Feds Join the Federation at Classic Motor Show
The Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs (FHBVC), the group which campaigns for the rights of historic vehicle owners to use the UK’s roads, has today (2 November 2014) announced that it is teaming up with West Midlands Police for a major awareness campaign at this year’s Classic Motor Show at Birmingham’s National Exhibition Centre (November 14-16).
The campaign, which will be run throughout the show from the two organisation’s shared stand in Hall 12 (no. 735), is aimed at raising awareness among historic vehicle owners of the need to take action to reduce the potential for theft of their cherished classic. Historic vehicle theft is a crime of our age. As new vehicles become more difficult to steal and historic vehicles become more valuable (currently values are rising on average faster than the price of gold) the incidence of theft is rising alarmingly.
Simon Barrett, from West Midlands Police’s Crime Prevention Unit says there are a few basic and relatively inexpensive measures owners can take to thwart the thief, “By all means keep the vehicle out of sight, but check it frequently. If it should be taken the police need to know as quickly as possible to stand a chance of tracing it”, he says.” Physical security devices like steering locks will deter a thief as will wheel clamps and the steel boxes that lock enclosing the pedals not only secure the vehicle but provide secure storage for valuables especially for open vehicles. If you don’t have a locked garage think about installing a barrier to prevent your vehicle being driven off your drive. A sturdy locked gate or folding post can be enough to make the thief seek out easier pickings.” Simon will be on the stand demonstrating the approved devices available and will be happy to advise visitors.
Another wise step is to forensically mark your vehicle and its key components so that in the event it gets stolen Police can easily trace its ownership back to you. FBHVC recently tested and now market such a marking kit to historic vehicle owners. Known as SelectaDNA, the kit enables you to mark key areas around the vehicle which show up only under ultra violet light (police routinely carry such devices). Microdots within the marking fluid carry your unique vehicle DNA code which police are equipped to read. In a matter of seconds reference to a national computer database will identify the vehicle or its components if it has been broken up, as yours. So far every single prosecution where SelectaDNA has been used in evidence has resulted in a conviction. Criminals are aware of this and steer well clear of a vehicle which has been forensically marked. The Federation will be demonstrating the SelectaDNA kit on the stand and members of FBHVC affiliated clubs will be able to buy kits at the special member price of £29.90.
The exhibits on the stand will also complement the campaign theme as they are all iconic and historic police vehicles. The ex-central motorway patrol group (CMPG) Range Rover Classic is a restoration work- in- progress and the same force employed a Jaguar XJ40 that will be displayed. West Midlands force’s heritage fleet supply the machine which replaced the original bobby’s bike, the Velocette ‘Noddy bike’ and its replacement, the ‘Panda car’ is represented by a Morris 1000. Last but not least is a rare example of the rotary engine Norton Commando.
This year’s show also sees the launch of a new nationwide quiz open to all FBHVC affiliated clubs. The FBHVC’s MotorMind competition will take place on each day of the show on the Classic Club Stage. Motoring trivia aficionados will be nominated by their clubs to pit their knowledge of their specialist subjects against the wits of other club members. The Grand Final will take place on Sunday and the whole show will be hosted by TV motoring personality, Quentin Wilson. The victor will earn a cash prize for his/her club and the coveted FBHVC MotorMind Trophy.