Car enthusiasts in for a wheely good time at Queanbeyan Showground this Sunday

James Coleman 24 February 2021
Row of BMWs

A row of BMWs at last year’s show. Photo: John Havelock.

Queanbeyan will come alive this weekend with more than 500 vehicles including antique and modified cars, trucks, motorbikes, and caravans descending on the showgrounds.

The annual car show will be celebrating its 45th anniversary, and the fourth year it has been held over the border. It had previously been held on the lawns of Old Parliament House but after the National Capital Authority complained about tree roots getting squashed, it – along with almost every other car show – turned to Queanbeyan, where they were met with open arms by the council.

The Council of ACT Motor Clubs (CACTMC) oversees the event, with one of their affiliated 75 local clubs picking up the job of running it each year. This time, the lot fell to the largest car club in the region, the Canberra Antique and Classic Motor Club.

Sponsored by Shannons Insurance, President of the BMW Car Club of Canberra Luke Wise said that the company had always been heavily involved in being at shows and wanting to promote cars for enthusiasts.

“These sort of events have become like a family; you get to see people you don’t get the opportunity to see the rest of the year.”

Cars, trucks, motorbikes

Cars, trucks, motorbikes, and everything in between, stretching into the distance. Photo: Supplied.

Most of the car owners are locals, but Luke says it attracts some from far and wide.

Six years ago marked the 50th anniversary of the BMW 2002, and about 20 of these iconic coupes drove from as far as Sydney and Queensland to celebrate the car and the occasion.

The main attraction this time was going to be a 1924 Cottin Desgouttes, an ancient French luxury car. Having spent the better part of 65 years off the road, Wayne Smith has just finished the massive task of restoring it to former glory, but given it will have only just passed registration, he says he’d prefer to take it on short test runs before running the risk of getting stranded en route to Queanbeyan.

Scott Molloy, one of the organisers of the event, says there will still be plenty to look forward to, with even the State Emergency Services (SES) and Historical Fire Brigade bringing along some of their trucks.

Public events like this took a hit in the wake of COVID-19, and Scott says “everyone is very keen to get out of the garage and catch up after such a long time.”

“The CACTMC want to ensure that all its club members have an event each year where we can all come together as enthusiasts, not only to drive and display our vehicles, but also to catch up with each other, and other like-minded people from our community, talk about our passion and re-live those great memories of the past, and the historic vehicles that trigger those memories.”

Since its inception in 1982, the gold-coin entry donation to the event has raised more than $400,000 for various local charities. This year’s proceeds will be going to Technology for Ageing and Disability ACT (TADACT).

The mayor of the Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council (QPRC), Tim Overall, will be on hand to give out the “Car I Would Like to Take Home” award, while his wife, Nicole, will select the “Lady’s Choice”. Shannons Insurance will select the best club display.

COVID-19 restrictions on public gatherings will apply to this event and attendees are encouraged to scan the QR code that will be dotted around the area.

Shannons Wheels 2021 will be open to the public from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm on Sunday the 28th of February, at the Queanbeyan Showground just off Glebe Avenue.

Holden display

The Holden display. Photo: Supplied.


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