Saturday, 13 June 2015

Knebworth Festival of Transport 2015.

This weeks blog is about Knebworth House (pronounced 'Nebworth') which is one of England’s most beloved stately homes, and is famous worldwide for its rock concerts and as the home of Victorian novelist Edward Bulwer Lytton. This beautiful Gothic mansion is situated 29 miles north of London off the A1M at Stevenage, Hertfordshire SG1 2AX. Knebworth Park offers a great day out for all the family, with fun activities for children, and lots to do for all ages, including Adventure Playground, Dinosaur Trail, a walk through history in Knebworth House and Gardens and numerous special events throughout the summer. One of these special events is the annual festival of transport show which this year was held over the bank holiday weekend of 24th / 25th May. The festival promised classic cars, classic bikes, American cars, Mini's, Volkswagen's and historic commercial vehicles. I had heard good reviews about this 2 day show over the years, so this year I decided to have a drive over to Hertfordshire and see for myself what all the hype was about.
To see all my other blog entries, go to ‘My Blog Archive’ to the left of this page. Simply click on an arrow for a particular year, then click on an arrow for a particular month, this will then give you a drop down menu for all the blog entries for that month

Driving up the gravel drive towards the main 
entrance into Knebworth House and grounds
I followed this lovely blue and white
MK2 Ford Zephyr.

The beautiful Gothic Knebworth House. It looks
as though they are having some renovation
work carried out at the moment, but the house
still looks pretty impressive.

The MK1 Ford Capri Owners Club were at the
show with a very good club display. This bright
yellow 1600XL looked stunning and it was in,
as you would expect, as new condition.

The Capri was produced from 1969 - 1986
in Dagenham and Halewood, in the U.K. and 
offered various engine sizes including
1300cc, 1600cc and a 2.0 litre. I remember
as a kid, my dad purchased a white 1.6L
model from new, and it was so exciting.

Under the bonnet of another MK1 Capri shows
the immaculate engine bay and the Ford Kent
straight 4, 1.6 litre engine. All the Capri's on
display had been restored to a very high

The restored interior brings back happy
memories. The carpets are aftermarket items
but everything else is standard. I did like
the retro eight-track player mounted on the
passenger side of the dashboard.

A gorgeous brilliant white Jaguar E-Type
V12 series 3 coupe. The series 3 was produced
from 1971 - 1975 and featured the 5.3 litre,
12 cylinder engine with uprated brakes and
power steering as standard.

The Series 3 is easily identifiable by the large
cross-slatted front grille, flared wheel arches,
wider tyres, and the four exhaust tips. The
0 - 60 time was less than 7 seconds.

The interior of the series 3 looks so gorgeous
with it's soft leather seats, deep pile carpet
and a dashboard full of gauges.

This is the MK2 Ford Zephyr that I followed up 
the drive in the grounds of Knebworth. The 
MK2's were produced from 1956 - 1962 and
including it's sister car, the Zodiac over 295,000 
rolled off the production line.

The Rover P5 was produced from 1958 - 1973
with a 3 litre engine, and in 1967 Rover brought
out the P5B (as above) with the infamous
3.5 litre engine.

Vauxhall produced the 'F' series Victor from
1957 - 1961 and this series 2 model in it's
two tone green paint looked fantastic.

The F series took it's styling directly from the
'57 Chevrolet Bel Air, and you can see the
similarities from this angle. The wrap round
front windscreen and the tail fins are classic
1950's Chevrolet.

This lovely 1971 MK1 Ford Escort 1300 GT
was absolutely immaculate. Ford produced
the MK1 Escort from 1968 - 1975 when the
new MK2 came along. The MK1's had various
engine sizes available from 0.9 litre - 2.0 litre.

This lovely British racing green 1967 MK2 Ford
Cortina Crayford Convertible stood out in the
line of classic cars. Ford produced the MK2
Cortina from 1966 - 1970 and they preceded
the MK1 Cortina.

