Nuffield Cup of the Americas
This very prestigious award has a long history behind it……..
There are five cups. They are all owned by the MGCC UK. There is one solid gold cup and four silver cups - all to a similar design. The gold cup was presented by Lord Nuffield in 1936 to the Committee of the MGCC UK "for a purpose that will enhance the prestige of the MGCC, assist its growth and add to the enthusiasm of its members". The Cup because of its value spends most of its life in a bank vault, but it always comes out for Silverstone and Presidents' Dinners, etc. Brian Woodhams (MGCC Overseas Director) has drank champagne out of it, and several times had the dubious privilege of being responsible for its security whilst in transit to events - it is quite a responsibility because of its history, value, and uniqueness. It is presented to the UK Centre which, in the view of the Chairman, is the most deserving in terms of growth, organization, or merit.
The four solid silver cups were presented in 1954 to the MGCC UK for the Centres in the other four continents - Africa, the Americas, Europe, and Oceana - and this came about because of the growth of the Export drive, and more and more MG Centres being formed worldwide. Because the cups are the property of the MGCC UK, one of the rules of presentation is that the Centre must be an Affiliated Club of the MGCC UK. The cups are held in trust on each of the four continents by the holders, and each of the cups is awarded annually with the exception of the African trophy, which because their Indabas are held biannually, is awarded once every two years. They are all inscribed identically with the exception of the name of the continent. The MGCC UK Overseas Director has direct input on the presentation of the African, American and European (in conjunction with the European Manager) trophies, but the Oceania trophy is presented on an annual basis at the Natmeet by a complicated process of points scored for attendance, participation in events at the Natmeet, and is graded to the actual membership of the Centre!!
The silver cups have a value of approximately £7000 each (US$14,000) and it is expected that the holders take steps to insure the trophies whilst they are held in trust. The America’s Nuffield Cup is presented on top of a round, black pedestal that contains smaller plaques. These plaques are engraved with each Centre’s name, location, and year of presentation.
The only known photo of the four silver cups together appears in Mike Hawkes' book "The First 70 years of the MGCC", and although on the occasion of the Club’s 70th Anniversary we tried once again to get them all together, we were unfortunately let down by the Australians and the Oceana trophy did not arrive in England.