Clubing Around

By Will Roe

If members of other clubs would like to share their reminiscences of joint club events MAR Online will be happy to hear from you.

If you think this is about going out night clubing then you are reading the wrong item. No it’s about the camaraderie among at least some model collecting clubs. I’m writing this from the viewpoint of being Coventry Diecast Model Club’s (CDMC) magazine (Wheelspin) editor, a position I’ve had on and off for many occasions now, the first going back to the 1970’s. Even back then, when I first took the reins, our club was linked to the West Australian Model Collectors Club, based in Perth. via their club magazine (Showcase). Via it’s editor, the late Mike Silk, we exchanged copies of our respective club magazines, something still done to this day, only in this day of modern technology it’s done as pdf file by email.

Staying on this club link, over the years I became friends with WAMCC’s next editor, Bill Holt, an ex pat at whose house the Oz club was founded in 1982. Bill and his lovely wife May, visited and
stayed with us on several occasions over the years while visiting relatives in the UK.

May and Bill Holt on a visit in 1993


Sadly, Bill passed away earlier this year and I shall miss our adventures, having taken him on visits to the Coventry Transport Museum, a CDMC meeting and even on the Rolls-Royce Centenary celebrations at Donington Park ( I worked for Rolls-Royce Aero Engines before my retirement) in good times past.

Myself with Max Doust on his visit in 2003


Another WAMCC member to pay me a visit was Max Doust, long serving treasurer to the Oz club. Sadly, like Bill, Max passed away this year but this isn’t about sadness, it’s about the continuity of club relations.

CDMC is still linked to WAMCC via our respective magazine exchanges with the current editor, John Boden, and we keep in touch on a regular basis by email.

Another long term connection for CDMC is with the South Hants Model Auto Club (SHMAC). Again, club magazines have been exchanged over many years and still are to this day. In times
past SHMAC and CDMC have put on displays at the Classic and Sports Car show at the Birmingham NEC, something that SHMAC have done on many occasions with excellent displays of members models, often in diorama form. On another occasion both clubs put on displays at Stoneleigh in the days of Ray Strutt’s ModeleX shows.

CDMC display at NEC 1988 Classic & Sports Car show


Personally, I’m still in touch with several of the SHMAC members, some of which have supplied articles for CDMC’s Wheelspin club
magazine. On one occasion, I had the honour of a visit from SHMACC members at my home when they visited my humble ‘Mini-Mobileum’ when they were in this area for one of the shows.

1990 – Members of South Hants Model Auto Club pay a visit to see my model collection

Moving on another club, we have long been associated with Maidenhead Static Model Club, (MSMC) Britains oldest established model collectors club – founded in 1969 – CDMC being the
second oldest I believe, founded 1975. Just to digress, CDMC Wheelspin magazine/newsletter has been published since the club was first founded, thanks to co-founders, Paul and Hilary Kennelly, which I think makes it the oldest of the club newsletters. another thing to note is that whereas CDMC’s magazine is WHEELSPIN, Maidenhead’s is WHEEL BEARINGS and SHMAC is WHEEL NUTS, all without these similarities without any prior knowledge of each
others titles. Back to the MSMC link- CDMC has visited their venue on past occasions among the first occasions was a combined trip in1987 when a coach was arranged for CDMC members to visit
MSMC’s Windsor Swapmeet and also to visit the London Toy Museum. A special treat for members on that occasion as they travelled on Harry Shaw’s brand new double decker coach.

CDMC members proudly wait to board Coventry coach operator Harry Shaw’s latest flagship doubledeck coach which bore a ‘1 COV’ number plate.


November 1988 was the occasion of a weekend in Brussels, organised by MSMC to attend the 20th Toy Fair held at the Palais Monial d’Automobile, the huge motor museum in the centre of
Brussels. A big contingent of CDMC and members of their family joined the coach trip, staying at the same hotel.

1988 – Maidenhead and Coventry club members gather in the lounge of the Brussels hotel for a pre-evening get together. CDMC (male) members can be seen wearing their club ties


Above, the massive Autoworld in Brussels, venue for the swapmeet, which can be seen on the mezzanine area. Below, Solido model, trailer and poster produced to mark the event


In June 1989, both Maidenhead and Surrey clubs visited Coventry and joined CDMC at thier monthly Club night. CDMC also attended at Maidenhead Club ‘Inter-Club’ nights quiz evenings on September
1990 and again in August 1992. Once again in November 1999, MSMC members joined CDMC members in a visit Jaguar
Cars, Coventry, a trip arranged by the Coventry club.

Another occasion when MSMC members travelled to Coventry was June 24th 1998 when CDMC organised a mystery evening trip on a preserved 1954 Coventry Corporation bus No 94. The bus left the
Coventry Clubs meeting venue. the Midland Air Museum, and ended up outside a toy shop in Bedworth which, unfortunately, was
closed! Along for the ride were veteran CDMC members, husband and wife Jim and Maurine Bailey, who once worked on the Coventry buses and on this occasion, wore their uniforms.

One of the other clubs that we have a connection with and swap Club newsletters with is Wessex Model and Toy Collectors Club. Other clubs that we have been in contact with now and then are Sydney Model Auto Club and Ulster Diecast Model Toy Club. If I’ve missed other clubs and occasions over this long period of time hopefully it will jog the memories of others and with a bit of luck they will come forward with their own experiences. To me contact with other clubs is interesting, rewarding and well worth fostering and I’d like to think that it is the same for other clubs too.

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