Club News, March 1942





John Cooper, of Scuderia ImpeeuniOsa„ has added a fabric 2-seater P.W.D. of the blown four-cylinder variety, to his stable. He drove down a distance of 100 miles from Leicester at 42.1 m.p.h. average to collect it, in his immaculate twin-carburetter, big port ” 12/50″ Alvis with two friends and quite a party resulted, as he was met by Partridge’s 1929 4-seater unsupetcharged 1%11%D. Alvis, Lowrey’s 1,100-c.c. H.R.G. and vendor Kipps in the ex-Radley M.G. Magnette 2-seater, boasting magneto ignition and no fewer than Six external drainpipe exhausts. Partridge has put in a lot Of work on his Alvis, which now has a single S.U. carburetter. It is the car which Ken Farley once raced at Brooklands, and the present owner also has a fabric 2-seater F.W.D. Alvis. In a recent 400 miles duty-journey to the West Country and back about the only unusual ears noted were a 4-seater Marendaz ” Special ” Six, old and new Crossley Ten saloons, and early Morris Six of rather rare type, an old gentleman in a beautifully preserved, if very touring, 3-litre Bentley, and a very smart cream Riley ” Gameeock ” 2-seater. A ” 14)40″ ” Brooklands ” Lea-Francis 4-seater was seen in use in Hampshire recently. In order to relax from Army life, Gerald Sumner bought himself a 41-litre Bentley while on leave not long ago ; he has also acquired the ex-Esplen ” II. ” -tylie M.G. Midget for future dicing engagements and has been running an IsottaFrasclii ni 2-seater. Sydney Allard has been indulging in a spot of rationed slime storming, using a Gould ” Greyhound ” Ford V8 4-seater with a late 30-h.p.engiae having special heads with o.h. exhaust valves, Scintilla magneto ignition and 164×7 comp. covers all round. S. G. Cummings is reported to have been killed in an air crash. Lieut. John Cumming, the Australian Maserati driver, is trying to acquire an Indian combination, American Army pattern, and John Bolster is riding an ex-racing “Red Hunter” Ariel. R. G. V. Venables has a B.M.W. solo and Leslie Seyd rides a 350-c.c. Matchless ” Clubman Special,” but Lowrey has sold his Square Four Arid, replacing it with a 1928, water-cooled J.A.P.-engined two-speed Morgan. In the same village a really early •• Family” Morgan is in regular use. Monica I’Vhineop now motors in a 44 D “. Type M.G. 4-seater. but has, in addition, a ” P ” Type M.G. with J2 engine, a Renault Twelve drophead coup-6, a four-speed Austin Seven 2-seater—–and, of course, her husband’s Bugattis. The Bugattis are not for sale I Capt. L. Roy Taylor, whose address is ” Gainscott,” Breton Heath, Shrewsbury, is putting a Riley Nine engine into a modified Amilcar and would like to acquire a twin carburetter manifold for an early Riley Nine and to receive hints and tips on tuning. He is trying to find a sound 1934 short-chassis Aston-Martin or :similar 4-seater li-litre sports car, up to £2:50, and has for disposal a 1934 Van den Plas drOphead coupe Alvis Speed Twenty. He reports finding a Flanders ” 20″ and a. two-cylinder Riley tourer in a Ross-on-Wye breaker’s, and he would be glad to meet enthusiasts in Staffs, Shropshire, Hereford, Radnor or Montgomery ; he was responsible, incidentally, for modelling the ” Newsome ” and

” Monto ” trophies, and is now working on a model of Monro’s Invieta, Cleland ‘s well-known Ford V8, a 1932 30-h.p., with which be won a Welsh Bally, has been considerably blitzed, but it is still working, hauling farm machinery. Apparently ” Chitty II ” is not in America ; she is reported to be still in Dover. still owned by Mr. Hollis, and available at. around £35. Pte. I). hod, ., has purchased a 1030 G.P. Salmson with :dismantled engine and seeks information, co R.A.M. College, Millbank, S.W.1. A I 935 Alfa-Romeo 1f-litre drophead coupe is reported to be at a Canterbury breaker’s, and C. W. Densham, of “The Cottage,” Ashley, Dover, wants to part-exchange two ” Brooklands ” aero screens for a pair of Lucas 44 Mellotone ” horns or Special bits for his 1935 Riley ” Imp.” Denyer has his Lea-Francis cars and various motor-cycles carefully stored and is busy with tire-prevention duties, for which he has evolved a very imposing Bentley tire engine. There was a Lagonda ” Rapide “

