From the Chairman — AGM Report — August 2017
It is my pleasure to share some thoughts as Chairperson of the Veteran Car Club of South Australia for 2017.
I would like to start by re-affirming our purpose to preserve advocate for the veteran vehicle movement. This year we released our ‘first’ ten years of the Veteran Car Club and prepared by Terry Parker. I think this document demonstrates that we are indeed a very special part of the motoring enthusiast movement within Australia, and possibly the world. Without specialist groups like ours catering for veteran vehicles, many vehicles would be off the road gathering dust in the face of growing impediments. Since our clubs creation, we should continue to be very proud of what has evolved to support our interests, so we can continue to appreciate and share our passion with the wider public. But as always, we must continue to advocate for our interest through the Federation and clubs of similar interests, to ensure our presence on the road and our needs are heard. Without this element of enjoyment, our vehicles are simply museum pieces!
Our membership of the Association of Veteran Car Clubs in Australia continues to develop. Working with other clubs and the Sporting Car Club, the AVCCA is now starting to tackle some larger issues beyond rally rotations, and some items which impact on us all include pushing for a change to the luxury vehicle tax for importing of vehicles, consideration of our most significant vehicles as ‘items of movable heritage,’ access to FIVA passports at a discount rate and 100 year badges for our vehicles, and a sharing of instate club newsletters and resources.
Closer to home, we have recently experienced a rushed review and push to change the conditional (aka: Historical) registration scheme. Whilst we all appreciate no more statutory declarations or vehicle inspections, it appears the devil is in the detail and recent experience tells us we are only just grappling with the results of a policy which doesn’t appear to support our interest. More is yet to unfold in this area. Talking broadly, we need to ensure veteran vehicles are still respected and acknowledged for authenticity and hold DPTI and the Federation to ensure the code is as we require it.
Our club continues to have a sound base to build on, due to the work of your Committee over the past twelve months and I thank those who offered their time since our last AGM and will continue to contribute to our club again this year. I would like to mention here the work of our club Secretary and Treasurer for their efforts, which are appreciated by us all.
Given the increasing expenses the club is required to make, the Committee has approved a slight increase in membership fees. The need to recover printing and postage for hard copies has meant a greater increase has taken place. It is a testament to the excellent work of your current and past Committees that we have been able to keep subscriptions at such a level for so long.
At present, our membership number is very much like many of our vehicles – over the century mark! We also have three associate members. Sadly, this year, we have said farewell to three members: Barry Foster, Dave Potter and our much respected friend, committee member and rally master – Neil Francis. They are all missed, as are their vehicles participating in our events.
We continue to hold a range of well attended member Gatherings across a range of topics and our club runs and events – like the annual club dinner – continue to reflect the wishes of the membership following our feedback forum held last year. Thanks to Phil and Trish Keane for the refreshments we enjoy at the end of each Gathering. Looking to the future, we know the proposed state rally in Mannum early next year will continue the opportunity for us to gather as a Club and enjoy driving our vehicles on-mass.
The vehicle dating committee, led by Peter Allen, has made an effort to date an increasing number of eligible member’s cars using our rigorous authenticity policy and process. Through the efforts of Frank Cord-Udy, as our Editor and Webmaster, these achievements (and so much more) are shared with you, the membership, in our monthly Bulletin and Website.
The upcoming National Rally in Clare highlights the fact that our club is very good at networking and fostering working partnerships with other clubs, for example:
- Working with the SCCSA to prepare for the National Rally, which builds on the foundation established in the past hosting national events like Naracoorte and Robe. We thank the organisers for their preparation and wish all those taking part from our club and interstate an enjoyable experience.
- A new opportunity this year has been engaging with the Gawler Veteran and Vintage Cub with members taking part in the Veteran and Vintage Car Run
- Neil Francis’ legacy and vision will unfold later this year when we hold an interclub run with the Morris Car Club of SA.
- Finally, the Down Under London to Brighton event, offered by the Vintage Sports Car Club, continues to be the one event that sees a good turnout of veterans. In 2017, this event is planned to be held later and hopefully this becomes a permanent change so future clashes with National Rallies – like in 2016 – don’t happen.
Finally, I would like to close by thanking you the members of the VCCSA for your support of our club. I hope that you have enjoyed the past twelve months and will continue to make the effort to participate in the runs and events over the next twelve months, share interesting experiences at the monthly Gathering and take the time to forward articles and images for inclusion in our Bulletin.
Happy veteran motoring. Hamish McDonald (Chair)