A history to our club
The Solent MG Owners’ Club was founded in the 1980’s by MG enthusiast Mark Walton, a serving member of the Royal Navy. Whilst stationed at HMS Collingwood in Fareham he noticed that several of his colleagues were also driving MG’s and he formed The Collingwood MG Owners’ Club, open originally only to service personnel. Later it was decided to open up the club to civilians, but for security reasons, the name was changed and the meeting venue moved to the Bun Penny pub in Lee-On-Solent. However, increasing membership and pressure on space in the pub led to another move to the Golden Bowler pub in Stubbington, where we had our own clubroom.
Mark Walton was then posted away from Fareham, his place being taken by John Pridgeon who ran the club for a number of years until the early 90’s when Hugh Smith took over the reins. Again increasing membership meant that the club outgrew the space at the Golden Bowler, resulting in yet another move, this time to The Swordfish at Hill Head, where we met until it closed in late 2003. In 2003 running the club was changed, sharing responsibilities between committee members. We moved club nights to the third Monday of the month at The Old Forge in Shedfield, north of Wickham. Since then we have changed locatios several times. In July 2011, we moved to tha Bugle Hotel in Titchfield Village where we were allowed to use their very comfortable function room.
In December 2014, we moved yet again to the Delme Arms in Fareham. It had been recently refurbished, and we were granted use of the function room at no charge. It served good 'pub grub', and had some very tasty real ales.
During 2016 & early 2017, we had quite an influx of new members, so by the April of 2017, we had outgrown the function room of the Delme Arms. By this time, the Bugle Hotel was under new management and were happy to have us back there. In May of 2019, the club had to seek a new venue, and after one month at the temporary location of the Cams Mill pub in Fareham, our club location was the Seagull Pub in Portchester. It transpired that the function room at the Seagull was slightly too small, so in January 2020, the club moved to the Bun Penny in Lee-on-Solent, which was the club's venue many years ago. The club visited the Bun Pennty again in February 2020, but unexpectedly the pub decided to put a charge on the use of their function room, which was above any figure the club was prepared to pay. Before a new venue was found, Covid 19 hit the UK, so plans to find a venue were put on hold. In July 2020, the committe resumed searching for a venue. After a lot of further effort, Southwick Golf Club (SGC) was approached and they agreed to act as hosts for club nights. However, it was understood that any meeting in their function room had to wait until Covid 19 restrictions were sufficiently relaxed to allow 40+ people to non-socially distance indoors. This happened in the summer of 2021 and the club has enjoyed the SGC's facilities since then.
The club caters for MG enthusiasts of all ages and the majority of marques are represented including a TF, Midgets, MGA’s, B’s and C’s through to MGR V8’s, MGF’s/MG TF’s and the Z-series saloons.
Solent MGOC is a very active club with events ranging from scenic drives to country pubs, to tours of France. Other events have included visits to stately homes and gardens, Spring breaks to such places as Warwick, the Isle Of Wight and Cricket St. Thomas, whilst also joining in with other local and national events such as the South Downs Run, Chichester’s annual Arundel Castle visit and the big MG Car Club annual race meeting at Silverstone.
Currently, there are about 120 members. Your annual subscription also entitles you to a copy of our monthly newsletter to keep you informed of all that’s going on and you are encouraged to contribute articles and/or pictures.
The present committee would like to take this opportunity to welcome you to the club and hope that you will find many things to interest you. We look forward to seeing you on as many of the events as you can manage and if there are any suggestions you would like to make don’t hesitate to speak to one of us.
If you would like to join us, please come along to one of our monthly meetings or go to our 'Application Form' webpage.