Happy birthday Surrey New MINI, ten years old today!
Feeling very proud that we've got here, it's taken a lot of work, especially over the past few years, and want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has made it possible by continuing to support the club and our events, which are what really make us what we are. As Ian says, we really are a community of friends now.
Safe to say it's changed my life too; I've learned to do things and been to places I would never have dreamed were possible ten years ago.
Some words I've done for Performance MINI:
A well known presence on the MINI scene celebrates its tenth anniversary this summer.
Surrey New MINI was founded in August 2009 by two local owners, Alastair and James, as there was no active club for modern MINIs in the area at that time. It definitely fulfilled a need, and was soon attracting thirty plus MINIs to regular pub meets. Modern MINI Oscars for Best Club followed in 2010 and again in 2011, and the white, black and lime green SNM logo became a familiar sight at all the major Mini shows, including the Brands Hatch Mini Festival and Mini in the Park.
Members have come and gone as people and times move on, including the founders, but the club continues to make its mark in the MINI scene. The focus is on fun with friends, and as we say: never leave a MINI behind. And some have been active members since the very beginning in summer 2009.
You don't have to be from Surrey to join, indeed we have members from as far away as the West Midlands, and membership is completely free on our forum. Yes, we remain a forum based club; though many these days prefer the convenience of Facebook, we find it still works for us and what we do.
With the rise of the Facebook groups, combined with a decline in interest in the traditional Mini shows, the focus of the club has shifted somewhat in recent years. Never really a tech or tuning club, we've always been more orientated towards the social side of the MINI scene, and the last few years have seen a move to organising more of our own events, with runs, days out, and driving weekends away being very popular, as well as the return of the pub meets. And always ice cream ...
We do still attend selected shows, and a highlight of our tenth year was winning the Best Club Stand award at MINI At Home at Plant Oxford back in May, after a big team effort.
Longer road trips and adventures feature as well, with Wales and the Isle of Wight being favourite destinations for our MINI fun. And among the more adventurous highlights of the past ten years would be a trip across the Atlantic by a few members in 2014 to participate in MINI Takes The States, and last year an epic Euro road trip all the way down to the supercar factories of Modena, taking in the Nurburgring, Stelvio pass, and the legendary Mini roads of the Col de Turini on the way.
So, what will the next ten years bring? Well to start with, our own MINI United weekend at the end of August to celebrate our tenth anniversary, as well as Mini's sixtieth; a return to the Ring in September; and of course more Wales, planning for another group trip next Spring is well advanced.
Hope to see you somewhere down the road!