An annual show organised by the Kilbroney Vintage Show Committee and Newry Lions Club took place on Saturday past (17th June) and played host to over 1500 vintage vehicles, live music and children’s entertainment.
From humble beginnings back in 1985 when a show was organised to celebrate the centenary of the motor car, little did those involved back then know that what was set to be a one-off show, would in 2017 be one of the biggest and most anticipated vintage shows of the annual calendar.
Not only does the show attract vintage cars, motorcycles, tractors, commercial vehicles and stationary engines from all four corners of the Emerald Isle but entrants cross the pond from mainland UK as well which is a testament to the efforts of the organising committee.
Earlier this week I was reminded of the Kilbroney Vintage Show and after a quick chat with Ricky from RB Automotive in Comber I had secured a lift to the show alongside him in one of only two remaining right-hand drive FIAT Barchetta’s that exist in the UK – a pretty rare car I think you would agree and one that fits the ethos of the show perfectly.
Aptly named the ‘noddy mobile’ we set off on the 90-minute drive to the Kilbroney Vintage Show without a red jumper, yellow neck-chief or silly blue hat in sight and thankfully the weather was kind enough to enjoy the journey roof-down.
On arrival in Rostrevor at Kilbroney Park, after a queue of a couple of miles there was a great buzz in the air – this type of show tends to attract all walks of life as there really is something for everyone on display and a great family day out can be had – as such everyone was in good spirit.
I am no stranger to a car show and have certainly been around over the years reporting from many events across the world but I don’t honestly think I have seen a show quite like this before anywhere on my travels.
Imagine a concert at Slane and the sea of people in the crowd – now picture that sea of people only see them as cars – over a thousand of them to be exact. A sight to behold! Applause is deserved for every single person involved behind and every vehicle owner who works tirelessly to keep these classics on the road.
An eclectic mix of vehicles is guaranteed and to give an example of how diverse the machinery is at the Kilbroney Vintage Show – one minute you could be drawn to a 911 or a Fiat Barchetta, next it’s an E-Type Jag, Ford hot-rod, Montego MG, VW Camper or maybe even an ex-works rally car with more pedigree than a pet store.
Never mind the huge mix of motorcycles as well as commercial and agricultural lorries, vans and tractors in attendance that I will admit I am not too clued in with, however, the appreciation for seeing such vehicles is never without a doubt. I have had this show on my bucket list for a long time now and am grateful to have ticked it off.
Will I return to the Kilbroney Vintage Show? Most definitely!