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Home Counties Meet 10th August 2003
Mad Dogs and Englishmen ...

On Sunday 10th August, 2003 the Home Counties Meet for Scorpio Owners was held at Tripes Farm, Chelsfield, Orpington, Kent, in association with the Granada clubs.

The event had been a month in the planning. The site is owned by a local farmer who gave us free rein for the day. The guys at Aircon Direct sent 2 vans to provide a checkover and regas service. We established a marshalling point in the centre of a coned lane at the top of the field, with the cars lined up down the field on either side of it. My wife Jean manned (womanned?) this point throughout the day and provided much-needed cold drinks and barbequed hot food as well as marshalling the arrivals when my back was turned - thanks, my love!

With blazing sunshine on what was to be record-breaking temperatures, the temperature soared during the morning. Fortunately, being on the very outermost edge of London with the Green Belt, a steady breeze across the site kept temperatures just about bearable.

Two owners arrived while we were still setting up, and helped erect the gazebos to provide a break from the sun - and were they needed ! (Thanks Frank and Del) and by 10:30 a good complete line of Scorpios were lined up in the blazing heat.


By noon the temperature was so high that even the cars were yawning with the heat (!) but what a grand sight they looked.

John and Mark from Aircon Direct arrived, and from then on they serviced a seemingly endless line of Scorpios and Granadas using three stations, parked over at the Other Marques parking so as not to disturb us with the noise from their generator. They worked like slaves in the merciless heat, testing, checking, explaining - and only regassing when they really thought that a car needed it. What a sterling service - and at a special price to those attending, too. Thanks guys!

Meanwhile members gathered in loose knots, chatting and swopping stories. I used my OBD cable and laptop frequently and only found a few DTCs, none serious. Most cars checked out with none - even in that heat. By early afternoon the last arrivals had formed a second line behind the first and every engine and body style was represented and discussed.

By now, the temperature had climbed to 36.7C in the shade. It was too hot to stand for long in the sun and too bright to read a laptop without darkening the interior of the car with a blanket. Some owners were captured for long enough to take a snap. The gap behind them in the line of cars was caused by the queue for the AC check

The Granada line was not quite as well represented - but they had other meetings that day. There were no Mk 1s, which was a shame because I planned a photo with one car of each mark in a fantail in front of the camera, which would have been a great shot.

Nice Granadas there were, though. I particularly admired two late 24V Granadas (the BOA engine) but they left before I could look them over..

This was a great Meet. The heat and sun had been too much to do some of the things I planned, but all in all it was a great day out and the opportunity to meet many of the owners familiar only from posts on the List and the Message Board. It was a wonderful turnout and well worth the effort. Roll on next year!

Thanks to owners for the use of their pix.



Copyright 2003