of course updated Archives. A limited amount of technical advice may be added at a later date, but we will need a dedicated technical information officer if we go down that route. Please let me know what you think. At this point in time, the site is still in its infancy. But hopefully, it will grow into something much bigger. Stan Chatterton has very kindly let me have a large selection of old Dorset newsletters. I have not yet had a chance to look through them, but hopefully, some of the old articles will appear here forthwith. Thank you, Stan.
About the Dorset Group
A brief history of the Group.
The Dorset Group of the Austin A30 A35 Owners Club is a subgroup of the National Austin A30 & A35 Owners Club. The Dorset group was first formed in 1975 by Alan and Barbara Hilling along with a few others who loved to drive, restore and generally enjoy their baby Austins. Alan and Barbara guided the Group through to around 1980 when Fred Symns took the helm. In 1984 Kim Henson took over the role and with only about three people interested in the Group it became very close to folding. Kim called an emergency meeting in October 1984 and it was decided to keep it going, and the membership numbers slowly climbed.
Alan and Barbara Hilling. Two of the founding members of the Dorset Area Group. Both Alan and Barbara left the Group scene for a while, but are now both active members once again.
Fred Symns took the helm in around 1980.
In 1984 Kim Henson took over the post, but with only 3 or so interested members, the Group very nearly folded. Kim went on to keep the Group in control for the next 30 years before handing the position over to Keith Bennett.
Since then, the group has grown from strength to strength and is now recognised as one of the largest and active area groups in the United Kingdom. We have in the region of 40 members travelling from all over the county and beyond. Long-term members such as Dave and Elaine Mallet, Ian and Shelagh Aggas and Kim and Elaine Henson have stayed with the group throughout the years, whilst many others have come and gone. Rob Stanley left the Austin scene in about 2002 due to owning his Ford Classic, but is now back and is the current Group Chairman. Allan and Barbara Hilling left for a while. But they have since returned and are both active members once again. Kim finally retired from his post as Chairman in around 2014 after 30 years service and Keith Bennett held the post for a year. In 2016 Rob Stanley was somehow voted into the post and here we are now. We hold various group events throughout the year including quiz nights, an auction night, where various spare parts and bargains can often be found, cars in the field and our ever popular Purbeck Road Run. Taking in some of the spectacular views in and around the Purbeck hills, Corfe Castle, Wareham and Swanage with the traditional pub ending. We also have a newsletter that is produced by Elaine Henson 3 times a year. After several years of holding our meetings at The Langton Arms in Tarrant Monkton, we have changed venues and the Group now meet at the Bridge House Hotel, 2 Ringwood Road, Ferndown. BH22 9AN on the 3rd Tuesday, January, March, May, September, and November starting at 7.30 pm. If you would like to join us at any of our meets then please contact our chairman, Rob Stanley, via the contact us button at the top of the page. We would love to see you there.
Keith and Christine Bennett at the 2019 International Rally, Wareham
One of the biggest turn outs for our annual Purbeck Run in 2017
Derek Lewis and Rob Stanley at the 2019 International Rally, Wareham