On Friday the 25th May nine varying types of MG sports cars set off
for a foreign climate as in previous years. This year saw us take
on the Welsh.
The journey started well enough with four cars leaving Preston
and heading down the A59 to Liverpool. There, another two roadsters
joined them. Three GT’s and three roadsters then set off through
the Mersey tunnel and onto the Wirral. After driving round following
Mike Newton we stopped for a cup of coffee or tea depending on
your taste. Whilst five couples went straight to the tearoom,
Bill & Janet Bradshaw went down to the beach for a quick one!!!
before joining us for a brew. Suitably refreshed we set off to
find Faulty Towers sorry – The Bala Lake Hotel.
We arrived to find one other MG Midget had beaten us to the location.
Initial thoughts were what a lovely hotel, nice views of Bala
Lake and the Welsh mountains, rooms well equipped and smart, the
bar well stocked, which is vital and all round, a good choice
of venue. Hot showers were followed by dinner and then several
bedtime drinks. Bill during this time had a stiff one and had
to pop out for a puff! (no wonder Bill had to stay behind
on Sunday feeling a little un well).
Saturday started with the sound of something vibrating coming
from the next room, (wait a minute, wasn’t Bill and Janet in
the next room?) anyway that was followed by a scream from
the bathroom, There’s no b*#%dy hot water and the heating isn’t
on. I don’t know about you, but I like to start the day with a
nice hot shower. Still, breakfast was OK. The tenth and final
car joined us Saturday morning and after a photograph or two,we
set of following the days run, roofs down, sun roofs open and
the sun shinning.
The morning’s run, although did suffer from a mileage error and
a road junction that the Welsh Tourist board had added just to
confuse us, was very pleasant. We all arrived at Portmeirion in
high spirits (except Dot who was a little upset with a Ford
Focus. I don't know, these youngsters always spoiling for a fight).
Lunch and a walk around the village was taken, and several happy
hours past before we set off back to the Hotel. It has to be reported
that at least four cars did take an alternative route to the one
planned. Barmouth can only be described as Wales's equivalent
to Blackpool. Still, the girls managed a little shopping while
the men folk found a public house, to discuss next years holiday.
It’s at this point I would like to confess to buying a rather
large water pistol with the intention of using it against my fellow
MG roadster colleagues, fortunately on Sunday, nature beat me
to it. You’ve guessed it, it rained. My fault. Eventually all
the cars and their occupants returned to Bala and the hotel for
another cold shower and an evening meal. After plenty of alcoholic
drinks the banter flowed and before long Sunday was upon us. Time
for bed said Zeberdee, or was it Julie, I had had too much to
drink I can’t remember.
Sunday morning’s shower was unexpectedly hot, except for those
staying in block B. You can guess what they had.
After breakfast, all ten cars set off following Sundays route.
Lunch was planned to be taken in Welshpool but due to the Royal
Oak only providing large Sunday Roast, most people set off to
make their own arrangements. Sundays Route was accurate and well
planned, with no errors made. It was a shame that it rained for
most of day 3, as the views were almost nonexistent. Still with
great company, Julie and I enjoyed the day. The Hotel staff, were
very good and tried their best under the circumstances and provided
us with a very good Sunday Roast for dinner. I’m pleased to report
that Bill had recovered from all his excitement and joined us
for dinner and a couple of drinks in the bar.
As sure as day follows night, sure enough Monday follows Sunday.
With bags packed and strapped onto the boot rack, we tucked into
our last welsh cooked breakfast before setting off for home. The
rain had past but it was a little cool, so in an effort to keep
piece and harmony in the Lockwood household the roof remained
up. (Don’t tell Julie, but I didn’t particularly want the roof
down anyway.) The trip home was un eventful, apart
from me driving too fast, resulting in my missing a junction.
To conclude, I have to say this was a great weekend. Dizzy (my
MG that is) behaved, never missing a beat even though she did
burn a little oil, the hotel was lovely and the company irreplaceable.
Perhaps a place to return to some time in the future. As a footnote,
I would like to thank Bill Ryding for all his efforts in planning
the weekend. It was a great shame Bill; you weren’t able to join
us. Thank you on behalf of all those who did attend.
I would also like to mention Tony Sharples for all his efforts
in planning the routes and producing the booklets. I can only
imagine how much time it must have taken.