So, you’ve passed your test, you’ve got your first car, it’s legal and roadworthy and you’re itching to get out on the road and show the little beauty off. But where are you going to go? How about one of the UK’s numerous and highly varied car events? You’ll meet like-minded, friendly folk (usually), pick up tips and see some amazing vehicles. This is just a brief selection of some of the country’s many shows and gatherings for autumn 2014. Warning: attending events like these can be habit-forming.
Players Show, North Weald, Essex
If you’re quick, you still have time to make it to the Players Show on Sunday 21st September. It takes place at the North Weald Airfield just a few miles south of Harlow, and promises a hangar-full of weird and wonderful modified cars from VW Camper vans to Porsches. Previous years’ exhibits have also included classic American cars; tickets are available now at the organisers’ website.
If it’s high-octane motor sport you’re looking for, try the British Touring Car Championship event at Silverstone (between Banbury and Milton Keynes) on 27th and 28th September. It’s the penultimate race of the season; the final event is at Brands Hatch on the weekend of 11-12 October. These cars produce 300bhp and above, and reach speeds in excess of 150mph. Thrills are guaranteed! Tickets start at £29.
Ultimate Stance, Telford
Telford’s International Centre is easy to get to from anywhere in the UK, and on 2nd November it’ll be hosting this showcase for “slammed and stanced” vehicles; that means very shiny, highly modified cars, often lowered so they’re almost scraping the ground. There’ll be DJ’s, a charity auction and a BMX display as well. Tickets are £12.50 in advance, £15 on the day. If you’re turning up in a brown Ford Fiesta you’ll probably want to park it several blocks away.
For the Love of Driving & Dylan, West Wales
Now for some more mellow events. This one’s based in the beautiful countryside of Laugharne in Carmarthenshire. It’s based around a classic car tour in honour of the 100th anniversary of the birth of poet Dylan Thomas. The tour itself is only open to classic cars, obviously, and entry is expensive, but there’s a display of the vehicles on Friday 3rd October which would make a great stop on a drive around this lovely part of the world.
Brooklands Morgan Day, Surrey
Historic Brooklands, near Weybridge in Surrey, is the setting for a celebration of classic British manufacturer Morgan on 5th October. Brooklands is worth a visit anyway; it was the first racetrack ever built and is home to an excellent museum with cars, motorbikes and aircraft – including Concorde! Morgan have been producing distinctive sports cars since 1910; current models include the Plus 8, which, despite its 1930’s styling, is available with either a modern BMW V8 engine or an electric motor.
Classic Motor Show, NEC Birmingham
Nearly 2000 classic cars will be on display at the NEC from Friday 14th to Sunday 16th November. There’ll be exhibits from the early days of motoring to much more recent cars – “future classics” are a theme of the event. Tickets are available now, with 3 day passes at £55.