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"Dedicated to the preservation of Standard Cars 1903-1963"

Dedicated to the preservation of Standard Cars 1903-1963

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Powderham is a Washout!

 The Club stand at Powderham! You can see the sky is still dark with more rain

Oh how we have suffered for our hobby this summer!

Steve Smeltzer sends this report from a waterlogged Powderhan Castle:

As usual, in July, I headed towards Exeter for the Powderham Castle Classic Car Show. On Friday I took a gentle run to Taunton where I had arranged to meet family members, who were holidaying in Somerset, for lunch. As I arrived at the appointed pub the heavens opened and it continued to pour down as we had lunch. On leaving the pub an hour later it was still raining, but as I drove south it dried up until I got to Exeter, where it rained again, and as I arrived in Kenton where Powderham Castle is located, it developed into a major cloudburst with the High Street resembling a river.

On arrival at the Devon Group's club stand I realised that I had left my waterproof boots on the running board as I loaded the car prior to departure, needless to say they were no longer there so I paddled about in my shoes. The stand was already under water and we spent some time trying to persuade it to drain away down the hill, but soon realised that we were fighting a loosing battle. John Pine disappeared into the gazebo with some of Chris's tools and for some time we could hear sawing etc., until he appeared clutching the fruits of his labour-a wooden boat that was named HMS Standard at it's launching ceremony. Later in the evening we went on the usual run to the chip shop in Dawlish, before returning to the Atmospheric Railway Inn in Starcross for some liquid sleeping tablets.

On Saturday morning I awoke to the British summer sound of rain hammering against the window and shortly afterwards Chris Bowden phoned to say that no cars were able to enter the rally field and I should leave my car at the pub. Usually I see many classic cars pass the window as I have breakfast, but this year there were none. Ray Horne and Chris picked me up in Ray's Vanguard as they were shopping for breakfast supplies. We had to park outside on the road and walk to the showground. It was a scene of devastation, not only was it flooded, but the wind had swept through in the early hours and demolished most of the gazebos and tents. Fortunately the club gazebo had survived intact due to the foresight of the members who erected it and secured it to the fence. As breakfast was being prepared we watched as a tractor and trailer went around the showground collecting broken gazebos and filling a large skip with them (yes, there really were that many!). It took several hours before the organisers finally admitted defeat and cancelled the show. We were amused to see 4x4 drivers getting stuck in the mud as most classic cars sailed through unaided.

I took the decision at this stage, to return to my accommodation and see if they would let me check out a day early without a penalty charge. They were fine with this, so I loaded up the V4 and headed for Bristol, leaving the Devon Group to enjoy their annual Saturday night festivities in the Swan. I kept a hopeful eye open for my boots on the way home but sadly there was no sign of them.

Here's hoping for better weather in 2013!

Below: HMS Standard sets sail!

Report by Steve Smeltzer

Bristol Group

If you have been to an event with your Standard, please send me a report and photos:

September 2012