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Well...WE DONE IT!

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I am still trying to put into words what we just done at the weekend - I am working on it but WOW! Just spent the morning looking at the forums around the world and what has been said...totally mind blowing experience.


I will be back with some words later but for now there are 20 shorts clips of the convoy....

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Didn't we just!!!


Awesome weekend with fantastic company, no arguments but plenty of piss taking, have written a little diary of my perspective if you didn't go, have a read!


Well done Jack and the team



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Jack and Kev what can I say ........ words cant explain how I felt over the weekend, such a cool thing to do to give the people there now, an idea of what it was like 65 odd years ago, to see, hear, smell and feel those Tanks and all the other vehicles which made such a sight running on the roads of Dorchester.

I cant think of anything better than looking across the hedge rows and seeing the tops of Shermans roaring along, a thing that will bring a smile to my face forever.


I just feel very humble to have been a part of it, and for compliments of how professional the job was done on the Convoys.


This must go a long way to show that such an event is possible and how the owners act in an outstanding and professional way. Very good plus points for the Historic Military Vehicle World in general.



You da Man....

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This must go a long way to show that such an event is possible and how the owners act in an outstanding and professional way. Very good plus points for the Historic Military Vehicle World in general.



You da Man....


Hear hear! So, where next?

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Well - I can’t really say much more than what has been said already.


If you were at A&E - you KNOW how good the event was and what it meant to be part of it.


If you weren’t fortunate enough to be there - you will have read the words and seen the pictures and this will give you a feeling of how well it all went.


First thing - many thanks to my mate in Grime (tootallmike) who came to my aid Monday morning at 730hrs on the M25, junction 7-6 when the Ward threw it’s toys out of the pram and decided to lose all power. He didn’t just come to my aid but ended up going home and back again for a new fuel filter which cured the fault (after taken the fuel system apart endless times) and got me back home.


Jack - I take my hat off to you. You ignored the kill joys who said you were wasting your time and it would never be allowed to happen (thank god you did). I know a little of the work behind the scenes done by yourself and others to make an idea into a reality and I fully understand just how much had to be done behind the scenes. You proved a point to the doubters and I hope those who have poured scorn at your efforts are enjoying eating their humble pie.


Many thanks David - your efforts in the field kitchen are appreciated by all those who attended. It’s not just the food preparation but your selflessness in missing out on the convoys etc to prepare the days meals as well. Top man.


Kev - the convoy man. Make no mistake - to plan and organise a convoy the size of ours, get it from A to B without dramas and still be able to smile at the end of it takes a genius. Thanks mate.


The DR riders - you’re all bloody mad and top job in escorting the convoy.


The tank owners - thanks, for making this a truly memorable occasion. There is nothing like a piece of armour to really add some sparkle to a convoy. If you ever get the chance - ask Adrian if you can have a look inside his Sherman. Hats off to you mate - forget the fact it’s a Sherman and just admire the dedication in acquiring all the stuff which goes inside it.


All those who attended in whatever shape or form. You, me, (us) made this a truly special event. Not seen in the UK since the preparation for D-Day. If it wasn’t for the dedication of all of us - it quite simply would never have happened - and that would be a crying shame for the people of Dorchester and all those who witnessed this truly remarkable spectacle.


Memories - LOADS OF THEM.


Recovering the Sherman with Mike and our toys - something which the Wards were built to do. The rousing reception when we pulled into base camp with the Sherman on tow. The beaming face of our fearless leader when he realised his dreams had just been made into a reality. The clapping and cheering wherever the convoy went. Meeting up with the many faces of HMVF. Made new friends and met up with old friends.


My most memorable moment.


We were in convoy and passed a little house where an elderly lady was waving out the window but crying at the same time. Brought a lump to my throat and a tear to my eye. This single memory means more to me than all the memories from a great weekend.


Should we do it again - for the pure fun factor, of course we should. But when and how often is another issue. Annual event - I don’t think so. I am in the camp that thinks it was so special because it has never been attempted before and hence never seen before. Maybe on the anniversaries of D-Day - to keep the memories alive and show the younger generation what was happening back before they were born?





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OK OK - I have been trying to put pen to paper all day but still struggling to put all of this into words...but I will.


