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In 1969 a number of members of the south Staffordshire caravan’s all purchased Buccaneer Caribbean caravans, they  were 13’ 6” long, on a rubbery Owen chassis and were a good buy at £569 (each).

A year later . One of the group Ron Marriott suggested that an owners club could be formed, the idea was discussed within the group who then decided to approach the owners of the Buccaneer caravans, Jim Harrison and Albert Thundercliffe to ascertain their views.

They agreed that in principle it was a good idea and they would like to meet the people involved before giving the venture their approval.  A meeting was arranged at the Turf Hotel on the A5 near Cannock with Jim Harrison and Albert Thundercliffe.  They were suitably impressed by the proposals and gave their permission for the launch of the club plus a £20 donation for initial expenses.

An inaugural rally was arranged to launch the club, Cannock Chase was chosen as a venue due to its central position and ease of access for those who would be organising the event.  There was an additional bonus, namely the facilities at the forestry office were free.

All agents who had sold Buccaneer caravans were contacted and were requested to inform any clients who had purchased Buccaneers that a rally had been proposed.  The day arrived Friday 9th October 1970, arrangements all in hand signs out, pit dug, marshals ready.  The organisers were quite nervous at this stage. Would the venture be a success? Would any vans arrive?

The first van to arrive was that of a dentist and his family John Parson, all the way from Newcastle on Tyne, the second outfit on site belonged to Ken Bond and his family (which included their cat Jenna!), from Swansea south Wales.  During the weekend 26 caravans assembled, 20 were Buccaneers (one an original pre 1968 vintage) and 6 were other outfits. The owners of these vans generously offered their time and expertise to help organise the first meeting.

Mr D Edwards – South Staffs CC ( Hon Sec )

Mr V Webb – South Staffs CC

Mr R Broomfield – Ace Club ( Chairman  )

Mr J Collins – South Staffs CC

Mr E Gilbert – Ace Club ( Hon Sec )

A social was held in the village at Sitting Mill on the Saturday evening for everyone to get together for a chatter and a natter, it was a friendly and successful night.

On the Saturday morning an inaugural meeting was held in the Forest Deer Museum Mr E Gilbert chaired the meeting, it was well attended with over fifty people present, it was proposed and accepted that an owners club be formed nominations for club officials  were taken from the floor of the meeting and votes were casts, the results were

Mr W Tyler (Chairman)

Mr N Rushton (Hon Sec/ Tres)

Mr R Marriot

Mr N Rosenthall

Mr N Snow

The rally was declared a success and made a profit of £4-10-00d!!!

As a result the committee were filled with enthusiasm to promote the club.

 

A rally programme of 6 events were soon organised for 1971 and an application for an exemption certificate was applied for from the Department of Environment.  The club initially given permission to organise the programme using licensed sites, a copy of the constitution was submitted for the approval of the DOE and following a trial period an exemption certificate was issued.

Committee members and their families attended many rallies travelling hundreds of miles lobbying every Buccaneer owner that they met to join the club.  A subscription of £1 gave them membership of the club and for an additional 15/- they could purchase a pennant.

During the next few years membership steadily grew along with the number of rallies held. The club soon earned itself a reputation of being friendly and ‘go ahead’. Events were held throughout the country ( anywhere a member was prepared to organise a rally . weekends, five days, holiday’s, national and continental rallies, some members ventured beyond the arctic circle and into Asia ( where they appeared on tv ) spreading the word that Buccaneer Owners Club was worthy of membership.

You may wonder about the origin of the Buccaneer logo, a competition was held to design the logo and it was won by Norman Rosenthall, his distinctive badge is now seen on most Buccaneer caravans.  And the roundel is still used to this day being out outside by the rally Marshall's caravan’s

From its inception the club had developed a close relationship with the staff at Buccaneer caravans Ltd, members of the club receive a warm welcome at the factory, where their views on alterations or modifications are heard and sometimes incorporated into the new models.

The club always appealed to a wide cross section of the community, many a member has asked the question, “Why did they purchase a Buccaneer”? and “ what is the special ingredient that bought us together?” whatever the answer it has worked.

2020 is the 50th anniversary of the Buccaneer Owners Club and the club will continue on for many years to come.

 

Past Chairmen of the Club

W.H.S Tyler*-------------------------1970 - 1974

N Rushton* --------------------------1974 – 1976

P.Buckle ------------------------------1976 – 1978

A. Russell* --------------------- ------1978 – 1980

J.B. Stevenson* --------------------1980 – 1982

F.G.T. Whitt --------------------------1982 – 1986

C. Lawton Thomas --------------- -1986 – 1990

M.R. Ward* -------------------------- -1990 – 1994

M. Hayden ---------------------------1994 – 1996

M.R.Ward* ---------------------------1996 – 1998

S.Ramsden --------------------------1998 – 2002

R.Lapper ------------------------------2002 – 2006

C.A.Green ----------------------------2006 – 2010

R.G.Grainge --------------------------2010 – 2015

A.Paterson ----------------------------2015 - 2018

* Deceased

 

Buccaneer owners Club

 

How it all began

 

1st committee

 

Past Chairmen of the Club