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News d'Anciennes meets Julian Parish

News d'Anciennes recently caught-up with Guide author, Julian Parish, at Rétromobile
You can read this News d'Anciennes article in its original French on our Press page, here, or at News d'Anciennes.

Meeting with Julian Parish, author of a travel guide for classic car enthusiasts

A great meeting at Rétromobile, on the stand of ‘Les RDV du Net’: Julian Parish

Originally from England, Julian has lived in France for many years and decided to write a guide for his fellow countrymen who love old cars. France: the Essential Guide for Car Enthusiasts is written entirely in English, but could be useful to a good many French collectors. The goal of the book: to gather information on everything there is to see for a lover of classic cars in our beautiful country.


Julian, where did you get the idea for this book?
I have lived in France for more than 15 years and love cars. I began visiting many places to do with cars, on my own, with friends or as a member of car clubs like the ACCF (American Car Club de France) – I used to have a Mustang – or for MG. Afterwards, I talked to English friends who regularly visit France, coming to tourist regions like Normandy. When I told them about the Rallye de Deauville or the Rétro Festival in Caen, none of them knew of the existence of these events. So I thought, perhaps there is an opportunity here to produce a guide, listing all these places and events, for English visitors. One in four English people come to France every year, and with the strong car culture in the UK, it could be worthwhile providing them with this information. For an English person, finding out what is happening in France (often in French) isn’t easy.

So what’s in the book?
The book is broken out into five regional chapters: Paris & the Ile-de-France, Western France, Southern France, Central France & the Alps, and North-East France. Within each regional chapter, there are thematic sections covering Museums (nearly forty in all), Shows & Tours (for classic car shows, concours d’élégance and so on), Market Place (listing galleries of motoring art, autojumbles etc.), Motorsport (for sporting events and regularity rallies) and finally Circuits, with information on how to drive on them or hire them for club days and so forth.

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How did you choose the places in the guide?
I already had quite a few ideas from following the French motoring press, and then I went through the archives of magazines such as ‘La Vie de l’Auto’ and ‘Rétroviseur’ over the past three years in the French National Library, as well as their English equivalents, to be sure I had identified all the major events. After that, I shared a provisional list of places with a couple of friends who are French motoring journalists, and they gave me some more ideas, like the Bouchon de Tourves, which I didn’t know. Finally, my publisher and I reviewed the whole list, so that we would have a good mix with places in every region, from the Belgian frontier to Corsica.

When was the book released?
Officially on 6 February, so it is hot off the press! It is available in France through specialist motoring bookshops (which are mentioned in the guide), on Amazon, or on the publisher’s website.

What about the electronic versions?
The full content is available as an eBook, but also as a set of apps – broken out into 5 regions – for Android, Windows Phone and iOS. You can search by region and make use of the maps on the phone, so that you can look for a museum, for example, and then create a route to navigate right to it. The advantage is that as well as having photos, you can look at video clips, send mails or phone straight from the device. We planned right from the start to bring out an electronic version alongside the printed guide. We’ll also be able to build a community of users on Facebook and Twitter to get their feedback.
A fine programme to look forward to, and we hope to try it out very soon.
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