Saturday June 23rd
Dear Family & Friends,
Another day, another bit of culture….
I left my B&B near Oxford this morning and rode an entire 20 minutes to Bicester.. the next town north. Just outside of town there is an abandoned WW2 air field. A few years ago a developer tried to buy it and build a large housing development but a group of classic car enthusiasts banned together and bought the place and have turned it into a classic car heaven!
There are large grassy fields for landing and taking off of old classic aircraft designed to use grass for an air port. The paved airport they have converted into a test track and road course for cars and motorcycles, and all the old air craft buildings have been converted into various restoration businesses so you can get virtually anything done there. Mechanical rebuilds, race prep, upholstery, body work, gauges rebuilt, etc..
Once a year Classic Car Magazine puts on a huge vintage car, aircraft, and motorcycle festival and guess what??? It is this weekend. So being in the area I just had to go. Wouldn’t you agree???
The event did not disappointed. Acres and acres of classic cars, planes, and motorcycles. Every antique plane there was flown there and watching them land was spectacular. The had one of the last flying British Lancaster bombers doing fly byes. I got a few good photos of that.
The cars and motorcycles each would do two demonstration laps around the track and some of the old glorious motors sounded so good. It is a shame there will soon be an entire generation that has either never heard a good sounding internal combustion motor, or worse won’t care..
There was even a classic car auction going on,,,,, don’t worry Bonnie and I didn’t bid on anything!!
During the time trials I took a short video of the motorcycles going out on the track. Here is the link for it.
The cross section of classic cars was amazing from turn of the century brass era cars to fairly late model super cars.
In my blog there are lots of photos and comments.
While I walking around the event I ran into a friend I made four years ago when I went to the Isle of Man. A fellow British motorcycle enthusiast. What a small world but of course if you share a common interest your bound to meet at similar places.. His name is Ian Cole and he will be riding with us this August when we return to the Isle of Man. Looking forward to it.
In the after noon a rode a short distance to Buckingham where I am staying tonight. I used to visit this town regularly when I came to the UK on business. It was a good stop on my way to see my vendors. It is a very authentic British town except now like the rest of England it has grown and is dealing with traffic jams and modern structures. At least the downtown is still quaint.
I went looking for he cafe I used to stop off at.. It was located in a very old stone building and on the wall as you enter is a plaque commemorating it’s opening year…. 1482! They started serving British food ten years before Columbus even discovered the new world, that is old!!
So tomorrow I am going back to the show for a few hours and then I have been invited to the home of my friend Aubrey’s daughter Vanessa and her family. I will look forward to seeing them all.
When I met Vanessa she was about 7 years old. Now she is married with two children of her own in their late teens.. Her son is taller than me… where has the time gone?!?!?
So that’s it for a couple of days. Check out my blog for some great geared photos and a few photos of Buckingham.
The parking area was hundreds of acres full of classic cars. Sadly most of them have come from the USA so you don’t get turn outs like this at home anymore.
The vendor area was very interesting.. This entire display was just toy cars!
A great selection of automotive art..
Even a selection of Model T Ford race cars..
This is the famous Broadspeed factory V-12 race cars. They won a lot of races and when they fired up the big V-12s they sound awesome!
The old buildings in the background make a terrific back drop for these vintage cars. The buildings are all left over from WW2 RAF base that was here.
This was the Morgan factory +8 race car.. Nice but not as nice as mine..;)
The man that displays and rides this bike is such a character. I have seen him at the Isle of Man, Goodwood, and now here. Always cherry and enthusiastic.
Interesting hood graphics..
These are the original Jaguar factory record breaking cars. One averaged 120mph for 24 hours straight,,, hence the name XK120
A classic American racer. Americana is still very popular here. You even hear a lot of 1950s and 1960s music being played here.
These are what is called “Pre War” cars. Mainly from the 1920s and 1930s. I used to not be very enthusiastic about them but I have grown a real appreciation for them.
Notice the propeller on the nose? I am guessing to get an extra mile or two per hour out of it? The Turbo of its day..?
All these planes were actually flown here.
These two gentlemen had just landed and were getting out of the plane.. They were about as vintage as the plane was. Which reminds me when I went to get a ticket I asked if they offer a “Senior Citizen” discount. The young lady just laughed at me and said EVERYONE here is a senior citizen!!
This plane looked and sounded so good in the sky. One of my favorite aircrafts. I used to build models of these when I was a kid. P51 Mustang
Bonnie, I got you a present.. 😉
My friend Ian Cole. Look forward to riding with him again in August!
A real enthusiast out for the day and enjoying himself. Just came in from some sucessful laps on the track. All smiles.
Not all hand made bodies work are master pieces of craftsmanship.
They even had a modern F1 car on display.
Some of the restoration shops located in the old hangers left over from WW2
My kind of place.
Ian bought me a 99cracker ice cream cone… a British tradition! 🙂
I toured the auction area and did not make one bid!
A hopeless gone old classic MG. Restorable but it would cost 5 times what the car would be worth when done.. Kind of sad to see it rot away
This Lancaster bomber did fly byes. It flies so slowly it was amazing it stayed in the air.. It did sound great.
Entering Buckingham for a late afternoon walk around.
This was funny to see this very high tech performance sports car going through this old town. Only in the UK.
This building had to be about 500+ years old. And still in use with a modern Italian restaurant inside..
A cool local barber shop sporting an English flag for the World Cup and a classic motorcycle in the window..