The Volksword show and SSVC display

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The Volksword show and SSVC display

Post by Who.Me? » Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:44 am

I'm putting this in the pointless bitching section because it *is* bitching, and it's just my opinion, but I want to whinge about the Volksworld show and about the club display. I'm bitching about it here because the club puts on a decent sized display, but the show organiser's constraints mean that I don't think you get a representative display.

It's a long whinge, but I'm off sick with a minging cold, so I'm in a grumpy mood. Feel free to counter my bitching, although I think that the club could benefit in terms of increased engagement from members and non-members if they took some of it on board. It's been festering with me for a while...

If you live in the south; Volksworld at Sandown Park is *the* big show for VW stuff. I pass by the site fairly regularly and like most locals and former locals, I used to have a half-joking whinge about the traffic while 'that beetle show' was on, until I became a splitty owner. I finally went to the show with high expectations a couple of years ago just after I got my single cab, and I was completely underwhelmed.

The show itself felt like a generic custom car show with loads of overly-glossy over-customised cars and busses inside the hall, very few of which felt like they represented 'real' VWs that were ever used by their owners, or vehicles that most of the visitors could hope to afford or would aspire to own.

Outside the halls; clubs' and groups' vehicles were pushed together in rows or enclaves that felt cliquey and inaccessible. Maybe if you were a member of the club that felt right, but as a visitor it felt sterile, odd and exclusive. It felt like most of the vehicles were there just so their owners and mates could get free entry to the show. There was nothing about them that looked like the clubs cared whether anyone outside their club was interested in the vehicles or not, and nothing to encourage that interest.

The SSVC display came across the same way to me. I went to the show on the Saturday and the display seemed to comprise a cluster of closed-up busses with some SSVC flags and a few balloons. Some of the busses were empty, some had their owners sat inside having a chat with their mates and there was nothing to draw in or engage an interested passer-by. (That wasn't just a problem with the SSVC display, most clubs' displays were like that.)

I didn't expect the owners to be stood around with beaming grins like stall-holders beckoning in passers-by so they could proudly show them their carburtettor or OG kick panels. I'd hate to be displaying there and feel like I was obliged to 'sell' my truck or the show to the public, but I kind of expected that there would have been some information displayed about the vehicles and about the club to engage spectators. If there was any, it wasn't up front and easy to find. Some simple chalk-boards for the owners to put the year and model/options on, or the history of their bus if they know it, would have made the display feel much more accessible and could have provoked engagement. All I saw about the club itself were the flags and balloons, I didn't notice anything explaining its history or why anyone who wasn't already a member might want to be.

At the time; my truck was just about (i.e. barely and intermittently) running and I certainly didn't feel that it was worth showing, so I was there as an interested spectator. And that brings me on to the display rules that Volksworld have set for the club - 'shiny inside, not so shiny outside'. Where would a rolling restoration single cab that was bought to be used and occasionally gets abused, and which gets bits fixed as ad when its owner has the time and can afford to do so, sit on the 'Volksworld scale'?

Bits of it are shiny, bits of it are not. It's tatty in places, scratched, dented and has old filler that is cracking and falling away in places. It is largely original, but not stock. It's not a 'survivor car', it's a driver (when it runs). It drips oil (but I'm working on that). It has some relatively rare original and unmolested parts and a bunch of repro and completely non-standard ones. It's not a show-finish restoration or a trendy patinal ride.

It's an ordinary mongrel and I'm proud that it is, but it doesn't feel like it or others like it are represented or recognised by the Volksworld show or the SSVC display at the show.

And before anyone says "why didn't you put it down on the list to display", partly the answer is above and partly it's below...

Last edited by Who.Me? on Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:58 am, edited 6 times in total.

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Re: The Volksword show and SSVC display

Post by vwJim » Thu Mar 23, 2017 1:50 pm

Best time to go to the show is on a Friday, before the barriers and masses arrive. Other than that, I can't be bothered to head over there, despite it being quite local.
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