I’ve been to a few truck shows over the past year in both the UK and Europe. What I have noticed is the increasing number of roof mascots..weather it’s the Michelin Man, Flipje (the Dutch jam maker), Convoy Duck, or even home made ones as the black Scania below. Can anyone tell me who the guy with steering wheel is giving the Dutch salute ??
With The ever popular retro style of low roofed cabs comes the roof racks with the beer creates and the Danish headboards. I think these are an improvement on the 4 spot lamps we have seen for many years in the UK.
Griffin Gatherings come round but once a year, well down in Ipswich they do anyway. For those of you who have been hidden under a rock for the last few years, you’re probably the only people who are unaware of the worlds largest gathering of Scania’s and as far as we know it is the only single marque truck show in Europe. Whether you’re a Scania fan or not it is an impressive sight to see 110+ trucks all in the same place wearing the same badge. The show is held at the Orwell Truckstop on the A14 at Ipwsich on the last weekend of September. The gathering of trucks is open to anything manufactured by Scania, last year was a first in that there was a truck from every generation of Scania production from a 65 to a 0 series right through to a brand spanking new Golden Griffin R Series, definitely a one off event. This year the plan is the same as normal, more trucks than the year before as this shows the word is spreading and the interest is growing, this year will also see the first Dutch truck at the show, so clearly the word has crossed the North Sea.
This year the show has grown well beyond last years number and is still rising. So far there are more than 55 first time entrants so they will be plenty of new Swedish metal to look at. There are some well known trucks coming too, the gorgeous blue Tcab from Longthornes will be making a welcome return, the stunning moving memorial that is Afgan Heros will be there as will the huge, brand new, red Longline driven by Phil Lane from Stuart Nicholl Transport.
Officially the closing date to get your Scania entered for this years show is the last day of August so you haven’t got long. The reason for the early closing is that the organisers arrange the parking so that all trucks are parked with others of the same generation, i.e. All 2 series together parked in a row. This is good for two reasons, it’s great to see all of them parked with the others of the same age and also it means you can’t all park with your normal group of mates which makes for a far more social event! The idea behind the show is If you want to enter it will cost you £10 that’s it. All I ask is that if you enter then please make sure you come!! If you do want to enter please ask for a form on the Griffin Gathering Facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below with your email address and I can send you a form myself, so hurry up, more the merrier. What’s my involvement? I love old Scania’s that’s what, 143 and before are just awesome. My own opinion and plenty won’t agree but as a boy growing up there was nothing I wanted more than a 2 or 3 series V8. So now I have the pleasure of Sponsoring the Best 3 Series in show. See you there people!
No sign of an old hat or a battered suitcase, no blue duffle coat, no wellington boots, no marmalade sandwiches or any little brown bears, it would seem deepest darkest Peru is just full of hard working trucks! Please don’t think I have been off on another jolly half way round the world, but my cousin Tim Andrew is the lucky one. Some of you may or may not know my cousin and his work as world wide professional photographer. Now and again Tim and myself have a chat and invariably its to do with vehicles of some sort usually what ever he has been photographing most recently. I always remember reading Trucking International magazine when I was a boy and rushing through it to see if Tim’s name was attached to any of the articles inside. I was always very proud or pleased to see his photos in the magazines and these days I’m even more pleased to see people’s reviews of his work online such as on Tim’s LinkedIn profile. Once again I find myself wishing I could have some of Tim’s prowess and talent.
I knew Tim and his family were travelling around South America some where, so when I saw Tim’s email come in I was intrigued to see what it was all about, especially as it was titled “Peru Trucks!”. Now Tim is a professional photographer I know and with more experience than most others in the same game, but even so when some one says “These photos are mainly shot through bus or train windows.” It makes me at least, think they might be a little fuzzy, blurred, have reflection from the windows etc etc. what a fool I am, profession through and through, the photos are great and better than any of mine with a tripod and my little skill! There are 35+ photos and I am gutted to say that I can’t use them all on here. What I did notice, apart from a mix of US and Europe trucks, was one particular Volvo FH Globetrotter that I’m guessing was a European based truck at some point, due to the green “L” low noise plate on the front.
High Andes, Peruvian trucks.
“I found myself in Peru for a few weeks this summer. There weren’t necessarily roads were I travelled, but when there were, they were full of vehicles of varying size and shape. Motorised rickshaws, tuk-tuks, minibuses crammed to the hilt, cars, pickups busses and large trucks. As a specialist car photographer, I was looking out for unusual Peruvian variants, but was mostly disappointed with the variety and quality of cars; boring Hyundais, Kias & Toyotas dominated. What really stood out were the colourful US style trucks. I seized the opportunity to snap them. Most of them were shot during a few bus/train rides through the high Andes plains. This area between Puño & Arequipa is mostly above 3000m. and is a sparsely populated area, surrounded by 6000m volcanoes where vegetation is minimal, lamas, alpacas and wild vicuñas graze on the sun parched grasses. The Carretera Interoceanica (34A) links the low coastline to the high Andes towns of Juliaca, Puño & Cusco, and beyond to Bolivia and eventually the Amazon. It’s a vital lifeline and so carries all sorts of goods. It also forms the backbone of the mining industry, with countless spur roads or dusty tracks leading off into the void. I cannot give you any specific information about the trucks themselves other than the convoys were well organised, proceeded by pickup trucks announcing the number of trucks involved. These were mainly mining carriers ploughing down the main road. Every so often there is a toll booth, as the Peruvian government decided to subcontract road building to private companies. As a result the surfaces are good and sound and carefully managed. The truck stops are almost the opposite. Overtaking is easy with the long straight roads, but when it gets twisty in the mountain passes, better close your eyes and cross your fingers as a passenger.”
About my cousin Tim Andrew:
Tim Andrew has been photographing cars and trucks for 30 years for various magazines and companies such as Trucking International, Mercedes-Benz Trucks, Nikon cameras, Car Magazine, Octane, Classic Cars, Jaguar, Nissan, Toyota, Ford, Peugeot. You can see more of his work at www.timandrew.co.uk Recently he has added aerial filming to his skills go to http://www.pixauto.com and see his work.
This week and next I am on holiday, along with half the UK it seems. Due to the lack of trucks in my life outside of work and the fact I’ve been mostly being a proper “daddy” this week, The Weeks in Trucks is a special drivers edition.
Thanks to the following dedicated blog loving drivers; Philip Westaby, Matt Lamb, Lee Colley, Martin Harding, Mark Steward, Matthew Campbell, Matthew Johnson, Joey McCarthy, Brian Hill, Michelle Lines, Rob Billman and Mick Moody.