London 1896 revival
London’s first ever motor show is to be re-enacted at the original Kensington venue after 120 years – and the organising club is being revived, too.
The International Horseless Carriage Exhibition took place at the Imperial Institute, now the Imperial College, in 1896. It was staged by the Motor-Car Club, most famous for being organisers of the Emancipation Run, which gave rise to the London to Brighton Run.
The De Dion Bouton Club is restaging the exhibition in 2016 on its original date, 7-8 May, as part of the club’s 10th birthday celebrations. Co-founder Nick Pellett says he hopes to get as many suitable vehicles together as possible for the revival.
‘The De Dion Club has more than 200 members in 18 countries and we wanted to mark our anniversary,’ Nick says. ‘I approached Imperial College to reacquaint them with this piece of automotive history. I am delighted to say that they came on board rapidly.’
The exhibition revival will include a display of vehicles in the college’s atrium and it’s hoped that the organisers will be able to close a section of Exhibition Road for demonstrations.
The club would like to hear from anyone who can supply suitable vehicles or help with the show during the weekend. Nick Larkin
Poster for London’s first ever motor show.