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Next section meeting - Thursday 31 August at The Bull Hotel, Bull Lane, Wrotham, Kent, TN15 7RF.

Honnington Italian Car & Bike Show & Country Fair - Sunday 7th September 2014

There has certainly been no excuse to leave our cars idle in the garage this year with over a dozen events being organised for the section by our regional Alfa leaders!  The seaside has figured prominently with some good car shows at places like Dover and Whitstable.  Having said that Sunday 7th September found us back at an old Favourite that being Honnington farm near Tunbridge Wells for the annual Italian Car, bike day and country fair event.  As many will know this is a regular well attended show for us being a cross between a Italian motor show and a traditional country fair all at one location, the main aim being to raise money the Kent Air Ambulance.  Apparently last year the event raised over £2000 for the KAA and £3000 in total for other charities so its a worthwhile event to attend.  Its a diverse event, in one afternoon you can wander about feasting your eyes on some of the most beautiful cars and bikes in the world and then go off buy the dog food and watch a rather rotund bloke shove a Ferret down a drain pipe in the Ferret racing!   I’d say all pretty good value for a fiver.

So what of this years event, did it live up to expectations?  Well actually it did seeming bigger than ever in terms of exhibits and visitors.   Kate and I set off early on a misty Sunday morning in the Spider (roof down naturally) a quick thrash round the M25 and down the A21 ensued and after a rather ‘refreshing’ drive we arrived at around 9:20.  Shock horror, not an AROCKES person in sight but we were met by line of about a dozen Alfa’s already parked up none of which we recognised?   In the best tradition of the section we started a new line and it was not long before reinforcements arrived demonstrating that at least some of us could get out of bed early on a Sunday!  Oli and Claire arrived next in the very nicely presented GTV and took up position (millimetre perfect alignment of course ;) and after that the usual culprits sorry members rolled in, Mark Reyes, Jeff, Doug, Dean, Clive, Giovanni to name but a few.  It was not long before we had a good line of some 20 cars sitting between our flags.  There was a good representation of Alfa’s old and new, GTV’s and Spiders being the main contributors with a sprinkling of 105’s, a brace of 156 GTA’s (Incl Mr Days) and a lone SZ (was that a section member?)to name but a few.  Bringing  us pretty much up to date we had models of Giulietta and GT in attendance as well.   It was encouraging to see some new faces to the section and enquiries from others asking about what we get up to.  To me there was a noticeable interest in the Alfa marque this year.   

The weather was fantastic (after Whitstable’s soaking ) Tee shirts and shorts being the order of the day.  A good wander allowed the eyes to feast on the usual  display of Ferrari’s, Maserati’s funnily enough most of them Red, a very new Lamborghini  Aventador and the Fiat coupe boys parked up in their usual circle around their club Gazebo.  Notable cars on show worth a lingering look were an Iso Griffo, old Lancia and a couple of very striking De Tomaso Pantera’s. Also there many derivatives of the Fiat 500’s one of which started up in the afternoon, ruining the peace for our afternoon naps the owner seemingly intent on ‘lunching’ his engine by revving the proverbial cashews off it.  Quite why we were not sure?  After a stroll a number of us went back the cars and had lunch.  Wobbly chairs set up we preceded to put the worlds to rights with conversation as diverse as the Syrian crisis, Scottish devolution the merits of unleaded Hammerite paint and Thackery washers. Please don’t ask ;)  

As in preceding years, the day proved a very successful one and I am sure a lot of money will have been raised this year as well.  Come later afternoon the event started to wind down and it was time in our case to head back North.  As always, it was good day very well attended I am sure we will continue that attendance for as long as this event runs.  A big thank you to the organiser if they ever read this!   

Now where are those Thackery Washers?!   

Mark Webster     

 

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