In the meantime I will share this with you:


The Chief Inspector said to me on Sunday that this was the most proffessional convoy he had ever seen go through town. And that it was the best Carnival Dorchester had had in 40 years. We done good folks.


So in 2008 HMVF won the Bart Vanderveen award. 2009 we raised over £20,000 for the Normandy Veterans Association. 2010 we made history and we created an event that has set the standard of all military events.

Now whats next?

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I took my jeep this weekend with others from the Wessex M.V.T. (sadly, not part of the convoy)


Superb organisation and a great event. My compliments to the Chef.


Here's a few pics' and with the help of 'Picasa' I've got rid of the white lines etc outside the school.





















Edited by Jeff Glasser
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I’m not ashamed to say I cried tears of joy when we were all on the road heading into Maiden Newton for the very first time, I cried when we hit Maiden Newton with the reception we received and again driving through Dorchester. Well I don’t know about anyone else but I feel completely lost now. I am so proud on how we all gelled and worked together without one cross word even though most of us never met before, everything fell into place for those two days in June. How I would love to see an aerial picture of our convoy.



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The phrase should be "We done it ........ and then some"


What an awesome weekend. To have been part of it was a privelege.


Someone said to me and Mrs in Martinstown "This is fantastic but I expect people like you who are into this sort of thing see it all the time" We told him we were probably more stunned by it than he was.


It's hard to put into words exactly how we felt about the whole thing it was just ...well... brilliant.


Hats off to all the team, great job.

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Debrief - you sound like 118-118.


Too long spent in Daves tent I expect.


You'll be unshaven and sporting a red cap next!!!!


Bear with me - I have only just started and I am up to 1000 words already :sweat:

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Part one.





Well where do you start? At the beginning I suppose...


Yes this has been a dream for a while and the fuse was lit by Jim Clark. He had just taken part in Maiden Newton at War in 2008 and said to me ‘why don’t you do that – why don’t you do a Tanks in Town’. So the seed was planted. In the future Jim keep your ideas to yourself........! But on a serious note I knew that with Jim’s support behind me it could be done.

So how do you put something together like this – something that has never been done before? Easy – you do what I always do and that is to think big. If you are going to dream then always dream BIG. Take the challenges that such things will present you and get it done. I am no different then anyone else – I can get nervous and I can question myself but you have to ‘feel the fear and do it anyway’. As Richard Branson once said ‘screw it, lets do it’ and it was with this mindset that I went into this project with.


Critics – thankfully there were many and understandable too. You do need this level of ‘feedback’ as you can use it as a driving force and also as a great way to make sure you don’t fail. It has been said for many years that the UK could never hold a tank event and I was told that it could never happen. The first thing people stated what that it would never get through H&SE, the highways, the Police and other authorities. My answer to that was ‘have you asked the question’? And no one had so I did. I was told it would be a ‘Dorset Disaster’ and how is the ‘c*ck up & Embarkation going....But as I have said before – soak it up and take the positive from it – it is all about self belief. Another sticking point for many was the £15 fee. Folks seemed to think that this was an attendance charge . It wasn’t – it was to provide catering for everyone. It was an objective to make sure no one had to worry about food. We all know the hassle involved in taking food to a show and having to cook after a long day. It was also to make sure we could get everyone together twice a day and to meet new friends – and it worked.


Tough days – this has been a challenge for me and as soon of you know I have been through some times this year. Many times I have had the 1000 yard stare and have woken up in 03:00am in a cold sweat thinking where the hell do I get the strength from to push this through. One of the tools in my box was visualisation – yes it does sound whacky but it works. When you get knock after knock the elf doubt of your brain kicks in and makes you work hard for focus. But when then visual the tanks coming down Dorchester high street and I would do this every time I came back from the office to home as I live in Dorchester. I would do this every time I walked up through town. I had burnt this image into my subconscious so hard that it had to happen. And guess what – it did and that is why I had tears running down my face as we were the first tank into Dorchester.