I think I'm right in saying that Ford never made
a convertible MK2 model, although there were
several companies producing a convertible
MK2, only one company really made a nice
job of it, that company was 'Crayford'

The real Crayford convertibles had the name
badge on the back of the car, if it doesn't
have a name badge, it's not a real Crayford

The interior of the MK2 Cortina had a wooden
dashboard with the 4 extra gauges on top of
the dash and wood caps on the doors.

How nice does this 1964 MK2 3.8 litre Jaguar
look? finished in a lovely coat of grey gloss
paint over the super straight body panels.

This huge 1957 Pontiac Cheiftain was in an
un-restored condition and looked great. These
were produced from 1955 - 1957 when they 
added the missile shape side trim 
with the extended fenders.

 The Chieftain had a massive 347 cubic inch,
5.7 litre engine which produced  over 290

The Bedford CA bus, produced between 1959
- 1969, later models such as this one had the
single sheet of glass for a windscreen as
opposed to the earlier 2 piece glass screens.

The standard panel van was available in short
and long-wheelbase forms, and was also sold
as chassis cab / chassis cowl, and became a
popular basis for ice-cream vans, ambulances
and amongst other vehicles...

... camper vans as this one is. OK you can see
it's old and dated, but you can also see how
cool this must have been back in 1969.

Another totally immaculate classic car was this
1956 Triumph TR3 Roadster. The TR3 was the
first British production car to have disc brakes
fitted as standard.

The 2.2 litre engine produced 115 BHP, this
was when most saloon cars at the time only
produced 30 - 40 BHP. The 4 speed manual
gearbox had overdrive on 2nd, 3rd & 4th gears
giving effectively 7 forward gear ratios.

The unmistakable shape of the VW Karmann
Ghia convertible.This 1969 model looked like a
U.S import with the chrome towel rail bumpers
and also being a left hand drive model.

This KG looked pretty much original body
wise, although it had been lowered. The super
straight body had almost perfect reflections
in the dark green paint.

As the hood was down it would have been rude
not to have taken a photo of the interior. Again
all looks stock to me, the instrument cluster did
change a littler over the years.

How clean and tidy does this 1967 early bay
look. This U.S import came from Montana 
and the new single colour paint choice, with
the lack of decals all over the windows make
this bay stand out. I did like the chrome 17"
Fuchs wheels with low profile tyres.

This stunning 1967 white over red split screen
was another immaculate Volkswagen. Again
it looks so clean and fresh, and again there
are no decals like most other VW buses.

This really is a nice straight bus with a nice
paint job that gives off an amazing reflection.
I do like the colour coded bumpers and wheels.

This orange bus looks familiar... I saw this at
the Chiltern Hills Classic Car Rally 2 weeks
ago. It's a 1972 late bay riding at stock height
with a pair of cool looking yellow spot lights
mounted to the bumper and a retro mesh
sun visor and 3 bow roof rack.

A lovely looking 1970 early bay with pop top
and finished in a new coat of paint in an 'old'
looking colour. I do like the swing out cooker, 
something I've often thought about having in 
my early bay, maybe one day I'll fit one.

This Dove blue (I think) single cab split screen
pick up looked great and looked pretty much

These pick ups are such cool looking vehicles
and this one is no exception.

This is a pretty neat looking home made
exhaust for the split pick up, but hang on,
won't this get hot? how do you warn the public
not to touch the hot exhaust..?

Easy, you get a permanent marker pen and
simply write 'Hot' on the exhaust.!

At first glance I thought this T25 was a syncro,
but upon closer inspection I think it just sits
high, although I could be wrong. This bus
is kitted out for some heavy duty work as the
3 roof bars show.

This T25 hasn't been restored but is still in
good condition considering it's age. I'm getting
to like these T25's and could easily have one.

'Bod' came along in his new ride, this 1999
T4 Compass Navigator 360. Bod has a lovely
lime green T5 and huge caravan, but now he
has this new 360 he doesn't need them.

This really was a bargain price, and has really
low mileage. It is a nice looking camper (?)
one of the niggly things Bod was saying is that
you can't see out of the door mirrors as the
body is too wide.

