Sunday 5th May 2024


The 2024 Charnwood Caper will start at Manor Farm Park & Woodlands, Castle Hill, East Leake, Loughborough, Leicestershire, LE12 6LU. Gates open for parking from 8:00am with registration and the Cafe open at 8:30.

Our finish will be the Great Central Railway Station in Quorn and Woodhouse, LE12 8AG.

The rally entry fee will be
25.00 and for your entertainment we have negotiated a reduction in the price of train rides on the day from Quorn and you will receive a voucher to present at the booking office when you buy a ticket.

Our chosen charity to be supported this year is The David Clarke Railway Trust - GCR Reunification Project,

Reunification Project Details

2024_EntryForm_for_icon_JPEG <<<<Click the ICON or HERE
to print the
2024_Flyer_A5x2_JPEG <<<<Click the ICON or HERE
to print the

Each year since 2004 (with the exception of 2020 and 2021, as a result of Covid-19), 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, usually at a local 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, Elvaston Castle Country Park just outside Derby, Rufford Abbey Country Park in Nottinghamshire, Thoresby Park also in Nottinghamshire and Calke Abbey near Melbourne.  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 and total donations in excess of 10,000 have been made over the years. Recent beneficiaries have been Wishes for Kids (2012 run), LOROS Hospice (2013 run), the Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance (2014 & 2018 runs), Headway Leicester (2015 run), Rainbows Hospice (2016 & 2019 runs),  Steps Conductive Education Centre (2017 run),  Headway DMRC Benevolent Fund (2022 run), The Peter Le Marchant Trust (2023 Run) and Great Central Railway (2024 Run). 
This Bournemouth based MG ZR leaves  Quorn & Woodhouse station on the 2014 Charnwood Caper

The sun really came out for the Charnwood Caper on the 5th May. The event attracted a record breaking total of 83 entries this year, with the furthest entrant travelling 134 miles from Hampshire to take part. The first car left the start point of Manor Farm in East Leake at 9:15, leading the way through the beautiful Vale of Belvoir and rural Leicestershire. Finally arriving at the Great Central Railway (GCR) in Quorn, for a good old natter, and with special rates given for the group, many took the opportunity for a nostalgic ride on a steam train. Thank you GCR!

A total of
1,500 was raised from the event, £1,000 will be presented to the GCR later in the year with the remainder being presented to one of our regular chosen charities, so watch this space for further details. A huge thanks goes to the organisers & marshals for making the event a huge success and of course to all of those who entered.

The event was in support of the Great Central Railway Reunification Project.

GCR Reunification Project
Caper-ft-2024.jpg The furthest travelled entrants receive their prize from our Membership Secretary, Helen Readwin.

The Charnwood Caper took place on Sunday 7th May 2023 in glorious sunny conditions. The start was at Quorn and Woodhouse Station on the Great Central Railway, near to Loughborough and 70 cars set off at staggered intervals from the station car park. The route covered 70 miles of Leicestershire's country roads with a coffee stop around the mid-point at Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre before continuing onto the finish at Calke Abbey, near Melbourne.
The furthest travelled entrant came 79 miles from Bedfordshire in their MGB and so for this outing they put over 200 miles on the clock!

The event was in support of The Peter Le Marchant Trust, Loughborough
PeterLeMarchantChq Following the 2023 Caper, Colin Readwin presents a cheque for 1,000 to Tim Marren, CEO of The Peter Le Marchant Trust at our monthly meeting where Tim gave a talk on the history, scope and work of the Trust.

Following two postponements in 2020 and 2021 (as a result of Covid), the first Charnwood Caper since 2019 took place on Sunday, 8th May 2022 The 2022 Charnwood Caper started at Quorn and Woodhouse Station on the Great Central heritage railway, near to Loughborough. The route was about 70 miles of Leicestershire and Rutland roads, most of which were country lanes with coffee stops en route.
The finish was hosted by Stonehurst Family Farm & Motor Museum in Mountsorrel, Leicestershire. For information about Stonehurst visit

Eighty-eight cars were pre-booked to take part this year. Of these, seventy-six bore the Octagon, ranging from a 1938 Tickford VA, through a couple of T-Series cars, several MGAs, Midgets and MGCs, a solitary RV8 and a dozen Fs and TFs.  MGBs wre again in abundance, with over forty taking part.  The other ten marques in attendance included Morgan, Morris, Porsche, Triumph and TVR.  Average age of all cars involved was just over 40 years, with the younger element (mainly MG Fs and TFs) being balanced out by the twenty-eight older classics which had been on the road for more than half a century.

MG TC leaves Quorn & Woodhouse Station on the 75-mile 2019 Charnwood Caper Run

The run ended at Thoresby Park, near Ollerton, in Nottinghamshire

To view a video of the 2018 Caper, CLICK HERE

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 80 to 90 cars.

This year, over 90 cars had signed up in advance, and several joined on the day itself, Sunday 13th May.  Once again, the run started at Quorn & Woodhouse Station on the Great Central heritage railway line, before setting off on a journey through north-east Leicestershire to Belton Garden Centre (near Grantham in Lincolnshire) for a half-way break.  The second leg took us on to the end venue at Rufford Abbey Country Park  in Nottinghamshire.
Caper_2018_Splash_Web Participants had to negotiate this ford just before entering Rufford Abbey Country Park
Caper_2018_Rufford_Web These early arrivals at the end venue were able to park up in front of the ruins of Rufford Abbey

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 assembled 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 Elvaston 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 the run
Elvaston Castle Country  Park was the final destination, where the participating cars could be viewed by the park's many visitors.

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 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 cavalcade 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

Gimson Beam Engine

  Site Map