Alice Dryden (huskyteer) wrote,
Alice Dryden

Weekend Bonding

So, I don't know if you've heard, but there's a new Bond film out this week. And people are pretty excited about it, perhaps because it's been delayed for so long (originally scheduled for November 2019), perhaps because there hasn't been much to get excited about lately, or much that is British that merits excitement.

This weekend saw a couple of Bond events, and I indulged myself by going to both.

Saturday was Bond Day at the Shuttleworth Collection, featuring an autogyro fly-in and a large presence from the Aston Martin owners' club.

My internet friend and fellow Bond and aviation enthusiast Gary was there with his wife, dad, sister and nephew, and invited me to join the family party. We had a lovely picnic, then wandered up and down the rows of cars, marvelling at their beauty and how much they must cost. Our favourites were the older ones; there were DB-4s, a 3, a 2, and one pre-First World War model from when the company had only just become Aston Martin rather than Bamford.

There was a car kitted out with fun Bond accessories, including an 'ejector seat' that flipped a plush Gromit a foot in the air from the passenger seat, and there was a genuine film star, the Volante B549 WUU from The Living Daylights.

On the autogyro front, Little Nellie from You Only Live Twice, who lives at the museum, was on display, along with over a dozen autogyros flown in by their owners for the occasion. We saw several of the funny little things in flight and it was thrilling.

IMG_1420 (1)


IMG_1440 (1)

On Sunday, I met Howard down in Sussex for Amberley Museum's James Bond weekend.

The museum's site was once chalk pits, and it was used as the location for baddie Max Zorin's Main Strike Mine in A View to a Kill. Amberley retains the mine entrance, train and trucks alongside its vintage vehicles, electrical appliances, craftspeople, exhibitions documenting the area's industrial heritage, and more.

The first thing we did (after lunch) was to board a sweet little steam train that chugs along a track with three little stations. As we travelled we found ourselves overtaking Zorin's train on the other branch, which delighted me.

I loved the 'Electricity' hall, full of electrical items from days gone by that all looked like utter deathtraps (portable electric bath, anyone?). I was especially taken with the 1930s nightlight shaped like a Scottie with light bulb eyes, just the thing for comfort after dark and not terrifying at all, and a display entitled 'A century of domestic light switches'.

Then we visited Zorin's train, where museum staff in coveralls and Zorin Industries hard hats showed us how the controls work and let us pose on the engine for photographs.

We watched the Astons set off for a lap around the grounds, attended a talk by Bond stuntmen then headed home.

Keeping my fingers firmly crossed until I'm actually seated in the cinema watching this film, mind.


Tags: james bond, planes

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