Press release from Volkswagen regarding the CO2 issue.

VW Logo with Das Emissions written under

CO2 issue largely concluded

No unlawful change to the stated fuel consumption and CO2 figures found to date
Only a small number of the model variants of new cars will have the catalogue figure slightly adjusted

Wolfsburg, 9 December 2015 – Just a month after questions relating to the CO2 figures measured on some of the Group’s models arose, Volkswagen has largely concluded the clarification of the matter. Following extensive internal investigations and measurement checks, it is now clear that almost all of these model variants do correspond to the CO2 figures originally determined. This means that these vehicles can be marketed and sold without any limitations. The suspicion that the fuel consumption figures of current production vehicles had been unlawfully changed was not confirmed. During internal re-measurements slight deviations were found on just nine model variants of the Volkswagen brand.

These model variants will be re-measured by a neutral technical service under the supervision of the appropriate authority by Christmas. In cases where the correctness of original figures is confirmed, there will be no consequences. These cars can be offered for sale by dealers without any reservations. In the case of any deviations, the figures will be adjusted in the future in the course of the normal processes as required.

Volkswagen presented these results to the investigation commission of the Federal Government and the Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA). The figure of approximately 800,000 vehicles under suspicion originally published by the Volkswagen Group has not been confirmed. The deviations found in the figures for only nine model variants amount to a few grams of CO2 on average, corresponding to increased cycle consumption in the NEDC of approximately 0.1 to 0.2 litres per 100 kilometres. With an annual production of approximately 36,000 vehicles, these model variants correspond to around only 0.5 per cent of the volume of the Volkswagen brand. The list of the nine model variants can be found at www.volkswagen- media-services.com.

The Group’s subsidiaries Audi, SKODA and SEAT have also agreed a similar procedure with the approval authorities responsible for the vehicles initially considered.

Customers’ real-world consumption figures do not change and neither are any technical vehicle modifications necessary. Against this background, the negative impact on earnings of
€2 billion that was originally expected has not been confirmed.

Whether we will have a minor economic impact, depends on the results of the re-measurement exercise.

VW Logo with Das Emissions written below

VW Emissiongate

On The Road – Touring Adventures with SunHatFrance

Photo of the Gorges du Verdon, France
Words and photography by Liz of SunHatFrance

Sunhatfrance recently launched their Classic VW Camper van hire in the stunning location of Provence/Cote d’Azur in the South of France.

Now that Spring has arrived, sunny days and lighter evenings we thought it would be the ideal moment to experience a few days touring our favourite places locally in our newly refurbished VW camper van ‘Cassie’.  She is a beautifully restored 1978 Westfalia, T2 Bay Window.

This last year has been an eventful one for her, she was shipped over from Oregon, USA to the UK where she then underwent a total revamp before taking up her new residence with us here in the heart of Provence in France.

Photo of the Gorges du Verdon, France

Beautiful Gorges du Verdon in France

From our base in Cabasse we decided our first stop just had to be the absolutely breathtaking Gorges du Verdon, aptly known as the Grand Canyon of France.

When we originally had the idea of offering this style of holiday it was the image of Cassie or Joe camped under the stars alongside the lake at Ste Croix du Verdon that fired our imagination that this could create a very special travel experience and hold memories that would stay with you for a lifetime.

Preparations underway we began loading her up with all we’d need for a few days luxury camping, we’ve carefully planned to include everything a self-drive adventurer will need when they choose to rent a Retro VW Campervan from http://www.sunhatfrance.com/

Next morning we wake to an azure blue sky and brilliant sunshine, everything on board, oil level checked (a little ritual you must perform regularly when driving a Classic VW like Cassie) and we’re off!

We know the route will take us through some of the most picturesque villages in the South of France and plan to take our time and visit one of our favourite vineyards en route http://www.chateaucarpediem.com/  we are after all in the famous wine producing region of the Var.

Cassie at Cotignac Market in the South of France

Cassie at Cotignac Market in the South of France

So, the wine chilling in the fridge, next stop the picturesque village of Cotignac http://www.provenceweb.fr/e/var/cotignac/cotignac.htm  to get our provisions for the next couple of days from the colourful  market, a selection of wonderful fresh French produce, perfect.

The quiet meandering country roads seem to be designed in perfect harmony for one of these vintage VW Campers, that refuse to be rushed along, the slower pace being beneficial for the camper van and better for us too!!!

An hour or so later we find ourselves looking down on the sparkling blue/green waters of the Lac Ste. Croix and the spectacular entrance to the Gorges du Verdon, this view never fails to make you gasp with the sheer beauty of it.

We decide to pull up and picnic making the most of the fantastic views that surround us, so roof up, picnic table and chairs out and relax….

We can’t resist taking a few photos of our Classic VW Camper in this setting, she just looks so amazing, her pastel green and white paintwork is absolutely gleaming in the Provencal sunshine, and with her brand new bespoke interior  featuring Ivory upholstery and Walnut cabinets she is the perfect blend of classic design and contemporary styling and it’s no wonder that so many people notice her as we pass by, we get many smiles and friendly waves as we tootle along, everyone seems to have a soft spot for these Iconic Camper vans.

SunHatFrance having a picnic by their VW Campervan

Time for a relax and a spot of food!

We could quite easily stay here all day long just absorbing the breathtaking scenery and atmosphere of this very special place, however we are excited to arrive at our destination and set up camp so we pack everything back in the van and head for the camping http://lesrochesverdon.com/  this is a tranquil little spot close to the village and right on the lakeside.

This is the bit we’ve really been looking forward to, setting up home and actually living in our VW Kombi for a couple of days, we want to try everything out so we can ensure all goes to plan when we offer her for campervan rental.

We put the awning together without any hitches, it’s amazing how much extra living space this creates, we can now store the picnic table and chairs in here leaving the campervan  clear, there is even a zip up bedroom compartment in the awning which can sleep 2 people if required.

It hasn’t taken us long to ‘make a home’ and before we know it we’ve got the kettle on.

We could have then gone off touring further afield, leaving the drive away awning to mark our camping plot, but we are so pleased to be here that we

Lake at Gorges du Verdon

Stunning scenery

have decided to spend the next couple of days around the van, walking alongside the lake, dipping in for a swim and a laze on the beach.  When evening time comes around it’s the moment to open a bottle of wine, cook a meal chez Cassie and sit chatting under the stars before turning in for a good nights’ sleep in our lovely classic VW camper.

We’ve had a great weekend and enjoyed every part of being ‘on the road’ in Cassie, having experienced this road trip first hand we are now confident that anyone choosing to book a holiday with Sunhatfrance   http://www.sunhatfrance.com/camper-vans/campervan-cassie/ are going to have as great a time as we have had, we can’t wait to do it again and have already planned our next trip to the beach near St. Tropez!  

