Dorset Group 2021 Diary

Well here we are at the start of 2021 and it looks like this year could be very similar to last year. With all of the uncertainty with the ongoing effects of COVID19. Many shows and rallies are already being cancelled or postponed. Because of the ongoing situation it has been decided that it would be unfair to charge the Dorset Group Members the annual  membership fees. Therefore, all fully paid up members will not be charged for the 2021 subscriptions. Anyone who has already paid will be eligible for their membership to be carried over into 2022. It has also been decided that due to not being able to hold a Group A.G.M. that all committee members would be voted back on via an online poll.  

Important Update; As from the end of January 2021 Bull Motif have stopped selling parts for our vehicles. Below is a statement from Bull Motif



Dear Valued Austin A30 and A35 Customer

At the close of business today the 28thJanuary 2021 Bull Motif Spares will no longer be supplying Austin A30/A35 Parts. We have decided the time is now right to sell the entire stock and tooling of the Austin side of our business to ESM Minors. This is very, very positive for the future of the baby Austin’s. Graham Clayton and his team at ESM are huge Austin A30/A35 enthusiasts and actually own a couple of vehicles themselves.

ESM are an extremely focused company, providing an exceptional delivery service and first class customer service. They plan to add an even greater range of new products to compliment those already available. I am delighted they have decided to take over our Austin business as it will be in very safe hands. We at Bull Motif would like to wish them every continued success if the future.

I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank each and every customer that has purchased Austin parts from us over the many years we have been trading. Your custom has been so very much appreciated. Unfortunately, due to regulations regarding contacting customers without authorisation we have not been able to advise anyone before this time about the sale.

All of our existing Austin links and domain names will now link to their new website. The Austin parts business will trade as part of ESM Morris Minors Ltd with the website under the name of Clayton’s Austin A30 and A35 Spares.


They can be contacted on telephone number 01580 200203



Bull Motif will now continue to focus on our extremely successful and growing classic mini spares business and as well as developing other avenues of business.

Kind Regards Mark

MD. Bull Motif Spares


Click the image above to link to the new website

Dorset Group Car Run. Sunday August 15th 2021.
Jeff Carter

Seven Austins and two moderns met at the Fairfield long stay car park in Dorchester for our first car run in over two years. Despite the forecast, the weather stayed dry as we meandered through some of Dorset and Somerset beautiful countryside. Unfortunately the Dorset Group were outnumbered by the foreigners (from Somerset and beyond) by four to three. Only joking, it was great to see a lovely turn out. Lisa Harcourt and her husband Paul bought along Lisa's lovely black, two door A35, Lizzy, from Sparkford. Zak Linham bought Buddy, his famous four door A35 from Taunton. Tim Neathey bought along his mini monster truck along with Steve and Mary Neathey travelling down from Bath in Steve's modified A30. Dorset was represented by Pete and Denise Legg in a van, Mike and Anne Farrell in another van, Dave and Elaine Mallett in a van conversion. With Rob, Teresa, Naomi and Naomi's boyfriend in a modern. I also bought along Nicky, Harry and Hannah in Scooby the Skoda. The first part of the trip saw us travelling through the small villages of Charminster, Forston and Godmanstone. It was quite sad to see that the once famous Smiths' Arms public house was closed for the last time in 2011. The Smiths' Arms was recognised as the smallest public house in England for many years. Upon entering Cerne Abbas the plan was to take a quick break at the Cerne Abbas Giant. Unfortunately, the car park was full and the overflow car park was temporally shut. A few three point turns later and we were back on the A352 heading toward Minterne Magna. Passing through the pretty village of Minterne Magna we took the opportunity to head up and over Batcombe Downs. Alas much of the fantastic views from this area were obscured by the high hedgerows. We then left the main road and passed Clay Pigeon Go Kart track. A place where many aspiring F1 drivers cut their racing teeth, including Jenson Button. We then passed what was known as Angel Autos. Dave Angel owned and ran the vehicle dismantling site for many years. Dave was also a keen collector of classic vehicles. Many Fords and big American cars. We reached the A37 and turned right and  headed toward Yeovil. Just before we got into Yeovil we turned left and followed the road to Sutton Bingham Reservoir. The car park at the reservoir was to be the destination for our picnic. A chance for a chat and a coffee went down well and many would have been happy to have stayed there all afternoon. Mel Rowell joined us in Sutton Bingham along with Nicky's parents. Dave was particularly impressed with Tim's mini monster truck. Harry was very keen to have a ride in an Austin and Paul very kindly took him for a blast around Halstock. Harry was a bit concerned about the fact that the Austin didn't start with a conventional key. The indicators didn't self cancel, the handbrake appeared to be missing and the seat belts didn't self retract. But the smile on his face when they both returned made up for any Austin shortcomings. An hour or so later and we headed back into Dorset. Along with Mel who had to try and keep up as I have neglected to sort her out with a map. Travelling through Halstock, Corscombe and the outskirts of Evershot we saw the sad remains of the BBC World service radio station. At it's prime the radio station was the largest in Europe. Back into Somerset as we headed toward Chard reservoir. Upon entering the car park at Chard it was lovely to see Doug Lockyear who had just recently replaced the engine in his little Austin and had bravely decided to join us with the Austin's maiden voyage with it's new engine. Some of the group decided that it would be a good idea to walk around the whole of the reservoir. Alas some of the land surrounding the reservoir is in fact private property. But everyone returned mostly unharmed. Mel and Lisa did almost get attacked by a killer squirrel though. A huge pinecone fell from one of the trees and missed them both by inches. I'm not too sure why everyone thought that I should accept the blame though....... All in all it was a lovely afternoon. Many thanks to all who attended. Hopefully it will become an annual event.  


