Record numbers attend 2018's Practical Classics Classic Car and Restoration Show

From barn finds to concours award winners, the Practical Classics Classic Car & Restoration Show had it all. Here's our highlights from the record breaking 2018 event

A record number of classic motoring enthusiasts attended 2018’s Practical Classics Classic Car and Restoration Show, with Discovery, to meet the likes of Wheeler Dealers’ Mike Brewer and Ant Anstead, Car SOS’ Fuzz Townshend and Tim Shaw, Salvage Hunters: Classic Cars’ Paul Cowland, Fifth Gear’s Jonny Smith, and Jimmy De Ville and the team from Goblin Works Garage.

It wasn’t just attendance records that were broken, either. With 28,151 visitors through Birmingham’s NEC gates for the three day event, an increase of over 3000 attendees, a record number of cars and clubs were on display with more record fundraising, restoration and rust than ever before.

Over 1000 cars in various conditions were showcased – ranging from the barn find in need of love to concours beasts that drew in all around them. Live work was also undertaken on stage alongside maintenance demonstrations from 159 classic motoring clubs.

The Sporting Bears Motor Club successfully raised a substantial £15,800 from their successful ‘Dream Rides’ campaign, offering passenger trips in rare classics – such as the popular MG SVR – alongside a traction engine that didn’t cease running around the outside of the halls all weekend. The last record was set when takings hit £11,000 – 2018’s event well and truly setting the bar for years to follow!

Show Director Lee Masters said: ‘Over the past five years, the growth of this event has been phenomenal, not just in terms of the numbers but in the way the car clubs are pushing the boundaries with live working and demonstrations.

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They spur each other on and give fresh ideas on how to showcase the wealth of knowledge within the club as well enticing new members. There is no other show in the classic motoring community like it anywhere in the world!’
On the Practical Classics Live Stage, with Discovery, the team set about restoring the oldest Citroën 2CV thought left in existence. Taken apart and reduced to a mere shell on day one and driven off the stage with Wheeler Dealers’ Mike Brewer behind the wheel on Sunday afternoon – this feat was enjoyed by the amassed crowds who witnessed the hard graft put in to meet the strict deadline.

Displaying 20 classic bard finds in various states of repair, the Carole Nash display included a Triumph TR6, an Austin A35, a Singer Gazelle and a vintage caravan. Not only that, but viewers of the dusty curiosities enjoyed live music as they scrutinized each classic. For the inner (Citroën) Picasso, artist ArtbyBex recreated the Citroën 2CV on show with a live painting.

Not everything on show required restoration, however. Lancaster Insurance’s Pride of Ownership spring final found concours examples of sports cars and everyday heroes of the past five decades peppering the show halls.

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The competition was won by Paul Clappison and his 1972 MGB GT, with Bron Burrell’s ex-World Cup Rally Austin Maxi taking second place. Christened ‘Puff’ by Burrell and her legion of fans, visitors were delighted to get up close with the iconic British Leyland rally car. Graham Varley’s 1993 Volkswagen Corrado VR6 clinched third prize.

Classic Car Auctions saw off 81% of the 165 cars passing under the hammer, with the two-day sale totaling £2.1 million.

The 2019 Practical Classics Classic Car and Resoration Show, with Discovery, will take place on March 22 through 24. 

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