A teenager who was inspired by his grandfather’s classic car shows to organise an event in his parents’ garage when he was only 10 has now transformed the humble display into a huge event – attracting 150 vintage motors.
Now 17, after helping his granddad Clive Lungmass, 77, organise the shows for seven years, schoolboy Max Jones has now taken charge – turning them into huge annual community events staged at a local farm and donating his profits to a military charity.
Bursting with pride at her son’s achievement, his mum, Emma Jones, 47, a GP practice nurse, of Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, said: “Max has done fantastically well with the show.”
She added: “It’s always been something he was very passionate about, so it’s been amazing to watch him take the reins.”
Emma, who also has a daughter, Alice, 11, recalls how Max started organising mini shows at home and inviting her, his dad, Tony, 51, a contract manager for grounds maintenance, his sister and other relatives, when he was just 10.
He caught the bug from his granddad, who lives in Lichfield, Staffordshire, and started running shows in 2005, when Max was a year old.
Emma said: “His granddad collects classic cars. He’s done a couple of car rallies and has seven classic automobiles at home in his garage.
“That’s how it all started. Max was very taken with the cars as a kid and loved to help out with them.
“He started organising small family events, inviting his aunts and uncles to come and view the cars in the garage and asked for charity donations to fundraise for good causes.”
She added: “Max been organising car shows with his grandad every year since he was 10 and they’ve got bigger and bigger.
“Each year, Max has been given a little more independence with them, but this is the first year that he’s taken charge of the event.”
Luckily, as the event gained more interest, in 2016 the owners of Lupin Farm, in the nearby town of Orgreave, Staffordshire, allowed them to move it there.
Emma said: “It’s become such a big event for the community.
“Local shops and businesses offer up donations for the tombola and raffle that we do.
“We also sell hot food, cakes and tea and coffee.”
She added: “Donations are taken at the show to go to charity, it’s a really happy day.”
But, despite his love of classic cars, Max, who is learning to drive, is yet to own one of the motors he so admires.
Emma said: “I think he’s got his eye on a few of his granddad’s cars.”
She added: “He’s told Max they might be his one day.
“We’re all very proud of Max. It’s fantastic that he’s done so well.
“He’s put all of his efforts into these classic car events, and it really shows.”
Now, the events – held in September this year – attract over 150 classic cars and are attended by around 300 people.
Max said: “The shows have always been a great chance for me to meet people, and for my family to get together.
“When I speak to people, they say they look forward to them, so that’s really motivated us to keep them going.”
He added: “Last year, in particular, we had a really nice range of cars, so I was keen to get everyone back.
“We get a mixture of different cars at the events, but the popular ones seem to be from the 1940s and 1950s.”
And the classic car enthusiast is keen to stress how important his granddad remains to the big day.
He said: “My granddad still gets involved. He works at the event as a car park attendant now and organises where all the classic cars will be parked on the field.
“Now that we have the field, it’s ideal, so the plan is to just keep hosting the events and making them even bigger and better until we end up having to find a bigger location.”
And they are all for a good cause – with profits going to The Not Forgotten, a charity providing events for wounded serving personnel and disabled veterans, to improve physical and mental health.
Max said: “The charity is important to me because it’s one that my granddad always supported when he ran the shows.
“I want to continue contributing to them and helping to raise more money for what they do.
“The whole point of the day is for people to have fun, enjoy seeing the cars and help out with a worthy cause.”
For more information, visit: www.thenotforgotten.org