I didn’t get to go to church yesterday. It had been planned for quite a long time though, and I wasn’t on the rota at all at church, so that was fine. At 8:30am I met up at The Cricketers Inn with some members of the Colchester Mini Club, and we travelled in convoy to Fakenham Racecourse in Norfolk. It was so much fun!! It’s years since I’ve been part of a Mini convoy, I’d forgotten just how exciting it is! When I was a member of the West of England Mini Club we travelled in convoy quite a lot, but never this far. It took us about 2 hours to get to the racecourse, along some lovely country roads. There were only six Minis in our convoy, but it was enough to get people looking at us!

So what were we going to a racecourse for? Well, the Norfolk Mini Owners Club had decided in their wisdom that it was about time they held a Norfolk Mini Show, to which everyone was invited. As a neighbouring club, we decided we would go along and have a club stand, which meant that we could park up in the central complex rather than in the car park area. It was so exciting seeing so many Minis in one place, it was like a dream come true! It wasn’t a big show compared to some of the national ones, but this was the first show I’ve ever been to, so it was quite overwhelming to begin with!

Once we’d parked up we started wandering around, oggling at other people’s Minis! It may sound really geeky to those who don’t appreciate Minis, but because Minis are so easy to customise and make your own you can spend ages looking at what other people have done, getting inspiration for things you can do yourself. Some people had gone to extremes with bodykits and added extras and custom interiors, some had made a few small changes that subtly changed the whole style of the car, others had restored the car to original spec and had pristine condition classic Minis. It was so much fun just wandering around looking inside other people’s cars! I’ve put some pictures from the day on my PhotoLounge if you’re interested, and I suspect there will be a write-up on the Colchester Mini Club web site too at some point.

Not only were there cars on display, but there were an assortment of stalls selling Mini bits. Some people were selling old bits that they’d found in their garage, other stalls were manned by companies selling their own products. I didn’t go expecting to be buying anything (after all, I am supposed to be saving for a wedding), but the more I looked the more I saw things that I wanted! In the end I bought some crystal halogen headlamps that I’ve been after for ages (they are exactly the ones I wanted and were cheaper than I’d seen online) and a chrome GB badge for the bootlid. There were a lot of other things I would have liked but didn’t end up getting, like a chrome rocker cover, red dipstick, wheel spacers, more chrome bits and bobs, an air filter….

My friend Darren spotted something he fancied on one of the stalls, and couldn’t resist buying it. It was a steering wheel. Yes, he did already have a steering wheel, but this one was different. It was smaller. Very much smaller. 10 inches in diameter, this new steering wheel was tiny! He fitted it there and then, and it really did look ridiculous, but he seemed happy with it. To put that into context, that’s the sort of size steering wheel you’d expect to find on a go-kart. Crazy, crazy fool. Various other people in the club bought other things, so I shall look forward to seeing the changes over the next few months once people have fitted them.

So, all in all, it was a fantastic day. The weather was kind to us, there were a lot of really good looking Minis there, and we all had lots of fun. I really must go and do some work now, but the temptation will be there all day to go and fit my nice new headlamps… must resist, must resist….

Categories: Miscellaneous

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