Veteran-Edwardian-Vintage, July 1959

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A Section Devoted to Old-Car Matters

High Speeds by Vintage Bentleys

Last year, at Monza, several members of the Bentley D.C. set out to lap the banked circuit in an attempt to see how far their cars could travel in an hour. The attempts ended in various disasters and had to be abandoned. This year seven Bentleys were unleashed on the Antwerp-Herentals motor road, these comprising Forrest Lycett’s famous 8-litre, Batten’s 8-litre, Stanley Sedgwick’s 6½-litre, Stanley Sears’ beautifully rebuilt supercharged 4½-litre team car, the 4½-litres of Rose and Pounds, and Llewellyn’ s 3-litre. George Burton went along to help drive Sedgwick’s car.

The highest praise must be bestowed on Forrest Lycett, who averaged 140.8 m.p.h. for the two-way mile, 141.1 m.p.h. for the two-way kilometre, wresting Belgian National Class B records formerly held by Trintignant’s Facel-Vega. The larger of the other Bentleys all bettered 125 m.p.h. for these distances, and it must be accorded very fair that such concours d’elegance cars as the Bentley, incidentally, already holds the equivalent s.s. records. Unfortunately, on a subsequent run the engine had piston trouble, caused by fuel starvation.

Three days later McDonald took his 4½-litre to Montlhery, where Burton drove Sedgwick’s 6½-litre. The former lapped at 116.8 m.p.h., the latter at 123.38 m.p.h., but after 40 minutes the 4½-litre broke a piston and after another five minutes Burton abandoned with a carburetter fire. So business unfinished at Monza remained uncompleted at Montlhery and vintage laurels still belong to Plowman’s virtually standard 30/98 Vauxhall, which averaged over 107 mp.h. for the hour run at Montlhery in 1953. Details of what the Bentleys achieved are appended.

See tables, Vintage Bentleys at Antwerp and Unfinished Business at Montlhery

Concours d’Elegance, Beaulieu (May 31st)

Lord Montagu of Beaulieu gave a champagne party at Palace House to celebrate publication of his new book “The Motoring Montagus,” after which the Vintage S.C.C. assembled 32 cars for a Concours d’Elegance, judged by Col. Rixon-Bucknall, Martyn Watkins and W. Boddy. Amongst this assembly of much-better-than-average vintage machinery, there were a number of decidedly dignified Rolls-Royce cars, including J. Norris’ Silver Ghost coupe de ville, B. Moorey’s Phantom I, Lt.-Cdr. Dymock-Maunsell’s very beautiful 1926 40/50 and R. Barton’s brisk 1938 25/30 sedanca-bodied car. D. Edwards’ shining 1930 worm-drive Aston Martin lost marks for originality as it has four carburetters, but was beautifully clean, S. Bourne’s 1932 2-litre Lagonda had a commendably original Cozette-supercharged engine (but his real love is Invicta), and it was unusual to see a worm-drive Standard Nine amongst the assembly, in the form of J. Rowland-Hashons’ clean 1929 sun-roof fabric saloon. Modestly, Dr. Taylor parted the Judges from his quite presentable 1927 3-litre Bentley, remarking that it wasn’t in Elegance condition, but the honours went to this make nevertheless, G. Daniels’ very beautiful 1924 3-litre Bentley with unusual landaulette body winning hands-down. It was nice to see two very original magneto-ignition Austin Seven tourers, of which House’s was superior to de Salis’ — he even claims it has the 698-c.c. engine.

Results:

1st: G. W. Daniels (Bentley)

2nd: G. E. House (Austin Seven).

3rd: P. Mann (Bentley) and Sqd.-Ldr. Miller (Sunbeam) — tie.

*

We hear that an early Cadillac engine, circa 1915, with four separate cylinders, is languishing in an Essex breaker’s yard. Letters can be forwarded.

