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Car Events 2016 – Shelsley Walsh Classic Nostalgia


We were back at Shelsley Walsh for The Classic Nostalgia this July. Put simply this is one of our favourite events on the car show calendar. A civilised Goodwood Revival.

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Car Events 2016 – Shelsley Walsh Breakfast Club April

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We were up early Sunday morning to go to Shelsley Walsh Breakfast Club. This is an event we have enjoyed many times in the past but their introduction of an entrance fee and a pre- booked ticket this year had rather put us off.
Nevertheless we had made up our minds to go with our friend Andy and when we woke we realised we had accidentally chosen the perfect day, bright and crisp with blue skies and a smattering of frost to start the day.
Beastie prepared the car and did his best to pre warm it. Then when Andy arrived we were off, roof down in the Opel GT, with hats and gloves at the ready. The drive from our house to Shelsley is a wonderful journey with the most stunning scenery along perfect windy roads.
Once there we were shown our places and we were lucky enough to get parked up with the posh boys just inside the gate. The opel GT was definitely fighting above his weight! First call was for breakfast and this time no queue but straight to the counter to get served – a very pleasant start as the queue in the past has been daunting and often out of the door.
Then we did a tour of the lovely cars on display including a Project 7 Jaguar which is one of only 250 built, and still the sun shone. We had hoped it would warm up but the wind was making us chilly so we stopped for a cup of tea in the cafe.
On reflection the charge for entry had the effect of making the whole morning more civilised although the downside was fewer cars to see. The charge was introduced to give the organisers more control over who came as they had some issues with noise upsetting the neighbours, but  I think the new scheme had more of an effect than was anticipated by the organisers
To be rational about the charge, it is only the cost of a cup of tea in Costas (not at Shelsley as its only £1.50) and the end result is a much more civilised outing. So although we had been quite aggrieved about the charge originally, once we had been we realised it was probably a good idea.

Click below for a slideshow from the day.

Shelsley Walsh April 2016

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Car Events 2015 – Classic Nostalgia At Shelsley Walsh


Sunday saw us at our favourite Hill Climb venue – Shelsley Walsh – for their Classic Nostalgia weekend.

“Classic Nostalgia produces some wonderful sights, sounds and magnificent machines from over the years, in a pretty setting amongst the wonderful Worcestershire hills.” Sir Stirling Moss

This annual event is rapidly becoming a firm favourite on the racing calendar and is kindly supported by Classic and Sports Car magazine and Stewart Miller and Peter James Insurance. The action-packed weekend always attracts a very a wide variety of pre 1980s competition cars competing on the historic hill climb course, plus features spectacular static vehicle displays, trade stands, vintage-inspired entertainment, musicians, live bands and show dancers. The 2015 event certainly didn’t disappoint. We arrived in rain feeling a little frustrated and sat in our car for twenty minutes until it gave up. Thereafter the day burst into wonderful sunshine, which really helped the event achieve all it promised to be.

Action on the hill consisted of two one day National B events for pre-1980 cars. On each day, practice was in the morning, where all competitors were offered two practice runs. The competitive runs the took place in the afternoon, with each driver having two runs. We were there to enjoy the fun on the Sunday. The fun was enhanced by the presence of Derek Bell there to help celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first of his 5 le Mans victories. Also honoured was Jaguar who this year are celebrating a number of anniversaries.


The Midland Automobile Club celebrated the successes of 5 time Le Mans winner Derek Bell at the Classic Nostalgia event held at Shelsley Walsh, as he celebrated the 40th anniversary of his first Le Mans win.

Derek who went to school at Kings, Worcester, took to the hill in a variety of cars which included the Porsche 956 that he drove during the 1983 season, sharing it with Stefan Bellof who used the car to set the legendary Nürburgring Nordschleife lap record of 6 minutes 11.13 seconds. Of all the Rothmans Porsches, it is this car that is the most talked about.

Derek also drove the Broadspeed Jaguar XJ12C in which he competed in the 1976 Tourist Trophy at Silverstone.

Derek’s book, My Racing Life, is a highly readable autobiography in which he recalls a life in motor racing that spanned over 40 years and was packed with achievement and diversity, and was available to purchase throughout the weekend with opportunities to get copies signed on the Sunday. I had a mind to buy a copy and get it signed but I have to confess at £35 a copy I baulked and changed my mind. Shame I’m such a tight arse if I’m honest, as I think this would have made a great souvenir to remember what really was a cracking day.

Anyway enough of my miserly ways. Derek Bell is best-known as the consummate endurance sports car driver who won the Le Mans 24 Hours five times and the Daytona 24 Hours three times, teamed with racing greats such as Jacky Ickx, Hans Stuck and Al Holbert.

Besides sports car racing, he has competed in many different cars and categories, from a works seat with Ferrari in Formula 1 in 1968 to rally driving a Vauxhall.

Getting Ready

Getting Ready

Also throughout the weekend Shelsley honoured the marque ‘Jaguar’ with special displays to commemorate the brands numerous anniversaries this year, including the 80 years of the Jaguar name, 60th anniversary of the Jaguar Mk1, 60 years since the last Le Mans win for Jaguar Cars Ltd and the 40th anniversary of the Jaguar XJS, 40 years of the XJ Coupe, and 25 years since a Jaguar last won Le Mans.

As part of The jaguar celebrations, Norman Dewis OBE came to Shelsley on the Sunday appearing on the Philip Porter stand for interviews and book signing sessions throughout the day. In a career spanning 33 years, Dewis played a pivotal role in the development of 25 significant Jaguar cars including the E-type, D-type and XK models. As chief development test engineer at Jaguar for 36 years he is synonymous with the brand’s success – both on and off the track and widely regarded as Britain’s greatest test driver having completed more than a million test miles at an average speed of 100 mph-plus. This year the British engineering icon was finally awarded an OBE in the Honours List for his contribution to the automotive industry. His presence was much appreciated by the keen petrolheads at Shelsley.


