Five-hundred Bentleys came together on Ross-on-Wye this weekend for the Bentley Owners’ Club Annual Summer Concours.
Held at Cubberley House Estate, owned by British industrialist and 2019 concours best in show winner Dean Kronsbein, the three-day event included a host of tours and excursions on Saturday, followed a champagne reception and five-course formal dinner, raising money for the RAF Benevolent Fund and Help for Heroes.
The concours culminated on Sunday with a 70th Anniversary R Type display, Peaky Blinders and Downton Abbey displays, a World War II Spitfire Flypast, and concours and patina class judging.
Michael Dacre’s beautiful 1936 Derby 4¼ three-position drophead coupe, clothed in Veth and Zoon bodywork, was named as the overall concours winner.
Michael was presented with the prestigious WO Bentley Memorial Trophy by HRH Prince Michael of Kent, the club’s guest of honour for the weekend.
The 1928 4½ litre Vanden Plas-bodied four-door saloon of Michael’s fellow club member Robert Hase, was presented with the coveted Bentley Motors Trophy, also by Prince Michael, as the overall patina class winner.
In total, 15 awards were presented, mostly by club president Duncan Wiltshire, in the various concours and patina classes as well as the inter-regional team accolade.
The event provided a long-overdue opportunity for friends to catch up and socialise, after the 2020 and 2021 Concours had been cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Twenty-one Bentleys of all ages were judged in the myriad concours categories and visitors were able to take a close look at these to decide which were their favourites.
Aside from the judged cars, the Bentley Motors Heritage Collection showcased 10 superb models from across the first 90 years of the company’s history, and a special display of R Types commemorated this iconic model’s 70th anniversary.
The 100-acre country estate is the home to Dean Kronsbein, whose home and grounds successfully hosted the Midlands Region Centenary Summer Gala Day in 2019.
The highlight of the weekend’s festivities was on Sunday, with the eagerly awaited concours, when the members’ cars were judged. A special exhibition celebrated the 70th anniversary of the iconic R Type and R Type Continental, while cars from the superb Bentley Motors Heritage Collection were also be showcased along with a special display of vintage Bentleys, courtesy of past president Jimmy Medcalf’s family, which have starred in hit TV drama series Peaky Blinders and Downton Abbey.
A spectacular World War II Spitfire fly-past took place on both Saturday (at 1.14pm) and Sunday (at 11.42am), courtesy of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flights programme, together a brass band and singing girls, added extra spice to the day’s summer party ambience. There was also a vineyard tour and tasting excursion.
TV personality Richard Hammond visited Cubberley on the Saturday to promote The Smallest Cog, his classic-car restoration service. The organisation was showcasing an R Type of Dean Kronsbein’s which is being restored.
The car voted best in show enjoys the privilege of being displayed for a week in the rotunda at the Royal Automobile Club in Pall Mall where a black-tie prize-giving dinner will be arranged.