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Opinion

The Classic Car Community

by John Mayhead
27 March 2020 2 min read
The Classic Car Community
The Classic Car Community

There aren’t many hobbies that readily lend themselves to the term ‘community’ when it comes to describing them. Other than at local level, there’s no real golf, fishing or hockey ‘community’. Classic cars are different though.

On the one hand, ownership of an historic vehicle is a very personal thing. There’s a relationship between the car and the owner, one that usually requires a major investment of time, effort and money in maintaining or restoring it. There are those wonderful road trips, often with nobody else in the car, that bring smiles of joy to the driver.

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But then there are the shows, the online groups and the clubs. There are the chance meetings in car parks, where someone remarks on your classic and you find you have a shared passion. There are the times when you just can’t make a certain part fit and you reach out to the forum, only to be overwhelmed by support from across the globe. In this way, the classic car and bike community is just that: a network or likeminded people. For some people, this can be their major source of social interaction.

When Hagerty looks at the statistics of the people who enjoy our content and buy our policies, we’re aware that men aged 45 and above account for a large percentage. Some are of advancing years. These are just the sort of people who we’re now told could be most susceptible to the coronavirus Covid-19.

Much will be written about the economic impact of coronavirus, and Hagerty are not unaware of the struggles many classic vehicle businesses will have to survive. But we also know that the community nature of our hobby could be a massive strength in helping people to get over this difficult period. We’ll do our bit, as it were – we’re all still manning the phones from our homes and we’re planning to increase the amount of content we’re publishing online and on social media – but we’re also encouraging everyone to pick up the phone, drop an email or message friends they know in the car world. We’ll be doing the same.

Now that we’re in lockdown for the foreseeable future, it’s helping us to reassess what’s really important, too. Like many people, I will be continuing to spend the odd evening trying to complete my present classic project so that I have something smart to take to the roads when the all’s clear is given. But most of the time, I’ll be concentrating on keeping in touch with, supporting, and sometimes seeking the support of my friends, family and colleagues. I wish you all the very best of luck, safety and good health in the months to come.

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Comments

  • ross on wye says:

    I own a number of classic cars but looks like they staying wrapped up for this year, at present. but next year will soon come and hopefully back to normal. we are in a world war against the virus and positively we know we will win with the only uncertainty being when?. I look forward to the summer with the shows happening and cars out STAY FIT AND WELL ALL.

  • Moreton Wirral Merseyside says:

    eo

  • Cheltenham , Glos says:

    The last day before the Government lock down I took my E type for a 220 mile round trip to the Brecon Beacons and the Black mountains, a wonderful day out in super sunshine topped off by a lonely sandwich and coffee lunch on the top of a hill, followed by a bottle of beer. The car and I both enjoyed it. The following day such trips were banned – for the greater good I feel. This break now gives me time to tidy and reorganise my workshop and then the hangar where my cars live. so far this is keeping me sane! – and my wife is an excellent cook, thank goodness. (and came out as a petrolhead last year by buying her own dream car, an Aston). Life can be good and will be again before too many months. Keep cheerful, keep happy and keep safe.

  • Mayenne, Pays de la Loire. says:

    It’s difficult to add anything meaningful but the Classic Car movement certainly does lend itself staying sane whilst confined, both via social media and, of course, the cars themselves. Garden is now weed free and I can devote my efforts to my old Rover P5 coupé which has been eyeing me up hopefully for the last four years since I rescued it from a barn in Southern France.

  • Dorset says:

    I have never had so much free time on my hands and and being tormented by the fact i cannot pursue my passion and enjoy my cars. I had some tasks to complete on at least one of them and worked hard to make them ready over the winter for the summer. So i feel robbed. But it is far more important now that we preserve ourselves and family for the common good. And the sacrifice is not too much to ask if we get through. I wish everyone the very best. And hope to see my fellow enthusiasts in fields somewhere or another next year.

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