After several years of AMOC concours events held at the stately homes of southern England, the Club has decided that it is time for a change and has made the decision to stage the 2015 Autumn Concours in the magnificent setting of Alnwick Castle in Northumberland on Sunday 27th September.
Known to many as a backdrop to the Harry Potter films and about to be the setting for the Christmas episode of Downton Abbey, the Castle is quite unique. A border fortress and home to the Percy family, Dukes of Northumberland, for over 700 years, the Castle’s warlike exterior gives way as you enter into a fabulously furnished, utterly civilised family home, containing internationally important works of art including some half-dozen Canalettos. The library is one of the finest you will ever see, with the wonderful contrast of thousands of gilt-backed books surrounding the family’s sofas, TV and the paraphernalia of everyday Ducal living.
Our cars will be displayed on the lawns in the most secure car park imaginable, within the Castle walls, locked in by massive gates and a moat. The backdrop of the Castle itself will make for superb photo opportunities and as well as much to see and do within the Castle there is also the celebrated Alnwick Garden to explore, home of spectacular fountains, an infamous poison garden and a unique Treehouse Restaurant.
With the incentive of a formal dinner the night before the Concours in the Castle’s magnificent Guest Hall, we hope that many members will take the opportunity to spend a few nights in Northumberland to experience some of the varied sights and activities on offer. Whether you want to wander on remarkably empty sandy beaches, walk in the Cheviot Hills, explore the museums of Roman life along Hadrian’s Wall, visit Durham Cathedral, follow a local expert’s guide to independent retail opportunities, take in a concert at the Sage Centre or a play at Newcastle’s Theatre Royal or simply relax, play golf, indulge in a spa and feast on magnificent local produce, there is much for everyone. And all this amongst some of the finest scenery in the country, with the added bonus of superb, almost empty roads which could have been designed with our cars in mind.
Working with the HQ Concours team, a group of local members has put together a variety of accommodation offers, and is developing a package of possible activities and visits to try to make sure that everyone who comes along can select just what suits them best to extract maximum enjoyment from their stay.
With North Sea ferries offering regular services to and from Newcastle, it is hoped that north European and Scandinavian members will be attracted to joining those from Northern England and Scotland in making Aston Martins at Alnwick Castle an unforgettable experience.
Alnwick Castle s proving to be an exceptionally attractive venue and this will probably be the best attended Autumn Concours for many years.
We have been very busy dealing with bookings and already most of the hotel rooms we reserved have been taken so if you are wanting accommodation please get in touch with Jon Radgick
soon, 01665 578222).
The formal dinner in the Castle Guest Hall is now fully booked as the room can only hold 200 diners. An alternative venue for those who cannot be accommodated is currently being negotiated and more details will be available from Anne or Ben at the Barn as soon as they are agreed.
The Treehouse Restaurant for the Sunday evening is also now fully booked. Members wishing to stay for the Sunday night who would like to eat in Alnwick are advised to book a table at the White Swan Hotel in the Olympic Dining Room (this is the dining room removed from the Olympic, the sister ship to the Titanic). You can contact the Hotel on 01665 602109 and mention AMOC when booking