Classic car events calendar: great events for spring and summer 2018

Paul Hudson
All set for a grand day out - Simon Clay

The classic car calendar is packed with events large and small, with something for everyone whether you're a marque aficionado or general enthusiast. Here are a few throughout the UK that are deserving of your attention, whether you're away on holiday or simply fancy a destination for a day out.

We will be adding to the list every week as more events are confirmed. 

July 14: Oakamoor Hillclimb, Oakamoor Park, Oakamoor, North Staffordshire
Credit: Linzi Smart

This family-friendly revival event will feature up to 100 veteran, vintage and classic cars made between 1900 to 1975 to celebrate the tradition of the Oakamoor Hill Climb, which dates back to 1906.   

A range of family-friendly activities will also be available, along with local craft, food and drink stalls. The event coincides with the Oakamoor Festival (July 13-15); this year’s theme is “Wind in the Willows”.

The event will take place between 9am-5pm and spectator entry is only £2.50 per person. All proceeds will be donated to Staffordshire Clubs for Young People (Staffs CYP), a registered charity which delivers a variety of projects to 5,000 young people across Staffordshire. 

Full details at www.oakamoorhillclimb.org   

July 14: Robert and Tanya Lewis Collection of Classic Cars open day, near Haslemere, Surrey
The Lewis Collection includes models from the earliest days of motoring up to the latest 200+mph supercars

This fascinating private collection of about 60 cars, from very early models to the thoroughly modern Koeningsegg Agera R, is being opened up for one day only, in aid of the Cure Parkinson's Trust.

As well as the superb cars, which are all in immaculate condition and driven regularly, there is also an extensive collection of motoring atefacts and ephemera from throughout the motoring ages.

There will be a special parking area for those arriving in classic cars, while an excellent lunch is included in the ticket price. Those tickets cost £60 per person (£30 for under-15s) and must be booked before June 29.

There will also be an auction of motoring-related items including tickets to the Goodwood Revival historic race meeting, which will be online at https://Auctionweb.ccqltd.com for those who are unable to attend

To order tickets to see the Lewis Collection, or for further details, go to the www.cureparkinsons.org.uk/Event/classiccars website.

July 15: 10th Old Ford Rally, British Motor Museum, Gaydon, Warwickshire
A Consul and Zephyr at last year's Old Ford Rally

The largest rally of old Fords in the UK will feature about 400 pre-1990 Fords including commercials, tractors and vehicles with a Ford-produced engine.

That means a huge range of Model Ts, as well as to the cars of the pre- and post-Second World War austerity years, along with agricultural vehicles and Thames and Ford commercial vehicles. Then there's the slightly better-known Ford large-car output such as Zephyrs, Zodiacs and Granadas - not forgetting the Anglia, Cortina and Escort, of course.

The event includes an autojumble and an arena with live displays and commentary throughout the day. Visitors will have full access to the Museum, the Collections Centre and the Car S.O.S exhibition, as well as the show outside.

Tickets cost £14 on the day for adults, £9 for children and £39 for a family. Discounted tickets are available in advance online, as well as camping.

Full details at www.britishmotormuseum.co.uk

July 27-29: CarFest North, Bolesworth Castle Estate, Tattenhall, Cheshire
Pudsey the Bear - with a little help from Chitty Chitty bang Bang - fundraising at CarFest

The car-themed family festival, which has raised more than £10.5 million for BBC Children In Need over the past six years, returns for 2018 bigger and better than ever.

As usual, there is one event in Cheshire and one in Hampshire, on July 27-29 and August 24-26 respectively. 

The Car Paddock will celebrate the very best F1 cars, convertibles, coupés, grand tourers, saloons, supercars and more. Also on the menu is a display of German cars set around a Bavarian beer hall with traditional food, music and entertainment.

Live music acts already confirmed include Bananarama, who will appear alongside Billy Ocean, The Feeling, Status Quo, Alfie Boe & Michael Ball, The Proclaimers and Madness. There will also be an exclusive performance from CarFest’s Supergroup, curated by The Kaiser Chiefs’ singer Ricky Wilson, including Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Spandau Ballet’s Gary Kemp, with more members still to be announced.

The CarFest Kitchen will include Joe Wicks, Nadiya Hussain and Candice Brown. Returning culinary masters including Tom Kerridge and Angela Hartnett will be joined by car-mad chef James Martin.

The Vintage Village is back by popular demand, featuring vintage market traders, tea rooms and sweet shops, and the chance to savour cars from the 1930s through to the 1970s.

