Suart and Gill Allan's Healeys

His and Hers Healeys
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zacmarshall
Posts: 5236
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2005 4:22 pm
Location: Bristol, UK

Suart and Gill Allan's Healeys

Post by zacmarshall »

Stuart and Gill are the club's new International Weekend Organisers.

This is their story:

We are in the process of taking over the organisation of the International Weekend and realising the work which will be necessary to fill the big shoes vacated by Tony & Joan Davies.

It is hard to identify when my interest in the marque was first kindled, growing up about 5 miles away from a Jensen dealership in Wilmslow (Cheshire), sightings of Interceptors were not infrequent. I do recall that when one flashed past the school bus queue there was silence as everyone followed it with their eyes; my interests however were more focussed on motorsport, Oulton Park Circuit was just down the road and there were always rallies being held in the nearby Peak District.

Although I had a hankering after a (big) Austin Healey, reality intervened and like most of my contemporaries I found that a Morris Minor was as far as Saturday jobs would take me. I went to Sheffield to study dentistry and left actual competition to my brother who went on to rally at international level. (He was kind enough to let me crew for him when studies allowed!). This period coincided with the launch of the Jensen Healey as a successor of sorts to the Austin Healeys, and I did see more than one on the streets of Sheffield. Years later I realised that I had been living no more than a mile from David & Helen Newby so one of these sightings must have been of him/them.

One of my student jobs was cleaning, and occasionally selling, cars in a second hand garage. The owner had taken a JH in part ex, it had a blowing exhaust manifold and the mechanics took one look and kept pushing it to the back of the garage. Eventually the boss was amenable to a cash offer which meant he didn’t loose on the deal and with the blind optimism of youth I assumed a new manifold and MOT would see me on the road in a few days. It turned out that the extensive welding etc. etc. and replacing the exhaust manifold actually took six months, my then girlfriend who participated extensively in this process then, for reasons she has never been able to explain, accepted my proposal of marriage and 35 years later we aim to organise the International Weekend jointly.
We did of course join the club, our first International being in Cheltenham though in those days our Healey was not allowed to be parked with the big boys. By this time I had qualified and was undertaking research, teaching at the University and working in practice, for 3 or 4 days per week this involved commuting between Sheffield and Manchester over the (in)famous Snake Pass. The Healey was surprisingly reliable though a real handful in the snow, the miles mounted up and when we reached 110K power was lacking and oil usage was getting silly. The tin worm was evident in the usual places and the advent of children made a 2-seater somewhat impractical. Retiring her gracefully into an old garage we had to withdraw from the fun of classic ownership for a while.
Once our younger daughter had started learning to drive it seemed time to wheel the project out, time had not been kind; a case of a soft bottom as well as top. There were parts which were too far down the road of returning to nature to repair, but Andy Brooks had a Healey with a solid body and it was a case of two into one and soon we were back on the road. In time I commissioned one of Martin Shirley’s masterpieces to replace the engine and also fitted the uprated brakes Martin can do, each previously described in the Jensen magazine or Torque.

Of course nothing is straightforward and there were plenty bits left over so it seemed natural to have a second project; the second Healey returned to the road last summer.

Of course the most important part of having the car on the road was getting back into the swing of JOC activities. The International Weekends and Concours being very useful for making sure I have actually put cables etc back where they ought to be as well as renewing old acquaintanceships. The club stand at the NEC is an annual must, as are the spring and Yorkshire weekends. Further afield we greatly enjoyed the fabulous Scandinavian tour and the club outings to Classic Le Mans. The Cheshire section under the expert guidance of Adrian Howells puts on a terrific display to the local shows, only my innate modesty prevents my mentioning the section’s famous breakfast BBQ being the envy of the car club fraternity.
We do see the International Weekend as the heart of the club, we are under no illusion that anyone, least of all us, has a monopoly of wisdom regarding the events and would welcome any ideas and suggestions for the event in the future.

Stuart & Gill Allan

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Stuart enjoying himself at last years International.

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Jill

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MML169L at the rather wet 2013 International

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The engine bay of MML 169L

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MML169L on the club stand at GMEX in 2012

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and at Tatton park

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Yorkshire Weekend

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A pause on the way to the LeMans Classic in 2012

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Piggy in the middle

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JKJ 848N at the 2006 International
C-V8 II 104/2146 CHJ 948B
ex FF II, Interceptor I, II and III, SP, GTs and Healeys. You might say I got the bug....
JOC Member No. 5061
Lotus Mike
Posts: 262
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2012 12:44 pm
Location: exeter

Re: Suart and Gill Allan's Healeys

Post by Lotus Mike »

Great looking cars both of them :D Mike
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