2019 National Rally Report

Nuffield Place 2019

2019 marks an important anniversary for one of Britain’s pioneering motoring achievements, the first British five-speed hatchback, the Austin Maxi. For this reason the Allegro Club joined forces with our good friends in the Maxi Club for a joint National Rally and 50 Year Anniversary celebrations. Nuffield Place, near Henley on Thames, was the chosen venue as it’s a wonderful place to visit and also has an important connection with car manufacturing at Cowley, where the Maxi was produced from 1969 to 1981. 

With trophies, rally packs and cake I set off in Gladys with a rather iffy forecast for the day’s weather. Thankfully upon arriving at Nuffield Place the sun began to shine and shone on us through out the day. Allegros and Maxis soon began to arrive and by mid morning we had filled our allocated area in the car park with 17 Allegros, 11 Maxis and five visiting classics. Many people visiting the house for the day were delighted to see the array of cars on display! 

Members were kept busy looking round the house and attractive gardens, catching up with friends and choosing the cars in the various judging categories. Alexandra Phillips did very well in the awards with her wonderful Blaze Series 1 2-door, winning her class and also ‘Best Engine Bay’. She has spent considerable time bringing the car up to a very good standard and it looks great. It was also a great opportunity to present Alexandra with the Directors’ Award, which she had been awarded at the AGM earlier on in the year. Mervyn Irvine also not only won the Series 3 award with his immaculate 1.3HL but was also delighted to be chosen as ‘Best Allegro’ by the Maxi owners. Richard Mason and Simon Pritchard attended their first National and were both Runners Up in their respective classes. All of the award winners can be found in the accompanying table. 

Gary Bridle was delighted that the Maxi he recently inherited from his dad Don, a long standing and sadly missed Club member, was chosen as ‘Best Maxi’ by the ACI members. A fitting tribute as it was actually Don’s birthday on the day of the show. 

We were very grateful, once again, that Harris Mann was able to join us for the rally. Harris was kept busy talking to members, choosing his favourite Allegro and also enjoying the house and grounds of Nuffield Place. He kindly presented the trophies to all the award winners along with Ian Botting, the Maxi Club President and founding member, who presented the Maxi awards. After the prize giving everyone enjoyed a slice of cake and the class winners were all invited to bring their cars to the front of the house to have a group photograph. 

All too quickly the event drew to a close and members said their goodbyes before making their journeys home. Many thanks to everyone who attended the show. I think it was wonderful that the Allegro and Maxi Clubs joined forces for the day, something they have done on several occasions in the past. Hopefully the good relationship between the clubs will continue long into the future. 

Next year marks 30 years of Allegro Club International. I will keep you all updated on a date and venue for the anniversary rally.

Pictures from this years National Rally can be seen in the gallery section. 

* The 2019 National Award Winners were as follows * 

Series 1:

1st WBY 599M 1300 Super Alexandra Phillips 

2nd VRF 144L 1300 Deluxe Colin Corke

Series 2:

1st PGP 971P 1100 Deluxe Tom Morley 

2nd RAB 62V 1300 Super Richard Mason

Series 3:

1st RPH 977X 1.3HL Mervyn Irvine 

2nd CGN 878X 1.5HL Clare O’Sullivan

Vanden Plas:

1st GGT 947N 1500 Mk1 Andy Perman 

2nd PYB 99P 1500 Mk2 Simon Pritchard


1st JJT 763V 1.3L Paul Atkinson 

2nd ATF 848T 1300 Super Jenny Thurston

Best Engine Bay:

1st WBY 599M 1300 Super Alexandra Phillips 

2nd PGP 971P 1100 Deluxe Tom Morley

Visiting Classic:

1st YPG 496 Rover 75 Ian Cole 

2nd FE05 GHY MG ZS Ernie Jackson

Best Allegro (As chosen by the Maxi Club):

RPH 997X – 1.3HL Mervyn Irvine

Best Maxi (As chosen by the Allegro Club):

KPG 292K – Maxi 1500 Gary Bridle

Harris Mann Award:

KOA 190W – VP 1.5 Anthony Kearsley

Don Bridle Memorial Award:

CGN 878X – 1.5HL Clare O’Sullivan