The Turner Rally
Sunday June 22nd 2014
The Manor Hotel, Crickhowell, South Wales
The Annual Turner gathering took place on Sunday June 22nd at the traditional venue of the manor hotel in Crickhowell, South Wales which is the hometown of the late Jack Turner.
Set up high on a hillside with stunning views across the Brecon Beacons, the sunshine was out to welcome in all 11 examples of Jack's Turner Sports Cars spanning production years of 1959 - 1966.
A highlight for me every year is the stunning drive through the flowing and winding country roads from Chepstow to Abergavenny, and in the blazing sunshine this year was no exception on both the journey over from Bristol and the return home which was a joy as my father and I drove our Turners in convoy with the red 950S and his yellow MK1 Sports both proving reliable and responsive through these quiet and scenic roads.
We were greeted upon our arrival by local Abergavenny resident and long-time Turner enthusiast Ralph Charles, Ralph has been rebuilding his MK2 to the highest of standards and I was delighted to learn that his car is now running with all electrics now fully functional. Ralph is now pushing on towards his final body shell fitting and finishing and hopefully paint, perhaps even ready for the 2015 Crickhowell gathering if all goes well.
A parade of 3 Turners travelled down from the West Midlands with Brian Shaw and John Cullis representing Wolverhampton with their MK3 Fords and Ken Robbins from Bridgenorth in his pale blue Turner 950S. Ken as a former Turner employee was happy to chat with owners and share his recollections from his time as Jack Turner's apprentice at the works, and was pleased to receive his die cast 1:43 scale 950S model of his own car, which is a new handmade model produced by Turner owner and die cast model maker Barry Smith of BTS Mouldings.
John Butcher represented the Turner Climax model, travelling over in his 1960 MK1 Climax from Essex accompanied upon arrival by Derek and Anna Bentley with Derek's Turner MK1.
Nigel and Jane Taylor travelled from Milton Keynes for the weekend in Nigel's MK1 Alexander Turner which will also be heading over to Le Mans along with Derek and Anna Bentley's Turner MK1 for the Classic during July.
David Norsworthy travelled from Worcestershire in his Turner MK1 which is looking stunning in white paintwork and chrome bright work these days, David's Turner has been a regular each year during his ownership as a rolling restoration and it is always nice to see him arriving now in the stunning well finished car under its own power after the hard work over a number of years to bring this barn find car back to life.
A Highlight without doubt was the rare opportunity to view one of Jack Turner's rare 2+2 GT Saloon models of which only 10 were produced, with Geoff Long bringing over his rare example (GT5) which since restoration he has used on a regular basis on the roads of Ireland and in rally events, Geoff also owns an original Turner Climax MK1 which has a rich history of motorsport in Ireland from new and he has used both cars in competition over the years he has owned them.
I was delighted to receive from Geoff a copy of Irish Vintage magazine (Issue 98 July 2014) which is the main historic / classic publication in Ireland and within the latest edition is a latter Geoff had written, requesting information on the many Turners which were supplied through Easy Built Sports cars of Belfast many of which were used in Irish motorsport competition and have since disappeared without trace. Hopefully this letter will reach those with recollections of the cars and perhaps it may help to unearth new information on their fate or whereabouts today.
My Thanks to Geoff for his support of the rally in making his journey over from Ireland with the GT, and for his efforts to find more information on the Turners of Ireland.
Any Turner gathering in Crickhowell would not be complete without the Green Turner Ford MK2 of Ron Taylor and Liz Taylor. Ron has attended in his Turner every year since the first event was arranged by Dave Scott back in 1986 and once again it was a pleasure to see Ron arrive in 220 WMA which had another trouble free journey from Fairford.
The cars and owners in attendance were
(1) Russell Filby - Turner 950S (1959) 1118 RE (30/222) ,
(2) Ken Robbins - Turner 950S (1959) 9NPC (30/264)
(3) Nigel Taylor - Turner MK1 (1960) 700 AOV (60/291)
(4) David Norsworthy - Turner MK1 (1960) 9551 RE (60/310)
(5) John Butcher - Turner Climax MK1 (60/318)
(6) Terry Filby Turner MK1 (1960) 231 YYC (60/345)
(7) Derek Bentley Turner MK1 (1960) 2 RTD (60/375)
(8) Ron Taylor - Turner MK2 (1962) 220 WMA (62/544)
(9) John Cullis - Turner MKIII (1964) BAX 500B (64/615)
(10) Brian Shaw - Turner MKIII (1966) GOK 444D (66/656)
(11) Geoff Long - Turner GT (1963) 1077 ZE (GT5)
A number of other owners were present who have restorations in progress which included Chris Burnell (62/568), Ralph Charles (62/521), Robert Savage (65/638) and Andrew Turnock (60/410), Unfortunately the Turner race car of Simon & Richard Turnock had blown an engine during the previous day at Pembury so was not able to join us at Crickhowell this year as planned.
Motoring journalist Martyn Morgan Jones also in attendance during the day and left with some interesting ideas for future magazine articles on Turner cars.
My thanks to all who attended for their support and for making the Turner Rally a success once again , August will see Turners return to Wolverhampton for the annual reunion in the city of Turner production so why not come along and support the day which includes a dedicated display on the history of Turner Sports Cars including Power Point presentations and display storyboards , as well as the cars on static display in the grounds of the historic Bantock House & Gardens which is also open to the public as is the coffee shop for food and refreshments during the day .
We hope to see you there...
Follow the link below to the photo gallery.