More than 200 cars gathered in the station road car park in Sturminster Newton, Dorset on New Year’s Day for the town’s 22nd Classic and Vintage Vehicle Run. Organised by the Weymouth Vehicle Preservation Society, the event, the largest of its kind in Dorset, attracts a wide variety of cars, motorcycles, military vehicles and – this year – even a 1911 Marshall traction engine.
Keith Ashman’s delightful 1959 Rover 105 won the ‘Car I’d like to take home’ award and joined in the 39-mile run around the beautiful countryside of mid-Dorset taking in waypoints at Hambledon Hill, Winterbourne, Whitechurch and Child Okeford, finishing at the Green Man Inn at Kings Stag.
Two nicely restored Willy’s Jeeps owned by Reuben Symonds and Derek Rayment were joined by Simon Curtis’s later Hotchkiss Jeep to lead the military vehicles along the route ahead of a period Chevrolet staff car re-creation cleverly based on an ambulance.
Other vintage cars included a very original looking Riley Lynx, Hugh Wace’s Ford Model A and lots of Austin 7s of every body style, brothers Josh and Sam Hepburn turning out in their lovely 1935 Ruby saloon.
One of the most fascinating cars was an English-bodied 1927 Renault NN owned by Tim Kennard, the only one in existence. Another special that attracted a lot of attention was John Robert’s 1938 Rolls Royce Sedanca de Ville with body by Mick Martin.
The oldest vehicles were a pair of WW1 lorries and an early Model T Ford, while the most exotic was a gorgeous pre-war Alfa Romeo and a beautifully restored two-stroke Saab 92.
Land-Rovers were well represented with a number of early models from Series I onwards, as were Jaguar with Mk1s and 2s and a superb MkIX in attendance. Local chairman of the MG Owners’ Club Rod Milne of Manston led the MGs on the run with Charles Howe’s 1930 Car Bodies saloon turning many heads along the route.
The run, sponsored by local business ‘Harts of Stur’ this year raised over £2,700 for the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance. The Weymouth Vehicle Preservation Society (WVPS) meets on the second Tuesday of each month from 7.30pm at the Nothe Fort, Weymouth.