Monday, 23 December 2013

Christmas Cards & Others That I Love.

Being a Hoarder by nature I have kept a few Christmas Cards and will add to them some of this years.

Here are a few, some of which you are bound to have seen before either on sale or may have received yourselves. 

This Santa Theme has become a national standard with the Charity Shops. This Bicycle version is a first seen for us this year.

Santa in his Morgan has been cropped this year from the larger Snow Scene version of Last Year.

In the version sent to us by Morgan owning fiends Keith & Rita below, it appears that Santa has adopted a pair of Chauffeurs to drive the Morgan this year. We have no idea if the same Morgan appears in each shot, but on this card someone has photoshopped off the top of the windscreen which is not 'Morgan'?

Now! This card sent to me by another Morgan owner stretches the mystery of Santa and his Morgan in that he obviously 'Over Heats' when not clad in his Red Suit in the Snow. 

The Morgan needs an occasional Polish and Mrs Santa, is obviously trying to help by offering her 'Smalls' for additional polishing.

The next two cards issued by The Morgan Sports Car Club may appear to be identical but are not as the original artist made two separate compilations in the new colourings.

For those of you, like me in the Northern Hemisphere who wonder what a Summertime Christmas must be like, This Australian Beach scene from my Niece's family in Perth indicated that while everyone is at home around the Barbee with their Tinnies and bottles of 'Fosters', the Koala and Skippy takes over the beach 

We have a family friend from the time we lived in Burgess Hill West Sussex called Bryan Cresswell. Bryan puts us all to shame by having his cards made each year from a new winter scene painting that he does of a location somewhere in his village. 

Even the Grand Children put us to shame as young Jacob has made his first Card here, printed this year at his Nursery School.

Being a Help for Heroes supporter and fund raiser myself, it was lovely to receive this H4H Injured Bear Card from my old School Friend Barrie, who is not only an avid H4H Fund Raiser but a H4H Area Coordinator for the Cheltenham area along with his partner Susie .

Morgan Centenary Roadster 100 Register Member Lyn, also from Cheltenham, who owns Car No. 100, sent me this non Morgan Motoring themed card this year. Its Close Lyn, very close.

Last year before I set off on my '1000 Mile Rally' H4H fund raiser trip (where you may view my results here) our grand children William & Jacob sent me this super sports car card to wish me good luck with the trip..

This card was made for me as a freebee on the back of a Vista Print order. It features three of our Morgan Roadster 100's (ours is on the left) in front of the best National Trust property of Waddesdon Manor.

On Sunday May 25th 2014 we shall be holding our next All Morgans' Day Help for Heroes fund raising event at Waddesdon Manor, where we hope to gather around 220 Morgan Cars there for the visitors to view.

 Our 2014 Event Details and Fund Raiser Donations Page may be found here.

In a previous Blog Page I spoke about the Morgan Driving Jacket being made by Designer & Tailor Timothy Everest.

In the past Timothy sent me the next two Christmas Cards depicting Santa visiting his lovely old Elder Street, Spitalfields, London, Artelier. Right in the centre of the old Huguenot Silk Weavers area.

My last Morgan Related Christmas card for now is actually a place name card from our first ever visit to the Morgan Sports Car Club's Thames Valley Christmas Dinner. 

Ann & I are the two seated second from the front on each side. It was a lovely evening. 

Have a Very Happy Christmas

If I receive any more related cards I will add them here later.

The MSCC Thames Valley Center Christmas Party at the Harte & Magpies 2009 

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Christmas Time in London

Christmas Time in London

Today I had to take the car in for its Annual Service which meant driving some miles away to another town. Rather that take a Courtesy Car I decided to walk for 5 mins to the local Railway Station and pop into London for the day. 

Being Christmas Time, I took the opportunity to photograph a few Christmas Windows at some of the Major Stores

My journey began at Maidenhead in Berkshire where I took the opportunity to photograph this clock tower opposite the station, available for the first time in passing without some vehicle blocking the view. Needless to say, the Time on the Clock Faces is totally Wrong on both sides!

The Clock Tower on the Maidenhead Inner Ring Road

Arriving in London, I headed for Marble Arch underground station on the Central Line, with the intention of exploring Hyde Park for any Christmas activities there. When I realised that the Fun Fair was at the opposite end of the park, I reverted to my original plan and headed for the massive store which I always enjoy visiting, 'Selfridges' 

Marble Arch and Gate.

On the way along Oxford Street I spotted this new modern Glass Walled building (or put it this way, It was not there the last time I was nearby).

Next door is the Primark Store. During My first career spanning from 1961 to 1976, this was the UK Head Office, Buying Offices and Flagship Store of the German Company C&A Modes or C&A Brenninkmeyer as the German wing is called. The family used to have apartments in the Western Wing. 

Sadley for me they withdrew from Manufacturing in the UK in 1976 and in 2001 they also withdrew from Retailing, closing all of their 60ish stores almost overnight. I believe that they still have a property company who own this enormous building, amongst others.? 

