Friday, 25 November 2011

Social Events

A few up and coming Social Events you may find interesting.
On Sunday 11th March a 'Jack the Ripper Walking Tour' through the City and Whitechapel, learn about the social history and murders in the Autumn of 1888. Coach leaves Grove Green at 4.00pm.
Price including coach, Blue Badge guide, pub supper of Fish or Chicken and chips, vegetarian option and all gratuities is £30 per person.
On Sunday 3rd June an all day event 'Drag Racing at Santa Pod' this is the FIA European Drag Racing Championships Main Event, including UEM Drag Bikes.
Price including coach, admission and gratuities is £40 per person. Details on
Final details nearer the date.
If you are interested in these events or want more details please get in touch with me. 
Max Power
Social Secretary

30 mph sign

A Villager in rural Devon painted a huge 30 mph speed limit sign on the side of his house in an attempt to slow traffic down after being infuriated by cars speeding past his home for years.


Unable to persuade the County Council to bring in traffic calming measures this resident decided to do the job himself.

Grabbing a couple of buckets of paint, he clambered up a ladder and painted a huge 30mph sign on the side of his house.

It took the self-employed artist five hours to complete the task.

The sign is 15-feet high sign and covers the entire side wall of the end of terrace property which according to the Department for Transport is technically illegal.

What do you think should he be made to paint over it?

Monday, 21 November 2011

Driving in Fog

How to make your way through the fog
Weekly motoring tips from Britain's top advanced driver, Peter Rodger. This week he is advising motorists on how to drive in fog.
IAM chief examiner Peter Rodger said: "Fog is one of the most difficult conditions to drive in. Ensure you are prepared so that you can carry out your journey safely, and allow lots of extra time for the trip."
Peter offers tips for driving in the fog:
 Before setting off, clean your windows and windscreen and ensure all your lights are working.
 When you're ready to leave, switch on the dipped headlights. Use front and rear fog lights if visibility is less than 100 metres.
 Use your windscreen wipers on an intermittent setting to clear condensation.
 Switch the heater or air conditioning on and leave it running to keep the inside of the glass clear.
 Slow down and keep enough distance between yourself and the vehicle in front make sure you can stop safely within the distance you can see clearly.
 Fog is not the same density all the time – it may get thicker, slow down if it does.
 Brake gently but earlier than usual so your brake lights warn drivers behind.
 At junctions, wind the window down and listen for traffic.
 Take high-viz clothing in case you have to leave the car.
 "Don't underestimate the effect fog has on your visibility. Adjusting your driving to the weather conditions will help you to become a better driver."
 To help drivers stay safe this winter, the IAM has launched a new website,, with traffic updates, weather forecasts and tips on how to drive safely in winter.

Tips cover rain, snow, ice, fog and wind – everything you can expect in a typically unpredictable British winter. Check it out before you travel.

Mercedes Benz World

Trip to Mercedes Benz World & Brooklands Museum


After a pretty uneventful journey from Grove Green round the M25 towards Brooklands we came across a road closure for the Olympic cycle race trials, no matter which way we tried the road was closed, the only way left open had a low bridge which the coach unfortunately would not fit under.  This resulted in us abandoning the coach and walking the final two or so miles to Mercedes Benz World, finally arriving there just before midday!  We all went our separate ways, some of us looking round Mercedes Benz World, but others of us walked across to the Brooklands Museum which had some very interesting exhibits on display…..



Ranging from the early 1900's cars that raced at Brooklands up to more modern Formula 1 cars, motorbikes and pedal cycles.  One car of interest on display was a Napier-Railton with a 24 litre aircraft engine built in 1933, which, driven by John Cobb, had recorded an average speed of 143mph around the Brooklands banked circuit in 1935!  



Personally, after seeing how steep the banking was and the lack of safety in the car, you had to be one brave person to drive round there at those speeds! 


Also on display at the museum was a number of aircraft including a Concorde and a passenger jet converted to a palace in the sky for the Sultan of Oman!




And the newly opened Cobham Bus Museum, showing the history of London buses from the horse bus up to relative modern day vehicles, one special vehicle on display was RT1, the prototype of the AEC Regent bus that served London for numerous years.

Wandering round Mercedes Benz world there was lots for us to see, not only the latest range of Mercedes cars, from the Smart car up to the £169000 SLS AMG, but the star cars have to be the classic Mercedes on display including a concept car with no steering wheel, you drive it using a joystick!



And in one area they had a display of current and recent past Mercedes powered Formula 1 cars, including one that had been broken down to it's components and hung from the ceiling.  Also there was a CLK GTR, a racing car made road legal, one of only 5 ever made! 



Some of us took advantage of the opportunity to take a ride round the test track driven by one of Mercedes Benz's trained drivers. All I can say is wow! He definitely knew how to handle that car, even if he didn't follow the IAM way of driving, but to do two circuits of the simulated black ice circle sideways whilst steering one handed and managing to change the radio channel with the other showed he did have a little bit of talent, but as Mick Cranfield did point out, he wasn't using the recognised system of driving!!!  On the handling part of the track he demonstrated how fast the car was capable of and it's handling, on the short straight he managed to achieve 100mph before standing on the brakes for very sharp right-handed corner.



I would like to take this opportunity to thank Max and everyone else involved for organising the day and Barry, our driver from Brookline, who despite many officials who tried to make our journey as difficult as possible, managed to stay very professional!

Andy Wyles

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Skid Pan Training

Skid Pan Training is available all year round with the Mid Kent Group of Advanced Motorists.  We use the Kent Police facility in Maidstone with one of their fully qualified instructors and a computer controlled car on a cradle.  Apart from the serious side this is also great fun which you can see by the smile on some of yesterdays participant's faces.



If you fancy a go or would like to give this as a Christmas gift to a friend or relation just click on the 'Dancing on Ice' add on the home page of our website for more information.  It's £50 well spent !!


Linda Davies

Group Chairman