Plan 2021

21/3/2021 By trailer from Cape Town to Mutare Zimbabwe  Purple
29/3/2021 Start of 2000km trip: Mutare, Bulawayo, Harare, Lusaka, Kitwe  Red
21/4/2020 By trailer Kitwe, Victoria Falls Hwange, Jo’burg, Cape Town Purple

‘Back to Africa in a Morris Minor in 2021’

‘Back to Africa in a Morris Minor’ trip will commence on 29th March 2021 from Mutare Zimbabwe.  Due to Covid-19 the plan has been revised and brought forward.  On 17th April is the day 91 years ago that the car (chassis M10228) left the Morris factory at Cowley Oxford England as certified, by the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust.

Phase 1 – Transport car to South Africa and final preparations

Phase 2 – Tour of Zimbabwe (past owners addresses)

Phase 3 – Tour of Zambia (to Itimpe where found 1970)

Phase 4 – Return to Cape Town

Phase 5 – Return to UK July 2022 by ship

The Morris is happy to cruise at around 35-40 miles (56-65 km) per hour.  Covering up to 200 miles (320 km) a day will be quite sufficient for both the driver and this little car.  However, we will make regular stops in addition to some site seeing.

PHASE 1 – Mid September 2019 the Morris Minor was shipped from England and arrived 23rd October in Cape Town South Africa.  Now the revised plan after postponing in 2020 due to Covid-19, we leave Cape Town on  21st March  2021, with the Morris on a trailer, we will drive north hopefully along with an entourage of friends.

PHASE 2 – We plan to arrive early in Mutare (Umtali) in Zimbabwe for local sightseeing and birding over a few days.  While in Mutare we will visit the local newspapers to see if they still have copies of their 1929 publications or perhaps at the city library.  We hope to find reports concerning the delivery of three new Morris Minors that we understand were probably be the first to arrive in the country.

Records show that the car was registered as U750 by Mr George Ward (founder of Tanganda Tea Estate) who gave his address as the Hillside Golf Club in Mutare.  This is where the formal journey commences.   Bob (Robert Leonard) Hickley of Mutare who is ex Kitwe, Zambia has kindly offered to host us in Mutare.  We also hope that a small reception with local car enthusiasts can be arranged before we embark on the 2000km safari around Zimbabwe and to Zambia.

We will depart the Hillside Golf Club on 29th March 2021 passing the Mutare office of Tanganda Tea Company then journey south west to Bulawayo.   We will take the A9 to Masvingo (Fort Victoria) then stopping at Zimbabwe Ruins for a photo shoot.

By 31st March we should arrive in Bulawayo where members of local car clubs plan a street parade and reception.  Bruce Beckley and Arnold Nyadete have offered assistance.  Perhaps even a Morris and Mini motorcade towards Bulawayo would be fun.

We will visit the original Isolation Hospital (2nd owner) and RAF Cranbourne (old name) (3rd & 4th owners) then a side trip to Rhodes Grave at Matopos for a photo shoot.

After say two nights we will depart Bulawayo with an overnight stop in Gweru 165km away. Next day a very early start on the road for the long haul of 275km to Harare.

Arriving in Harare (Salisbury) on 6th April we look forward to meet the Vintage Car Club of Zimbabwe who plan to host us led by Bob and Margaret Rose. It would be wonderful if the next day the VCCZ can arrange a parade of their cars and then a reception at “The Dripping Well” at 15 Rossal Road Kamfinsa in Harare.  I would be happy to give a power point presentation on the car’s history.

If the Central Vehicle Registry in Harare is still operational then I would like to visit them and pay the 25 cent search fee that they asked for on 3rd March 1971.  A friend in Harare had arranged for the vehicle archive search.  Unfortunately politics of the day prevented me to paying the modest search fee from Zambia!

While in Harare we would hope to meet the Chairman of Tanganda Tea Estate, Mr James Ward descendant of George Ward (1st owner) founder of this 100 year plus company.

Other addresses to visit will be (5th & 6th owners) ex RAF Belvedere and then Collingwood Farm, Concession where Lt Willy Bates of RAF last lived.

The 7th owner was at Hunyani, PO Glen Athol Estate, Banket.  Then to Plot 1, Frazer Rd. Park town where the 8thowner lived.  Next is Parkview Grand Hotel for the 9th owner the 10th at Ngorp Farm, Headlands.

We will drive to Ruwa Park where Peter attended the Central African Scout Jamboree in 4-9th May 1959.

PHASE 3 – The journey to Zambia will commence around 11th April , through part of the Zambezi Valley and escarpment but deviating from Mrs Lang’s trip to cross the Kariba Dam Wall for an overnight stay at Siavonga.  Then we make our way to Lusaka arriving 13th April where Ginty Melvill hopes to be able to organise a drive through the city main Cairo Rd. together with a convoy of cars, bikes, Police outrider escort, TV coverage, Press, etc.  We hope a reception and lunch can be arranged at the Lusaka Protea Hotel.

By 16th April  we will travel to Kabwe for a night stop in preparation for the long drive to the Copperbelt.

Arriving in Kitwe on 17th April , the town where Peter grew up,  will feel like coming home.  Local arrangements are under discussion.

Next day we will visit Itimpe (Garneton) a few miles out of Kitwe to find the small holding and position where the Morris was discovered in 1970.

Afterwards, visits and photos to all Peter’s former homes in Kitwe and Kalulushi; this will end the formal tour of ‘Back to Africa in a 1929 Morris Minor’.

PHASE 4 – After placing Morris on the trailer we expect to leave Kitwe on 21st April , taking a steady drive down to Livingstone with an over night stay near Choma to do some birding.  We plan an arial photo shoot of the Morris driving over Victoria Falls Bridge.  We will visit Hwange Game Reserve and make a steady return to Cape Town with rest stops and sightseeing along the way.

A professional video and still photographer will accompany us. He will record all our activities with the view of producing a DVD of this unique event. Further I will take detailed notes for a book to be published shortly after the tour.

PHASE 5 – July 2021 The Morris returns to UK by ship.