Bendigo’s Alison Mulqueen and Marcus Williams share a love of a bygone era in their 1966 Franklin caravan named Audrey.
The couple were part of a 6th annual vintage caravan rally at the Bridgewater Caravan Park, north-west of Bendigo, at the weekend.
More than 100 owners of the moving museums booked out the park in a welcome boost for regional tourism and the town of 326 people.
“You don’t look at the phone, you don’t look at the iPad. You walk around, you talk to people, you look in peoples vans. You go back to the ’60s or ’70s and just relax,” Ms Mulqueen said.
“We didn’t realise that there was a whole community of vintage caravan people. We’ve met lots of like-minded people and it’s grown and grown and grown,” added Mr Williams.
There is an unwritten rule for enthusiasts — caravans should be decorated inside to match the decade it was built in.
Some also go as far as wearing the vintage clothes to match their van’s era.
They also sell and trade vintage items throughout the weekend.
“You find things you cannot find elsewhere. I need this door handle, it’s red, had a push bottom, it’s from the 1950s. Then someone goes ‘oh I’ve got one of those. Do you want it?'” Ms Mulqueen said.
“And if you need to know how to do something mechanical, there will be someone here who will be able to help you.”
For Mr Williams, the caravan adventures take him back to his family summer holidays as a child at the Merimbula Caravan Park.
The vans are also a reminder of moments in Australian history.
Graham Southey’s was on display at an international trade show during the 1956 Melbourne Olympics.
“It was like the demonstrator model people would have looked at,” he said.
Some of Mr Southey’s efforts to match the interior to the 1950s have made van-life a little challenging, however.
“Pillows are made of horse-hair. But if you have a couple of drinks with friends before you go to bed it makes it easier to sleep,” he said.
Lisa Mora can not get enough of the vintage life, having written a book and formerly edited a magazine on the topic.
Her 1968 Viscount Duralvan is now a permanent traveling home with her dog Pixie.
She purchased the van for $3,000 from South Australia before giving it a vintage makeover.
“Initially I got into it because it was cheaper and I wanted to go travelling,” Ms Mora said.
Ms Mora renovated her first van 11 years ago and she has seen the vintage caravanning movement grow.
“Everyone’s been cooped up for so long, we’re like ‘yeah, we’ll go camping’ and everyone wants to get out and do it. I think that’s great, if you can get out and see your own country, why wouldn’t you?” she said.
Thanks for seeing this article on “News & What’s On in The Bendigo & Central Victoria Region named “Vintage caravans are not just homes on wheels, they’re liable to inspire dress-ups and work on classic interiors”. This story was presented by My Local Pages Australia as part of our local events & news services.
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