Twenty-two and a half (yeah, and then some) years ago, a lady lay on a bed in Maidstone hospital, screaming obscenities at my Dad, shortly after (well a good hours, sorry Mum!) I entered the world. Obviously, I am very grateful for this, because that woman was my mother.
Now, I admit I was never the best-behaved nipper. When I was a teenager we didn’t have the distraction of online gaming and internet porn to keep us entertained. Instead me and my brothers were all experts in the long-lost sport of winding up Mum to the absolute limit of her sanity.
Even when I was finally old enough for a motor and found myself preoccupied by what girls would do in the back of it (for a bag of chips, I am from Dartford), Mums car got exiled to the road, so I could use her drive for all the modifying essential for impressing girls.
I haven’t lived with my old lady for a long, long time either, but I still have a car parked on there right now. And that’s not even the half of the stuff I could mention.
My Mum then, has put up with a lot. She has the patience of a saint, the capacity for unconditional affection that only a mother could have, and I love her dearly.
But what has this heart-felt tribute of sentiment and love got to do with everyone’s favourite VAG show? Because this year Ultimate Dubs fell on Mother’s Day – so fuck going around her house for Sunday lunch!
Anyway… Ultimate Dubs, as I’m sure you already know, is widely regarded as the UK season opener. It’s also one of very few events to not only take place inside, out of all the wind and rain, but to be a strictly invite only affair.
Obviously, this means that only the best of the best need to apply for a place, and that brings with it a certain amount of expectation centred around what’s everyone been building over the winter… Volkswagens mainly, fancy that!
The point is that, long-time venue, the International Centre in Telford, is always rammed with the finest the VAG world has to offer – but more recently there’s also been a few other surprises thrown in for good measure. Even though the ‘rules’ this year was looser than ever, and by that, I mean it’s no longer exclusively VW metal, it’s still predominantly embraces the cars from the Fatherland.
Put it this way, if you love a Golf, you’re pretty sorted. And If you don’t? Well, you’ll get around the event a bit quicker, but there’s still plenty that will catch your eye.
What’s also pretty evident is that there’s something here for every age, a mixture of the modern and the classic working in perfect harmony, all modified in a variety of different ways catering for just about every whim and personal taste… and all to the highest standard you’re likely to see anywhere in Europe.
I’m not saying you’ll like every single car inside, but you will absolutely love quite a few. This sort of diversity is what makes life interesting.
The International Centre is a huge venue and, over the years, Ultimate Dubs has grown to fill all of its exhibition halls with an ever-increasing collection of display cars and trade stands.
In fact, nowadays it’s pretty much full, and plenty of the more amazing cars you’d expect to have an ‘indoor’ space are starting to spill outside.
Now, although there’s always been a gathering of sweet modified street cars in the carpark immediately outside the venue, as the years go on, more and more of them seem to be jaw-droppers in their own right.
It adds up to a heady mix of out-and-out show cars, quirky daily drivers and just about everything in between. And all that’s before you even get in the front door to buy your ticket!
Words by Midge Photos by Slim Jules