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Steam cars and the MOT
Posted by: Mike Clark (
Date: September 17, 2009 05:09PM

Steam cars and MOTs

I hear from people who attended the GDSF that the newly formed NSCA continue to tell people that SCCGB members are driving cars which do not have an MOT certificate, and that this is condoned by the Club. This is quite untrue and if the NSCA are saying this it can only be seen as the deliberate and malicious spreading of misinformation intended to damage the SCCGB..

The history of steam cars and whether to MOT or not to MOT is extremely confusing as the DVLA themselves for several years were wrongly interpreting the law and did not require steamers to be tested. Being concerned about this when I first ran my car in 2001 I spoke to the DVLA and the Vehicle Inspectorate who were adamant that my car did not need to be tested so I ran without an MOT for two or three years. Later on, the DVLA, prompted by some correspondence in "The Automobile" in 2006, revisited the subject, realised their error and, through the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs made it clear that we should have our cars tested.

From that time onwards the Club have known, and have made it clear to members, that steam cars do need to be tested. This was stated clearly several times in the SCCGB Ltd magazine, in one instance by Joy Davis in her capacity as Secretary at the AGM of the Limited Company in 2007, with a further confirmation by Bill Rich in his Chairman's letter prior to the AGM of 2008. The Club's insistence that members' cars have MOTs was specifically discussed with Joy and Haydn Davis and with Peter Williams at the time of the Blue Stones Tour in 2008 and clearly Gerry Stoneman as a member of the Committee also knew of this.
The subject was also discussed in detail when Greg Walker and I met Gareth Jones and Sally-Ann Dodd prior to the EGM of the SCCGB Ltd in May this year when I explained the history of steamers and the MOT as outlined above. I also confirmed that the policy of the SCC (as it was called at the time) under the Chairmanship of Basil Craske is that members' cars must comply with the law and that it is the responsibility of the member to ensure this, including obtaining an MOT certificate.

The NSCA, of which Mr Jones is a Director and Ms Dodd, the Secretary, therefore know very well the policy of the SCCGB on MOTs as do other members of the G14. There is absolutely no excuse for NSCA members to continue making allegations about the SCCGB which they all know are untrue - this is hardly the action of an organisation which hopes to be taken seriously.


Edited 1 times. Last edit at 12/10/09 09:58AM by Jeff Theobald.

Re: Steam cars and the MOT
Posted by: mike mutters (
Date: September 18, 2009 04:07AM


Thank you very much for airing this important matter up on the Forum.

I too ran the Whitney for a couple of years in the mid '90s without an MOT as the DVLC confirmed that an MOT was not required. Fortunately, I decided to check with my insurance company, AON who confirmed that they would be happier with one.

Bearing in mind that our Club has made considerable effort to clarify the matter to us and that those of us who use our cars regularly were aware of the legalities some considerable time ago, I cannot understand why members of a breakaway club should find it neccesary to make such scurrilous claims.

Re: Steam cars and the MOT
Posted by: Jeff Theobald (Moderator)
Date: September 18, 2009 11:11AM

Hi Mike,

This subject was first aired by myself in the July 1999 issue of the SCCGB Ltd magazine 'The Steam Car'

I wrote this, as I too had cars where an MOT was not asked for when re-licensing, the next issue Oct 1999 carried two letters both quoting the regulations which applied to all motor vehicles at that time, the regulations clearly stated that MOTs were required by ALL motor cars below 3,500 kg in weight.

Because some cars were still not being asked for MOTs as late as 2002, Bill Rich as Chairman of the club wrote a letter which appeared in the October 2002 page 42, where he clearly states in the biggest wording possible that all steam cars require an MOT.

I suggest that anyone in doubt should read The Steam Car Club of Great Britain statement which can be found by clicking here:-

MOT Information

Regards, Jeff.

Re: Steam cars and the MOT
Posted by: Mike Clark (
Date: September 18, 2009 03:19PM


My point was not that steam cars need to have an MOT, we all know that, but that there seem to be some among the G14 who are still saying that the SCCGB in some way does not believe in MOTs.

This appears to be part of their recruiting stratagy by which they seek to present the NSCA as the only true path for the responsible user of a steam car. If they are still doing this it is a malicious slur, intended to damage the SCCGB. They must stop.


Re: Steam cars and the MOT
Posted by: (
Date: September 20, 2009 04:12PM

Interesting to note this extract from the NSCA website;

NSCA strongly encourage all their members to ensure that they have an up to date MOT certificate wherever they go, and no member is allowed to attend a NSCA event without one.

not quite the same as stating the fact that it is a LEGAL requirement!

Re: Steam cars and the MOT
Posted by: Mike Clark (
Date: September 20, 2009 05:35PM

It was my impression from the meeting with Gareth Jones and Sally Ann Dodd that they were not aware that an MOT is a legal requirement for steam cars. I wondered at the time where they had been for the last few years to miss the discussion of MOTs in the magazine.


Edited 2 times. Last edit at 09/20/09 06:18PM by Mike Clark.

Re: Steam cars and the MOT
Posted by: les nelson (
Date: October 4, 2009 07:52AM

I thought I should mention that as I was manning the SCCGB stand at GDSF a "punter" said "them lot up there (NSCA) say you lot don't have boiler inspections" of course I put him right and he joined our club
Make of that what you will, but for now I am going back out into the sunshine in Kefalonia Regards to all Les Nelson

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