Car culture is dead, if you believe the doom-mongers out there. Driving’s now a chore rather than a pleasure, cars are too fast or too complicated or too boring for anyone to get excited about, and kids are too glued to their mobile phones to show a flicker of interest.
Evidently nobody told anyone in Hampton Village, a small suburb of south west London where I happen to live, and where the annual car show recently rolled out on our local green. It was packed - both with cars and people of all ages who flocked to see what was going on.
It’s a scene that will be out in force across the country for the so-called summer months, with cars of all shapes, sizes and ages being displayed, shown off by proud owners and ogled by eager car enthusiasts and passers-by alike. The passion and energy around every car show - big or small - that I go to is one of the many reasons that I believe the death of car culture has been very much exaggerated.
Some will say that classic cars are inherently more interesting than modern ones, and to a degree I understand that. I also believe, though, that today’s cars will become yesterday’s cars and be just as interesting to future generations as an old Alfa Romeo, Alvis or Citroën are today.