Here we are back again and a very belated very, very Happy New Year to you all and a sincere thankyou for your custom and support last year. In a year where there seemed to be even less ballooning than ever before, not least assisted by the weather, it was very much appreciated. We did manage to get a long overdue trip down to Devon and Cornwall to visit my aged Auntie Pam and talk about writing up my Uncle John’s flying story which will be pretty exciting. Naturally advantage was taken to visit me favourite pub, The Red Lion in Clovelly. Its great in the winter as there are no tourists! We are currently having a big rethink about opening times until the season gets going but please be assured if you need anything sorting then please call in the normal way, Tuesday to Friday, or drop a mail to either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. I will try and keep me mobile close by and turned on during office hours. If all else fails try email@example.com which is manned by Jane! As is obviously apparent all the stuff that should have been done before Twelfth Night including bunging articles and the like on the site (that should have been done before Christmas actually) didn’t. Been all a bit hectic with Jane’s dear old dad being off colour but he was sent back again this Saturday (meant we missed the Icicle) so fingers crossed. Amidst the turmoil we also missed Christmas Day but did make up for it by having every known relation plus some people waiting for a bus around for Boxing Day. It has to said, ‘2016 has not been a good year’, there, said it and it is with deep sadness that we got the news that Tessa Tennant passed away on the 23rd of December. We had only recently had a mini-meet for her which was truly wonderful and there is a piece about that I will re-visit in the next day or so and post. Our thoughts go out to her other half Lou who has been truly brilliant. As a result, this year, we have decided, will be excellent. 2017 is a prime number. You can get four eights out of it. 1+7, 7-1+2 and 2x1+7=16 (remember BODMAS) eight being an exceeding lucky number for the Chinese and it adds up to 10 which is two fives. I’m sure there is more. We are at the workshop under the care of HS2 until November 2017 and hopefully we will be able to extend that for another year so that’s a start.
This time round in the News is the latest techy stuff, some late news we have had on file for a while and the announcement of another Cross Channel Flight plus a bit of an update on Camerons’ SB23. The rest we have probably made up. Seems that we need to get into a more regular publishing mode but the time flies by and before we realise it, its two months since fingers hit keyboard. I don’t feel inclined to make a New Year resolution as I’d either forget or fail, unlike granddaughter Holly who stated quite positively that she intended to win a competition at Bury Farm this year and blow me down she has already, on Treasure. Quite impressed in a quiet sort of tell everyone way. On the article front as we had two Old and Rusty outings in December, one as tourists in Milton Keynes and the other partaking in the first through train from Oxford to London (but we only did the Oxford Bicester bit!) and they are up. Since writing up the Milton Keynes jaunt we have been in contact with a lovely lady that organises guided tours around the Homeworld ’81 houses so we will be back for sure. Barry and I will be spending a weekend on a train before Easter so that is another adventure and rumours are afoot that we are going to have a crack at the Ridgeway. Ballooning? We do have a project or two on the cards which hopefully will come to fruition in the coming months.
The dark barn (now a bit brighter) hasn’t seen much action but Bazzer has been fettling his Guzzis and I’m still chasing bits for the Puch and BSA which is getting a bit frustrating. Once they are sorted and the Bonnie Mot’d the next job will be to dig out my old Sunbeam which has been languishing in the shed for too long as I have decided that I will use it for the Gentlemans’ Ride this year, talking of which did I ever finish the article on that? Job for a rainy day then. This will mean a trip to Stewart Engineering to get some bits and bobs and that will be enjoyable for sure. They’ve moved to Poole though so I won’t get to visit Staverton’s Jet Age Museum and see how they are getting on with the Leeming Javelin. The old white Landcruiser has been replaced by a slightly newer version with less miles so that needs sorting and selling. My £140 Corsa with the balloons and towbar has been hi-jacked by our Pete so I’m now in an automatic model! There is a pile of trailer stuff in there which I need to sort out and catalogue. Seems I order stuff only to find we have it in stock a few weeks later. We do have bits and bobs for older Westfalia trailers including a set of drawbars for the 2.5m model. Lots to do this winter then! Thanks for coming back for a nose around. I hope that you find something to make you chuckle or information from the pages bit. Have a great year and thanks again for your continued support. John, Jane, Chris, Polly the Collie and, for this time only, Rosey.