Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run 6th November 2016

I had the pleasure of photographing the arrival of hundreds of Veteran Cars arriving at Madeira Drive.

The 436 pre-1905 entries translated to 393 starters from Hyde Park on their journey to Brighton, with hundreds of spectators to cheer them on during the 60-mile route, which was bathed in autumnal sunshine.

Below are a small selection of photographs from the day.

Maderia Drive Brighton, the finishing line for over 300 veteran cars.

There were 344 finishers, with the 25 patrols, 3 recovery trucks and 2 passenger ‘Taxi’s’ provided by RAC Motoring Services - complemented by the TOTAL mobile welding unit - attending around 175 breakdowns (some cars up to 5 times!), providing recovery for 12 cars to service points at Honda Redhill and Gatwick, and providing welding services for 6 cars. 

The spectator route guide.

I got to meet some very interesting people who told me about their family history with their cars; in particular a young man who remembers each year being a small passenger in his parents 1904 Cadillac, and this year is the driver with his parents as passengers, the VCR has played an important part in their lives.

Commentators getting ready to interview the drivers to hear about their journey.

Around 10.15am, some two hours after leaving Hyde Park the first participants crossed the finishing line, car number 263 a 1903 Mercedes driven by Mr. Chris Scott.

First car back Mercedes 1903.

Car 253 a 1903 Panhard et Levassor driven by Dr. Terence Bramall CBE.

Car 051 a 1900  De Dion Bouton, driven by Mr. Simeon Barringer.

Joy and delight for car number 203 a 1903 Cadillac driven by Mr. Philip Kadoorie.

Following a respectful distance behind the early starters, were BBC Radio 2 DJ Chris Evans, plus BBC The One Show host Alex Jones, driving vintage buses full of passengers who paid for their ride of a lifetime by jointly raising more than £180,000 for BBC Children in Need. 

The 1950 Bedford OB buses provided by Lodge Coaches of Chelsmford, Essex.

BBC The One Show presenter Alex Jones drove one of the coaches.

Chris Evans, Alex Jones and dancing professionals from BBC One Strictly Come Dancing, Kevin Clifton and his wife Karen Hauer, who were amongst the passengers.

Car number 158 a 1902 Mors driven by Mr. Philip Oldman.

All welcome to come and watch.

Car number 116 a 1902 Panhard Levassor driven by Mr. Tim Dickson.

Brass Band entertainment too!

Car number 388 a 1904 Darracq driven by Mr. Graham Gregory.

Family fun for car number 309 a 1904 Alldays driven by Mr. Christopher Thomas.

Car number 379 a 1904 Darracq from the Louwman Museum driven by Mr. Louwman, seen here with his daughter Quirina and grandson Freddie.

This is the car that played the lead in the 1953 film ‘Genevieve’ set against the background of the London to Brighton run. In the film this 1904 Darracq is the hobby of Alan McKim, a barrister played by the actor John Gregson; an interesting detail is that Gregson does steer the car in the film, but couldn’t actually drive!

Thanks for reading, I'll be back in the New Year with more news from my world of cars and photography.

Bye for now.

Stella

Stella Scordellis

SMS Creative Photography, 83 Station Road East, Oxted, England, RH8 0AX

British Photographer with a career spanning over three decades, photographing people, events and collections.