Club Awards A Trio of Motoring Literature Awards

To view images from the event click here.

At an evening ceremony, the Club hosted its annual Motoring Book of the Year awards on Wednesday 30 October. The prestigious awards once again drew together authors, publishers, media and the book trade from around the world to celebrate their accomplishments over the past 12 months.

Lifetime Achievement Award

After a welcome to the evening by Club Chairman Ben Cussons, Simon Taylor hosted the ceremony, and began by announcing the winner of the ‘Lifetime Achievement’ award.

To receive the award was his wife Annette and his two sons, J and Chris.

John Haynes OBE creator of the iconic Haynes Manual and founder of the Haynes Publishing Group was posthumously awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition to his significant contribution to the UK’s motoring book industry.

His wife Annette Haynes collected the award on his behalf and said “John would have been immensely honoured and amazed to receive this award. He always said that the success of Haynes Publishing was not him alone. I know he would be quick to dedicate it to all the people that supported and helped the business throughout the years”.

John Haynes moved to the UK when he was 12 to enrol in boarding school. It was there he persuaded his House Master to allow him to miss rugby, to spend his time converting his £15 Austin 7 into a lightweight sporty Austin 750 Special.

Not only did he sell the finished car and made a profit, he produced a booklet ‘Building A ‘750’ Special’ featuring his hand drawn step-by-step illustrations. He ran off 250 copies on a stencil duplicator and the booklet sold out within 10 days at five shillings a copy!

Several years later when he was in the Royal Air Force, he agreed to help a colleague to rebuild a ‘Frogeye’ Sprite. Finding the factory manual was lacking in detail, he bought a camera and pictured the step-by-step process of dismantling and reassembling the engine.

Thus, in 1966 the very first Haynes Manual for the Sprite was published and its first print run of 3000 sold out in under three months. The rest you could say is history.

Haynes is now the world’s leading publisher of automotive repair manuals and renowned for teaching millions of car owners how to carry out routine maintenance and repairs. The use of step-by-step photo sequences linked to diagrams is the trusted hallmark of Haynes Manuals. To date, in excess of 200 million manuals have been sold covering over 1,000 different models. John has helped keep millions of motorists on the road and leaves behind a huge legacy.

His ambition was evident from an early age – with Annette remembering that at just 25 he wanted to become the biggest and best publisher in the world. The Club’s award recognises both John’s lofty ambitions and success.

Specialist Book of the Year Award

After an onstage interview with the Haynes family, it was on to the Specialist Book award. After Simon announced the shortlisted titles, he called Ben Cussons to the stage to announce the winner. The surprise was clear when it was announced that his book had won.

The Specialist Book of the Year Award which, in the opinion of the judges, is a feat of impeccable research and flawless writing regardless of its retail cost was awarded to Simon Taylor for ‘John, George and the HWMs: The First Racing Team to Fly the Flag for Britain’ by Evro Publishing.

Judge Mick Walsh of Classic & Sports Car said “A definitive history that is both hugely enjoyable to read and superbly presented, Simon Taylor’s book is a terrific tribute to the HWM team”.

Judge Gordon Cruickshank from Motor Sport commented “Enjoyable and of course well-written. Overdue in subject, excellent presentation, some great tales”.

Simon Taylor has a lifelong passion for HWM. In 1999 he realised his childhood dream when he became the custodian of the Ex-Stirling Moss HWM Stovebolt Special and there is nobody better qualified to write the definitive history.

The two volume 528-page masterpiece covers the biographies of the fascinating and poignant people associated with Hersham & Walton Motors, its racing story, the 19 individual cars and the men who raced them along with their specifications and ownership chains.

The book is packed with a superb wealth of period pictures sourced from libraries and private collections worldwide and paints an evocative picture of a period of motor racing that marked the beginnings of Britain’s prowess in the sport.

Motoring Book of the Year Award

The shortlist for the Motoring Book of the Year was an impressive list, but the accolade for the ‘Motoring Book of the Year’ went to Matthew Field for ‘The Self-Preservation Society 50 Years of the Italian Job’, published by Porter Press International. A unanimous decision by the judges.

Christian Whitehead from Foyles said “It’s a treasure trove of archive material with stills, behind the scene shots, promotional cinema posters and engaging facts of the stresses that the film crew had to endure. You can’t help but smile at the story of the making of one of Michael Caine’s best loved films”.

Mick Walsh from Classic & Sports Car said “A remarkable celebration of this cult movie classic that author Matthew Field has researched passionately since his teenage years. Bloody brilliant!”.

The 335-page book includes more than 50 in-depth interviews with the cast and crew, and is beautifully illustrated with hundreds of never-before-seen photographs and production documents from the filmmakers’ private collections providing a fascinating, behind-the-scenes look at how the British classic made its way to the big screen and includes a foreword by Sir Michael Caine and an introduction by Academy Award-winning Producer Michael Deeley.

The evening was a wonderful celebration of the talent which exists within the world of automotive publishing.

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