In which I track down one of the previous owners and wish I hadn't and end up with a long to-do list.
First thing I did after getting the car home was to become a fully paid up member on one of the Clio owners club forums. I introduced myself and my new car. Another member asked if the car is white; it is. We spoke briefly and it turns out he was one of the previous owners. He'd really looked after the car from what I could tell, but it had changed hands a number of times since his tenure and judging by the state of it someone in between him and me hadn't really taken very good care of it. I mean, bright red DIY alloy wheel paint job, not properly prepped, peeling off and touched up with what I think is nail varnish?
There is only one way to see what the real state of things is I thought, and that is to start stripping the car down give it a good going over. I'm not one for duplicating effort if I can help it. I have been writing a quite long and detailed project progress thread over at clio197.net which goes into all the gory detail along with lots of photos for those who are interested. I think the thread is viewable without needing an account.