Club News, June 1948

We hear…

Vinnicombe and his brother are rebuilding their s.v. Aston-Martin chassis, but have been compelled to use Humber back-axle, wheels and prop-shaft to replace the original axle which was damaged when the old car was serving with the Home Guard during the war.

H. Cocker is rebuilding a Wolseley Hornet with a Riley Nine engine.

Barker is hot on the scent of an old 11.9-h.p. Lagonda and has been meeting old employees of the Lagonda Company to whet his appetite.

The veteran Charron coupé illustrated in this feature recently, regularly motors about London.

It is really rather staggering how many old Rolls-Royce cars have come on the market in recent months. They include a 1922 “Silver Ghost” 7-seater in running order in Wales, at £100, a 1925 “Twenty” with 1929 fabric saloon body in Dorset, a 1925 “Silver Ghost” open tourer in Yorkshire, a 1926 7-seater  “Twenty” in London, at £185, a 1926  “Twenty”  Windover coupé in Bucks, a “Phantom I” in London for £250 or near offer, a “Silver Ghost” in Norfolk for £80, another, with breakdown crane, in Surrey, a “Twenty” van, a 1921 “Silver Ghost” hearse in Nottinghamshire, a 1927-28 “Phantom I” ambulance in Yorkshire for £30 and, more interesting, a 1914 open tourer in Scotland, a 1914 shooting brake in Hampshire and a 1912 “Silver Ghost” with lorry body in Kent. It would be nice to think of all these going to good homes and one does wonder whether some of them might constitute good Gaitskell-wagons, at 11 and 22 taxable h.p., respectively.

James Bryrner motors in a Riley Twelve “Adelphi” saloon and has also put his old Riley “Gamecock,” in which he has topped 120,000 miles, on the road again.

A 1921 Singer Ten 2-seater is in use on supplementary petrol in Hampshire.

The Pratleys have disposed of their 2-carburetter Riley in favour of a 3-litre Bentley.

B. W. Lyth has a 1934 Wolseley Hornet Special with a Morris Eight engine, and he is also rebuilding a C-type 750-c.c. M.G. Midget, converting it from forced to atmospheric induction. He hopes to replace the Morris engine with the correct Wolseley unit and to improve the Hornet’s steering by fitting a series-E Morris drop arm.

T. Lindless has a very nice looking 8.9-h.p. Vernon-Derby 2-seater and he would like to contact other owners of these cars and to acquire data generally, especially about finding a replacement gearbox, as his is badly worn.

We hear from P. D. O. Liddell that the first club of its kind to be formed in Singapore since the war, the Singapore Motor Club, held a rally on March 31st last, over 37 miles with 25 starters, and a speed hill-climb on April 25th. The club is affiliated to the Automobile Association of Malaya and it is hoped to have some serious racing, possibly on a circuit in Southern Malaya, later on, the Johore Grand Prix being an event likely to be revived.

L. J. Beer has a 1932 small Invicta tourer, with twin carburetters, and craves information about its engine.

E. S. Limpus is rebuilding the E-type ” 30/98 ” Vauxhall which is the actual car, No. BN 5600, featured in George Sanders’ masterful article in our April issue.

J. B. Page owns the 1934 NE M.G. Magnette, which was driven in the 1934 and 1935 Ulster T.T. races by Handley and Baird, while a country doctor remarks that his more normal 1935 M.G. Magnette starts so easily that it puts him in a good humour when called from his bed at 2 or 3 a.m!

Two Standard Fourteens, an “11/22” Wolseley 4-seater and a 12-h.p. Calcott were recently turned over to a breaker by a firm in Southampton, but a 1929 Morris-Oxford coupé for £50 and a 1924 11.9-h.p. Lagonda tourer remained, together with many vintage motor-cycles, including RudgeMulti, B.S.A.,  2-speed Calthorpe, o.h.v. Calthorpe, Connaught and Sun 2-strokes, Precision, Coulson, Bradbury, Torpedo, a vast New Imperial twin combination, and a very early V-twin Moto-Reve. There is also a 1921 Tamplin belt-drive cyclecar with V-twin air-cooled J.A.P. engine and gearbox with kick-starter within the tandem-seated body. Someone should save this heirloom; it is valued at £20.

A. Powell has brought A. T. Norton’s 1924 15.9-h.p. Delaunay-Belleville coupé and intends to restore it to good order, while A. F. Eminson has acquired Boddy’s 1924 “12/50” Alvis with somewhat mutilated “duck’s back” body. Then David Clarke seeks a dynamo pinion for his “Petit Sport” Amilcar and a 1923 Ceirano saloon has turned up in London, for £25.

Stuart Wilton asks us to say that in the 1938 200 Mile Race he lost a wheel from his M.G., but did not go off the road, as implied in W. Boddy’s book.

A Bagshot garage is using a R.F.C.-type, flat radiator, twin rear tyred Crossley as a breakdown tender and a “23/60” Vauxhall is employed on such duties in South London.