The final batch of tickets for both events will be available from April 19 at www.bbc.co.uk/radio2

Full details (and for the CarFest South event on August 24-26) at www.carfest.org/

July 28-29: Shelsley Walsh Classic Nostalgia Experience, Shelsley Walsh hillclimb, Shelsley Walsh, Worcestershire
A classic Alfa Romeo grand prix racer tackles the Shelsley Walsh hillclimb

The superb Shelsley Walsh hillclimb course's annual nostalgia-fest Has as its theme 'F1 Through the Ages'. The main attraction at the 2018 event will be an F1 paddock filled with modern and classic Formula One cars.

The venue is the oldest motorsport venue in the world still using its original course, having staged speed hillclimb events since August 1905.

The F1 paddock will be open to all spectators and many of them will be put through through their paces on the narrow, twisting hillclimb set in the beautiful Worcestershire countryside.

As well as the lure of historic and more recent F1 machinery, there will also be vintage and retro racing against the clock for pre-1980s cars, demonstration runs, static displays, live music, entertainment and food.

There will also be displays of rare classic motorcycles and a selection of historic rally cars from the Eighties and Nineties.

Full details at the Classic Nostalgia section of the Shelsley Walsh website: www.shelsleywalsh.com/classicnostalgia.

August 4: National Metro & Mini Show, British Motor Museum, Gaydon, Warwickshire
The British Motor Museum already has the first production Mini - it will be joined by many more 1959 examples at the show

The 60th anniversary of the Mini will be celebrated in style at this annual show, which has moved from its traditional June slot to early August.

The show will be supported by various Mini clubs including the 59 Register, the Mini Traveller and Countryman Register and the Cooper Sport 500 Register. Plans are also coming together for a Guinness Book of Records attempt on the Saturday before the show to create the longest line of Minis ever seen.

Tom Caren, show manager at the British Motor Museum, said “As home to both the first and last classic Minis, it is only fitting for the British Motor Museum to celebrate the car’s 60th anniversary. The 2019 National Metro & Mini Show will be held on the weekend before the International Mini Meet to allow our international visitors and Mini enthusiasts to plan for a week of Mini 60th celebrations.”  

Visitors to the Show will also be able to explore the Museum’s collection of more than 300 historic British vehicles from the 1900s to the present day.

Full details at www.britishmotormuseum.co.uk

August 12: BMW Car Club GB National Festival, British Motor Museum, Gaydon, Warwickshire
Bavarian metal galore Credit: Darren Teagles

More than 1,000 BMWs are expected at the BMW Car Club GB National Festival. New for this year is an area devoted to new products from the BMW and Mini ranges, along with displays from German-based BMW tuning wizards Alpina and AC Schnitzer, along with a motorsport-themed area featuring companies specialising in tweaking BMWs for racing, rallying and track days.

The BMW Car Club Concours will include a plethora of classes, from Pride of Ownership through to Elite and Masterclass, while a host of trade Stands will offer a wide of BMW-related products. 

Tickets cost £17 for adults, £10 for children (under-fives free) and £45 for a family. Entry to the Museum is also included in the ticket price. Discounted advance tickets from the BMW Car Club website www.bmwcarclubgb.com.

Full details at www.britishmotormuseum.co.uk

August 24-26: CarFest South, Laverstoke Park Farm, Laverstoke, Hampshire
The Red Arrows roar over the festival in 2017

The car-themed family festival, which has raised more than £10.5 million for BBC Children In Need over the past six years, returns for 2018 bigger and better than ever.

As usual, there is one event in Cheshire and one in Hampshire, on July 27-29 and August 24-26 respectively. 

The Car Paddock will celebrate the very best F1 cars, convertibles, coupés, grand tourers, saloons, supercars and more. Also on the menu is a display of German cars set around a Bavarian beer hall with traditional food, music and entertainment.

Live music acts already confirmed include Bananarama, who will appear alongside Billy Ocean, The Feeling, Status Quo, Alfie Boe & Michael Ball, The Proclaimers and Madness. There will also be an exclusive performance from CarFest’s Supergroup, curated by The Kaiser Chiefs’ singer Ricky Wilson, including Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Spandau Ballet’s Gary Kemp, with more members still to be announced.

The CarFest Kitchen will include Joe Wicks, Nadiya Hussain and Candice Brown. Returning culinary masters including Tom Kerridge and Angela Hartnett will be joined by car-mad chef James Martin.

The Vintage Village is back by popular demand, featuring vintage market traders, tea rooms and sweet shops, and the chance to savour cars from the 1930s through to the 1970s.

The final batch of tickets for both events will be available from April 19 at www.bbc.co.uk/radio2Full details (and for the CarFest North event on July 27-29) at www.carfest.org

August 31-September 1: Déjà Vu Ulster Rally Reunion, Titanic Quarter, Belfast
An Audi Sport quattro S1 of the type that Walter Röhrl used to devastating effect in the 1984 Ulster International Rally

Rally legend Walter Röhrl will return to the scene of his dominant win in the 1984 Ulster International Rally for the latest in Déjà Vu Motorsport’s popular rally reunions, in aid of charity, which have already raised £70,000.

