Gerry gets his Cresta after waiting nearly 50 years

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Easy drive...Gerry Kennedy uses his 1968 Vauxhall Cresta as a get-around car as well as taking it to rallies. PHOTO: FIONA ELLIS

When Gerry Kennedy bought his car six years ago, he had already spent 46 years eyeing up the model.

He first took the wheel of a new 1968 Vauxhall Cresta when he was a young man,

The owner allowed him to take the car for a spin.

“I just fell in love with it,” Mr Kennedy said.

“It only had a few hundred miles on it .. I took it to a rugby game and people were looking at me wondering where I got the money from.”

In the intervening years the Gore man bought three Vauxhall cars but sold them again.

It was not until the better part of five decades had passed that he was able to buy a car of the same make, model and year as the one he so admired as a young man.

“I had to wait until 2014 to get one.

“I’d always wanted one of those cars.

“I just like the style of them.”

Such vehicles now had classic status.

This suited Mr Kennedy, who had been a member of the Gore Vintage Car Club for over 50 years.

His long-awaited acquisition had needed some work.

“When I got it, it had sat in a garage for about six years. It had primer paint splattered all over it.”

With the help of family members, he sanded the car and had it repainted in its original turquoise colour.

The grey upholstery was changed to red at the suggestion of his daughter.

In the past year the engine had also been restored, he said.

“There was the odd spot of oil sometimes.”

Since the repairs this was no longer a problem.

The car drove well and was suitable for everyday transport as well as attending rallies.

“It’s easy to drive. You can cruise at 60 miles per hour, which is the speed limit.”

After waiting so long to own it, he had no plans to sell the increasingly rare car.

“You can’t get Vauxhalls anymore except in England.”

“It looks good and it gets comments.”