If you would like to book with SunhatFrance you can either go to the Classic Volks Hire Page for France or direct to their website

Thanks for reading. Stay tuned for the next instalment.

Road Trip with 69 Campers – by Matt Tombs

Image shows the 69 campers advert

………….where to go? France was the choice and it had to be the South, sun atmosphere scenery and shopping were very high on the list!  St Tropez, Cannes, Juan-les-Pins, Antibes, Monte Carlo the choice was endless but not the mode of transport. It had to be the iconic VW Camper van in the shape of Margot 1978 and Amélie 1968 Bay window courtesy of 69 Campers, a company offering a range of vintage and T5 VW camping cars for touring in absolute style around the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region of France.

Four people, two Campervans and our road trip… cruising this stunning coastline from St-Tropez to Monte Carlo over 14 days. Let the fun begin…..

We flew into Nice, left-hand side of the plane was the place to be with magnificent views of the French Riviera which were to be our playground for the next two weeks.  With a transfer organised by 69 Campers we were whisked away to their headquarters in Seillans, the heart of Provence, in less than an hour. Paperwork and Campervan tutorial done we set off.

1- St-Tropez was our first point of call, a unanimous vote and a great opportunity to get the hang of the gears and brakes of our Campervans as it was downhill all the way!  A great ride meandering through the vineyards of backcountry Provence down to the coast, with a journey time into St-Tropez of 1hr 20mins and 67 km.

For our first night, we stayed at Les Tournels Camping Village 10km south of St-Tropez. Camper vans parked up it gave us our first opportunity to see them close up. Margot 1978 Californian Bay dressed in Yukon Yellow and Amélie 1968 Bay from Alabama in Pacific Blue both feature bespoke interiors comprising of fridge, sink, gas hob, 240V hook up, radio/cd and leisure battery.  The Campers can sleep 5 but the Rock ‘n’ Roll bed was all we needed. With the roof popped and bags unpacked we made full use of the luxury hamper we had pre-ordered with 69 Campers. Outside table and chairs prepped, we sat back and enjoyed our first evening under the star filled sky drinking chilled champagne and eating homemade brownies.

2/3-Awoke to blue skies and sun, a quick check on the vans in the morning, dipsticks at the ready, oil looking like golden syrup we headed back into St-Tropez.  With our windows down we cruised in convoy waving at our appreciating audience. Parking the vans at the Port, a 5-minute walk brings you instant chic as you enter the stunning harbour front that is St-Tropez.  Later that afternoon we headed to our next campsite, a short journey of 12km round the Bay of St-Tropez to Camping De La Plage, Grimaud.  This was to be a 2 night beach stop of pure chill and indulgence and to just absorb the atmosphere – the pink light, the fragrant air…. A simple campsite with a pitch on the beach gave us panoramic views of the bay morning, noon and night. The two Campervans parked up next to the beach really brought home to us the ethics of what this holiday was about. That evening chez Margot & Amélie, we served another fine meal and a night to remember with great friends….

4 -Managed to tear ourselves away from the Golfe de St Tropez and then headed 52km inland, to the boys choice, actually they had made a good choice, a wine tour and tasting chez Le Château des Demoiselles, La Motte.  Fantastic scenery, culture, history and wine

Armed with new liquid provisions and a sober driver our overnight stop was 40km down the N7 through the roman town of Frejus with it’s Amphitheatre, to St Raphael and Esterel Caravaning.  A 5* campsite with, get this, YOUR OWN private bathroom and jacuzzi on your pitch!! The private bathroom contained: a shower, toilet, washbasin, mirror, blow-dryer, and dishwasher, pure luxury!  All the basics of electric water and drainage as well.  An early evening swim and Wifi time provided a catch up on life.

5- One of the most stunning natural features of the Côte d’Azur is the Massif de l’Esterel, a coastal mountain range of red-ochre rock which forms the backdrop to some of the most iconic images of the South of France. The Massif de l’Esterel is located between St Raphaël and La Napoule, then onwards to Cannes. The N98 coastal road called the Corniche de l’Esterel is a must for driving, plus being in a Campervan brings that added height to enhance the experience through it’s numerous twists and turns. A 30km route to remember, striking red rock and azure-blue sea creates spectacular views.  Along the road we found numerous places to stop and take some holiday snaps plus a mid-morning swim. The road passes through such places as Agay with its sheltered bay and beach, Le Trayas and Théoule-sur-Mer with its scenic harbour and local cafes.

 

Specially organised by 69 Campers, we had an afternoon of water activities with Thierry at Jets’Cool. After thrills, spills and total exhaustion on these top of the range jet skis we drove to our campsite for the night Les Cigales in Mandelieu-la-Napoule. With the nights chef democratically elected we ate chez Margot with Amélie playing the summer tunes. This option was really growing on us – your own private space, eating what and when you like, dressing how you want and drinking as much as you wanted . It is so soothing just to be outdoors, listening to the sound of our neighbours the Cigales (grasshoppers).

6 – Day 6 and a tick in the box for Cannes, girls had a big smile and the boys conveniently forgot their wallets as we shopped in the chic boutiques of La Croisette.  Another must is the Forville market with its vast provençal larder where you can stock up the fridge. Residence that night was Camping Parc Bellevue, a 3 star campsite with all the necessities needed to accommodate our Campers as we headed off for a night in Cannes.

7 – Cannes in a day… no chance.  The girls had found the wallets and we split up. Shopping without the boys, and beach starring without the girls….

 

8 – Heading out of Cannes with the windows open, we spent the day driving in convoy up the coast through the elegant residences that occupy Juan-les-Pins and Cap d’Antibes. A real eye opener to wealth that the Côte d’Azur houses. One thing for sure every turn and twist on the coastal road brings a different shade of blue in the crystal clear sea. Margot and Amélie’s admiration over the week had been growing, two stunning vans in tandem presented another photo shoot at the Château Grimaldi in Antibes which houses the Picasso Museum.  You may be surrounded by wealth and beauty but driving a classic VW Camper beats a wide and loud Ferrari any day.

Two nights planned at camping Le Sourire in Villeneuve Loubet and we are loving this simple lifestyle.  Drive onto a pitch, pop the roof, put the tables and chairs out and in less than five minutes you are pouring your first drink…. silently sniggering at the other campers struggling with their tents.  This is definitely camping in style.

9 – Another day of blue sky and our activities were planned at Marineland and Aquasplash, conveniently placed side by side.  We watched a great sea life show followed by lunch back at the vans with few admirers popping their heads in, our French had improved immensely over the week!  Aquasplash that afternoon with swimwear intact, a great place for all families and ages.