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Time for a change: Rob Stanley

After a lot of thought  I will be stepping down from my position of Dorset Group Chairman at the end of this year. It’s a position I have very much enjoyed holding throughout the past five years, with some memorable moments too. However now is the time for me to step down from this role and also from arranging the events. 
Teresa and I are planning to move down to Cornwall in just a few years time and we will now be spending more time sorting things out here in preparation for it. This will hopefully include trying to get my vehicles in a far better condition than they are currently ready for transportation as I couldn’t imagine the Cornish allowing a load of scrap cars crossing the Tamar Bridge! We now also couldn’t guarantee that we would be able to attend as many club events as we would normally. So I feel that someone who has more time and availability for the role or roles would be better suited now.
I really wanted to thank everyone of you along with my committee for making our club run so smoothly with always very happy and positive attitude. This is what makes our group stand out so much and highly regarded by Austin owners around the world. 
Our Jurassic Rally for me was our finest moment so far and the enthusiasm and hard work of you all will stay with me forever. However, you certainly won’t be seeing the last of me. I’m happy to continue with the supporting role of newsletter production with Jeff and I will continue running the Dorset Group Facebook page. Besides all this I will always be a Dorset member even when we no longer live in the county
So finally..
Would anyone be willing to step into the role of Chairperson or Events  Secretary from January 2022? Straight away for events if you would like? I thought by giving six months notice we could get potential replacements lined up ready. 
If you are interested in either of the roles please let me know and we can go from there.
Take care and thank you to you all. 

Dorset Group Night. Tuesday 21st September. 
The Bridge House Hotel, Longham

22 members turned out for our first group night in over 18 months. A great evening, great company and plenty of laughs. Rob had very kindly organised a quiz although Keith Bennett was unsure how many questions there were. Eventually it was established that there were 40 questions. A very well done to Alan and Barbara Hilling who managed a credible 20 correct answers. Despite Keith's pleas it was decided that his team hadn't scored 43 points. Rob has suggested that we may hold a Christmas meal at the Bridge House Hotel. Initial response was very positive. Rob will find out more in due course. 

We are very sad to announce that we will no longer be holding our club nights at the Bridge House Hotel.

As from November 2021 The Dorset Club nights will no longer be held at the Bridge House Hotel. Longham. Despite Rob's efforts to try and negotiate a deal with the new managment, we will need to find another venue. Early signs are that we maybe able to use Hamworthy Club. But this is still being discussed. The bonus of Hamworthy Club is the fact that they have a skittle alley. It's hoped that we can arrage a few matches against various locla vehicle clubs. Watch this space. 

Here is the email that Rob sent out to the Club Committee Members. 

Dear all,

Thank you for all your replies regarding new venues. I’m hoping that we can hold our first couple of meetings at the Hamworthy Club next year and in the mean time we would have more time to look for other venues if needed. Personally I think it will be hard to find anywhere free now and as we don’t currently have any outgoings through the club I think we can manage it. The bonus of a skittle alley once again would open up the opportunity to invite other clubs for matches as we used to many years ago. This could bring in more people and more money on raffles etc as well a great opportunity to meet up with other car enthusiasts. Austin 7, Anglia club, British Made Car Club to name a few.

Being that our club night would be tomorrow we will have to cancel it and if you could put an email out to members please Jeff to let them know. Derek has come up with the suggestion of having a Christmas get together as our final club night of the year. Possibly end of November/ early December. However I’m unlikely to be around as things have got rather busy around that time for us but if you would like to suggest when is best for most people we could look into it in more detail. Or would someone like to take a look?

Anyway, hopefully we are covered with venues for now. I’ve just got to see if there is availability for us to keep to our 3rd Tuesday of the month which I will let you know.

Best wishes