The Old C&A Marble Arch Branch 

Turning to my left, there on the North Side of Oxford Street is the magnificent Selfridges Store decked out in its Seasonal Decor.


The next series of photos are of the Selfridges Christmas Windows each themed around a brand or product

The Playdough Mountain 

The Selfridges Snow Globe Window

 The Jo Malone Perfume Window

The Agent Provocateur Goldfinger Window 

 The Armand De Brignac Gold Brut Window

The Kenzo Snow Scene 

Inside the store, in the toy department, I came across a performance put on by performers from the Giffords Circus Show - I did not stay for the whole show but watched the jugglers in action.

Jugglers Bibi & Bichu Tesfamariam in action with their straw hats.

As I left Selfridges and made my way along Oxford Street eastwards towards Regent Street I took one more quick snap of the store just before a Bus (mirror in the shot) got in my way. Sods Law, I got the Traffic Light instead.

Rather than fight my way through the Oxford Street Crowds I took a shortcut through Hanover Square. On the left of this photo there is a wall of Porta Offices as part of the Cross Rail Development going on across London deep below.

Hanover Square in Autumn. Still a refuge for lunching Office Workers and Tourists.  

In lower St Georges Street I discovered that the Georgian Offices of Coats Viyella, where I was based during 1984/86 when I worked in The PR of China developing factories, is now the 'Mexican Embassy' - How life changes?

It was during this time that young Lady Diana Spencer, soon to be engaged to Prince Charles, was employed by the Nursery School located in one of the buildings opposite.   

 St George Chapel, Mayfair

Once I arrived at Regent Street I took this photo of the Christmas Decorations. They do not look a impressive in daylight as the will when it get0s dark and all of the lights are switched on.

Regent Street

I crossed Regent Street into Great Marlborough Street where I found my next destination. The Liberty Store which is located in one of London's oldest buildings. 

Being the subject of a three program series on TV during the last three weeks I could not miss the chance to see for myself how the store was inside. Chatting to one I of the Sales Assistants, I discovered that they only finished filming the series a few days before the last episode.

On the linking part of the building is the famous clock with its rotating depiction of St George Chasing the Dragon on his White Horse. Under the clock is an inscription - (should have been my own watchwords)

 "No minute gone comes ever back again, take heed and see ye nothing do in vain"

On the roof is located this magnificent Golden Galleon Weather Vane and a set of beautiful set of 5 individually patterned Chimneys.

Over the main entrance flies the Union Jack (the correct way up as well) 

Inside the large volume of customers shopping deterred me from taking more photos other than these two of the Atrium Decorations. 

Looking Down from an upper floor balustrade.

Looking Upwards from an intermediate floor. (I apologise for the blurred shot ) This shot also give you an idea of the lovely interior architecture.

The last part of my visit was to photograph some of the Christmas windows,  the subject of a big unveiling ceremony during the last program in the TV series. 

As I photographed the windows the Liberty Clock struck 1.30pm so I was able to watch St George follow the Dragon and give it a sharp prod with his Spear.

My next visit was to be a walk down Carnaby Street of 1960's Fame. Here is located the 'Back Door' of Liberty which leads into the Chocolate Shop. Here there are two life size model Grenadier Guardsmen sentries guarding the doorway. (You can tell that they are Grenadiers by the touching buttons on their tunics.)

The Liberty Guardsmen

Carnaby Street has never lost its Tourist attraction and is still a warren of Fashion Boutiques and Restaurants. Here are some of this years Christmas decorations.

The famous giant Plug & Socket has been refurbished and given some Christmas Lights.

My quest continues as I re route myself back to Regent Street and travel north again to visit the world famous Hamleys Toy Shop. On the way I spotted this wonderfully disguised building site. This is the way London maintains its beauty during the months or years of shambles going on behind it.

There are not that many windows to Hamleys store so they are very large making it difficult to photograph a whole window. Equally, there are so many people looking at the windows at the same time.

My last set of Christmas Windows are those taken on Piccadilly of the Fortnum & Masons Store as I made my way to the Costa Coffee Shop nearby.

As I passed by I took this quick shot of the store interior through the Fortnums main doorway.

Heading back towards Piccadilly Circus and my Costa Coffee, the Princes Arcade and decorations were worth a photo.

Just along the road from the Arcade is the LLadro Porcelain Figurine Store where I noticed these giant Christmas Themed pieces in the window.

The last window contained these unusual characters which I have never seen in a Lladro Store before? 

Costa Coffee taken, It was time to head back to Maidenhead and wait for the car. As I approached Piccadilly Circus I could see that Eros had been encased inside a giant balloon.

On closer inspection I could see that there was some artificial snow inside and realised that the whole structure was mimicking one of the 'Snow Globes' 

As I turned to make my way into the Underground for my BakerLoo Line Train to Paddington, I took one last photo of Lower Regent Street - Haymarket and the Giant Advertising Boards on Piccadilly Circus. 

A Very Happy Christmas to All My Blog Viewers