 

10 – An early start and Amelie led the way into Nice (20km), four lanes of traffic and very little road markings provided the mornings entertainment!!  Followed by calming visit to the old town (Vieille Ville) with its narrow streets curving between old buildings with red-tile roofs, small restaurants and open markets.  Driving along the Promenade des Anglais with the windows down and the tunes pumping we were the epitome of cool!  In the afternoon, we headed up the coast – literally- into Villefranche Sur Mer.  The Camper made light work of the hills and we were greeted with a spectacular view of the coastline below.  We drove into the port, a test on the brakes….and managed to park alongside the beach giving easy access to chilled drinks and the picnic.  That evening we escaped the heat with a 20km drive inland to the foot of the beautiful perched village Peillon, which was our stop for the following two nights.

11 – Headed back to the coast in the morning to visit the medieval village of Eze (24km) and the ruins of its 12th-century fortified castle (torn down in 1706).   Amazing girl shopping and the opportunity to partake in the outdoor café culture that reigns throughout the region.  An enriching morning of history followed by an afternoon on a private beach in Eze-Sur-Mer with our very own man-servant providing the mojito’s.  Designated driver took us back to Peillon that evening, there is a lack of campsites in this area so be sure to book in peak season.

 

12 – A big day for the boys as we headed to to the furthest point of our trip – Monaco and Monte Carlo (30km).  They were desperate to drive the race course; another ambition fulfilled although not quite at warp speed.  Margot pipped Amélie by a tenth of a second!  A final drive through the beautiful principality of Monte Carlo to wave at the rich and famous before we headed back down the coast to Cagnes Sur Mer. (36km)  We thought we would brave the motorway and were pleasantly surprised at how well our Campers faired with the lorries.  We cruised along at 100km per hour, albeit on the inside lane, without causing too much trouble.

13 – Final day on our epic trip and we headed inland up the D2085 into Grasse (25km), the perfume capital of the world.  The old town is very interesting with tiny streets winding forever between the 17th and 18th century buildings, up and down ancient steps, passing through arched tunnels and sometimes opening out onto large squares.  We meandered to our final stop in Saint Paul en Forêt (31km), enjoying the country roads and beautiful views.  A evening in a secluded woodland setting drinking the remainder of our rosé…. it doesn’t matter that we have drank all that we intended to take home, summed up this VW Camper experience for us.  As the 69 Campers tagline states, we went our own way, saw many of the beautiful sites this region has to offer and truly experienced the joys of driving and living in a VW Camper van.

14 – A short drive back to 69 Campers head quarters in Seillans and the end of our VW Camper tour.  We handed the girls back, finalised the paperwork and with were whisked back to Nice airport with a camera full of photo’s and a head full of happy memories.

 

Distance total 500km (310 miles)

 

If you like the sound of this, get in touch with 69 Campers, you can find them on our France hire page

Field of Dreams Show Report 2014

Field of Dreams VW Show 2014
Written by Mark Stutt of Camperscape;   Photos by Lauren Frost & Rick Goodwill

We couldn’t make the first Field of Dreams Aircooled VW Festival (FoD) in 2013, so we were very keen to get to this one, it being in the North saving hours on the motorway and that it’s organised by friend, Kate of Classic Volks, was a bonus!

We were also keen to get along as to be honest I’d fallen a bit out of love with VW shows, what were great events focusing on the cars became massive and expensive with traders selling hardly anything VW related or complete tat; the music on offer wasn’t to my tastes and the growth in popularity of T4s and T5s meant air-cooled vehicles were becoming a minority and I say this as someone lucky enough to own a Late Bay as well as a T4! Indeed, a group of friends and I started the Tynemouth Classic VW Rally a one day air-cooled show to counter this trend, and as it’s by the beach with the vibe and atmosphere we wanted and that we felt others did to, we’re onto our fifth one now. I knew anything that involving ClassicVolks.com would be top notch so early bird tickets were purchased, dates put on the calendar and time booked off work.

The great day arrived and we purred (our Late Bay, Gracie, having received a new exhaust!) through the Tyne Tunnel on the A19 and headed south.  An hour and a half later, with more and more VWs appearing, we turned off the A19 (no need for maps or sat nav, 98 miles on the same road!) and into Escrick Park. Straight away one of the selling points of FoD became apparent when we were directed to the air-cooled only parking area! Although to be fair, the steward did have to ask if we were aircooled, so maybe a VW spotters guide should be included for the stewards! It easy to forget that not everyone is as obsessed with aircooled VWs as we are…

A short trundle over the fields, and a friendly chap guided us into our spot and that set the tone of all the stewards/organisers – friendly, helpful and approachable (no ‘hi-vis vest of power’ attitude here).  Awning up, kettle on, camp chairs out and relax! We were pitched at the bottom of one row of aircooled VWs, a mix of Splits, Bays (Early and Lates) and a few T25s with a large area in front of us leading to the marquees and food and drink stalls, so a long walk to where things were happening certainly wasn’t going to be a problem.

Catching up with old friends and exploring the trade area took up the rest of Friday. The trade stand area itself is worth mentioning as it was the best one I’ve seen at a show; enough relevant, quality stands to offer a great choice (including three swap-meet stalls) but not too many that it overwhelmed the show. It’s positioning was ideal, being right by the main site in between the two camping areas and when the sun set the strings of light bulbs for illumination were a really nice touch.

I’ve mentioned there were two camping areas, one was air-cooled only and the other was for any VW or even (whisper it) the odd caravan… These gave people the choice to camp in the mixed area to be with friends who don’t own an air-cooled VW or, if they did, be part of the actual event, as it’s raison d’être! A busy week before FoD led to an early night on Friday but it was very pleasant listening to the excellent music of The Inspectors coming from the marquee and once that had ended a very good night’s sleep ensued.

Saturday started overcast but warm and the appearance overnight of the Rothfink crew from Cardiff. They’d brought the awesome “Rustbus” (drool…). Parked up with them for the Haul of Rust display was a beautiful patina’d Beetle, a couple of ‘Things’ and If you don’t know Rothfink (and why not?) they produce a natty line in clobber and some great photshoots of old Dubs, tattoos, bikes and anything else that catches the zeitgeist. They are a nice bunch too as I found chatting to Jason as our daughters caught some air on the bungee trampolines!

Saturday day was spent chatting with friends, tree climbing, lounging on the handy straw bales listening to some excellent acoustic music and observing Kev’s  masterclass in MCing on the wireless mike! Next to the music marquee with it’s cool Beetle DJ booth was a chill-out tent with more straw bales and blankets in case the weather turned, thankfully it stayed dry, but it was a nice touch.

Due to tragic events at the Manchester Dogs Home the Canine Show n Shine was almost cancelled but people rallied round, volunteered and the show did go on! Bravo to all those who helped. All proceeds from the dog show were sent back to Manchester with Dogs N Dubs to be given to Manchester Dogs Home to help with the rebuild of the home.

