Thursday, 21 September 2017

September Newsletter - Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run supported by Hiscox

Plan your time with us for the 2017 Run

With less than two months to go until this year’s Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run supported by Hiscox, we have a few final reminders for you, which are designed to help you get the most out of your time with us during London Motor Week. With this in mind, we would be grateful if you could take particular note of the following details.  
Don’t forget to study the revised route this year

Given the alterations to this year’s route, as a result of the major roadworks in the Brixton area (meaning that the Run passes through Reigate for the first time since 1954!), please take the time to familiarise yourselves with the revised route out of London. The route guides are available to view online here and full details will also be included in the Participants’ Packs which will be dispatched in the first week of October.

Important Information: In addition, please note that tender vehicles arriving at Hyde Park must only use South Carriage Drive to drop off cars and will only be permitted access to the Park via Alexandra Gate from Kensington Road. Marshals will be in attendance to guide and assist the unloading. This change has come about due to a vehicle weight restriction being put on the Serpentine Bridge in the centre of the Park, and the Run overlapping with the build programme for the Hyde Park Winter Wonderland show which starts 17 November.

For spectators wishing to follow the journey, a spectator map for this year’s Run is available here.
Improving our communications with you

This year we are introducing a text messaging service for participants taking part in the 2017 Run, as a method of providing improved communication links both ahead of and on the day of the Run. Please be assured that only a very select number of messages will be sent with important, event-related information.

Don’t forget that, if you’re joining us for the first time (or even if you’re returning to the Run after an absence of a few years) you can sign-up to take part in the Hiscox First Timer’s Briefing on Saturday 4 November (ahead of the sell-out Hattingley Valley Participants Reception, supported by Hagerty). This briefing is designed to give you some helpful hints and tips ahead of the Run and you’ll have the opportunity to ask the Clerk of the Course any questions you may have in a Q&A session. 
Win a Chopard Watch

If you’ve entered the Run but haven’t yet opted to take part in the Chopard Regularity Time Trial for the opportunity to win a stunning Chopard timepiece, there is still time. Please email if you would like to enter.  
Chopard  Mille Miglia Chronograph self-winding watch
Embracing the French theme with a pre-event reception on Friday 3 November

Following the success of the inaugural Friday evening reception hosted by Hiscox in 2016, this year a French-themed reception is being held for participants at the Royal Automobile Club on Friday 3 November.

The reception follows the Bonhams Veteran Car Run Sale and transport will be provided from the auction to the Club’s Pall Mall clubhouse to make sure the evening runs like clockwork.

Tickets are complimentary for Run participants, courtesy of Hiscox, but you do need to apply for them in advance via
Prize Giveaway at Crawley High Street

This year, at the official half-way checkpoint in Crawley High Street, participants will have the chance to win a gold, silver or bronze prize by stopping to collect their gift from Gatwick Airport. More news of the prizes in next month’s newsletter…
Enjoy some Motoring Forum insights... and fun! 

There is still time to sign-up for some Motoring Forum insights, rounded off with a fun quiz, hosted by Veteran Car Run Steering Group member Daniel Ward, at the Royal Automobile Club’s prestigious Pall Mall clubhouse, which will take place on Thursday 2 November.

A sumptuous buffet lunch is included as part of the Club Motoring Forum event, with tickets priced at just £15. Please note there is limited availability. For more information on the speaker line-up and to book your space, please visit the website here.  
Special screening of the iconic film, Genevieve

To get you in the mood for the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run, the Veteran Car Club (VCC) will host a private viewing of the iconic film Genevieve - based on the car that takes place in the Run every year - at the Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Place, just 400 metres from Trafalgar Square. The film starts at 1.00pm on Friday 3 November, leaving plenty of time to reach Bond Street in time for the Bonhams Veteran Car Run Sale later in the afternoon.

Admission is by ticket only (priced at just £10 each) which can be booked via VCC HQ on 01462 742818.
A bumper year for entries

We’re delighted that so many cars are already signed-up to join us for the annual pilgrimage from London to Brighton this year. At the latest count, entries numbered 447 (that’s an uplift of 8% on the same time last year), and include representation from 22 different countries, in addition to the UK. We can’t wait to welcome you.

For those of you that are still planning on submitting your entry to join the world’s longest-running motoring event this year, you have until midnight (BST) on Friday 22 September. Please note that after this date, we will be unable to accept additional entries.
Veteran Car Run 2016, Madeira Drive

From the Archive

Royal Automobile Club Heritage Manager, Jane Holmes, shares some insight into the significance of mascots in motoring history from the Club's archive

In 1905, the motoring monarch, His Majesty King Edward VII, was the proud owner of a car mascot featuring 'Caesar the Dog’. Just two years later, he also owned a personalised Royal Automobile Club badge.

Car badges may show allegiance to an organisation, but early automotive mascots displayed the personalities of the drivers. Today, the Lion, St George, and even a frog are all mascots used by the Royal family.

The exorbitant cost of early automobiles limited their availability to the very wealthy, familiar with displaying their coats of arms on coaches. As the landed gentry switched from coaches to cars, their heraldry switched vehicles, too.

Like most fashions, Italy led the way when Queen Margherita commissioned a gilt St Christopher to bless her car on its travels. In 1899, Lord Montague's Daimler also sported a St Christopher, Patron saint of travellers. Today it is still common to see saints adorning vehicles throughout Europe, with St Bartholomew and St Anthony also vying for pole position.

The hand-crafted nature of early automobiles and their limited run guaranteed an element of individuality. However, as manufacturing techniques improved and cars became more standardised, manufacturers embraced the mascot to give their marque a clear identity distinguished from their competitors. Saints, heraldry and mythological subjects were the most popular mascots. Some were a figurative illustration of the company name such as the 1903 Vulcan, God of war, used by the Vulcan Motor Company.

In Edwardian England, Egyptologist E.A. Wallis Budge, Keeper of the Department of Egyptian Antiquities at the British Museum, was also a celebrity. E. Nesbit and H. Rider Haggard dedicated books to him. A decade before Howard Carter, the Edwardians had caught Egypt-mania. The generation that could go further, faster and higher than anyone else, brought back artefacts from the ancient world, which provided a new theme for mascots. Sun crested falcons were popular and Armstrong-Siddeley sported a sphinx.

Whatever the subject matter, the car mascot displayed individuality and also fulfilled the role of talisman, assuring the Edwardian motorist that luck was on their side.
Chauffeur driving Mr Small

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