|THE 2018 CHARNWOOD CAPER|
CLASSIC AND SPORTS CAR RUN
Following on from our first run back in 2004, we have seen steadily improving turnouts for the "Caper", with the last three years showing attendances of around eighty to ninety cars.
The date for next year's run has been set for SUNDAY 13th MAY 2018, and will, once again, start at QUORN & WOODHOUSE STATION on the Great Central heritage railway line. The end venue is to be RUFFORD ABBEY COUNTRY PARK in Nottinghamshire. There will also be a half-way stop.
A PDF format entry form and event publicity material will be available for download on this page, probably towards the end of October.
Visit the RUFFORD ABBEYand GREAT CENTRAL websites to find out more about the two venues.
|ABOUT THE CHARNWOOD CAPER|
Each year since 2004, we have organised a nationally-advertised car run called The Charnwood Caper. The run takes its name from the area of north Leicestershire where we are based, which has the scenic Charnwood Forest at its heart. It usually takes place in May, and starts off with a light breakfast around 9 to 10 am, either at our club HQ or a place of interest.
Although generally the preserve of classic and sports cars (many of which are not MGs), the "Caper" is open to anyone (in any type of car) who enjoys a drive of 60 or more miles along country lanes. The route is planned by our members, and a detailed route description is provided to all entrants.
The final destination of the run is always a place of interest. In recent years, we have visited the National Trust's Belton House near Grantham, the Transport Heritage Centre near Nottingham, the Abbey Pumping Station Museum in Leicester, the Staunton Harold Estate in south Derbyshire, and Elvaston Castle Country Park just outside Derby. Many of our recent runs have started at the Quorn and Woodhouse station on the restored Great Central Railway line in Leicestershire.
Each year, surplus funds generated by the "Caper" are donated to a local charity. Recent beneficiaries have been Wishes for Kids (2012 run), LOROS Hospice (2013 run), the Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance (2014 run), Headway Leicester (2015 run), Rainbows Hospice (2016 run), and Steps Conductive Education Centre (2017 Run).
|This Bournemouth based MG ZR leaves Quorn & Woodhouse station on the 2014 Charnwood Caper|
|THE 2017 CAPER|
Although the number of participating cars (84) was down on 2016's record turnout, the 2017 Caper was still a great success, because of the fantastic facilities which we managed to secure at the start, half-way and end venues.
As has become customary, the run started at Quorn & Woodhouse station on the restored Great Central line. The assembld cars then set off for a 40-mile drive through Leicestershire and Derbyshire to Bretby Garden Centre (near Burton-on-Trent) for a mid-run break. A further 35-mile jaunt took participants to Elavaston Castle Country Park, where the owners, Derbyshire County Council, had provided a dedicated parking area, which allowed the cars to park up one car deep on the grass either side of a roadway, where they could be viewed by the public.
Although it was not particularly warm at around mid-teens centigrade, the sun was out for most of the day, allowing for top-down motoring for those driving convertibles.
|A group of the participating cars at Quorn & Woodhouse Station get ready to set off on rthe run|
|Elavaston Castle Country Park was the final destination, where the participating cars could be viewed by the park's many visitors.|
|THE 2016 CAPER|
Thanks to the 90-plus cars which took part, the 2016 Charnwood Caper was our most successful to date. Participants travelled from eleven counties to join us, and this year we decided to present an award to the car owners who drove furthest to take part. The winners were Mike and Irene Grainger, who had journeyed the 92 miles from Chapel St. Leonards in their 2001 MGF. They are members of the Lincoln MG Club.
As Quorn & Woodhouse station, on the Great Central heritage railway, has proved to be ideal in the past because of the catering facilities and large car park, we once again used it for the run's starting point.
The 80-mile route took the run through north west Leicestershire, then over into Staffordshire to the Barton Turns Marina for a half-way stop. It then continued into south Derbyshire, finishing at the Staunton Harold Estate, where the cars made a grand entrance through the ornate gateway into the park, to be lined up on the lawn in front of Staunton Harold Hall, overlooking the lake.
We were blessed with bright sunshine throughout, on what was probably the hottest day of the year up until that point.
Thanks to all who took part, the club members who organised the run and acted as marshalls on the day, the management and staff at Quorn station and its Butler-Henderson Cafe, and the management of Barton Turns Marina and Staunton Harold Estate for their hospitality.
Go to the USEFUL LINKS page (Places to Visit section) to find out more about the above venues.
|Start venue: Quorn & Woodhouse Station on the Great Central heritage railway|
|Half-way stop: Barton Turns Marina, near Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire|
|Final destination: Staunton Harold Estate, Derbyshire|
|THE 2015 CAPER|
The 2015 Caper was one of our most successful, with 79 cars taking part. Over half of the entrants came from twelve counties outside of Leicestershire, with two travelling from Northumberland, a journey of around 200 miles.
Taking the calalcade of cars through about twenty villages in Leicestershire, the run covered 80 miles, mainly along country lanes. At its most easterly point, it briefly crossed into Rutland.
Starting at Quorn & Woodhouse station on the restored section of the Great Central Railway line in Leicestershire, the run had a half-way refreshment stop at Wistow Rural Centre, before setting off for the second leg to the Abbey Pumping Station Museum in Leicester. Adjacent to the museum is the National Space Centre, which participants could also visit if they wished.
|Start venue: Quorn & Woodhouse station on the Great Central heritage railway|
|Final Destination: Abbey Pumping Station Museum, Leicester|
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