Green Bay Café (a café housed in a Green Bay bus…) provided caffeine a converted DubBox trailer provided alcohol and lots of food stalls provided grub (the wood fired pizzas proving very popular with us!) and a very pleasant day was had by all.

The evening’s music kicked of with TEN79 playing some cover versions and their own songs had an early REM vibe with the headline act The Talks and their two-tone, ska, rap fusion going down a storm. The theme for this year’s FoD was ‘A day at the races’ and special mention to Steve (from Dubenhams.com), Honor, Gary and the rest for turning on the style.

To round off a most excellent day Kate had arranged for an exclusive showing of the VW bus film ‘Circle the Wagen’; the tale of a couple of young lads who bought a Late Bay bus off Ebay and decided to drive it from New York to Los Angeles! Needless to say things didn’t run (in every sense of the word) smoothly but along the way they made friends, learnt more than they could have bargained for about air-cooled engines and discovered the fantastic VW community that we all value.

The Show n Shine took place outside our awning door on the Sunday and there were some cracking vehicles, a Split Screen Beetle drawing a lot of attention and for me a gorgeous Karmann Ghia  was the highlight as it was the double of my Uncle Johnny’s that sparked my interest in all things air-cooled and VW. Reggae was playing over the PA and everyone was kicking back and enjoying the show. Our daughter won the Hobby Horse race and I was persuaded/blackmailed in to entering the Men’s Hobby Horse race – the 1.20 from Escrick! I came last but special mention to the awesome home made horse and outfit from one of the Flat 4 Dubbers – outstanding!

We had to leave before the prizes for Show n Shine were given out, but I bet the judges had some tough decisions to make.  All in all Field of Dreams 2014 was without doubt one of the best VW shows I’ve been to, the location was great, facilities spot-on, enough things to keep kids entertained, not too big, but with enough people and vehicles to create a special vibe that other shows just haven’t got. If you didn’t make it this year, make sure you get your tickets for 2015, it’ll be one of the best shows of the year, you heard it hear first.

Thanks Kate, and all the others who put this show on, you nailed it!

2015 dates are 11th – 13th September, tickets are available from midday on 27th October 2014 by going to the website

(www.classicvolks.com/vwfieldofdreams.html)

 

 

Camper Jam 2014

Split pick up at Camper Jam 2014

Once again the masses descended on Weston Park in Shropshire for the fantastic Camper Jam VW Festival.  As the name suggests, this one is all about the campervan, from the Split right through to the T5. The camping was completely sold out a couple of weeks before the show – you have to be quick to grab tickets for this show!

We left York at around 7pm and it rained the whole journey down, the rain stopped as we set up camp with the awesome Split66, Matt, Rachel and little Gage.

On waking on the Saturday morning, the sun was bright and it was already warm at 7am, this looked set to be a great day at Weston Park. As we were first up, and having forgotten pans and a kettle, we headed straight down to the showground to get a coffee from the excellent Green Bay, where we always know we can count on a great coffee to start the day!  The showground was looking fantastic as always and it certainly looked set up for a great weekend, the Camper Jam staff all looked happy and excited and ready to give everyone a fun weekend.

The music was fantastic as always, 16 Stone Pig made their annual appearance, having seen them on numerous occasions I went for the Michael Jackson tribute.  Well, I could have easily been fooled into thinking that Jackson had risen from the dead, there was an amazing likeness.  I did later hear that the the tribute guy had actually had surgery to make himself look like MJ – I don’t know if it’s true but it’s very believable.

Sunday was a fun filled day and we attended the Cooking in a Camper, watched some of the dog show, looked around the amazin vehicles in the show and shine and sat in the sun quite a lot!  There was so much going on, mix that with a fantastic array of traders and I don’t think it gets much better than Camper Jam for me – it’s definitely one of my favourite shows of the show season.

Generally when going to a show I like to get away by about 2 or 3pm, I was so relaxed at Camper Jam that we ended up back at the camp, with the bar-b fired and stayed til around 6pm!

Another great show from the Camper Jam guys – always a favourite show of mine.  They have managed to be big but keep the shilled out and relaxed vibe that we all love.  See you there next year – tickets go on sale 21st October 2014!  Get your tickets from www.camperjam.com/tickets

Don’t forget to pop over and like us and say hi over on Facebook and Twitter.

Absinthe Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

Words and images by Martin Bellamy

Spring 2011: I’m chatting with my friend and business partner whilst out on a cycle ride and he says, “Did you know that you can buy new VW campervans?” “Really?”, says I, “I thought they were all old ones, that break down all the time” “No”, he says, “I saw an advert in the paper yesterday – they’ve got an offer on with £500 discount*”

 A month later and Mrs B and I are on our way to Yate, near Bristol, to visit the Danbury showroom. We’ve got an appointment for 2pm (you can’t just turn up) but we’re an hour early. The receptionist (sitting behind a desk made of a VW T2 body) isn’t sure there’ll be anyone to see us yet but she’ll ring upstairs to try and find someone. After a short while, Dan comes down and so starts the bewildering process of buying a new Brazilian made VW T2 Kombi.

I suppose driving down to “look” at a Kombi is a bit like going to “view” a litter of puppies. Apart from timewasters and those who can’t stretch themselves that far financially (and, believe me, it’s a stretch of gymnastic proportions) both outcomes are liable to produce a sure fire sale.

We’d thought about buying a classic 60s or 70s Campervan, but I don’t have the mechanical skills to keep one on the road. If it’s a pen you want pushing then I’m your man – but the thought of being stranded by the roadside with my limited skill set fills me with dread. What we wanted was something reliable that we could use at weekends and for summer holidays.

“Why not get a modern T5 then? They have power steering, modern interiors and much more powerful engines” That’s my head talking, of course, whilst meanwhile, my heart is doing cartwheels at the sight of the iconic T2 shape and suddenly I’m the hippie, free-spirit that I dreamed of being back in the 70s.  In reality, I’m MD of a commercial insurance broker in Wigan but, hey, we can all have our dreams.

So, it had to be a T2, and we got down to the process of choosing the options available. I’m 6’5”, so sleeping room was essential and we opted for the full size double bed option. Ker-ching! This meant the spare wheel had to go on the back and we’d need the locking wheel cover, of course. Ker-ching!  Do we want all leather on the seats? – you betcha, we do! Ker-ching! How about having her lowered? Oh, yes and BRM alloys please. Ker-ching!

What about colour? Now, we knew we wanted green over white, but weren’t’ prepared for the option of having ANY green we wanted. We’d expected a small choice like you have with modern cars but Danbury have swatches and swatches of colours. Eventually, we chose Spice Green (“Metallic?” “Yes, please” Ker-ching!)

