SNITTERFIELD WI

APRIL 2016 REPORT

Jacky Legge “The Exhibitionist” is the name she went by while working for Rover and at our monthly meeting on Wednesday, 13th she explained how this nickname had materialised when she spoke about “Exhibitions and Me.”

Jacky was employed by Rover at Longbridge, initially in administration but was soon organising exhibitions for Rover and Landrover at motor shows both in the UK and around the world. She regaled us with her tales while working at Motor Shows in Belfast during the troubled years, the awareness of not standing out as being British, the armed soldiers on the streets and of running an exhibition after being informed of a bomb scare.

She was involved with Classic Car Shows in Germany, the Institute of Directors Show in London and whenever a new car was launched, an exhibition had to be organised. She chose the uniforms for the promotional “girls”, hats (being Jackie’s trade mark) were always part of the uniform. She trained them so that they knew all about the technical details of the cars, were informed and able to discuss the cars in a professional manner.

In 1991, Jacky set out with her team to Iran, although Jacky was conservatively dressed, she was taken on a “shopping spree” and was soon sporting the obligatory black Abaya and Shayla. The windows of her 10th floor room were riddled with bullet holes, she was struck by the poverty, the vast difference between the “haves and the have nots.” The locals were friendly but really only communicated with the men on the team. She visited a mosque, the market, the deposed Shah’s palace with it’s wall to wall silk carpets, jade statues and among them a statue of the Shah that had been cropped off at the knees.

The organisation of the exhibition was not without it’s difficulties, six days were spent building the ramps and stands but the cars were only released by customs the night before the exhibition. She recalled how two members of the Hezbollah who had walked into the initial meeting, disregarded Jacky, speaking only to the rest of the group through an interpreter, had walked up to her on the day of the exhibition and congratulated her for her hard work and the success of the event, in perfect English!

Jacky said that it was a sad day when Rover stopped making the Metro and despite organising the £1800000 International Motor Show, she still considers her work in Iran as being the most exciting thing she has ever done.

As a woman she had to earn her spurs in a man’s world and be accepted and she was able to do this by always being fair.

Jacky is a member of the Snitterfield WI, our Vice President and lives in Snitterfield.