During his working life, father Arie already dreamed of someday being able to set up an automobile museum. He had already compiled an, in his eyes, interesting collection of old-timers and in 1991 his dream could finally be realised.
It was Father Arie’s flaw, though, that his collector’s passion was almost unstoppable. At a certain time more than seventy cars stood in his museum. Many among them were ripe for demolition or almost fell apart on their own.
Father Arie was hoping to be able to someday start with the restauration but that never came to pass. Unfortunately, the founder of the museum died in 1998 and it was time for making decisions.
Kapitein’s eleven descendants were confronted with the choice: to quit the museum or to go all in. Fortunately, the latter was chosen, although that implied that the amount of cars had to be reduced drastically.
The finest pieces were kept and furthermore, the collection was supplemented with, amongst others, bicycles, mopeds and motorcycles.
And not only that: old agricultural vehicles also found a place. A few light stationary engines that often stem from agricultural machines also fit into this framework.
When father Kapitein was being talkative, he could talk on and on about every single car. In the present museum the visitor does not only get to see vehicles of the museum’s own collection. Owners of interesting classics can exhibit their property in the museum for an indefinite period.
Due to this working method, the collection can be changed up and supplemented regularly. It might also happen, for example, that an owner sells his vehicle and comes to retrieve it. For cases like that, the management has a number of special vehicles up their sleeve in order to be able to immediately fill in the spot that has been left vacant. As for decoration, the visitors of the museum will also find a great collection of billboards, illuminated advertising and other car and engine memorabilia.
In the new set-up of the museum, volunteers are recruited to help preserve everything. And from those volunteers a lot of love for old cars and especially old-timers is expected.
At this moment the management of the museum actually has an enthusiastic team of volunteers who perform a wide variety of tasks. Namely: everything from brewing coffee in the reception area to specialists who maintain the website and facebook.
For the museum has moved with the times in this area as well: as such, the latest news can regularly be found on facebook, for example.
Due to all of this, the automobile museum has grown to be one of the best in this area above the North Sea Canal. And another special feature is: the entrance is always free of charge.
If only the founder, father Arie, could have lived to see this, he would have been immensely proud of his eleven descendants. An automobile museum of this class: it has been his dream but unfortunately he could not realise it himself.
The collection of the founder’s old drivers licenses in the reception area of the museum keeps his memory alive.