As we greet the New Year by promising ourselves we’ll stop doing some things and start doing others, here’s a resolution really worth making: open your 2018 diary to the weekend of June 9th/10th and note ‘XK70 Jaguar Festival - Shelsley Walsh’. You just have to be there!
This 70th anniversary celebration of the Jaguar XK will be a mid-summer’s dream of a weekend: live music from the ‘40s and '50s, revellers in period clothing, vintage fairground rides, fascinating exhibitors' stands, fine food’ traders' stalls, excellent hospitality, a Battle of Britain flypast, the beautiful hillside setting of the world’s oldest surviving motorsport venue - and of course cars, cars, cars.
By cars, we mean XK-badged or XK-engined Jaguars - and that’s a theme much broader than many people might at first think. Celebration of the 70th anniversary of the XK 120 is really just this Festival’s starting point, because the sensational star of the 1948 Earls Court Motor Show brought the world an XK engine that went on to power the majority of Jaguars between 1950 and 1986. This means the XK70 Jaguar Festival promises the glorious sights and sounds of XK 120s, XK 140s, XK 150s, C-types, D-types, E-types, Mk 2 saloons, XJ6 saloons, and so many other XK-powered cars as well.
These cool cats will be at Shelsley Walsh in their hundreds, lounging proudly in static displays, growling hurriedly up the twisty hillclimb course, and prowling together in such a great number - the aim is to have at least 700 - that it sets a new world record.
If anything in this New Year is going to make you beam like the cat that got the cream, it’s this! It’s well worth resolving to be there!