Keeping ploughing engines, implements and skills alive
It is with great sadness that I have to report the death of Malcolm Ranieri who died in October. Malcolm was always to be seen at many rallies and steam events taking photographs which he willingly shared. He attended many Steam Plough Club events and he always sent us many of the pictures he had taken, some having appeared in Steam Plough Times. He and his work will be greatly missed by us all.
Fowler Archive rescue
The Museum of English Rural Life has announced plans to apply for partial funding to restore its collection of Fowler records which cover a lengthy period of the production at the Steam Plough Works. These records are an invaluable resource covering in detail engine production and much other information. The photograph shows one particular volume the binding of which has almost disintegrated. There are 37 volumes plus a large number of photographic records.
The Steam Plough Club supports fully this application and proposes to make a donation. It will keep members informed of progress regarding this essential work.
Update May 2018
We are pleased to report that the application was successful. Should members wish to make an individual donation to this important project please contact The Secretary.
ROADWORTHINESS – APPLYING FOR ROAD TAX (VED)
There are new rules for applying for Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) for road engines including ploughing engines. These came into force in May 2018.
To obtain VED at the zero rate ploughing engine (and other traction engine) keepers will have to apply for an exemption via DVLA form V112G and quoting Category 26.
There has been a great deal of confusion on this matter and advice you may have seen from elsewhere may have been incorrect. There is no general exemption for road steam as reported previously.
SPC will continue to argue that the only sensible way forward is a general exemption for steam despite representations to government. SPC members may well question why they have to seek an exemption for a test that doesn’t exist for ploughing engines. It is not sensible.
To use an untaxed vehicle (even at the zero rate) can have implications for road insurance and may draw engines on the road to the attention of the constabulary.
Updates will be posted on the website
John Billard 24 September 2018
SIR WILLIAM McALPINE 6th BARONET
SPC member No 36.
We are very sorry to hear of the death on 4 March of Sir William (Bill) McAlpine. He joined the Steam Plough Club in 1967 almost as a founder member and remained with the club for 26 years when he sold his road steam collection. This included McLaren 12 hp ploughing engine 1541 and a pair of BB1 engines. He also looked after the John Allen engine No 67 for many years.
We were privileged on several occasions to visit his steam collection at his home in Fawley where the club was made very welcome. Widely recognised for rescuing the Flying Scotsman from the USA in 1972 his interests were wide and we were privileged to have him within the Steam Plough Club.
6 March 2018
John Allen 12hp No 67, in the care of Bill McAlpine, is demonstrated at Fawley during a 1970s club visit. Photo John Billard
1936 - 2018
We are very sorry to report the death on 6th March at 81 of Robert Oliver after a long illness. He was member No 171 and secretary 1974 to 1976, chairman from 1977 to 2006 and editor from 1988 to 2006. On his 25th anniversary in in the post of chairman in 1993 Robert was accorded the title of life chairman which now lapses.
Robert became chairman at a crucial time for the club which at the time found itself in the doldrums in the years after its inception in 1966. With a new secretary joining him a while later they worked together to invigorate the membership which then rose rapidly. Successes under his leadership included a new Steam Plough Times under the editorship of Bill Padwick, the inauguration of events such as the Great Challenge and Hands On training and turning the annual general meeting into a major social event where on occasion it seemed that almost half the membership attended. Our web site was instituted. A most fruitful relationship was built with the Museum of English Rural Life, at the University of Reading, which continues.
Robert had an interest in the historical aspects of the club and spent many years collating engine records from primary sources such as the records at Reading; a work that he painstakingly assembled over 6-8 years. This became a very early application of computerised records for the club. More recently he encouraged further research as he worked on the records with Dick Eastwood to produce the very successful club publications on this subject.
Regrettably much of his activity was dogged by ill health caused by congenital kidney disease which has affected many members of his family. He had a successful kidney transplant in 1998 which improved his life greatly. In 2004 with his wife Helen he left Croydon after many years and set up in Leominster where he became active in local affairs including chairing the Civic Society. He did much for the things he cared about.
We send our condolences to his family particularly to Helen, his son Michael and his wife Jill, and sister Elizabeth. Without Robert’s influence the club would not be what it is today. We will miss him.
14 March 2018
13TH & 14TH OCTOBER 2018
Click HERE for an initial report and results
Saturday 1st December
THE BIENNIAL LUNCH
and presentation of prizes from
THE GREAT CHALLENGE 2018
ONLINE SUBSCRIPTION RENEWALS
Renewal reminders will be going out in the Steam Plough Times in early December, this year members also have the option of renewing online using PayPal. You don’t need to be have a paypal account to be able to use this method. As Paypal make a charge for this service, there is an extra charge of £1.00 to cover the clubs costs, however you won’t have to pay for a stamp.