Tom Rollason's Aston Martin Atom took Car of the Show at the 15th annual Classic & Sports Car Club Awards held in association with Lancaster Insurance during the three-day Classic Motor Show at the NEC in Brimingham.
The 300-guest sit-down ceremony hosted by Simon Taylor on Friday 16 November has come a long way since a C&SC representative stood on a crate in one of the show-halls in 1998 to present our first Club Personality of the Year trophy (to Ron Smith of the Jensen Owners' Club).
Since then the awards have grown every year and for 2012 there was a record number of candidates vying for the prestigious honours that recognise the clubs' unstinting efforts to promote and preserve the classic car hobby.
They are split between trophies for the best cars and stands at the show, plus all the events, runs, websites and magazines that the clubs toil over during the rest of the year.
Rollason's unique experimental 1939 Aston beat off fierce opposition from several highly rated rivals to be judged the best on display. As well as a trophy, Rollason wins a full professional photographic studio shoot of the car courtesy of C&SC.
Receiving the same valuable prize was David Hanks' wonderful 1934 Hillman Aero Minx Streamliner that scooped the C&SC Special Award for the car that stole the judges' hearts. Hanks bought the pretty Hillman as his first car when aged just 17 and has owned it ever since.
Of the five awards for stands at the show, the Riley RM Club was Best Themed Stand for reflecting the Classic Motor Show's 'what's the story?' brief.
There was loud applause when the Wolseley Register was announced as the Club of the Year for a wide range of exemplary activities, not least its epic Jubilee Tour of Britain.
There wasn't a dry eye in the house when the Club Personality of the Year was announced. The prize was won by Keith Clements of the Jowett Car Club who embarked on a mammoth European fund-raising tour in his Jupiter after his wife Jenny died of cancer.
And the winners were…
BEST CLUB WEBSITE
TVR Car Club at www.tvrcc.com
MOST IMPROVED CLUB MAGAZINE
Tailgate, Woodie Car Club, edited by Colin Peck
CLUB MAGAZINE OF THE YEAR (prize includes a £500 digital camera)
Champ World, Austin Champ Owners’ Club, edited by Andrew Wardle
BEST CLUB RUN/RALLY
Club Triumph Round Britain Reliability Run
BEST CLUB SHOW/EVENT
International Citroën Car Clubs Rally: Citroën Car Club, Traction Owners’ Club and 2CVGB
MOST INTERESTING SELECTION OF CARS
(Inter)national Micro Car Rally
BEST THEMED CLUB STAND
Riley RM Club
BEST SMALL CLUB STAND
Morris Commercial Club
BEST MEDIUM CLUB STAND
Traction Owners’ Club
BEST LARGE CLUB STAND
Veteran Car Club
C&SC SPECIAL AWARD (for the car that stole the judges’ hearts)
David Hanks’ 1934 Hillman Aero Minx Streamliner
CAR OF THE SHOW
Tom Rollason’s 1939 Aston Martin Atom
CLUB OF THE YEAR
CLUB PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR
Keith Clements, Jowett Car Club