What’s more, Paddy Hopkirk, a five-time Circuit of Ireland Rally winner, has confirmed that he will be returning to his native Belfast to also take part.

It’s 34 years since Walter and his co-driver Christian Geistdörfer blasted their Group B Audi Quattro S4 over the Antrim, Down and Fermanagh stages to obliterate the opposition. Those who witnessed their performance rate it as one of the greatest drives in Irish rallying history. The unbeatable duo defeated luminaries such as Russell Brookes, Jimmy McRae and local hero Bertie Fisher by more than four minutes.

The Porsche-contracted driver will return to Ulster to head a cavalcade of historic rally cars over famous Antrim stages such as Glen Dunn and Torr Head. He will be joined by many of his contemporaries and a host of other rally stars.

The cavalcade starts at the Titanic Quarter in Belfast at 10am, taking in a 150-mile route over classic rally stages used in the Circuit of Ireland and Ulster Rally.

Afterwards, there is a gala dinner in Titanic Belfast with classic rallying videos, interviews with star drivers and other entertainment.

Registrations and tickets for the gala dinner can be reserved at the RPM Motorsport website below. All profits will go to Macmillan Cancer Support.    

Full details at www.rpm-motorsport.com/tours/ or email alan@rpm-motorsport.com

August 31-September 2: Concours of Elegance, Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey
The Hampton Court Palace and gardens by the Thames form a splendid backdrop

Nearly 1,000 of the rarest and most important cars ever produced, from the 1890s to 2018, will gather in the beautiful gardens of the Palace for the annual Concours of Elegance weekend.

The event’s main display of about 60 vehicles will tell the story of the motor car from the 1890s to the modern day. Picking out the finest examples from the world’s most iconic and legendary car brands, the event is a celebration of rarity, craftsmanship, design and endeavour in the automotive world.

There will also be a range of exclusive supercars, displays from the owners’ clubs representing many of the world's most illustrious marques, as well as stands from purveyors of various luxury goods.

Many of the cars on display will be taking part in moving parades over the weekend. Cars already confirmed include Rolls-Royces with Figoni et Falaschi bodywork, rare vintage Bugatti prototypes and Ferraris formerly owned by Hollywood stars.

Tickets start from £25, with concessions from £17.50. Children under five and carers are admitted free of charge.

Full details at www.concoursofelegance.co.uk

September 1: Brighton Speed Trials, Brighton, East Sussex
More than 200 cars and bikes will be inaction on Madeira Drive in Brighton for the town's annual Speed Trials on the seafront

The Brighton National Speed Trials return to the seafront again this year with an action-packed series of timed sprints featuring more than 200 cars of all types and ages.

Len Wooller, chairman of the Brighton and Hove Motor Club, which organises the annual sprint spectacular, said: “Spectators will see a whole host of cars and bikes, from the ultra-modern to the old classics. Already lined up is a Lamborghini Countach, a Ferrari F40, Formula Ford single-seaters and an Allard.

“We will also have a display of cars including a Lamborghini Haracan, Aston Martin Volante, a Ferrari 488 and a Porsche 911 Turbo S.”

Entry forms are still available from www.brightonandhovemotorclub.co.uk.

Tickets are available on the day or in advance via the website above, saving 20 per cent on the gate price.

Spectators will be able to follow competitors’ progress live from the start line then through to the finish line via a 21sq metre LCD screen. The event will have a dedicated wheelchair/disabled viewing area as well as a 70m raised viewing platform.

Practice runs start at 8.45am, with timed runs starting at 11.15am. Entry (including a programme): £15 or £12 when purchased in advance online at www.brightonandhovemotorclub. co.uk

September 2, 2018: Blenheim Palace Classic & Supercar show, Woodstock, Oxfordshire
The spectacular line-up at last year's inaugural Blenheim Palace Classic & Supercar show Credit: Rachel Palmer

This family-friendly event returns for 2018 with more than 300 of the world's greatest classic and supercars, set in the spectacular grounds of the Blenheim Palace World Heritage Site.

One of the highlights will be the Pirelli Prestige & Performance Competition, featuring 80 supercars and hypercars built between 1978 and now, split into eight classes of 10 ground-breaking cars.

Full details at blenheimclassicsupercar.com

October 6-7: Prescott American Autumn Classic, Prescott Hillclimb, Gotherington, nr Cheltenham​
Ford Mustangs, such as this 1964 example, will be much in evidence

The American-themed Autumn Classic returns, celebrating the biggest, brashest and most revered US cars in Britain and Europe.