Inside Bods new ride is lush. It has an oven,
Sink, Satellite T.V. more bed configurations
than you can think of, a toilet and a shower,
and you can stand up easily, that's the life eh?

This very clean early bay had a nice pair (?)
or set (?), or whatever, of Roo bars on the front.
The bars are called Roo Bars because they
were fitted to Australian bay's to protect the
front of the vehicle should a kangaroo jump
out in front of it. I think I'm right in saying they
are know as 'Boing' bars in South Africa for
very similar reasons.

A couple of mate's of mine from the Dunstable
Dubbers VW Club were at the Festival. Bert
came along in his very clean 1983 blue T25.

This bus is Bert's home from home as he is
always out and about attending different shows
throughout the whole year. 

Another Dunstable Dubber was Darren who
brought along his lovely white split screen.
This is just one of Darren's many air-cooled
VW's he has in his collection.

Darren's 1965 split screen really is a lovely
looking bus, which certainly gets plenty of use
as along with Bert in his T25, these two buses
really seem to get everywhere.

This gorgeous black over red single cab split
screen pick up was simply stunning and I liked
everything about this bus. I think this belonged
to another Dunstable Dubber although I could
be wrong.

From any angle this single cab really is a nice
looking bus. I liked the colour coded bumpers
and the Fuchs style wheels.

This 'For Sale' sign was in the rear window of
the single cab, and expresses the sentiments
of virtually every aircooled VW owner I'd imagine.

This 1964 chocolate brown and off white split
screen looked gorgeous. It was in immaculate
condition and everything was like new. I did like
the full length roof rack which complemented
the style of this lovely bus.

Which ever angle you look at this bus, you can't
help but be impressed by it's overall condition.
It must take dedication to keep a bus this clean
especially here in the U.K.

The engine bay and the engine was in the same
show standard condition as the rest of the bus. 

The Mini owners club were also present at the
Knebworth Festival of Transport. The Mini was
produced (in one form or another) from 1959 -
2000 and starred in the 1969 film, The Italian
Job, starring Michael Caine which is a 'must
see' film.

This gorgeous 1967 beetle was one of my show
favourites, painted in an off white / ivory colour
over a perfectly straight and solid body with what
looks like deep dish steel wheels with whitewall
tyres. It looked totally original, and so nice.

This bug really is nice, I do like those big rear
tyre's and how they fill the arches on the slightly
lowered body.

This stunning Suzuki GT 750 brought back some
memories as my brother had a silver one many
years ago. This one must have been restored
as every nut and bolt was like new, and the paint
finish and colour were amazing.

How about this stunning 1957 Giulietta Spider.
It only had a small 1300cc engine but could
still produce a 97mph top speed.

The gorgeous body styling was created by
the famous independent Italian design and
coach building company, Pininfarina.
The Alfa was the first vehicle that Pininfarina
produced in large numbers, in fact Alfa Romeo
chose Pininfarina to produce the Spider in large
part because they felt confident that they could
produce 20 cars a day for a run of 1,000, but in
fact over 5000 ended up being produced. 

The gorgeous styling even carried on into the
interior of the Alfa. In the mid to late fifties this
car must have been amazing and so stylish.

 A tough looking 1970 Dodge Coronet finished
in blue with white detailing. These Coronets
had the 440 cubic inch (7.2 litre) V8 engine.

These tough looking muscle cars had a price
tag of just a little over $3000 and it was priced
to match it's rival the Plymouth Roadrunner.

The view most car drivers get of this 2 door
hard top. I did like those huge rear wheels and
tyres tucked under the stock body.

A 1974 Daimler Sovereign (XJ6) series II in
an unusual pink colour, which actually suited
the car. This Sovereign had the 2.8 litre
engine which was upgraded to the 3.4 litre
in 1975.

So that was the Knebworth Festival of
Transport for 2015, overall it was a very good
day out. There were many more classic vehicles
that attended the show that I did not get photo's
of. There were enough trade stands to keep
everyone interested and a small autojumble.
Knebworth House has many attractions
including the house its self, the gardens and a
dinosaur trail. Check out their website for more info:


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