Could this be the demise of the classic and custom car culture?
The start of 2024 has seen the sad news of the Bromley Pageant being cancelled, and now the shock announcement of the demise of the Brighton National Speed Trials, this an event that has been held since 1905 and was recognised as the oldest motor sport event in the world. Organisers have highlighted rising costs, worsening road conditions and the loss of key volunteers as being contributory factors leading to the cancellations.
Manhood Classics, a small car club in Selsey, West Sussex, have been served notice by Chichester District Council, banning them from using the local car park where they have historically met, for any future club meets or associated events. This is not an antisocial group, but a well established group of classic car owners and enthusiasts not dissimilar to the Bexhill 100.
Even we, the Bexhill 100 Motoring Club are now being charged for the privilege of displaying our member's vehicles along the seafront at shows held monthly between March and September. These displays attract visitors to Bexhill, where local businesses benefit from additional income and the local council reap the rewards from on-street parking charges. Is this a local council initiative to drive out the car culture? Let us hope not; we will have to wait and see what the future holds - watch this space.
IMPORTANT NEWS - Bexhill 100 Seafront and August Bank Holiday Polegrove Shows
We have been informed by Rother District Council that from 2024 onwards, they will be imposing charges for events using the Seafront and Polegrove sports ground to help cover increased maintenance costs in the current difficult financial climate.
Following a meeting with Hazel Timpe, Councillor for Sackville Ward and Lead Member for Tourism, we have negotiated a discount for this year, and hope to do so again in future by stressing that promotion of the Bexhill 100 Motor Club's events bring to the town both visitors and trade for local businesses. As a not-for-profit organisation, we use the profits from our events to make generous donations to local charities and good causes, as chosen by our club members. Since 2005, the club has made donations totaling £156,000 thanks to the hard work of our volunteers, sponsorship from local businesses, and the increasing number of cars on display and visitors to the show.
Since bookings for trade stands and car entries for the Polegrove Classic & Custom Car Show are already coming in, we are unable to pass on any increased costs this year and your continued support is greatly appreciated.
This will also effect our seafront displays and in order to keep costs down, sadly we can now only display vehicles belonging to Bexhill 100 Motoring Club members, who should have their membership cards handy to show the marshals as they enter the seafront. We are hugely disappointed at having to resort to this.
Members of the public are of course most welcome to visit our displays, as without you coming along there would be little point in holding them. Your support is greatly appreciated.