V-E-V miscellany, January 1972, January 1972

Amongst some interesting items in a booklet issued by Bishops Move, the well-known furniture removal people, to celebrate their 116th year of service in 1970, which a reader has kindly let us see, are pictures of their Foden steam pantechnicon and trailer which they operated from Pimlico in 1920 (they later claimed to have pioneered the fitting of solid rubber tyres to the front wheels of a Foden steam waggon), a Fordson tractor towing six wooden-wheeled pantechnicons when they moved Marconi’s in 1933, and the convoy of 23 vans which moved the British American Tobacco Co. in 1953. It is also interesting to learn that before Morden was engulfed in housing estates Bishop & Sons had their farms there, which provided foodstuffs for their enormous fleet of horses. Serck Services have issued a coloured advertising card featuring one of the Model-T Ford vans which they used to deliver repaired radiators in 1924. We regret to report that William G. Watson died last November. Mr. Watson served an apprenticeship with the Thames Ironworks when they were making the Thames car, served in the RNAS, assisted in the production of Eric-Campbell, Silver Hawk and Invicta cars and, after a spell with Wolseley and Ford, was with Lagonda just before the war, when W. O. Bentley was working on the V12. He spent the post-WW2 years in connection with the Invicta Black Prince, then joined Aston Martin and was designing Jaguar gearboxes from 1958 to 1967.

Eric Thompson spotted a Humber acting as a tender car during the Brighton Run and says that if it was a 1921 Ten, Reg. No. PC 5547, it was in his family from 1923 to 1946; he has its instruction manual and wonders if the owner would like to contact him? A publicity booklet concerning the R. 100 airship has been reprinted by Brooklands Books, to sell for 25p, post free. It is interesting that this 709-foot 100-passenger airship, which could cruise at 71 1/2 m.p.h. for 3,500 miles, propelled by six Rolls-Royce engines, used three AC car engines, presumably the four-cylinder 1 1/2-litre type, to drive the dynamos. The vintage racing scene is expected to be enlivened this year by the appearance of the 1920 3-litre GP Ballot which Michael Crowley-Milling has been restoring. An early 76-mm.-bore JAP vee-twin side-valve engine with non-detachable heads has been saved from a Hereford breaker’s yard by someone who is rebuilding a Rover Eight.