There will be a special classes for American cars and hot rods on the Bugatti Owners' Club hillclimb, as well as American car displays, a dedicated concours area and US-themed entertainment. The paddock will feature classics, hot rods and muscle cars including Mustangs, Cadillacs, Pontiacs, Buicks, Camaros, Dodges, Corvettes and Chevys, along with Indian and Harley-Davidson motorcycles and custom choppers.

Many of these, along with a host of other American vehicles, will take part in a cavalcade up the hillclimb.

On the Saturday, the event will also include competitive championship rounds for the TVR Car Club, the BOC New Barn 'B' Licence, Downton Motor Club and TR hillclimb championships, supported by saloons, sports cars and single-seaters in the Bugatti Owners' Club Handicap.

On the Sunday, competitive motorsport includes the 500 Owners' Association, the Aldon Classic Championship, Morgans, Austin Healeys, Flatheads and invited American Cars.

Away from the hillclimb, don't miss the Demon Drome Wall of Death, the oldest surviving Wall of Death, as well as live bands throughout the weekend.

Prescott will be play host to the last ‘heat’ of the prestigious Classic American ‘Car of the Year’ competition 2018, in which aficionado Ben Klemenzson will be looking for cars either original or restored. The winner will be guaranteed a place on the Classic American stand at the Classic Motor Show at Birmingham’s NEC in November. All American vehicles on site will be part of the judging process.

Advance tickets cost £15 per day or £25 for the weekend (£20 and £35 on the gate). There is free parking, while children under 14 are admitted free.

Full details at www.prescott-hillclimb.com

October 7:  Shuttleworth Race Day Sprint, Old Warden Aerodrome, nr Biggleswade, Bedfordshire
The sprint is a timeless display of historic cars and motorcycles on the grass runway of the fantastic Shuttleworth Collection at Old Warden 

The season finale at the fantastic Shuttleworth Collection of historic aircraft and automobilia celebrates founder Richard’s Shuttleworth’s passion for racing, veteran cars and vintage aviation.

The Shuttleworth Sprint is a ‘classic’ sprint course along a grass runway. It’s purely fun, non-competitive or timed and no racing licences are required, though some of the world’s finest veteran and vintage race cars and motorcycles will be taking part.

Entry applications are welcome from all pre-1939 vehicles - and visiting car and motorcycle clubs are welcome.

As well as the smell of oil and the roar of engines at the sprint, expect vintage aircraft flying displays, live music, period paddock and exhibits, along with activities to amuse and delight visitors of all ages.

Full details at the www.shuttleworth.org/events/raceday/ website.​

October 19-21: Lombard Rally Bath, Somerset
1972 AND 1998 FORD ESCORT RALLY CARS

Although not a competitive event, this celebration of the classic era of rallying takes place on part of the route of the 1976 Lombard RAC Rally in historic rally cars.

Back in the 1970s and 1980s, the Lombard RAC Rally was the largest spectator event in the UK. To recall those days, the new tour was conceived by former rally driver Tim Nash as a predominantly social event and a reunion of former competitors, and already more than 120 cars have been confirmed to take part.

And the drivers! Expect to see Stig Blomqvist, twice a winner of the Lombard RAC Rally; Jimmy McRae, five time British champion; Louise Aitken-Walker, Ladies World Champion; Rosemary Smith, not only a former Ladies Champion Driver but the oldest person to drive a Formula 1 car, aged 79; former manufacturer drivers Terry Kaby, Graham Elsmore, David Llewellin and Robin Eyre-Maunsell.

These and many more will arrive in Bath on October 19 to attend a Rally Question and Answer Forum at the Bath Spa Hotel. On the Saturday morning the cars will leave Bath to visit former rally stages at Longleat and Cricket St. Thomas, before arriving at the “Spectator” stage at Wiscombe Park between Axminster and Honiton in Devon at about 11am.

Lunch will be taken in Minehead before the cars run up the Porlock Toll Road and then return to Bath, where they will be displayed whilst the drivers attend the Rally Dinner on the Saturday evening.

The oldest car confirmed so far is a pre-war Alvis Special, which will join hordes of classic rallying machinery such as Minis. Ford entries include a 1958 Zephyr, Cortinas, Escort Mk1 and Mk2, Sierras, Puma and Escort Cosworth, while Triumph will be represented by a TR4, Dolomite Sprint and a selection of the brutal V8-engined TR7s. Less likely rally cars include the Rover SD1 and Volkswagen Beetles and Golfs.

No such event would be complete without the cars that changed the face of rallying in the 1980s – Audi Quattros and MG Metro 6R4s, among others. 

As the tour around the old rally venues will be conducted at a leisurely pace, spectators will be able to approach the drivers and get a close-up of the cars.

Full details at www.lombardrallybath.co.uk 

 

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