NSRA Southen Swap Meet


North Weald, Essex, March 8th 2020, Words & Photography: Christopher Tilley

Hard to believe it’s almost a year since the last major event on the American calendar took place before the first UK lockdown. We dial the Classic American time machine back to March 2020 and take a look at the NSRA Southern Swap Meet – see if you can spot yourself or your car in our photo gallery…

Bring your warmest coat, maybe your sunglasses, maybe an umbrella, but certainly a Radio Flyer… where possible, with some ‘greedy boards’, you’re gonna need them all! This year’s NSRA Southern SwapMeet certainly didn’t disappoint, weather wise or for what was on offer! NSRA have definitely settled into their new home for the SwapMeet at North Weald Airfield, with a spacious layout, efficient queuing and ample parking! Continuing their tradition of an area for pre-’72’ parking, getting preferential treatment as a reward to committing to the cause!

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Inside the SwapMeet, there were plenty of American classics being put to work, as well as a few for sale. In fact ‘brands’ Like Farm Fresh have branched out from just great looking trucks, and into memorabilia, using it to dress up their stand. North Hants Tyres, Naughty Boyz, VHRA, even Harrys Hot Rod Shop all now names expected to be present, although it’s the independents that bring some of the biggest surprises.

            How about an Austin in the back of a van, a triple carb set-up for a Ford V8, a Wildebeest skull with horns, a self-propelled tin rocking horse… hunt for long enough and you’ll find all of these things, along with a plethora of wheels, tyres, superchargers and the ubiquitous American Licence plate! Early birds certainly caught the worm, wrestling their rewards back to the car, even before the entire queue had snaked its way in, putting sacks, barrows and biceps to good use. As ever, a huge thank you to Hannah Thomas and the NSRA team for an amazing season opener.

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