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Motor Mouth articles 2010

Goodwood: a drive down memory lane

GOODWOOD, the famous one-time motor-racing circuit on the Sussex downs, has certainly reinvented itself in recent years, with the massively popular Festival of Speed and the Revival meetings every year.

Now the people who run the place have come up with another Big Idea – called Vintage at Goodwood, it is a three-day celebration of five decades of British culture and it begins today (Friday).

The event will bring together and celebrate not only motoring but also the music, fashion, film, art, dance and design from the 1940s right through to the 1980s, echoing the retro theme of the Revival gatherings and tapping into the nation’s booming interest in nostalgia.

Vintage at Goodwood promises to be quite a show. Classic cars and bikes, hot rods, scooters, commercial vehicles, camper vans and caravans will be on display, with popular vehicles representing each decade.

From the 1940s there will be the ubiquitous models of Ford, Austin and Morris that dominated the roads in those quieter days, as well as the more exotic Rolls-Royce and Jaguar models of the era. Stars from the 1950s will include the MGA and Vauxhall Velox, alongside taxis and GPO vans. 

Sixties icons like the E-Type Jag, Aston Martin DB5 and the original Mini are sure to attract enormous interest; there will be the Ford Capri, Triumph 2500 and Jaguar XJ6 from the 1970s; and typical 1980s models such as the Ford Sierra XR4i, Lotus Esprit and – brace yourself – the Metro.

The organisers are also promising a good turn-out of oddballs, such as 1950s micro-cars, Mods’ scooters, Rockers’ bikes, hot-rods from America, as well as the workhorses from previous eras, like tankers, police cars, fire engines, milk floats and buses.

The show will also see a special celebration of the 60th anniversary of the legendary Volkswagen Type 2 Transporter, better known in Britain as the VW Camper Van, with conversions by such British-based firms as Dormobile proving enduringly popular.

There will also be a Vintage High Street, as well as live music from dozens of bands and performers, including The Faces, Sandie Shaw, Earth Wind and Fire, Heaven 17 and Joy Division.

It sounds a bit like the Goodwood Revival meets the Glastonbury Festival and organisers hope this new annual event will be a perfect appetite-whetter for the Revival meeting which follows in September.

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