Sidecarland

The Baston Car and Bike Show

by Roy and Chris

Sunday saw me heading off to Baston in Lincolnshire for the village’s annual show. This car and bike show has only been going a few years, but it has really taken off, and this year it had to move to a larger field. Baston is a few miles south of Bourne on the A15. This year the organisers had moved the entrance to the show to directly off the A15 and they had a 3-way traffic light system operating to allow vehicles to get into and out of the showground. The stewards had done a great job; going onto the field there were two lanes – one for motorcycles and the other for cars. The field was marked with white lines and if you were on a club stand this was marked out and named. I spotted a good place to leave my outfit and then realised that I had parked on the Vincent Owners’ Club stand, so I move it elsewhere. The joy of this show is that as a single entrant you can just turn up on the day without pre-booking. However if a group / club of you were intending to arrive then you needed to inform the organisers and they would set you out a space for your group / club.

This show is massive and a bit different to most classic shows in that motorcycle dealers bring along new machines for you to sit on; car dealers bring along their latest models as well for you to look at. There were plenty of classic vehicles to look at. I feel that a total of a couple of hundred two- wheelers of all ages turned up. All entrants received a show sticker and a show guide. The guide was printed on good quality glossy paper – less likely to disintegrate on a rainy day!! The show opened to visitors at 10.00 am and finished at 4.00 pm.

The motorbike area was large, with plenty of space for more bikes than actually turned up; we were close to a section of fairground rides. It was nice to have something for the children to enjoy. In a corner of the field close by was an area entitled “Made in the USA”, with American cars and motorcycles here. Sycamore, a local Harley-Davidson dealer, had several bikes on display.

This firm also sponsored the stage where the music was being played and the Harley beer tent. The music started at 11.00 am. I saw a couple of guys singing and playing guitars, and they were good. Later a trio turned up, but there were four of them (!!) – The lead singer explained that they had picked up another player on the way in. Between them the musicians covered a mixture of popular music, jazz and folk.

Plenty of food outlets gave you a wide choice and they were very busy. One little three-wheeler vehicle serving a wide range of coffees ran out of water a couple of hours before the show ended!

The big Red Bus was also at the show, doing its usual roaring trade. I last saw this one in March at the weekend of the Fenland Rally. It certainly seems to get around!!

The trade stands, of which there was a good selection, were close by. One of the dealerships had a climbing wall installed for the more energetic to enjoy.

12 noon saw the judging start for the Best Bike and Best Car in the show. At 1.00 pm there is something a bit different – when you hear the klaxon you start your engines, switching them off when you hear the second klaxon. At 2.00 pm the Best in Show Awards were announced.

There is so much for the classic enthusiast to enjoy here. Wandering amongst the cars I spotted a couple of Douglas motorcycles, one was a ladies’ model, dated 1913; it was the oldest bike that I spotted here.   An interesting point on this machine was that the leg shields were fitted to the front mudguard – very clever.

The Nene and Welland BSA Owners’ Club had a nice collection on motorcycles on display. I usually meet up with this club’s members at a few rallies over the course of a year.

The organisers had plenty of pieces of ply wood cut up big enough for your centre or side stand if needed in all the motor cycle areas; these people certainly have an eye for detail.

The show finished at 4.00 pm, and the stewards were very busy marshalling the vehicles back onto the main road.

The show committee had done a great job – a really well run show.