Here at last: the Commons Classic Car Club

Here it is! The proof! The first picture of the House of Commons Classic Car Club, which - following a long article in the Independent on Sunday last December - some cynics said did not exist!

But the camera cannot lie (can it?) and our exclusive picture shows the HOCCCC's moving spirit, the Tory Deputy Chief Whip, Greg Knight MP, enjoying a club outing with two fellow club members, Tory MPs Nigel Evans and Peter Thurnham.

Mr Knight was praised, in two separate post-Budget press releases from the club, for his efforts in getting the road tax on vehicles more than 25 years old abolished. But, puzzlingly, each was signed by a different club honorary secretary - neither of whom could be traced. Mr Knight claimed the club had been in existence for about five years and had between 20 and 30 members. However, when Labour MP Paddy Tipping checked records in the Commons Library, he could find no trace of it, and he reported the club to the Commons Administration Committee as bogus.

Mr Knight's efforts to prove this is a baseless charge came to fruition last Friday with the official club outing - Mr Knight driving to the Aston Martin factory in Buckinghamshire in his 1950s General Motors Camaro Roadster, Mr Thurnham in his open-top 1937 Bentley, and Mr Evans in his non-vintage Jaguar.

But Mr Tipping said yesterday: "I'll be checking in the Commons library, and if they are not properly registered I'll be taking it up with the Speaker and the chairman of the administration committee with the utmost dispatch."

The cynicism of it!

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