A former employee of the Abingdon MG factory was taken on a surprise trip down memory lane by the team at the care home where she now lives.

Valerie Mackie, who lives at Bridge House Care Home, started working in the offices at the factory in the 1950s where her mother, Elsie Cummings, already worked as one of only two female mechanics.

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The 89-year-old’s trip to the MG Car Club facility at Kimber House was made extra special after a member of the team found an old album containing pictures of her mother at work.

“Mrs Mackie was sharing so many wonderful memories from her time at the factory with the team at the club,” said lifestyle manager Chantelle Merritt, who organised the trip.

“When one of the team, Colin Grant, brought out an old photo album from his dad’s time working at the factory, Mrs Mackie found pictures of her mum inside.

“It was an extra special and emotional moment for everyone to see how much it meant to Mrs Mackie.”

The trip was organised as part of the ‘Wish Wednesday’ initiative at the 71-bed home where the team make residents’ wishes come true.

Mrs Mackie recounted how her mum knew every nut, bolt and screw of the legendary British cars and said there wasn’t one that she did not know how to fix. She also recalled how the pair used to cycle to work.

She said: “Me and mum would cycle to the factory from our home in Wooton together every day and we always had lots of fun on the way.

“Today was a beautiful trip down memory lane and I'm so proud to have worked somewhere that produced these beautiful cars.”

Care home manager Marta Leszko said: “Val is an amazing woman and often reminisces about her time at the factory, so we were delighted to be able to make her wish come true.

“To hear how emotional it was for her to see those old photos of her mum working at the factory was really lovely.

“Our team do a fantastic job of arranging special trips and creating wonderful new memories for our residents and to see how much it means to them is very touching.

“It’s so important for our residents to be able to continue to do the things they love as they enjoy this new chapter in their lives.”

The MG started production in 1927 in a factory in Edmund Road, Cowley, which remained in use until the late 1930s.

Demand rose rapidly so in 1928 the factory in Abingdon was acquired.


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This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Matthew.norman@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1