MGCC COMBINED CAPE CENTRES & CENTENARY GATHERING
PRINCE ALBERT 2023
The MG Car Club, Combined Southern African Centres, has a long tradition of national gatherings held every two years called Indabas. These gatherings give MG owners the opportunity to drive their MGs to different venues around our country as arranged by the seven Centres alternately, and to enjoy MG fellowship. In addition to the biennial Indabas, in intermediate years, the four Cape Centres (Cape Town, Border, Port Elizabeth and South Cape) organise similar gatherings mainly for their own members.
Sadly, both the 2020 Indaba and the 2021 Cape Centres Gathering were cancelled because of the Covid pandemic. A successful 2022 Indaba was held in Port Elizabeth and preparations are well under way for the 2023 Combined Cape Centres Gathering, to be hosted by the South Cape Centre. This event will incorporate the celebration of the momentous occasion of the CENTENARY of MG in the historic Karoo town of Prince Albert.
The time for this celebration approaches surprisingly rapidly. The venue in Prince Albert has been secured and the places available, unfortunately limited by the size of the only suitable function room in the town, have for some time been fully subscribed.
The Karoo is an inland, flat, semi-desert part of South Africa with wide open spaces crossed by good roads ideal for fast MG touring. The climate is so
dry that rust just does not happen with cars lasting forever. Prince Albert lies just inland of the impressive 2350m. high Swartberg range with only two routes from the coast. The spectacular untarred Swartberg Pass is a must for 4x4 tourists but it is not very MG friendly although many MGs are known to have traversed it. The alternative is Meiringspoort.
We are privileged to have close by, the awe-inspiring Meiringspoort for an MG ‘tops down’ drive-through and exploration, one of the activities during our gathering. A ‘poort’ is a pass following a river in a narrow ravine through a mountain and this one is especially spectacular with 1500m. cliff faces on either side. Various attractions in the town of Prince Albert will also be visited.
The date of the MG centenary has long been controversial. Many including our National President, Norman Ewing, have brought forward what is now accepted as conclusive evidence that 1923 was the year of the sale of the first MG. An extract from a decision of the MG Car Club U.K. dated 11th December 2017 reads, “It has been decided that the centenary year should start in June 2023 and last until June 2024.” While our event precedes this date by a few days, this will not detract from the importance and excitement of our celebration to mark the hundredth anniversary of the marque about which we are all so passionate.
Included in our celebrations will be a group photograph of the attending cars appropriately positioned and a ‘gala evening’ with the theme, ‘100’.
The South Cape organising committee looks forward to welcoming the participants to Prince Albert on 23rd May next year.