After being told Thursday all the things which were wrong on the car and would need to be fixed for the MOT, I took the car in this morning to find out what was making the bizarre knocking noise which suddenly erupted on the way home from work last night.
Apparently the near-side drive shaft is kaput. My mechanic was very forthright and said I really needed to have a think about whether it was worth doing all the work on the car. There's no rust on it and the engine is clear as a bell, but the peripherals (brakes, the drive shaft etc.) are starting to wear out. Plus of course I've got to replace the badgerised wheels.
I reckon I've found one of the few honest mechanics around. This is the second time he's said to me, "We can fix it, but I'm not sure it's worth it. You have to decide." when he could have just told me I needed to get all the work done and then hit me with a huge bill. At least there's that silver lining on my car-shaped cloud.