Murray Bridge Auto Collectors take off on annual Patron's Run

A great day out: Auto Collectors Club of Murray Bridge (ACCMB) members visited Collectible Classics in Strathalbyn on Wednesday, October 14.
A great day out: Auto Collectors Club of Murray Bridge (ACCMB) members visited Collectible Classics in Strathalbyn on Wednesday, October 14.

ON Wednesday, October 14, 38 Auto Collectors Club of Murray Bridge (ACCMB) members assembled at their Johnstone Park clubrooms ready for a much-awaited run during the COVID-19 era.

ACCMB patron Bob Hunter and wife Lyn arrived in their 1969 MG B GT Coupe, setting the scene for the outing and asking members to sign the run book for COVID records, before outlining the days activities and calling for members to "start their engines" and get ready to roll.

Moving from Johnstone Park, left onto Adelaide Road, the group proceeded to Old Princes Highway, through the "didn't happen dream city of Monarto", through Callington and Woodchester's farming country with its rolling fields of freshly cut bales of hay and with cereal crops fence high, waiting for a perfect finish to hopefully what will become a bumper year, before arriving at Collectible Classics (CC) in the historic township of Strathalbyn.

ACCMB members parked all of their 16 various classic cars in and around the CC carpark, creating a spectacle for locals and visitors alike to view.

On arrival, ACCMB members were met by owner Principal Ben Finnis, who was introduced to members by Mr Hunter.

A gift of a ACCMB coffee mug was duly presented to Mr Finnis in appreciation for the visit to CC.

M Finnis then gave a short presentation of the history of CC and its operations in Strathalbyn, before inviting members to view the many classic cars on display and for sale.

Some of those classics included a 1970 Holden LC GTR Torana, 1970 Holden HG GTS Monaro coupe, 1976 Holden HX Limited Edition Coupe, one of only 600 ever to be built, 1956 Ford Thunderbird, along with many more.

As a special surprise for ACCMB members, after a short walk across Rankine St, they were invited to view the contents of an additional storage garage that in days gone by, housed the motor vehicle dealerships of Hupmobile in 1919, along with Ford in the 1960s.

Then it was time for ACCMB members to assemble at the Commercial Hotel in Historic High street to partake in a midday meal.

With the meal complete, ACCMB president Claude Minge thanked Patron Bob and Lyn Hunter for organising another successful outing, along with thanks to the hotel management and staff for their service.

Members applauded in the usual manner of appreciation.

Who was the ACCMB member who won, a "Pale Ale beach towel" at the hotel during lunch, courtesy of a pub scratchie ticket?

With summer around the corner, members look forward to seeing this person on the beach, kitted out with the new towel and bathers.

As an additional bonus to the day, ACCMB publicity officer, Graham Edwards organised an impromptu visit to view the ever impressive Gilbert's Motor Museum across the road from the pub, run and manned by community volunteers as a sub group of the Strathalbyn Tourist Association, and what a tremendous job these volunteers are doing for their community in promoting history.

For a "walk-back-in-time" experience, this ever increasing display of motoring history, motorcycles, vintage, classic, muscle cars and much more, is a must see experience not to be missed on your next visit to historic Strathalbyn.

As the ACCMB is now somewhat back to pre COVID 19 restricted conditions, they welcome members, new and old to join their monthly meetings on the first Tuesday of each month (excluding January) at 8pm.