With the addition of a retro wooden steering wheel and classic bowed roof rack we were done and the order was placed. As we drove away we looked at each other and thought, “What have we done?”

Collection was to be in August so we had 3 months to wait – time we spent worrying about the cost and thinking of where we could go in the new van. I found a Forum specifically aimed at the Brazilian Bay which proved to be a brilliant resource for information and which was so friendly we’ve made scores of new friends in the real world as well as cyberland.

We were so excited by delivery day and the train journey from Preston to Yate seemed to take forever. It was all worth it – our first sight of Absinthe (yes, of course, she’s got a name) was fantastic and we couldn’t wait to drive her home. Paperwork done, Mrs B took the wheel and we set off.

What was immediately obvious after years of driving modern automatic cars was that this one was going to need to be driven. The gearbox and gear stick seemed to have minds of their own and the steering was eccentric to say the least. That didn’t stop us from grinning from ear to ear though (what we now recognise as the permagrin of the VW enthusiast) and being thrilled by the waves from other VW owners.

 

It’s the last bit that has been the real thrill of ownership for us. The VW world is a small one with lots of interconnections and in the main we’ve been welcomed wherever we’ve gone. Sure, there are one or two die-hards who consider anything without an air-cooled engine as less than authentic but, in the main, Absinthe brings a smile to most peoples faces.

The recent ending of production in Brazil has brought the T2 into the limelight again and in 30 years time I’m sure the current incarnation will be as revered as the originals are now. For us Brazilian owners, the attraction is the freedom to use the van as often as we want.

Many of the Forum members use their vans as their everyday vehicles and many have now added power steering to make day to day use even easier. We use Absinthe almost every weekend from Spring until late Autumn and the pleasure we’ve had from her has been immense.

We’ve had 3 week runs through France and Spain and weekends away throughout the UK. We’ve done our first ever Festival (Larmer Tree in Dorset) and have used her as overspill family accommodation at our Static Caravan in the Dales. She’s shifted furniture and been to the tip. We’ve had afternoon teas overlooking the coast and icy mornings in the Cotswolds. She’s even part of our Xmas decorations over the holiday break.

Would we swap her? No! Are we glad we found Danbury? You bet we are.

* a bit like DFS, Danbury nearly always have a £500 offer running

 

 

 

 

 

Go your own way…. Classic VW Camper van hire in the South of France

Image shows the 69 campers advert

It’s the fanatics, the curious, maybe the first timers that continue this story… from the initial “plattenwagen” design that the restorers piece together, the cabinet maker that mixes modern with iconic or the feel and smell of an era gone by.

69 Campers launch their very own and unique way of holidaying in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur.

A vintage vehicle comes back to life in an area steeped in natural history and beauty; 69 Campers have married the classic VW Camper van to this esteemed region.

A premium range of VW Split screen and Bay windows from the 1960’s and 70’s have been sympathetically restored to realise today’s customers requirements without harming the integrity of the vehicle.

All the Campers hail from the sunny climates of the USA and France, enabling a professional bare-metal restoration and mechanical overhaul. They have new 1600cc twin port engines, re-conditioned gearboxes and new electrical wiring looms.  Bespoke fitted kitchens with two gas burners, sink, fridge and storage give a touch of luxury in a retro classic. Thoughtfully equipped with iPod connection, solar shower, 220v leisure battery, sun canopy and outdoor furniture to name a few… a truly fine product with beautiful toning hand-made interiors complimented by matching linens and tableware.

The Camper vans have all been named to reflect their personalities so a relationship can flourish from the moment you turn that key.  Margot a  1978 VW Bay window is our shimmering light from California, oozing beach and sun in her soft yellow and pearl body work.  Amélie is a 1968 VW early Bay, our sweetie from Alabama dressed in pacific blue and pearl.  Estée is our little star, a 1968 VW Bay window in velvet green and pastel white originally from gay Paris. Finally Gigi, our fabulous 1964 VW Split screen Sundial Camper, an Arizona belle shining in two tone beige and alpine white paintwork.

Margot, Amélie, Estée and Gigi are available for rental all year round, or why not consider hiring one for a wedding or another special event.

Collecting your VW Camper van could not be easier, fly to Nice, Marseille or Toulon, take the TGV or drive direct.  Your self styled adventure starts in Seillans, one of the medieval perched villages in Provence, the home of 69 Campers.  From collecting your beautiful vintage Camper the choice is yours, explore the vineyards, take a culture tour or head for the chic resorts of the Cote d’Azur and Monaco.  Discover Provence and the French Riviera with 69 Campers.

For all enquiries please contact Matt Tombs of 69 Campers

Tel: 0033 483 11 17 75 Mobile: 0033 675 85 25 76

Email: matt@69campers.com

Visit: http://www.69campers.com

69 campers banner logo

Hiring a vw campervan for holiday

2010:  It costs a lot to buy and maintain a VW campervan these days and so it is not something that everybody can do – no matter how much we’d all (VW lovers) like to own one, it’s just not possible. I personally loved VWs for as long as I can remember but I’m not in a postion to own a camper as well as my 1969 VW Beetle – I still have a lot of work to do on her, so to buy anything else right now would be crazy even if I could. But, I absolutely adore camper vans as you will see from my Facebook page and my personal profile if you are a friend of mine. Most people that know me would say I have an obsession – personally I think I just have a real love and great interest!

Anyway, a few of years ago I was over in Scarborough and spotted a campervan with a VW hire website on the back so I wrote it down. As soon as I got home I went to have a look at the site and it came up with “Website Under Construction”. My husband and I also run a web design business (ByitSizePro.co.uk) so I decided to get in touch and see if there was a reason it was not finished.  Anyway, to cut a long story short we ended up designing the website in exchange for a weeks camper hire as payment.
The first of August finally arrived – I was so excited, I couldn’t wait to get out and about in Felicity (Felicity is a Brazilian T2 bay camper converted by Danbury). We left York mid morning and arrived at Felicity’s home at around mid-day.  The owners have become good friends over the time doing the website so it was lovely to see them too. There was lunch waiting for us when we got there which was a lovely start to our holiday. We had a nice relaxed lunch and a catch up, and then we were on our way in Felicity.
We headed up the coast road first towards Beadnell Bay. The views were fantastic – beautiful coastline and it lots of castles! The first night we stayed in Budle Bay which is just up the coast from Beadnell Bay and near Berwick-upon-Tweed.
The next day we decided to head further north and ended up crossing the border into Scotland and up to North Berwick. We found a lovely campsite in North Berwick overlooking the coast and just a very short walk down to the beach. Bass Rock could be seen from the campsite too. Here we had some German neighbours with whom we had wine and snacks the first night and then on the last morning they invited us for breakfast. They were a really lovely family and we intend to keep in touch and hopefully visit them at some point in the future. We are also, possibly, having the daughter to stay next summer to help her out with her English (although it’s way better than my German has ever been already).
From North Berwick we had a drive into Edinburgh for the day and had a wonder around. We saw Edinburgh Castle and many of the other sights and sounds of Edinburgh – a really lovely and lively city.  After 3 nights in North Berwick we decided to head to the Lake District for a couple of nights. We drove down to Lake Ullswater in Cumbria and stayed at Park Foot campsite right on the lake for 2 nights. We drove around a few of the lakes and spent a couple of hours in Keswick. We took Felicity right up to the top of Borrowdale where the views were absolutely amazing, we spent a lot of time up in the clouds! The climb by road was very steep and very bendy but Felicity managed it all with absolutely no problems.
After the Lakes we head over the Pennines towards Alnwick and then stayed our last night back in Northumberland. Unfortunately, the time then came for us to hand Felicity back to Paul and Denise. We had had a fantastic time with her and will hopefully have her again sometime. She was so much fun to drive and to spend time in. Stopping here and there to make a coffee in the back was great. And cooking dinner was also great fun.
I would definitely recommend hiring a VW camper to anyone with a love for campers, it’s a great way to see some of the country!