Hugh Sewell threatens to install a Triumph Twin engine in his F.I.A.T. 500.

Robert B. Gegan, of the Sports Car Club of America, was interested in the photograph of the  “World’s Fair” V12 Delahaye belonging to Conan Doyle, that formed the “Rare Type” in the April Motor Sport . He tells us that the actual car exhibited in the French Building at the New York World’s Fair of 1939-40 had a dummy engine. A Cadillac engine and transmission were installed after the Fair closed, high-compression light-alloy heads and dual carburetters being used. This Delahaye was seen recently in California and is now owned by Ritter, an American enthusiast.

Capt. T. W. Stubbs is overhauling his 1933 “T.T. Replica” Frazer Nash.

G. Brown has installed one of the rare Standard V8 engines in his M.G. chassis, not a Ford V8 as we stated last month.

F. E. Cox has acquired a 1922 s.v. Riley Eleven, to original specification, and would like to obtain information about it and, if possible, a handbook.

A 1928 Chenard-Walcker saloon that has been up on blocks for twenty years looks like coming out of retirement.

Dr. Edisbury has changed his F.W.D. Citroën for a 1936 Ford Ten and also has a 1933 Alvis “Firefly” fixed-head coupé. He is toying with the idea of a mild supercharger for both these cars.

D. M. Black comments on a 1929 Singer Nine saloon with good tyres for £40 and a 1935 Hillman Twenty saloon for £75 or near offer, in Hull recently, which, he submits, confirms that prices of the duller cars are coming down. He remarks that he is seeking an old Crossley and an A.C. of circa 1926 vintage, and sometimes sees an Asrova Special, believed to have a Rover 14 engine, in Bridlington. Unusual or ultra-cheap cars in the advertisements recently have included a well-shod vintage Sunbeam landaulette for £85, a Singer Twelve saloon for £70 and a Minerva saloon, well-shod, for the same price.

A. J. Dunning has a late-1926  “Grand Sport” Amilcar and H. Murray a 1928 “Surbaisse” and both seek information about them; the latter would be willing to share his car for vintage events if anyone will overhaul it.

Apparently one daily paper described the Jersey race as contested between E.R.A. and Maserati motor boats! Incidentally, our thanks to those readers who wrote in appreciation of our “stop-press” report of this race.

E. A. Burney, M.I.Mech.E., brother of C. S. Burney, has in hand a new type water-cooled 500-c.c. engine, possessing some unusual features and adaptable to many uses.

An enthusiast has contrived to install an unblown 2-litre Atalanta engine into a Type 40 Bugatti chassis.

“14/40” Sunbeams are up and doing again, one reader having located an artillery-wheeled coupé, and another a sports version believed to be good for 70 m.p.h.

R. Barnes-Hewitt has acquired from T. P. Breen the 1927 “14/40”  D.I.S.S. Delage which Motor Sport  road-tested in that year.


American veteranism

America is “sold” on the restoration and running of veteran cars. Not only does she have three clubs devoted to this absorbing pursuit  —  The Veteran Motor Car Club, The Antique Automobile Club and the Horseless Carriage Club  —  but these clubs recently combined with the Sports Car Club of America to stage a very ambitious Antique Auto Show in New York. Not content with that, and such regular Club publications as the Bulb Horn,  The Antique Automobile, and the Horseless Carriage Gazette, they issued a magnificently-produced book to commemorate this Exhibition. With a coloured cover by Peter Helck, of Esquire,  this beautiful production illustrated 86 veteran and vintage cars from an 1896 Duryea to a racing 2-litre Mercedes, model-T Ford and Mercer series 5 raceabout of 1922. Of particular interest are a 1909 De Tamble roadster, two 1909 Mercedes, two pre-1914 Delaunay-Bellevilles, two V12 Packards, two Rolls-Royce, a 1916 Stutz “Bearcat,” Cameron’s 1913 G.P. Peugeot and Helck’s 1906 Locomobile racing car. It is worth noting that such manufacturers as Studebaker, Dodge, Buick, Kaiser-Frazer, Hudson and Nash supported this lavish publication, the last two with appropriate “copy,” although Studebaker preferred a midnight bathing party, to which we register no objection. From the advertisements we learn that at least five veteran car museums (apart from the National institutions) operate in the States, and that an Old-Car Club has been formed at Long Island. By the time these words appear, our own Veteran Car Club should have announced its 1948 Fixtures and confirmed that the Brighton Run will be held next November.



The North London E.C.C. ran a coach to Prescott on May 9th and had a technical talk by Mr. Spikins at the end of the month. Hon. Sec: G. Bance, 7, Queen’s Avenue, Muswell Hill. (Tudor 2518.)



The Vintage Sports Car Club should be congratulating itself that the new Gaitskell half-price tax will enable many large cars to encompass a basic ration. The Club’s fixtures look like a return to that carefree vintagery we enjoyed pre-Hitler and include a rally at Madresfield on June 13th, and the Club Day at Prescott  —  a very good value-for-entry-fee event  —  on August Bank Holiday.



