CLASSIC cars from across the globe descended on Paisley for the start of the world famous Monte Carlo Classic Rally.

Around 100 vehicles - some dating from the 1920s - gathered in the town centre last night before heading for the French Riviera.

Thousands turned out for the event, when classic cars set off from outside Paisley Abbey.

Their 1670-mile journey will take them via the Channel Tunnel and the French Alps.

Legendary racing driver Paddy Hopkirk and Renfrewshire's Provost Anne Hall waved the classic cars off on the journey to Monte Carlo.

Paisley was chosen as one of five start points for this year's event - with the others being Barcelona, Stockholm, Oslo and Reims.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said the town was "delighted" to welcome the prestigious and world-famous event.

He added: "Being able to attract an occasion of this calibre is a reflection of Paisley's growing reputation as a home for top-class events."

Since the event returned to Scotland in 2011, more than 30,000 spectators have seen cars such as Imps and Bentleys leave for France.