Polybush Joins The Party: A Toads Night Out
Penned by our esteemed Chairman and resident Ex Racing driver, Mr. Mills, This blog recounts the festive celebration of Willie Green’s 80th birthday at the Toad’s Christmas lunch.
As a collective of automobile enthusiasts known as “Toads,” our shared passion for cars, spanning all ages and types, has brought together a diverse group from various corners of the world, each with a unique connection to the world of motorsport. The occasion, marked by the surprise acknowledgement of Willie’s milestone by Stuart Graham, unfolds with anecdotes of racing days when track limits were determined by nature’s boundaries rather than stewards’ rulings. The post, accompanied by splendid photographs and amusing tales, captures the essence of a memorable day, including the presentation of uniquely crafted Polybush Towcaps, adding a touch of motoring flair to the celebration. This reflection on a significant moment in the career of a distinguished driver comes to you courtesy of our Chairman, offering expert insights into the world of automotive enthusiasts and the camaraderie that unites us all.
Via Our Chairman: This year’s Toads Christmas lunch was an occasion to celebrate the 80th birthday of one of its members, the classic car racing driver, Willie Green.
Let me first introduce “Toads” – The name Toads references Mr Toad, the great car enthusiast from Wind in the Willows, which most of us would have read in our childhood. Although some of the younger members bridle a bit, I think of toads as a bunch of geriatric petrolheads. Our common interest is an enthusiasm for the automobile of all ages and types.
It all started with two or three blokes meeting once a month at the Cholmondeley Arms in Cheshire, to talk about cars and motor sport in its widest form. Gradually more and more like-minded chaps joined in until at this year’s lunch we filled the whole Pub!
Nowadays we have Irish Toads, Southern toads and even a Dutch and an Australian toad. Most members have some history of racing, rallying or other forms of motorsport. Some have motor trade connections but others simply enjoy a pint and a natter about all things automobile.
Back to the day in question. Willie was taken by surprise when another member, Stuart Graham, rose to announce that the rather young-looking bloke (I say with some envy) called Willie Green had recently reached 80 years old. Stuart reminded us, with some nostalgia, that when he and Willie started racing no stewards were deciding whether a driver had exceeded the track limits by 3 cm or so, it was the large old trees lining the Avenue at Oulton Park (Our local track) that decided whether you had exceeded the track limits and they were not to be argued with!
Willie was then presented with two magnificent framed collages of photographs (taken by Alan Cox, the gifted Toad photographer) depicting the enormous range of cars that he had raced in his career.
Many of us joined Stuart in being envious of having driven many of the cars especially the Maserati 250 F Grand Prix car from the 50s.
This was followed by a magnificent cake in the form of the speedometer with the needle at 80 mph for his 80 years but perhaps a bit on the slow side!
Following the Lord Mayor’s show came the dustcart when Robert Mills presented Willie with two quite unique versions of the Polybush Towcap. Unique because the normal Polybush insignia had been replaced with the moulded-in word “WILLIE” and were cast in a special green colour. The Towcap is moulded in soft polyurethane to protect the shins when you walk into your towing bracket in the dark, which if you have a fixed towbar, you WILL have walked into at one point or another.
It has a moulded-in strap which is fitted over the tow ball before mounting the cap on the ball. This means you don’t mislay it when towing or on the pull.
As you might imagine, after a well-lubricated Christmas lunch, the description of the fitting and use of the Towcap was the occasion for a wide range of ribald comments and suggestions for its use of a non-motoring variety. Altogether splendid way of marking a special date in the career of a great driver.
Blog written by our Chairman & resident Ex Racing driver, Mr. Mills.