Vauxhall Heritage celebrates 25 years with upcoming open day

You can now get up close and personal with the world’s largest collection of Vauxhalls on June 10 at the Vauxhall Heritage Centre. Free admission for all!

Ever fancied reliving the days when you were ferried to school in your grandfather’s Vauxhall Viva? How about reviving that madcap dash with a Cavalier packed with fax machine toner, and a fresh shirt on the hook, towards the nearest Little Chef for some food with your grease? Well, with Vauxhall Heritage opening their doors to celebrate the centre’s first quarter-century, you can do just that.

On Sunday, June 10, the Luton-based Heritage Centre will be hosting an open day for all Vauxhall-followers to enjoy. Home to a collection of 75 rare, one-off and historical vehicles bridging the marque’s entire 115-year history, Vauxhall’s Heritage Centre will welcome families and enthusiasts to clap eyes on the first ever Vauxhall model – a 5hp variant powered by a single cylinder, chain driven ‘horeseless carriage’ – as it rests alongside the latest, fire-breathing 600bhp VXR8 GTS-R.

Don't think it's a two-horse race, however. Between the first and most modern vehicles to wear the Vauxhall badge will be a host of other special legacy models celebrating significant anniversaries.

The 1918 D-type Staff Car will be commemorating a full century since mobilising the British Army during the First World War – playing a huge part in Allied victory to end Europe’s hostilities.

Keeping with the wartime theme, 2018 also marks 70 years since Vauxhall ceased production of the Churchill tank, recommencing automobile production at Luton and setting the company on track to where it is today.

Further birthdays include the legendary Vauxhall Astra GTE, honouring 35 years as the secret pin up for all teenage boys, alongside 55 years of the first Viva and four decades since the first Chevette HS. Many buckets will be required to catch the drool as your inner youngster brings all those desires to the forefront of your mind...

For many, their first taste of freedom is turning 25 years old. Still as common as muck and relied upon across the nation, the humble Corsa will be showcased in all its forms, transporting many of us back to those carefree days the other side of your driving test. You can expect to see all four generations displayed in showroom quality.

If production cars are a bit too ‘everyday hero’ for your tastes, there will also be a huge collection of concept vehicles ready for you to fantasise over. While the SRV and XVR concepts set the stage for Vauxhall’s design through the swinging '60s and '70s, the VX Lightning demonstrates the design prowess held during the turn of the new millennium. We can promise that you will want to take one home. Try that one on with security...

There will also be a celebration of all things Bedford, ranging from the 1930s Two-Ton truck, to the CA and CF panel vans – once the backbone to Britain’s economy.

You will also have the chance to speak with senior restorers Andy Boddy and Terry Forder, responsible for keeping the unique vehicles in rude health.

Running from 10am to 4pm, with refreshments and food available on site, the open day coincides with the Luton Festival of Transport, with proposed buses running transfers between the two events.

Situated around the corner from the main Vauxhall plant and behind Vauxhall’s head office – head to Park Street, Luton, LU1 3HG on Sunday, June 10. Don’t drool over the GTE too much…

Enjoy a bit of nostalgia...

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