Finally leaving PaceBeast in the field we meandered through the car club stands and headed for the paddock where a mindboggling collection of cars awaited our perusal. The smell of petrol pervaded the air a wonderful heady mix to delight the nostrils of any petrol head and we were no exception. We experienced this at Chateau Impney but it was even more intense here. Our cameras were put to high use. Peanut was armed with a 230mm zoom on the XE-1 and I shot from the hip tilting the rear screen on the XM-1 matched to a 35mm zoom. I thought we would also make use of the iPhone 6 as we did at Chateau Impney last week, but as we had both cameras the iPhone saw little use. For us the atmosphere was really exciting, somehow much more real than last week at Impney. Drivers were working on their cars, some were warming them up, regular queues were forming as the cars made ready for their practice runs up the hill and enthusiasts were milling around all of this snapping away with their cameras. Derek Bell was about and his Porsche was being warmed up too. The smells, the noises, the cars to be admired it was thrilling. It took me back to being at The Mille Miglia!

Time for a coffee and a sausage butty in the café and this was very civilised too with but a small queue.. The band was playing and through the door of the café we glimpsed the dancers having fun to the period music.


A walk up the hill followed to snap a few cars on the hill, then a walk around the club cars on the field as these had now filled up before we headed back to PaceBeast to enjoy the picnic we had brought. The sun was shining the fresh chicken sandwiches were good and we got chatting to the chap in the car next to us. Peanut managed to burn her knees and chest in the sun!


The afternoon was a repeat of the morning, this time with an ice cream and then a cup of tea in the vintage tea stand adjacent to the car club stands. The Elf’s favourite cars from the day were the Marcos sports cars, I didn’t have a highlight though I did like the Alfa Romeo which we had admired the previous week at Impney – I think I have little room in my head for anything except the Generation 1 MINI GP. Peanut also did not have a favourite though we did all love the gorgeous red Bentley on the Jaguar display.

A wonderfully great day out!



Car Events 2014 – Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb 20th September


Shelsley Walsh – Autumn Speed Finale

Even though the season is drawing to a close, there has been a capacity entry received for the final two meetings of the year at  Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb this weekend. (20/21st SEPT)

Entitled ‘Autumn Speed Finale’ the two separate one-day events saw the usual mix of sports, classic, saloons and racing cars taking part, as well as nearly 30 motorcycles, with several championships reaching their final crucial stages.

Saturday hosted the BARC SBD Speed Championship, The HSA Speed Championship, the SSCC Championship, the Revington TVR Championship, the Service Hydraulics Speed Championship and the Classic Marques Handicap Challenge, while Sunday saw extra classes for an entry of 11 Morgans, 13 Austin Healeys and a dozen Ferraris.

We had the opportunity to go as press photographers courtesy of our local camera club Beacon Camera Club in Great Malvern. This gave us free entry to the event and access to the areas the press can use to photograph the event, so it really was an opportunity not to be missed.

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Car Events 2014 – Shelsley Walsh June Breakfast Club

I Am That Boy!

I Am That Boy!

This weekend just gone saw us revisit the Shelsley Walsh Breakfast Club, held monthly at the world famous Hill Climb centre. In a nutshell we really enjoy these events, they are just so jolly well civilised and a marvelous variety of old and exotic automoblie machinery turns up. It was very hard for us to choose a favourite from the cars on show. There was a glorious classic Maserati to ogle, Ferraris in abundance, E Type Jaguars and oh well, it was hard to choose the favourite. Until… The Willys Jeep turned up, well actually it was the machine gun mounted on the back that did it. We snapped a boy looking at the Jeep and he loved it and I though, that boy could be me, because I loved it just like he did.

If the cars on their own aren’t good enough, then there is a fantastic breakfast on offer in the clubhouse and I enjoyed a very tasty full English at a very reasonable price. The other thing that Shelsley Walsh offers us is a glorious drive there and back from our home in Malvern. The run is through some of the finest countryside England has to offer, and with the Opel GT with the roof down and the scarves on, then the fun begins from the minute we set off!

Where Did I Put My Driving Gloves?

Where Did I Put My Driving Gloves?

Finally we always bump into old pals here. This time we had breakfast with old MINI friends Chris, Christine and Ava and it was fun catching up with the news and stuff. Later we bumped into Libby and Lucky Dave and got the inside story on Lucky Dave’s latest car projects. This man always has his finger in a pie, he is always up to mischief and nothing has changed – can’t wait to see his latest project completed. Then at the last knockings we had a chat with a cool guy called Trigger and that just about completed a wonderful morning at Shelsley. It really was another great day there looking at some very special cars.

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Car Events 2014 – Shelsley Walsh Breakfast Club 6th April 2014


Yesterday morning we were up bright and early and went to Shelsley Walsh’s Breakfast Club Meet. This is an excuse for car enthusiasts to  fire up their precious metal, head to an idyllic part of the world and show off their pride and joy to a whole bunch of other petrol heads and car lovers. To this end we took our 2008 very rare Opel GT. However, because Peanut’s son was up from London for the weekend we had to take Our MINI JCW Coupé along as well. A wonderful 40 minute cross country drive to Shelsley  Walsh for the pair of us then. Mindful of my frail health just now post chemotherapy I kept the roof up on the journey there just in case I got too cold and ended up spoiling my day. Anyway, here is how the day went. Continue reading