The first person to send in a correct solution to last month’s “Quiz” picture was F. G. Lomax, of Redditch, who correctly named the car as J. W. Burnand’s J.W.B., with Riley 9 engine in a chassis constructed from Austin 7 parts. The photograph was taken at Southport in 1936 by the present Editor of Motor Sport. Other correct solutions were sent in by Tony Brooke, of Sheffield, E. C. Wilson, of Southport, Allan Smith, of Manchester, N. Elliott, of Glossop, and F. Watterson, of Liverpool.

Cases of mistaken identity covered Capt. Waites’ Austin Seven, the J.D.K. Killick Special, Harkness Special, the original Allard Special, “Brooklands” Austin Seven and B.N.C.


750 Club

The annual general meeting of this club was held on May 2nd at the “Red Cow,” Hammersmith, and the following officials elected: Chairman: H. Birkett; Vice-Chairman and Captain: R. Yeats; Press Secretary: H. L. Biggs; Assistant Secretary: A. G. Pine;  Hon. Secretary and Treasurer: P. H. Hunter, 39, Warland Road, Plumstead Common, S.E.18; Committee: L. M. Ballamy,  A. C. B. Chapman, T. H. Lush, A. W. Butler, D. Brooks and K. F. Welfare.

In the circumstances it was decided that the past year’s activities had been satisfactory. The next club meeting will be on June 2nd at the “Red Cow,” Hammersmith, at 8 p.m.



The Veteran Car Club has now issued its fixture list, the provisional dates being as follows: June 19th, rally near Sandhurst;  July 17th, special rally at Austin factory, Longbridge;  August 28th, Norwich rally; September 26th, Hull rally;  October 23rd, Bristol rally.  The Brighton run is scheduled for November 14th. The secretary’s address is 46, North Row, London, W.1.



The New Zealand S.C.C.’s sixth annual general meeting took place on April 21st at Wellington. Membership is increasing steadily and past events met with a gratifying amount of support. Fixtures held during the last year included a motor rally to New Plymouth, with four starting points, at Auckland, Palmerston North, Napier and Wellington;  this event was won by an M.G. N-type Magnette driven by Farland, from Palmerston North, the best team being that from Hawk’s Bay. There were also a night reliability trial and a half-day trial to cater for the touring side of club work. By contrast, for speed events, a standing quarter-mile sprint was held in Wellington, where, in awful weather conditions, a Christchurch entrant, Sharman, achieved fastest time with a Railton Terraplane. The next event was a hill-climb at Plimmerton, which produced a great duel for fastest time between Hollis (“TA” M.G.) and G. Easterbrook-Smith (“12/50” Alvis), and the third speed event was the club’s classic climb, Paekakariki. This hill is on part of an old main road and is closed for the competitors’ use; it was described as “a large-size nightmare of a hill.” The part used is 2 miles 250 yards long and is unique in probably being the longest hill used for such a purpose in the Empire, as well as having all types of corners from flat-out bends to tight hairpins, during the course of which it rises over 800 feet; also, being up a hillside, spectators at the summit can see almost the whole course. The record stood at 2 min. 50 sec. by Proctor’s “Brooklands” Riley, but this year’s event saw the record broken no less than four times. It now stands at 2 min. 32 sec. to the credit of Roycroft with his Ford-engined cinder car In April an extra event was tried, a 50-mile beach race at Waikanae. This was won by R. Clapperton driving a Model A Ford (embodying his own modifications and very much stripped as to bodywork) by just over a minute from Ansell’s very consistent 1-1/2-litre Riley, with the Proctor “Brooklands” Riley close astern.

During the last year club members have supported the Manawatu Club’s events with a fair measure of success and also had a representative at the Dunedin Sprint, which was held as part of the Otago centenary celebrations.

The club holds monthly meetings in Wellington where informal discussions take place, with occasional talks and film shows to augment proceedings. Future programme is now in course of preparation, but the re-introduction of petrol rationing may curtail the two long-distance events, the rally and the 50-mile race, but the original aim of the club  —  to do its utmost to encourage motoring sport in the Dominion  —  is well to the fore. There is a club publication, The Bulletin, and, incidentally, as a sidelight on the shortage of sports cars here, there are no less than seven “specials” under construction so far as was known to club officials at the meeting. Of these, Farland’s, Lloyd’s and Falkner’s are all Ford V8-powered; Les Stone is operating on the same basis in Wellington, having temporarily deserted his old love the Austin Seven, and Easterbrook-Smith’s “Ansaldo-Alvis-Sunbeam-P40” job is well under way. A Sunbeam-Special is under construction by Cresswell, a Singer Twelve-engined Morris Minor with Ford wheels is another, and Freeman’s job is basically a lightened and lowered Chevrolet powered by a Ford V8. Yet another is a “Swallow” Austin Special with a 5-ft. wheelbase.

The Club secretary is W. J. Cope, 16, Grafton Road, Roseneath, Wellington, N.Z.