A Section Devoted to Old-Car Matters
The Vintage S.C.C. has changed its address to: Bone Lane (off Mill Lane), Newbury, Berkshire (Newbury 4411). Its Measham Rally had to be abandoned because of the foot and mouth epidemic but the Pomeroy Trophy will be contested at Silverstone on March 16th and will take into account petrol consumption this year.
1968 H.C.V.C. Brighton Run
Lord Montagu has received a reply from the Commissioner of Police, New Scotland Yard, to his request that the H.C.V.C. Brighton run should be permitted to start from Hyde Park. The Commissioner remarked that such rallies “provide you with the opportunity to sell programmes . . . and brings you all the fun of the fair and abundant publicity” but went on to say that they leave the Police with a difficult task. Shepherding the vehicles through many miles of streets in central London is far from easy, he said, “if these old crocks want to maintain a constant speed so as not to lose way.” He also made the point that in 1966 such marshalling involved 49 policemen and that in 1967 there were 62 policemen engaged and that this represents “manpower police can ill afford to spare in these days of heavy crime and shortage of strength.”
While we are glad to know that the importance of using the Police to prevent and detect crime is recognised, instead of allowing them to persecute motorists, the Commissioner is badly out of touch with the situation, if he thinks of the vehicles as “old crocks” and that the 1967 Commercial Vehicle Brighton Run went anywhere near Hyde Park. He also appears to have a poor knowledge of geography if he thinks that the route from Hyde Park to Brighton involves many miles through central London. This reply is disappointing, but the Commissioner does conclude by saying that “it is not difficult to find sympathy with the purpose of your Club.” It is now obvious that Hyde Park will not see the start of this informative and popular cavalcade of commercials next May!
V-E-V Miscellany.—A beautifully preserved 1936 straight-eight Daimler landaulette, chauffeur-driven and looking as if it had just left the showroom, is in service in the wilds of Surrey. Within days of encountering this Daimler in a snowy night setting in Sussex we saw another straight-eight being driven out of Weybridge Municipal Car Park by a lady. This was undoubtedly a post-war 5½-litre car which should not be mentioned on this page but is interesting as it is presumably privately-owned, whereas most of these big saloons are used by hire firms. Another interesting car seen about this time, crossing Barnes Common, was a well-kept vintage Austin 20 coupé. A correspondent in the December 1967 issue of Multicylinder, the duplicated journal of the Pre-50 American A.C. lists all the early American cars which feature in the much-discussed Bonny and Clyde film. This issue was a special Hudson, Essex, Terraplane number. The Wolseley Register is compiling a list of all known Wolseley cars, as it is now able to check details against some official documents kindly made available by the factory. Wolseley owners are asked to send general information, maker’s number (nor the chassis.no) and engine number, to R. Burrows, 17, Hill Av., Cambridge. The Montagu Motor Museum is staging another Cavalcade of Motoring, on Easter Monday, and those who own interesting vehicles, from 1895 to the present, and wish to take part are asked to contact the Curator. An H.E. is likely to be rebuilt, with replica cloverleaf body, in Hampshire, a very decayed 18/80 Mk. II M.G. saloon changed hands recently for £50, and a rather sad Arrol-Johnston chassis has been found in Sussex.
Fodens have issued a short illustrated history of their Company which should interest. commercial vehicle folk; copies can be obtained by writing to the Publicity Dept., Fodens Ltd., Elworth Works, Sandbach, Cheshire, mentioning Motor Sport. Guildford is hoping to have a week’s pageant of historic cars and motorcycles in July. Two old Morris Commercial vans are reported rotting in a Lincolnshire scrapyard. On the subject of old garages, only a few months ago the original premises of the Berkhamsted Motor Engineering Co. were still standing. The Berkhamsted Gazette published a 1923 picture of them last year, before a new service station was opened on the site; it shows three overalled mechanics outside with a Trojan tourer which has solid back but pneumatic front tyres. The old building was made in 1921 from a war-time aeroplane hangar and stored Fleet Air Arm folding-wing aircraft during the last war. It was demolished last summer but a similar hangar is still used as a furniture store, in Middle Road. The Berkhamsted Parochial Review last year recalled that probably the first car in the town was a secondhand 4½-h.p. Benz acquired by a Mr. Wood, whose son had a Kerry motorcycle and that in 1913 Dwight’s Garage introduced the first taxi service, with a Darracq, which took its first “fare” to Whetstone. The article also mentions Southey motorcycles being assembled at Southey’s Garage in Elm Grove.
A 1923 Amilcar has been brought into this country for restoration. Alan Clarke has acquired an open Derby Bentley said to have been owned before the war by Bira and to have had its engine converted to T.T. specification. He would be glad to learn its true history.
V-E-V Odds and Ends.—The Pre-49 Club of Halifax has been given the use of a Georgian house, out-buildings and a 2½-acre field by the Education Committee, which the members have renovated, using materials on the site, and now the mansion constitutes headquarters of this Club, where a working party is in attendance all day Saturdays and Sundays and a line-up of vintage cars, we are told, graces the cobbled courtyard. There could be several vintage Citroëns at the Citroën C.C. Beaulieu Rally next June, because one member is, according to Citroënian, the Club’s monthly magazine, restoring a 1926/7 B14G l.h.d. tourer and another member has imported from France a 1923 two-seater, which has passed its M.o.T. test. The veteran Eagle three-wheelers described some months ago aroused considerable interest; one of these vehicles, with its early space-frame, is being rebuilt in Leicestershire. The Clyno Register (Sec., J. J. Salt, Chimley Corner, W. Lavington, Wilts; sub., 10s.) has issued a membership list from which it is seen that there are 35 Clyno cars and eight motorcycles on the books, the former ranging from 1924 to 1929 and the latter from 1912 to 1922. The cars breakdown into 18 10.8 or 11 h.p. models, six Nines, two 12/28s, and one each of 12 h.p. and 12/35. It is interesting that one of the sports 10.8 Clynos seems to have survived in Cambridge.