*

Two interesting one-make rallies scheduled to take place at Beaulieu are the Rolls-Royce Rally on July 26th and the model-T Ford Rally on September 20th. The latter is to commemorate the 50th anniversary of this famous “people’s car.” The model-T is one of the world’s great cars and a very considerable number, private and commercial, both vintage and Edwardian, exist, many of them in splendid condition. Let us hope that not only those belonging to V.C.C. and V.S.C.C. members will rally to the Montagu Motor Museum that day but that “new” examples, either unearthed for the occasion or in daily use but up to now shy of rallies, will make the pilgrimage.

*

A 1906 Standard touring car, discovered on an Australian tobacco farm, has been renovated by The Standard Motor Co. of Australia and presented to the parent company in England. This resulted in some historical notes and illustrations appearing in The Standard Car Review, and in the same issue a letter praised a 1929 Standard Nine saloon which has covered 136,000 miles in the hands of its original lady owner in New Zealand.

*

Looking for an appreciative home is a 1929 Austin Seven in Kent, with grass growing out of the body because it has been used for carrying plants. Letters can be forwarded.

*

Chitty-Bang-Bang II appeared recently at the opening of a new service station in Kent.

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The original Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost was flown across the Channel recently by Silver City to lead a Rolls-Royce cavalcade down the Champs Elysees.

*

The Jack Barclay Service Station, Chelsea, recently reconditioned an American-built 1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost Brewster tourer. After reconditioning the car was shipped back to its owner, F. B. Hand, Jnr., in the States.

*

Lord Montagu’s 1913 Fiat has been in the news again — displaying fashions at Derry & Toms.

*

Seen in a London street — a vintage Essex, circa 1924, with van body, which had previously been used by a radio dealer in Wadebridge and which is presumably being restored.

*

A rare discovery in Leeds is a 1922 Bramham, which should be worth restoring, particularly as it is claimed to be in fair order.

*

A rally for Edwardian and vintage cars will be held, in the grounds of Bryanston School, Blandford, Dorset, on July 11th. Details from W. Carpenter-Jacobs, The Bothy, Bryanston, Blandford, Dorset.

*

Items for collectors. Cars reported by readers as possibly available for restoration include a vintage Calthorpe in pretty fair condition standing behind a garage in Yorkshire, a six-cylinder Star chassis (No. C 100) near Shrewsbury, in which town an early Austin breakdown truck, on wooden wheels shod with beaded edge tyres, has recently been consigned to a scrap yard, and a blue-label Bentley in a scrap yard in Edenbridge. We hear also of an Invicta chassis rotting away in a yard near Weston-super-Mare and of a Lancia Lambda tourer, with its engine dismantled, at a service station between Knutsford and Holme Chapel.

*

The Furniture Preservation Society recently treated Mr. Digby Wills’ 1911 model-T Ford tourer for woodworm which had infested the body. The car was submitted to poison gas fumigation, then given a coat of insecticide, and it now carries the Society’s guarantee tag covering it for the next five years. Other owners of old cars which woodworm has attacked may care to try this remedy. The Society’s address is Barking, Essex.

*

Hofman & Burton, Bentley specialists, of Henley-on-Thames, have made a fine job of restoring mechanically an Edwardian 40-h.p. de Dietrich, discovered in a London basement. The car has since returned to London for restoration of its three-tier, seven-seater open coachwork.

*

A Twin-Cam 3-litre Sunbeam has been rescued from a Shropshire breaker’s yard and is to be rebuilt, and another is being built up from parts in Romford.

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We hear of a Calcott said to lie in a Bedfordshire breaker’s yard, of a vintage flat-radiator Morris-Oxford coupe laid up in Buckinghamshire, and of a 16/50 Humber fabric saloon for sale in Worcestershire.

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Maurice Chevalier plays the part of a French nobleman whose hobby is collecting old cars — surely a change for Maurice! — in the film “Count Your Blessings,” now showing in London. Amongst the cars in the film are a 1910 Delahaye and a 1923 Bentley.

*

A reader enquires whether anyone knows of a surviving Gilchrist car or has any information about this make.

*

The Sunbeam S.T.D. Register is holding its annual Wolverhampton weekend on July 11/12th with a navigational run, parade and Concours d’ Elegance on the Sunday. Details from the Hon. Registrar, Mrs. W. Boddy, Carmel, Wood Lane, Fleet, Hampshire.

