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Barn Finds On Display At NEC Classic Car & Restoration Show


Barns, lock ups, garages, and driveways from Southampton to Yorkshire are now being disturbed to look for cars that have remained hidden and mostly forgotten over the years. These cars are now heading to the Practical Classics Classic Car & Restoration Show, with discovery +, which will be held in Birmingham.

From March 18-20, 2022, a fantastic mix of vehicles will be showcased for the Carole Nash Barn Find display.


A car that will definitely grab attention is the Ford Cortina Mk3 1600. It is believed that there are only two of this model in the world that has survived. This once in a blue moon example was commissioned by Ford of Dagenham. The owner’s instructions for the car include having a crossflow engine, bench seat, and making it resemble a GT.

Last time it was on the road was back in 1986. It was saved from being scrapped, and a few weeks ago, it arrived in the UK from British Guyana. It is now in the care of Pete Crompton, an Mk3 Cortina specialist from Cortina City.

Joining the Cortina is another Ford, a 1972 Escort Mexico Mk1 which is currently being taken out of the garage. The example has a Le Mans Green finish, and back in 2000, Mark Pinnigar has attempted to start restoration work on it. Unfortunately, certain circumstances have blocked his attempt. He had to move house, and also had a serious work injury so the car was left in the garage for more than 20 years. It is also interesting to note that the example does not have its engine and said engine has been on the garage floor for just as long.

Another notable example is the rare 1975 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT 1.8 shell. For more than 30 years, it has been stored in a barn with its engine. In 2011, a 1960s Morris Mini Van was also discovered at the back of a field, and it has been waiting for a chance to be restored since then.

Since the 1970s, Martin Jewell’s 1954 VW Beetle has been in and out of storage. It changed hands several times looking for a custodian who would nurse it back to health. In 2016, after ownership of the VW Beetle was transferred again, it was finally fixed enough that it can now be driven on the road. It has kept its original 30hp engine and gearbox, but it does need some restoration as the example also kept its storage patina.

As the biggest display of barn finds in the UK, show organizers are hoping that they can showcase up to 20 vehicles in all stages of repair to display. For 2022, a new feature has been added: Barn Finds Revisited. It is part of the Practical Classics Classic World area wherein visitors will be able to see the cars that are about to be beautifully restored.

On March 18 to 20, 2022, the Practical Classics Classic Car & Restoration Show with discovery + will be returning to Birmingham’s NEC. Tickets are now for sale. To know more about ticket prices and booking ideas, please visit their website at