On Friday 9th November I made my annual trip to the Classic Car Show, sponsored by Lancaster Insurance, at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC), Birmingham, U.K. It’s no hardship for me because after a mile walk to the station it takes less than fifteen minutes, by train, to get to the NEC. The show opened at 10.00 am and I was amazed at the size of the crowd already queing (‘standing in line’ for our American readers) before the doors opened. The whole idea of me getting there early was to be able to take photos without being compromised by people standing in front of the camera looking at the cars, which they are perfectly entitled to do of course.
Right from the off I was having to seek opportunities of photographing cars without people being in the shots. Motor Shows are not the best environment for taking pristine photos of cars. However, the presence of car enthusiasts does create ‘atmosphere’ and that is a good attribute when telling a story in pictures. Friday is supposed to be the least busy day so I can’t imagine what a crush Saturday and Sunday were. One thing is for sure visitors interested in all kinds of classic cars, ancient and modern were unlikely to have been disappointed. I have just received the attendance figure for this year’s event – another record at 71,216. I am not at all surprised.
Here are some of the cars that took my eye –
1938 Triumph Dolomite DHC
1967 Gordon Keeble
2004 – 11 Bristol Fighter (Chrysler) V10
Late 70s Maserati Khamsin
1932 Bentley 8.0 Ltr. straight six with supercharger
1971 Fiat 500 Vignale Gamine
Morgan three wheeler ‘Beamish’ special
1949 Bristol 401
1929 Alfa Romeo 6C 1500 Normale with James Young Body
1954 – 63 Mercedes Benz 300 SL (Gull Wing)
c 1926 AC Royal Tourer in need of some TLC
1979 – 84 AC 3000 V6 ME (for mid engined)
1950 – 52 K2
1952 – 58 Palm Beach
1948 M Type DHC
DB 2/4 Mk. I
2016 Vantage GT12 Gulf Edition
1960 Sebring Sprite
1957 Pre Production Sprite used as Launch Car
3000 Mk. III (BJ 8) in Rally spec.
1972 Pantera GTS
1936 ‘White Lady’. The first car designed and built by Jensen Motors. It has been in Canada for many years and now has been bought by a JOC member in Germany who aims to bring it back to its original condition.
1936 – 41 ‘S’ Type 3 door Tourer
1938 H1 First of the ‘H’ Types. This car was used for Richard Jensen’s wedding. Clearly it is W.I.P.
Recently restored Interceptor SP. The Italian designed (Touring of Turin) 1966 Interceptor was the car that brought Jensen to the attention of the general public.
2003 – 5 SV – R 4.6 V8 (based on the Quale Mangusta produced in Italy)
1956 356 Speedster
917 Gulf Racing Replica by Iconic Engineering
1934 Aero Minx Streamlined Saloon. My favourite car at the show!
1935 12hp Vogue
1950 Super Snipe Mk. III
1930s Junior chassis
1937 2.0 Litre Tourer
Samba Group B rally car
Others of Note
1958 Peerless Triumph TR3 based sports coupe raced at Le Mans
Triumph TR8 V8
1972 Triumph Stag special ‘Wild Stag’ created by Shire Motor Services, Wellingborough