I was struggling to get the money together to hold A&E as there are many hidden costs that you aren’t aware of. But the main cost was contributing to the cost of getting the tanks here. I knew that this was as such the done thing and knew that I had to do that same but I couldn’t guarantee anyone that I could get the money. I was one hour away from making the decision of pulling the event and then Jim Clark called. I explained the situation to him that I didn’t have the money to send the tankers way and that I was going to pull it. The following conversation was the turning point for me. He told me to call everyone and to explain the situation to everyone as I had just done to him. He said ask them ‘if I couldn’t get the money together would you still come’ It was a big ask but I did make those calls – to the man and I mean to the man they all said ‘Jack, it would be great if you could get the money but if you can’t then we are in – will support you in full, we will be there for you’. That was a very tearful and special moment for me but I knew then that A&E was on. We all have these guys to thank for A&E. I would like to publicly underline the fact this is hobby is indeed full of special people and it is people like this that make this hobby what it is. And this attitude ran throughout everyone who attended A&E and I was lucky to spend the weekend with you all – you all made it what it was.


Backbone – unquestionably A&E wouldn’t of gone as well as it did without some key people and their support for me. The first two are Mark Heliops and Dave Ives. On the Thursday before the weekend Mark and Dave arrived on site and from that moment onwards I knew I was in safe hands. Dave had some issues in getting down to us and he was crucial as he had the cook trailer. Mark was in my office and went straight to work in making calls all around the country to get the spare part that he needed and he sorted it with help from Tony Pearson who picked up the part on his way down to the show. Nothing was too much trouble for Mark as we had a lot of running around to do. Dave Ives came into his own with his cook trailer and worked solidly from the moment he got on site to the moment he left – he feed us all and took care of me and made sure that I was catered for and made sure I would eat and I was looked after (even thou he filled my helmet up with cake when I said I haven’t got a plate) . The guy is one of the most generous people I know and couldn’t do enough for us all. If we had Planks (awards) to give out then he truly deserved to get one. Both Mark and Dave are the most dependable people you could have in your team.


Mark was my Number 1 and so too was Dave – but it has to be said that they were both demoted and promoted to Number 2 on my occasions throughout the weekend when I saw fit. In fact I think they were both demoted to Number 3 at some point and I was promoted to Zero too!!


We then had Jerry Ice arrive to help Dave in the cook house and Jerry worked as hard as Dave over the weekend to feed us all and was another star – in fact I promoted him to Number 1 and Dave slipped down to Number 3 because my coffee was cold. Heliops was still Number 2 at this stage.......


If there was a God award then it must go to Kev Hollis who organised the convoy on Saturday. This guy worked long and hard on this and we all know how successful the convoy was and this was down to Kev and his DR’s. As far as I am concerned this guys walks on water. He had many challenges that day and took them all on, stood his ground and did not flinch. Not even when I was screaming ‘get the f***ing convoy moving I don’t want the tanks get hot’ he would just look at me and say ‘calm down dear – it’s just a convoy’. Priceless and if you ever need a man to run your convoys then ask Kev.

Furthermore, as the Chief Inspector said to me on Sunday – this was the most professional convoy he had ever seen and this was down to Kev and the outstanding work of the DR’s – were these guys fantastic or what? That should be very proud of what the achieved.


Part two to come....

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Bit late in my reply after the weekend, but its taken a while to start coming down off the high.


What a truely awesome weekend, the best MV event i've ever been to and ever likely to for that matter, words just can't do it justice.


It was great to finally meet people who i've only ever conversed with in cyber space before plus some others, to name but a few - Adrian, Jim, Jamie, Phil B, Mark, Mike, Vince, Dave, Bodge, Nigel, Andy, Kit, Darren, Phil, the 2 Sams and of course Jack.


To be a part of the run was just amazing, seeing MVs as far as the eye could see in both directions, and getting such a great reception everywhere we went, i shall remember this one till the day I die.


A few special thanks:

Dave: for cooking the food, as everyone knows cooking food in a field on a poxy little gas stove is an absolute c*#t, having it done for you just made the weekend all the better.

Adrian: for the ride in his tank.

Kev: for organising a truely memorable run.

Nigel: for the jump start when the Jeep decided to throw its toys out of the pram Sunday morning.

The people who gave me lifts in and out of the village: I don't know who you are but thanks.

Jack: he da' man.


Finally, i know Jack said he doesn't want to, but if enough people say it it might just come true, heres to the next Armour and Embarkation.


Once again, thankyou all, Richard

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