Press release – Field of Dreams 2014

Field of Dreams 2014 HeaderEscrick Park Estate, 12th – 14th September 2014

Field of Dreams Aircooled VW show is back for a second year.  After an extremely successful first show in 2013, tickets for this year have just gone on sale and are already flying off the website!

Those that came in 2013, may have been aware of a couple of issues we had with the venue that were completely last minute problems and totally beyond our control, thankfully, we decided we couldn’t put our trust in a venue that could make things so difficult at such short notice!  We will be putting on a very fine selection of music yet again, this, apart from the fantastic aircooled VWs on show was most definitely a highlight of the first Field of Dreams and is going to stay as part of the show for years to come, with music to suit most tastes at some point over the weekend.  Last year, we had soul, funk, ska, rock, dance, reggae, indie and more, bands that played covers and bands that played their own excellent material, plus DJs, a dance tent, and even an acoustic tent!  All three music tents last year had people dancing on the Friday night, for a full 12 hours on the Saturday and throughout the day on the Sunday.

As well as all the aircooled VWs on show, we also had some fantastic traders, including autojumble, craft, VW gifts and parts along with some unusual stands and some fantastic food! We had a fancy dress theme, we are currently deciding on a theme for this year’s show.  There was a fantastic Canine Show and Shine, run by Manchester Dogs Home and sponsored by Dogs N Dubs.  We had a hobby horse race, I felt we had to have something horse racing related with our venue being York Racecourse.  We will be doing the hobby horse race again this year, so get those hobby horses dusted off and customized, there will be a prize for the best hobby horse!  And then of course there is the aircooled show and shine, I was amazed by both the quantity and quality of the show n shine for our first year, this is bound to only get bigger and better as the year’s go on.

Escrick Park Estate is a fantastic location, easy to find and is roughly, just a 15 minute drive or bus journey from the beautiful, historic, City of York and some of last year’s weekend guests, did pop into the City for a look around and some in fact spent a few days here before the show.  If you don’t know York, it would be a real shame to come to the area and not visit, in my opinion it is one of the most beautiful cities in the UK, if not the world!  York has a vibrant café culture, hundreds of museums and historic monuments along with many other attractions, excellent street entertainers, great shopping and so much more.

Field of Dreams, is an aircooled VW show and there is a camping area that is strictly for aircooled VWs.  But, we do have a general camping area that is for all vehicles.  This can be somewhat confusing if you haven’t been before, basically, if you have a vehicle that was built as an aircooled VW, then if you would like to be in the aircooled only camping area then you purchase an aircooled ticket, if you are coming in a watercooled VW or a non-VW, you can only book into the general camping area, no other vehicles will be permitted into the aircooled area.  If you are coming in an aircooled but want to be with your club or friends that don’t drive an aircooled, you may of course book general tickets – the general area is for all vehicles, watercooled VW, aircooled VW and non-VW.

We look forward to welcoming you all to Field of Dreams 2014.  You can buy tickets and book trade pitches by going to the Field of Dreams page on our ClassicVolks.com website www.ClassicVolks.com/vwfieldofdreams.html  Earlybird tickets are well and truly sold out but there are still a few extra discounted advance purchase tickets left, these are at a 10% discount of the advance purchase price. Be quick though because when they’re gone, you guessed it, they’re gone. *UPDATE 21/07/2014 – only a very limited number of these left!

If you are a business interested in sponsoring the show then please get in touch with Kate at events@classicvolks.com for more information.

The VW Kombi – it may not be the end!

So it was expected that December 2013 would mark the end of production for the VW Kombis that are still rolling out of the factory in Brazil.  This was due to new safety laws coming into force in Brazil – as they previously had in other countries of production, the last being Mexico in 1995.   The new laws include ABS brakes and airbags, which there just isn’t room for in the Kombi and so the only answer was to end production after 63 years!

Brazil’s finance minister, Guido Mantega, is looking at a possible exemption from the new safety regulations that meant the production of the Kombi had to stop.  The finance minister is saying that an exception may be made for the VW Kombi because of it’s iconic status and they may allow production to continue.  The Kombi is still very popular as a workhorse and is seen being used as a work van all over Brazil.

The factory in Brazil had produced a limited edition of 1,200 to be the last ever Kombis to roll of a production line, anywhere in the world, all in blue and white with a commemorative plaque on the dash, going for a price of £26,000.

Monday (23rd December) will see final decision day and the finance minister will anounce if there is to be a reprieve for the Volkswagen Kombi!

Watch this space, we will keep you updated!

THE CAMPER VAN IS DEAD. LONG LIVE THE CAMPER VAN

News that production of the iconic Volkswagen T2 camper van will cease in Brazil later this year will no doubt have left many of you feeling sad, but while the rear-engined original is gone, a new generation of Volkswagen campers ensure its spirit lives on.

The iconic camper van joined the Transporter line-up in 1951 but it wasn’t until the 1960s when it was adopted by a free-spirited generation. It became a cult symbol of an alternative lifestyle and images of vans painted in crazy colours and psychedelic designs enthral to this day.  The versatile, practical camper van captured the spirit of the times and has been the epitome of independent travel ever since.

Old and new campervans

The end of an era!

And those 60 years of globetrotting experience runs through the latest generation of Volkswagen campers – The California SE and California Beach.

