Ordinary classics to take centre stage in Towcester


A new event has been launched to celebrate the much-maligned classics of the 1970s and '80s. The Festival of the Unexceptional aims to be the country's first 'Concours de l'Ordinaire', bringing the glamour of the competition lawn to classics more often seen on the hard shoulder.

The show is due to be held at The Whittlebury Park Golf Club in Towcester on 26 July, running concurrently with the Silverstone Classic, and is backed by classic car insurer Hagerty. The event kicks off at 8:30am.

Managing director of Hagerty, Angus Forsyth, told C&SC: "There is no shortage of events that showcase the glorious examples of some of the best cars ever made. We love the traditional concours as much as the next classic car enthusiast, but we wanted to put a twist on the quintessential car show and shine the spotlight on cars that are rarely celebrated.

“The Festival of the Unexceptional is meant to humorously highlight the serious attrition rate of cars produced in the 1970s-'80s. The paltry number of these cars either licensed or on Statutory Off-Road Notice is truly frightening. Remarkably, there are more Ferrari 308GTBs licensed in Britain today than Austin Allegros.”

The firm has suggested five cars that it says were 'built to last a lunchtime', including the Austin Allegro, Morris Marina and Triumph TR7, with the Alfa Romeo Alfasud and Renault 30TS representing mainland Europe.

In total, 50 classics will be competing for the top title, plus there will be an additional prize for the runner-up. A panel of four unremarkable experts will judge the cars on show, with bribery actively encouraged – as is period dress.

The event is free to enter and visitors are urged to register their cars free of charge at www.unexceptionalcars.co.uk




I suppose that as anno domini takes its toll of my generation there must be a follow-on who have no idea just how dreadful the cars of this era truly were and also - and it is as such important - find them an affordable way into the classic car world, just as virtually any car was in my day. I wouldn't visit the event, having dreadful memories of my company cars of that era, the poor construction, the lackadaisical dealership attitude - in fact the people of my generation who cold-bloodedly murdered the British car industry. But I wish them well and hope the event is a great success and that plenty of knowledge is pooled.

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