The past weekend saw Autoshite descend upon the Cholmondeley Castle classic car show. It was brilliant. Within minutes of arriving on site, one club took so much offence to our cars that they drove elsewhere on site! Autoshite had had the audacity to arrive in seven fairly modern classics, all in somewhat shabby condition admittedly. I had hoped to clean the XM, but hey, it’s my daily driver. Even if I had cleaned it, I’d driven about 60 miles in it just getting to the show.
The 1993 Toyota Lucida Estima Charme Pleasure Wagon seemed to cause particular offence, but given the event is for cars built before 2000, I can’t see what their problem was. Ok, so one car was a 2001 Skoda Octavia, but then one of their cars was a sodding 2003 Vauxhall Astra! We didn’t mind. They were replaced by the Toyota Enthusiasts’ Club, who were a jolly decent bunch displaying some lovely motors, and some deliciously dreary Corollas. Wonderful.
We heard many derogatory comments over the duration of the show, but it’s water off a duck’s back to be honest, just as I’m perfectly able to ignore ‘experts’ proclaiming that Citroen hydraulics are nothing but trouble. What was pleasing was the POSITIVE comments we got, and there actually were some. We got pretty much ignored by the compere – but then he seemed rather short of car knowledge so probably just didn’t know what our cars were. Highlights of his commentary included a ‘nice Audi’ (actually a DKW 1000) and a Ford Corsa. (Corsair).
It was a great show really. There was a huge variety of classics on display, of all eras and types. From enormous Americana to Alpine Renaults, 1930s Austins to Toyota Crown estates. It’s nice to that a lot of visitors did take an interest in our cars. Some of them had travelled from as far as Fife (Volvo 850 TDi) and Glasgow (Kia Pride, Volvo 740 and Citroen AX 1-litre). These cars may not be shiny, but there’s enormous pride of ownership. Loving your car does not have to mean you get the cotton buds out to polish the exhaust pipe. Some like to keep their cars immaculate, and that’s fair enough. But there needs to be room in the classic car world for cars that aren’t immaculate or particularly common.
I’ll certainly continue take pride in my shambolic fleet. Some cherish, some prefer to use. My 2CV would still be immaculate if I had cherished it more after its restoration, but I bet I wouldn’t have had half as much fun in it. So, don’t judge cars that aren’t perfect. They may have many interesting tales to tell, if only they could.