THE Vintage Automobile Association (VAAWA) celebrated its 50th anniversary with a drive from Guildford to Bellevue this month.
The group started in June 1972 when a small group of car enthusiasts got together to form a club devoted to the restoration and preservation of veteran and vintage vehicles.
In its early days, the club moved around from Rivervale to Bayswater and the old Mundaring Shire Depot before settling at the Mundaring Agricultural Grounds.
With a permanent base to operate from, the club started to become well recognised and set the foundation for what it represents today.
“On June 28, 1972 there was only a total of 10 founding members, today the club has grown to a total of 426 members with some 600 vehicles,” association president Tony Warner said.
“The growth of the club continues, and the future of the club is promising with many new younger members ensuring the future of the club.
“Members are able to share their knowledge and skills and enjoy the companionship whilst they share the facility to maintain their vehicles.”
Unfortunately the Mundaring shed was broken into and set alight in October 1998.
It was decided that to survive, they needed to purchase their own club rooms.
Nearly 80 members pitched in $250 each and, along with the bank’s help, they were able purchase a place on Helen Street in Bellevue where they reside today, 20 years later.
Over its 50-year history the VAAWA has supported various community and charitable organisations including taking retirement and aged care home residents on vintage car rides.
“The seniors truly enjoy the experience and club members enjoy being able to give them a little ride back in vehicles they were so familiar with in past times,” Mr Warner said.
“Last year the residents all dressed in Gatsby era clothing to add a bit of flare and fun to the day.”
To celebrate the club’s 50th anniversary, members hired a bus from the Bus Preservation Society to pick up residents from Morrison Lodge for an afternoon tea at the clubrooms.
They also launched a 50th anniversary book called Past Times to capture the highlights and events of the club and to ensure its history is preserved for future generations.