*

The Fiat referred to in the June issue as a 1903 model turns out to be a 1914 15/20 with shooting-brake body, not necessarily for sale.

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V.S.C.C. fixtures for July are the Club cricket match at Warfield, Berks, on the 12th, and the Silverstone Race Meeting on the 25th. At this meeting important events will include a 50-kilometre All-Comers’ Scratch Race and the Vintage Light Car Handicap, etc.

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A rally for pre-1913 cars will be held from Rome to Chianciano on July 4th/5th.

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A Jaguar agent near Blackpool has made the remarkable discovery of a 1914 Crossley which had never been assembled until this was done a few weeks ago. A Studebaker touring body which had been ordered by the original customer forty-five years ago was also taken out of storage, and the car is now on the road. Could this be the car of which we have heard rumours from time to time for several years?

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Discovery in a barn — A Colmore Frazer Nash, Reg. No. MV 607, Chassis No. 2036, Engine No. 10232. Can anyone advise the lucky owner of the car’s history?

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Two more old cars unearthed in Ireland last year and awaiting restoration are a V8 Vincent-Hollier and a six-cylinder Buick of about 1918 vintage with special body built for Lord Waterford. Has anyone any information on the first-named?

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V.C.C. fixtures for this month are the Scottish Rally on the 10th/12th and a Rally to Stratford-on-Avon and Run to Oxford on the 18th.

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On the 40th anniversary of the first non-stop Atlantic flight a memorial to Alcock and Brown was unveiled at Connanara, where the Vickers Vimy landed after making the crossing in 1918.

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Fiat Register Trial (June 7th)

This was the second round of the 1958 Inter-Register Contest, so there were other makes besides Fiats, competing. The route, in Surrey and Sussex, comprised a timed climb of a very superbly steep, metalled hill, the usual driving-skill frolics and negotiation of some rough stuff. The picnic lunch stop was at Noah’s Ark, Lugershall, thus enabling competitors to enjoy the beauty of an unspoiled English village. The 12/50 Alvis Register headed the Inter-Register team contest, the Fiat Register being second, the S.T.D. Register third. The outright winner was W. Bowyer’s 1927 Fiat 509A, second and the Invited Members’ prize place being taken by G. Burton’s 12/50 Alvis, T. Nicholson’s Humber 9/20 and I. Grant’s 1926 Fiat 501 being the runners-up.

V.S.C.C. Light Car Trial (June 14th)

Run in beautiful weather this had 20 competitors, although Buckmaster brought a massive 14/40 Swift tourer instead of his Swift Ten, so was only a token runner. Hooson had the misfortune to break a half-shaft on his 1925 A.C. in the acceleration and braking test; had he known it at the time a partly-dismantled A.C. Anzani existed nearby from which a spare could have been cannibalised. As it was, he had to retire and await spares from 80 miles away. The Getleys performed in a delightful 1913 Swift light car and the vintage Austin Seven was strongly represented.

Results: 

Best Performance: J. K. Milner (1925 A.C.).

First-Class Award: t H. J. de Salis (1925 Austin Seven).

Second-Class Awards: I J. D. Rogers (1923 Jowett), A. D. Jones (1929 Austin Seven).

Third-Class Award: T. R. Nicholson (1926 9/20 Humber), G. Liston-Young (1928 Fiat 509) and J. and R. Getley (1913 Swift).

_

Sunbeam M.C.C. 13th Veteran and Vintage Rally (June 14th)

Veteran Award: P. E. Leverson-Gower (1903 Quadrant) 42 marks.

Vintage Award: W. Moore (1915 Douglas) 32 marks.

Figure of Merit (age of driver and car): F. A. Bateman (1909 Renault)

Best Sunbeam M.C.C. member: E. A. Beckham (1924 Sparkbrook) 29 marks.

Best V.M.C.C. member: F. D. Forster (1925 Levis) 32 marks.

Best V.C.C. member: S. J. Humphries (1914 Perry).

Best V.S.C.C. member: J. Egglestone (1928 Austin Seven) 30 marks.

Team Prize: Ruislip M.C.C.