While the debate raged on this topic, three of us quietly got in touch with each other and placed an order with both TBG and also with MCI and had all posted to one of us, it was then repacked and sent on to the two others.
Group larger order allowed us to negotiate a decent price reduction. Also two of our orders were not of high enough value to have attracted the free post from MCI so again group buying saved here.
1/3 of all group post (customs fee was incurred but split according to value) With value of posting each of the three orders and the handling fee applied to custom charge I reckon we all saved a reasonable amount. The local leg was £11 split 3 ways so no big shake there.
So for those who may do this again in the future it may be worth ignoring the bulk of what ended up posted in this thread for the cost savings.
I now have 3 bodes in need of trimming, 4 in need of paint and decals. So my (assuming its coming) enforced quarantine will at least give me a chance to complete the bodies of my remaining Tamiya's which will fill all the slots in my display cases.
One of the bodies is for an Astute that I would NEVER have paid going rates for a vintage body/wing/undertray. The car was expensive enough without them but was in little to barely used condition and included original tires still not fitted to original rims.
One for a Vanquish to return it to box art- mine is currently blue
One for a Saint Dragon - again never would pay the going rate for a vintage as mine is a madcap converted by buying red pogo's and a fellow forum member supplied 3D printed rear body mount.
Lastly was for a Manta Ray (sorry but REALLY don't like the look of these) that I will re-body as a Dirt Thrasher.
My display had already 7 new TBG bodies (Boomerang, Winger, Super Sabre, Thundershot, ThunderDragon, Fire Dragon, & Terra Scorcher) in it already so as you see I have NO issue with non Tamiya parts.
TBG & MCI has enabled me to return what in most cases were tired, different or battered bodies to catalogue (well with my limited talents as near as I can) condition. 3 of my others are re-re, only 2 are vintage and thats due to the fact they arrived to me in really good condition - Both sourced on this forum from fellow TC members (Hotshot 2 and Madcap)