Inspired by the past, built for today, the Volkswagen California introduces new standards of comfort, performance and safety, thanks to its modern purpose-built design and superb engineering.  But the ethos remains the same.  The latest evolution of Volkswagen’s iconic camper van still symbolises the fun, freedom and adventure that was such an appealing quality of the much-loved original.  The ability to go where you please, when you please is as relevant today as it was in the 1950s – maybe even more so.  Yes, there are those who love the nostalgia, but the appeal of the California lies across a generation.

Whether it’s a family camping holiday, a festival weekend, or a voyage of discovery road trip, the Volkswagen camper van gives you the freedom of the open road and provides a place to relax, eat and sleep.

Travel is not just about the destination, it’s about getting there, too.

Volkswagen Camper Van Milestones:

1949: The first ever Volkswagen Transporter van is launched at the Geneva Motor Show, with its distinctive smiling face.
1951: The Volkswagen Transporter is developed into the iconic Volkswagen camper van.
1960s: The camper van is adopted by the hippie generation, becoming a cult symbol of an alternative lifestyle.
1967: Second generation Transporter, known as the T2, does away with the classic, ‘splittie’ (split windscreen) design and introduces panoramic vision, gaining the nickname ‘Bay’.
1969: A Volkswagen camper van becomes the ‘Mystery Machine’ in hit cartoon series ‘Scooby Doo’.
1979: The T2 becomes the T3, boasting a more angular design
1990: The Transporter turns 40 and the fourth generation, T4, Transporter is launched.
2003: The fifth generation T5 Transporter launches to critical acclaim and provides the basis for the latest Volkswagen California camper van.
2013: Volkswagen California celebrates its 25th anniversary, with around 100,000 California camper vans rolling off the production line since the start of production.

 

Hailstorm at car factory damages up to 28,000 Volkswagens

Volkswagen has blamed a hailstorm for a slump in its car deliveries last month, after golf ball-size clumps of ice hammered car parks full of 28,000 brand-new vehicles.

The storm, in the Wolfsburg region of Germany, where the manufacturer has a major factory, resulted in broken windscreens, dented bodywork and scratches on paintwork. It forced the manufacturer to halt deliveries while it hired inspectors to pore over each car, searching for damage.

hail

Most of the cars were built to order for customers across Europe. Drivers have been offered a discount on the list price if their vehicle was damaged and then repaired by VW. They also have the option to wait for a brand new car to be built.

The German car company said that it was fully insured against the cost of the storm, which is likely to run to several millions of pounds, not least because it’s not the first time that its cars have fallen victim to severe storms. Last year, new Passats were damaged by hail at the car maker’s Chattanooga factory in America. In 2008, almost 30,000 cars needed repair work after another hailstorm in Emden, Germany, where cars are held before being exported.

Volkswagen said that delays caused by the latest storm had “significantly affected” deliveries of its cars, particularly in Germany, where most of the affected vehicles were due to be sold. The number of drivers taking delivery of a car there fell from 401,200 in the first eight months of 2012 to 364,300 for the same period this year.

Around 200 cars ordered by British customers were caught by the hailstorm. Of these, 75 are still being restored to factory condition. Affected owners have been offered courtesy cars.

Taken from driving.co.uk with The Times

Tatton Park VW Show 2012 – Photo Report

Show report and pictures by Rob Blackwood of originals-art.com – if you particularly like any of the pictures you see here then please pop over to his website and get in touch – all pictures are available to purchase.

Now I’m no VW expert, but I love to look at them and more particularly, take photos of them and this caused us a bit of a problem at Tatton Park! Why i hear you ask …well let me tell you,choice and people is the answer.

We have been going to VW shows for a good few years now and we always manage to get hundreds and hundreds of shots between us, at Tatton we took a little over 100 shots, this was nothing to do with the quality of the vehicles on show (more about that later) the reason we took so few is simply because of the crowds, there were swarms of people surrounding all the super cars and buses on show it made getting a nice clean shot almost impossible! It really sounds like I am complaining, but believe me I really am not, quite the opposite really.  The quality and variety of vehicles on show was amazing, there was dubs there that I have not seen at any other show, along with some very nice Porsche and some very wacky beach bugs.
The whole showground had a really nice buzz about it, I’m sure the lovely sun had a lot to do with it, when we arrived on Saturday night and seen the 3hr downpour we thought it was going to be a washout, but like I have heard people say, Tatton seems to drain well and when we woke early on Sunday,the ground was almost bone dry!  The main reason for the feel good vibe, was just the fact it was one hell of a good show and a real family show.  We traded here for the first time and even the range and variety of trade stands were excellent, with lots of stalls to help us part with our hard earned cash!!  We had heard such alot of good reports about Tatton and sometimes this can be a recipe for disaster because you have such high hopes,but the show lived up to all our expectations.
Now the most technical bit you will ever get from me,our fave dubs were a nice two tone beetle and a ratty split that we have seen at many shows,i think its the cyclops light we like! and i loved the couple of old Porsches and the VW variants.
Hope to see you at a show soon,if you see a confused looking photographer say hello and explain that the engine is in the back.

Camper Jam 2012

Picture taken at Camper Jam 2012
By Kate McCarthy Bedward of Classic Volks & York Classic VWs

After another week of checking the weather forecast every 10 minutes and seeing nothing but rain, rain and more rain we were beginning to wonder if this year’s Camper Jam would go ahead.  We were due to set off from York at 2pm on Friday (6th July) and it was constant rain here in York.  I called the show organisers in the morning to double check everything was okay and yes, it was very wet and very muddy after another torrential downpour overnight but they would most definitely not be cancelling.  I for one had made the decision that as long as it wasn’t cancelled we would be heading down – I had been looking forward to this show for a long time and really din’t want to miss it.

We set off as planned at 2pm, the drive down was dreadful – the rain was pretty much constant throughout the journey, bear in mind we were in our ’69 beetle with wipers that do what they want, and the traffic was very slow with many tailbacks due to accidents and roadworks in different parts.  We finally arrived at Weston Park at 7pm but this was not the end of our journey, it took an hour to get into the grounds and onto the camping area ‘Home is Where You Park It’.

We found a dry bit of ground to put the tent, in fact the whole of the area ‘Home is Where You Park It’ was pretty well drained.  We had lost a tent pole in the wind at last week’s Volkspower and so I had arranged to pick one up from Lightening Leisure on arrival at the show.  So, first stop over to the traders area to find them.  The ground as we walked down to where the traders were located was extremely muddy and we were very grateful for the wellies had bought that morning!  We found lightening Leisure in a foot of mud, picked up our new pole and went to get our tent up.  Once it was up it was time for a wander round to see what there was on site.  The first part of the show we came to was a good sized fairground with waltzers, bumper cars, a crazy bull ride, ghost train and much more, this we would definitely be coming back to later!  Next there were the food traders and what a selection there was! – from the usual fish & chips and burger stands to Caribbean and vegetarian food, a cous cous stand and noodles amongst many others, spoilt for choice I think you’d say! In among this was a DJ in a campervan playing some great tunes – people were having a fantastic time here dancing away in the mud!

