I was born in Solihull and spent my childhood living not much more than a stone’s throw
away from the Rover / Land Rover plant. I was interested in cars as far back as I can
remember and learned to drive at 12 in my Grandfather’s Ford Thames van ( on private
ground ), bought my first car, an Austin A40 Farina Mk 2 at 16 so that I was ready to take
to the road legally at the stroke of midnight as I turned 17, took and passed my driving test
4 days later and have loved being behind the wheel ever since.
I started my working career in the Motor Industry with an Apprenticeship at what became
Leyland Cars, then Jaguar, Rover, Triumph based at Lode Lane, Solihull. My Father spent his
career in Interior Body Design, also at the Rover plant so I sort of followed in his footsteps.
After graduating with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, I specialized in Exhaust Emission
Control systems and had lots of fun with developing Range Rover for the US market, putting
the Buick derived Rover V8 into Land Rovers and the Triumph TR8 and with Morgan for the
+8.I was offered a position back in 1980 with Lotus Cars out in Norwich to run their
Emissions Lab for the Lotus product and DeLorean, but at the same time I was offered a
position as a Development Engineer for Gas Turbine Engine Fuel Control systems, by
The salary and prospects at Lucas were much better and I was courting my now wife Julia at
the time, we were looking to buy a house together, so the latter opportunity was the one I
followed. I found myself working with Nigel Mansell ( yes that’s the one ! ) and his father Eric,
those were good days ……. and I have been in an Engineering role in the Aerospace Industry
for over 37 years.
I specialise in mechanical components, mostly high performance bearings with design &
development consultancy for a number of major OEM’s including Pratt & Whitney, UTC
Aerospace Systems and
Parker Aerospace as well as projects for the US Government which is why collectively, I spend so
much time away from home in the USA supporting these activities.
Cars however have always been in my blood, so having restored an MG Midget, a Lotus Elan
+2, a Jaguar XK150 and 2 E-types, a third E-type was sold as an incomplete project when
we moved to Germany with 2 young children back in 1993, but I have always had a love affair
with BMW having dreamed of owning an E23 M625CSi and how I wanted an E21 323i. My first
however, was an E30 320i as a Company car back in 1988, followed by an E36 325i in 1991 and
then a long gap until a new dream became a reality in June 2009 with my current pride & joy,
the E60 M5. The M5 has always been for me that perfect blend of a sports car for the family that
can be a normal family saloon one minute, but push that M button and it becomes a beast !
We also have 2 other BMW’s in the household with an F15 X5 30d M-sport and an F21 118d M-sport
As I have always enjoyed working on cars, I continue to tinker with the M5, it is not an easy car to work on which is what makes it all the more rewarding to do so, and though it is not a daily driver, neither is it a garage queen, I love to drive the car and look forward to taking it from its regular winter SORN status and onto the road for the Summer months.
I joined the Car Club in 2009 after purchasing the M5 and attended weekend events notably the first Invasion of the Lakes in 2012 and the Welsh Weekend in 2013 and a few pub meets before taking the plunge to become more involved. I launched the Cotswold Region in August 2014 following discussions with Cotswold Motor Group and the then Car Club Chairman and these factors have given rise to my increasing interest, activity and deeper involvement in the club.
I was invited to join the Board of Directors following a board meeting in September 2016. Having given it some serious thought, I accepted the position on the strict understanding that I was not interested in just making up numbers and wanted to make a positive contribution towards the day to day running of the club and its future.
My role as such is still in a process of evolution with Dealer Liaison and its primary goal to develop a structured network of dealer partnerships throughout the Country, International relationships with other BMW Car Clubs around the World and I have volunteered to take a leading role in the planning and execution of our Annual National Festival.
Jamal Blanc – Chairman- firstname.lastname@example.org
Design & planning of Car Club – stationary/event flyersTo work with office – with co-ordination and marketing the futures of the club
Neil McDonald- Motorsport Director- email@example.com
Currently looking after Motorsport and BMWCCR
Richard Stern – Technical Director - firstname.lastname@example.org
Dave Evans- Region and Register Director- email@example.com