With Formula 1 and Nascar season upon us we sat down with Tim Earnshaw founder and CEO of Windrush Storage Ltd to find out more about the ever increasing classic car market.
How long have you been involved with cars?
I have always had a passion for cars for as long as I can remember. I guess my ‘career’ really began when I finished building my Morgan recreation form the ground up and realized I didn’t have a place to store it. I realized I had nowhere to store my pride and joy and the idea of car storage was born. I converted a building being underutilized on my parents farm into a clean, secure storage area for my car and started marketing the service as a small side-line business.
I feel that a lot of people, at some stage in their life, hanker after the car they may have had on their bedroom wall as a poster, or seen in a film So you have always had something to do with car storage. Is that where the bulk of your professional experience comes from?
Yes and no. While the business was growing and after university I was an events and logistics manager working with Ferrari in F1 and Ducati Moto GP through a Philip Morris connection. I loved this job but after five years the car storage business I had built up was finally ready to expand further, so after gruelling consideration I handed in my notice and went full time into Windrush car Storage.
What does your company do?
As a company I aim to set the industry benchmark in vehicle storage Worldwide. 2014 marks the 10th anniversary of the business. F1 standards, a best practice approach and an absolute passion for every detail means that we store a huge range of vehicles some high value and some high sentimental value. We are a small team of 6 where whilst storage is our core Windrush has evolved into a full car care company where every angle of car ownership assistance is offered.
What type of cars do you deal with?
An eclectic mix of cars is best to describe the type of vehicles we care for. These cars range from classic cars, prestige, everyday and cars, which may have been in a family and are sentimental. Some highly valuable and some not however the thing that they all have in common is that they are all someone’s baby and we cherish them as individuals with the best care and attention to each and every one.
What makes a car vintage/classic? Are there different categories in this market?
Vintage cars tend to be pre WW2 and I term classics to be anything after 1950 up to the late 70’s. Basically anything after WW2 with chrome bumpers in my book is a classic car and after 70’s no longer in production but popular to be a modern classic.
What do you think the appeal of classic cars is for individuals?
Classic cars are fun to drive and allow us to savour life a little slower than the fast moving times we live in. Therefore classics tend to be weekend cars, allowing us to tinker, clean, polish and drive and enjoy as a hobby. Like most hobbies there are a huge amount of classic car events, clubs and meets which give owners a purpose to drive their pride and joy and meet people with a similar love.
I feel that a lot of people (generally those into cars) at some stage in their life hanker after the car they may have had on their bedroom wall as a poster, or seen in a film (James Bond?) when younger but were too young and or couldn’t afford it. As that same little boy or girl grows up it may still be a dream so they work hard, make some money and wish to fulfill the void from the childhood yearning. We all have that little boy or girl inside us right?
Then there may be the yearning to own a car that their father or family friend may have owned and they have aspired to own a similar car.
I have also noticed a lot of people get into classic cars after retirement. When people reach the end of their working lives and need to fill the void of available time to them and this coupled with the desire to own a car they may have been after all their life results in many purchasing a classic as a reward, enjoyment and a means of meeting like minded people.
Since 2005 classic cars (according to Coutts) has become the best preforming alternative investment, even out preforming the stock market. Why do you think this ‘passion investment’ has become so popular and do you believe this growth will continue?
Investment is becoming an ever increasing reason people are collecting cars. Due to general desirability by ‘petrol