This is the biggest classic car show in the UK, and took place at Birmingham’s NEC from the 13-15 November. All the major car clubs have stands there, and the TVR Car Club chose to make a splash this year with a 15 car stand to celebrate their 50th anniversary.
However many felt that the stand wasn’t quite as big as they had expected, as when filled with 15 cars it seemed quite cluttered. They also had problems getting owners of earlier cars to display, so just 2 pre 1980s TVRs were on the club stand. At least these were special, Chris Overton’s Grantura Mk4 1800S is a beautiful example and attracted many admiring glances even if it was rather lost at the rear of the stand. The other car was the Gem, originally built by Bernard Williams and Tommy Entwistle at Grantura Engineering as a potential replacement for the Grantura series, and subsequently raced by Tommy until only a few years ago. Shortly before his death in the summer Tommy put the car up for sale and it was bought by John Livesay, who has owned a highly modified 3000ML for many years. John had cleaned the car up for the show, but intends to prepare it for racing next summer where he can see how fast the GAA Ford Essex really is.
The show covers several halls with everything from early 20th century cars to 1990s Fords, with many dealers there and a small autojumble area. It was a pleasure to come across the Pilkington’s Glass stand where they were displaying the TVR Tina coupe. This prototype from the 1960s is now owned by Gerry Marshall’s daughter Tina, who it was named after, and has been the subject of a restoration by “Practical Classics” magazine. Because the windscreen was a unique item Pilkington’s had made up a new one, and so were proudly showing off their workmanship. There is still work to be done to the car, including making new bumpers, but it was good to see the car and hopefully Tina will get to drive it soon.
Each year there is an awards ceremony, and as usual the TVRCC had a few entries. The monthly magazine, “Sprint”, came 3rd overall, the club’s Publicity Officer Ralph Dodds who has just written a book on the Peter Wheeler era TVRs came 2nd in the Club Personality category, and the TVR Car Club itself was judged to the Club of the Year. A great result for all the club committee and its members.
Bildquelle: Oliver Edwards
Text: Oliver Edwards