It's a Family Affair

It's a Family Affair
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It's a Family Affair

By Neil Longstaff

Neil tells a story about a VW Golf that has been in his family since new in 1983.  It's a story about how it's shaped his life.

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It's a Family Affair

By Neil Longstaff

My story starts on 16th September 1983, a day that would shape the rest of my life.

I was 7 and my brother was 10. We waited at the end of the drive……”won’t be long now” he said, “They’ll be here soon”.

We were waiting for our grandparents to arrive. They had just been to the Garage to collect their brand new car, a Mk1 Volkswagen Golf.

This proved to be their pride and joy. They loved nothing more than going on trips to the countryside for picnics or trips to the seaside for fish & chips. She truly was a loved car and part of the family.

As time went by, and my grandparent got older, they used the golf less and less. The car would only come out on rare occasions, and they decided it was time to hang up the driving gloves. The hardest part was the reality that they would have to part with their beloved Golf.

I often look back to that day in 1983, and how significant it had been in my life. For that day, was the day that I also fell in love with VW’s. After leaving school I owned several VW’s, from Polo’s to Golfs. I joined a local VW Club; where I’ve met many friends, and met my wife Helen. We have both been members of the club now for over 18 years.

So what happened to my grandparents Golf? We’ll in 2007; it left their garage on Sledmere Drive for the last time. It may have been leaving its home of the past 25 years, but it certainly wasn’t leaving the family, and I was the proudest man alive as I drove off down the street. After a little TLC at local garage she returned to the family as good as new.

We’ve now had our Golf 8 years. I love it like I did in 1983. It had been a huge part of our family, and although my grandparents have both passed, there memory lives on. We only use our Golf for shows and local cruises, but every now and again, we enjoy a trip to the country for a picnic or have fish & chips at the seaside.

We have now started our own family, and have a beautiful daughter of 5 years. She loves the Golf as much as we do, and refers to it as the “funny car”, and I’m sure that one day, she will enjoy taking her out on trips out like we do.

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Project Details

Home Is Where You Park It

A new international project which aims to capture the history and stories of the UK’s VW Campervan community is being launched here in the North East.

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