There were 2 very large marquees both with live bands – although The Beat who were supposed to be playing were unable to come due to adverse weather conditions (not as hardcore as us veedubbers I guess!).  We had a good look around bumped in to a few friends and had a really nice evening.  It was a real shame the The Beat couldn’t make it as many had been looking forward to seeing them, in fact a couple of our club members had only come to this show because they were playing.  However, Saturday night’s band 16 Stone Pig were absolutely fantastic, I think I can speak for pretty much everyone that was in that tent to see them when I say, we all had a fantastic time – they played some great covers and got us all dancing and jumping around – videos will be uploaded shortly to our YouTube ‘Classic Volks’.   Once they had finished we wandered over to where Druid’s Brew were playing from their split screen campervan – we sat there probably for about an hour, very chilled out acoustic music under a tree, there was a beautiful and relaxed atmosphere, I could have sat there and listened all night.  After this we were relaxed and ready for sleep.

Unfortunately on Saturday night the organisers had to make the very difficult decision to not allow any day visitors in on the Sunday – although it had only rained a couple of times during Saturday, the times it did it was very heavy rain and any more vehicles coming in could have made it more difficult to get people out at the end of the show.

We awoke to beautiful sunshine on Sunday morning!  So we decided the best course of action would be to have breakfast and then pack up the tent etc in case it decided to rain later.  Once packed up we drove down to the show area so that we could get out easily at the end of the show.

The show and shine time was brought forward to give people time to get off the site and get towed off if necessary, some areas were still extremely muddy and this was most like to be the only way they were going to get off.  Some of the traders and packed up and gone home before we even go down there – I think they were worried that if it rained again they may be stuck there until Monday – it had been mentioned at some point that this may have to happen, we weren’t sure if this was true of if it was just a rumour, but there were some that didn’t want to take the chance.

The show and shine was of a very high quality, some fantastic campers on show – both old and new, one of my favourites was definitely the split screen high top.  Rob Henley with his T5 won best in show (his dogs had also won places in the dog show!),  Rob Underwood (of VW Wedding Hire) and his split screen wedding campervan ‘Beryl’  also won a prize as did Rob Newman (of Dubtrips camper hire) with his recently restored split screen ‘Jeremy’ – both of these split screens were immaculate and were restored at Dubtricks of Harrogate, see accompanying photos!

The sunshine did stay all day on the Sunday and it was a beautiful hot day but still very muddy on the showground. We decided to leave after the show and shine to avoid the queues getting off the site as we knew our first stop was the nearest petrol station petrol station!

Despite the weather and the mud I have to say Camper Jam 2012 was a fantastic show and I think the majority of people there would agree that the organisers did a fantastic job keeping the show running and making it an absolutely fantastic weekend!  We are already looking forward to next Camper Jam 2013 and come rain or shine we will be there!

Picture Blog from VolksPower 2012

I have decided to just do a picture blog for this show, partly because I am so busy cleaning mud of everything and doing my usual day job (running Classic Volks & York Classic VWs) and getting ready for setting of to CamperJam 2012 on Friday.  Seems the working weeks are very short currently as I am at shows pretty much every weekend, so I spend Mondays cleaning all camping equipment (all shows so far have been wet and muddy), and then Fridays are spent packing up and getting ready to go, with a day in the middle somewhere to give Miss Betsy (my 1969 Beetle a bit of love ready for her next trip).  We took plenty of pictures so please enjoy.

Dubfreeze 2012 Show Report

Some may say we’re totally crazy, others know and understand our obsession. Yes, it was the middle of February and extremely cold but that was not going to stop us heading down for a night of camping in order to be on site ready for the first Veedub show of the year.

We Met a couple of club members in York and set off just after 12:30 – all very excited and very much looking forward to this – marking the start of the 2012 VW events season. Our first stop was Woodall services just over an hours drive from York, here we met up with some of the Sheffield Owners club and some of the Doncaster club as well as some of the RULE (R U Low Enough) Club. From there we convoyed the rest of the way down to Staffordshire Showground.

We arrived at the Showground at around 4pm and found our York Classic VWs Club camping area – a couple of our members had arrived before us as they had been in the area the night before. We set up our tent in the freezing cold – although I have to say putting the tent up and the excitement must have kept us warm as we didn’t notice how cold it was after a while. Once the tent was up it was time for a coffee in the tent with the heater on. We then all had a bar-b-que and sat around and chatted dubs for a few hours, then decided it was getting a little cold so thought we should head of to the bar where it may be a little warmer. The walk over to the bar, although only a few minutes, was absolutely freezing so the warmth on arriveing was very welcome. We stayed in the bar and chatted to fellow Veedubbers for a few hours. We then headed back to the cold, cold tent. Heater on and coffee made it was time to try and get some sleep. We managed to stay warm enough to get some sleep which was great – with the help of a heater and a great big duvet! The next morning we were all up nice and early – part of this due to the cold and partly because we were all very excited about the show. Coffee and bacon on the bar-b and then ready to head over to the show – thankfully this show is an indoor one. We had woken in the morning to snow on the ground (it did disappear pretty quickly though as the sun was shining).

The show The show didn’t open til 9am so until then we decided we should have a wonder round and look at some of the lovely VWs around, and there were some real beauties. At about 9:30 we decided that the queue would have gone down enough so to the show we went. First stop was up to Dogs N Dubs up on the balcony to take them a much needed bacon butty.

The show was absolutely jam packed – obviously a very popular show, I think the majority of people drove to Stafford on the day (not too many people around mad enough to camp in this cold weather!). It was very difficult at first to get anywhere – so busy. We had a good wander around the show and shine area – some absolutely gorgeous dubs in there, I would have found it very difficult to pick a winner. If you are looking to buy anything VW related whether parts of accessories or clothing this is definitely a show to visit. We saw some fantastic cars and vans for sale – if only we’d had some cash on us (actually, probably a good thing we didn’t as there may have been a good few veedubs heading back to York with us! There was an amazing number of parts for sale including panels etc. All in all a very good show – although I do think they maybe need a bigger venue.
To get a real idea of the show please visit our facebook page: and have a good look through the photo album for Dubfreeze 2012, I have only added a small sample of the photos on here.

…the new addition

Later this week we will be picking up the latest addition to our family.

She is a 1969 VW Beetle, 1200. Not in a great state but she runs and has 12 months MOT, which is pretty much exactly what we were looking for – one that we could use daily but also that we could work on.
So, let me introduce to you our new family member by adding a few pictures of her. I will add some more once we have her home.