Aug 15 2008 by Gill Broad, Chester Chronicle
PETROLHEADS flocked to Cholmondeley to lap up the weekend’s spectacular Pageant of Power event.
Cholmondeley Castle provided the setting for the inaugural event which showcased 80 classic and vintage cars, 25 classic boats, 40 motorcycles representing a century of racing and 56 helicopters.
Over 20,000 people turned out over the two days – despite the rainy conditions on Saturday.
The grounds were alive with the roar of a multitude of engines as the stars of the event showed themselves off to appreciative crowds.
Cars and bikes raced around 1.2 miles of purpose-built track, competing in time trials, while boats raced around the mere and helicopters whirled in from all over Europe.
As well as being a feast for motor enthusiasts, families turned out to take in the action and soak up the atmosphere.
The venue was fitting as the Cholmondeley family has a history of enthusiasm for classic cars.
Lord Cholmondeley was there and said: “My grandparents were avid collectors of fine vehicles in the early 20th century.
“They owned models by Alfa Romeo, Hispano-Suiza and Rolls-Royce. They were friends with Ettore Bugatti and he was commissioned to build them a number of iconic cars.”
Event organiser James Hall said he was delighted with the success of the inaugural event.
“Feedback from our visitors has been phenomenal. At one stage I was able to watch a Le Mans winning Bentley skidding away from the start whilst a Formula 2 powerboat simultaneously carved the most extraordinary turn on the mere, and a Squirrel Helicopter buzzed overhead.
“Although the weekend started wet, we were delighted to welcome over 20,000 spectators across the two day event, and we are thoroughly excited about next year when we will bring the Pageant of Power back.”