Works Camping & Caravanning Club still going strong.
In 1969 a group of workers at the Wolseley factory in Drews Lane, Ward End, approached the then thriving Sports and Social Club about starting a new section, for those with a common interest in camping and caravanning.
The new group was led by Norman Stone and Tommy Rogers. After much discussion it was decided to run the Club as a separate enitity from the Social Club because they wanted any excess funds made by the camping and caravan club to be paid into the general funds of the Social Club. Our early pioneers thought that this would not be beneficial to their membership and therefore the Works management were then agreeable to the Club being called The Wolseley Camping and Caravan Club and use of the works notice boards was allowed to advertise forthcoming rallies.
Prior to the Association being formed rallies were held at Alton Towers, in the days when its biggest attraction was the wonderful gardens; other venues included Overton Park and Trentham Gardens. The Wolseley Committee members at this time were Norman Stone, Bert Hawksford, Phil Kinsey, Frank Russell, George Sheldon, Bill Davies, Jack Lamb and George Hoare.
In 1971 the British Leyland Association was formed and consisted of the following clubs: Longbridge, Pressed Steel Fisher (Swindon), Fisher & Ludlow (Castle Bromwich), Standard Triumph and Wolseley.
The first rally book was prnted and issued for the 1972 season. During the Easter Rally at Henley-on-Thames a discussion took place at the evening social. There was no disco equipment back in those days so the members chatted more and made their own entertainment. Various ideas were put forward on what the club emblem should be. Frank Russell put the idea forward that the use a hornet would be a good idea, as this was one of the early models of car manufactured at the factory. The idea was accepted and one of the younger members, Roger Lamb (son of Jack Lamb) said he would produce a prototype of the logo and would present it at the next meeting. Jack brought along a hand painted image on sticky back plastic, a few more versions were made prior to one being agreed on and being sent to be produced commercially, this emblem is still in use today.
Wolseley hosted and organised their first Association Rally in 1974, the previous two years had been run by Longbridge (1972) and Fisher & Ludlow (1973). The rally venue was a Long Carret, near Evesham. A limit of 300 units was set and 320 duly arrived. In those early early days the rallies were very popular and lots of fun was had by all. By this time there were nine clubs in the Association. The loca police were very very impressed by how the traffic had been handled during the event and good comments were made in the local press. There were a few killjoys among the locals who didn't really want us there but the local bobby who came over to have a chat, stayed until midnight and ended up having a pint or two at the bar.
Our gratful thanks go to Frank Russell, one of our early pioneers and current club member, for providing these great memories.