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Episode Two - Underneath the Grease and Grime

In an occasional series, Malcolm Robertson outlines life with 'Alison', his 1957 MG ZB Varitone Magnette….

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Europe's Celebration of 50 Years 
for the
 MG ZA/ZB Magnette 1954 to 2004

A holiday planned for Europe was programmed to take in: a trip to Germany and meet our very hard working webmaster, attend Silverstone race track and participate in the three day celebrations in Hambridge, Somerset. Plus fit in a holiday of a lifetime looking at Scotland, England, Wales and Southern Ireland. Germany was very nice and the five days spent with Gunter and his family exceptionally relaxing. Being driven around the city of Siegen, visiting Cologne and traveling through villages and countryside in Gunter's very presentable ZB was well worth the trip.

Silverstone being next on the list. I had booked at a bed and breakfast at a fascinating place called Towcester [Pronounced 'toaster'] about 6 Miles from Silverstone race track.
Again this was interesting. Many camped there - Gunter and family tented there - the main events for me were: concours displays, Z Magnette Anniversary laps, class racing, talking to fellow enthusiasts and the many displays; all held over three days.
MG wise a final trip down the M5 got me on the lesser roads to Hambridge for the 3-day 50-year celebration. Many camped on site while others such as myself stayed at pubs or B&B's, booked in many cases via the committee. I zig zagged my way as usual to my accommodation and yes there are more direct ways but they alluded me on the narrow local roads [in the UK].

At Hambridge, Events were well organized and fell into social, fun and light hearted competition. Around the countryside the roads are narrow by Australian standards but great for navigational exercises. The sight of packs of Magnettes convoying through the country- side has to be seen to be believed. Participating were 14 ZA, 12 ZBV and 3 ZB.
Each registered vehicle amongst other things received: Tie-on numbered Rally Plate, Name Badges, Dash Plaque, uniquely labeled Magnette Ale bottle and prepaid vouchers.

David Johnson [has now taken on the role of chairman for the Magnette Z and Farina
Register] was exceptionally generous and allowed me to join him in his ZA in both participating in the Silverstone laps of honour, plus co-pilot/navigate with him around the Hambridge/Somerset levels as part of the scenic drives and tours.

At the end of three days of well organized activities a buffet lunch, speech and prize giving was held. A sample of one prize in the form of a glass tankard with etched Anniversary 50-year logo is shown in the picture. Since mentioning the logo its important to point out this very apt and well-presented logo is at its best in colour as used on presentation key rings and collector Magnette Ale bottle and regalia tee shirt.

In conclusion a thank-you is in order to the organizers of this function and from my point of view a special thank-you to Warren Marsh for his pivotal role from start to finish in the 50 year 'European' Anniversary of our MG Z Type Magnettes [ZA/ZB]. 

Loz [Laurence] Scott Nov 2004

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In an occasional series, Malcolm Robertson outlines life with 'Alison', his 1957 MG ZB Varitone Magnette….

Readers of the now closed magazine MG World will remember my occasional Running Reports in which I described in tortured detail the agonies of living with one or two MGs. For several years I outlined the highs and lows of running my 1936 MG Two Litre (SA) and of trying to keep a 1964 MG 1100 up to the demands of my then teenaged daughter, Amelia.

Of more interest to the visitors to this website would have been the developments with my ZB Varitone Magnette (ZBV 27116) since it joined the fleet in 2000, a lasting gift to myself purchased with a legacy from a favourite Aunt who died the previous year. In memory of the great friendship we shared, the ZBV was christened Alison.

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A Magnette Tour Around Seattle, Washington, USA

I attended one of our club’s car shows in Port Angeles and on the way home, I was thinking about the Magnette website so I put the camera to work:

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MG Magnette Steering Wheel Centerpiece Motif Production

– by Chuck Reece

My MG Brother, Phil White and I, both have 1958 ZBV’s and our steering wheel centerpiece motifs were cracked and broken. No NOS parts exist, so Phil started exploring the possibility of making new parts.