Going with an older version of Ubuntu is many times a bad idea. First because of the hardware support. Older versions have less hardware support and even less for newer existing hardware. Second is the security for it. Third the performance, stability and you can see where I am going with this.
Jump all that you will be happy to know that 12.04 will have Gnome Classic. You will be able to install it from one single package. It will look like the older version but enhanced with all the new updates for each app that Gnome Classic uses.
Just to add that the latest will receive more up to date stuff than an older version. This includes the kernel because 10.10 I think uses the 2.6.35 Kernel and ends on April 2012. The same date that 12.04 comes out with the 3.2 Kernel (Awesome version) and better support for Gnome Classic. Besides compiling the 3.x kernel to an older Ubuntu version includes having to start a domino effect of compilations between all apps to get them all working correctly at the end.
So for my suggestion. Stay with the one you are using until 12.04 comes out. Then install 12.04 and apply the Gnome Classic package. Logout, select Gnome Classic. Enjoy. You would get an updated Ubuntu with the Gnome Classic.
Here is some info about it: