Motor along to the car museum in West Bay

 The Cayman Motor Museum is part trip through automotive (and Caymanian) history and part testimony to one man’s personal passion for classic cars. Mr. Andreas Ugland, Sr.  says “I started collecting cars when I was 15 years old, I bought my first MGA and…restored it myself actually,” but “It’s not here because I gave it to my youngest son.”  
   The museum is located on North West Point Road in West Bay – just past the Boatswain’s Beach facility on the land side of the road and it has an impressive collection.
    Just for starters, there are nearly a dozen different models of Ferraris dating from the 1950s to the late 1970s.  
    There are 55 classic cars and 18 motorbikes in total at the Cayman Motor Museum, shipped in from several places including Norway, England and Canada. Ugland at one time had an antique car museum operating in Norway with his brother. The building has since been purchased and he decided to move the cars down to Cayman.
   “Now I can see them at least, they were tucked away here there and everywhere,” he says.
   Ugland wants a lot of other people to come share his hobby.
   The museum is basically a large open space jam-packed with cars, but there are also mementos of boat racing on the walls and some authentic pieces of Cayman’s history.
   Those pieces include a miniature catboat and photographs of old cars and streets in Cayman from the pre-1960’s era. Ugland says he is interested in putting more photos and even art from the period on display if anyone wishes to donate.  
As for the vehicles, Ugland has written a description for every one that has been placed on a sign post in front of them.
   “There a story for each one,” he says.
   Visitors can look as long as they wish, but no sitting behind the wheels of most of the cars because they are in a tightly packed space.
   Just some of the highlights are an original Batmobile used in the 1960s American television show starring Adam West. Ugland, picked it up in the UK a few years ago.
   Another film car on display is the 1929 yellow Rolls Royce, the very same vehicle used in the 1960’s film The Yellow Rolls Royce, starting Ingrid Bergman and Rex Harrison.
   For a real bit of history cast your eyes over the 1905 Cadillac, the same make and model as the very first car ever driven in the Cayman Islands.
   “It was imported to Cayman from Cuba in 1914, by Dr. Henderson,” Ugland says. “And I found exactly the same car in Canada. I thought I wouldn’t ever find it but I kept looking.”
   Another 1905 vehicle on display is the classic Ford Model-T. Mr. Ugland reckons he can still get it to start.
   “This has a one cylinder engine,” Mr. Ugland says. “When you start it, with one cylinder it goes poof-poof-poof and is all shaking; it’s terrible to drive as you can imagine.”
   “But it’s good fun, you know?”  
   And that is what the museum is about for Ugland, who is not looking to make a huge amount of money on the attraction.
   “I didn’t do an economic study or anything before I opened it,” he jokes.
   This being the Caribbean, there is always the threat of storms, but Ugland says the collection is as well-protected as may be. The thick walls of the museum have no windows in the section where the cars and motorcycles are being kept. The entire facility is about 24 feet above sea level.
   “If it floods that high, we’re all in trouble,” he says.