41-litre tourer with very nice lines (the pre-i.f.s. model) at a Surrey garage for 1125, and we know of a 1936 M.G. Magnetic 4-seater with spare engine, rear axle and E.N.V. box, at £200. Then B. Fitzpatrick has the ex-P. R. Monkhouse M.G. Magnette for sale, with road equipment, at 1175 ; he badly wants a 1935 11-litre imblown Alfa-Romeo instruction book. The veteran Alldays & Onions mentioned recently has been given a home_ in Croydon, whither it went on a 5-ton lorry, and someone in Bristol is trying to win a bet by running an A.C. Sociable. In Somerset a 1900 Gladiator and a Daimler dogcart are reported, but not for sale, and the only coupe H.R.G. lives that way ; it has, incidentally, a Triumph engine, not a Meadows as a emit einporary recently stated.


The very recently formed Lea-Francis Owners’ Club deserves every credit for getting off well in these trying times. Nearly all the famous ears of this marque of recent years have turned up and members embrace Wrigley, Molyneux, Currie, Wagstaff and Cliff McCulloch, the last named with Delaney’s ” Special Hyper.” The following announcement has reached us and we wish the Club well : It is proposed that a Lea-Francis Owners’ Club be formed ler the benefit of owners of all Lea-Francis cars, in particular vintage types, ‘I lie primary object of the club at present wouht lii uite unambitious, btu would certainly include the following :

(I) Keeping cid bustards in t ouch N it hi one another and isnim to all members a complete membership list, which, as well as giving names and addresses, will include details of numbers’ experience, ears owiwil, spare parts available and any other details likely to be of interest. People will then be able to correspond with each other on matters of mutual interest.

(2) Keeping a Register of spare parts available, both new and second-hand, so that those having ears undergoing repair or reconstruction will he able to lay their hands on parts required.

It is suggested that the above activities: should commence forthwith, and, in order to facilitate this, you are asked to send in to me full particulars of past and .present cars owned of all makes, together with a list (with prices) of sixties and accessories available and any other details that will be useful in compiling the Register. If you will also enclose a stamped addressed envelope, a copy of the Register, together with any news of the Club, will be forwarded in due course. Your opinion is earnestly desired on any other activities, present or future, in which you would like the Club to indulge : whether you are in favour of a periodical being produced (which would necessitate a subscription, but enable the Club to be put on a more formal footing), etc. The Club is open to anyone interested, whether they have a car or not, and I shall be delighted to hear from you shortly as iii)Ove so that we may get under way. Hon. Sec., Lenard Potter. ()Inwood House, Wilmslow Road, Cheadle, Cheshire (Gatley 2934). London members are invited to telephone H. AShwood at Streatham 3193 and arrange a visit.

750 CLUB

The March 1st lunch went off with the swing one has come to expect under Capon’s organisation. H. L. Biggs brought some toy cars in his Fiat ” 500,” including one of those excellent P2 AlfaRomeos ; Tubbs regaled his friends with

his usual excellent stories and went for rides in Jenkins’s very beautiful D.I.S. Delage and Nlerten’s 4i-litre Bentley, and a number of NI.G.s, with the inevitable blondes, came along. Childs (Austin), Birkett (Austin), BalImlay (B.NI W.), Capon (Riley), Hunter (A.E.W. Austin), Klernantaski (Fiat), Mallock (Austin), Boddy (Gwynne), Grosscurth (Morris 8), George Foxlee (Triumph) and Lowrey (II.R.G.) were also present, as were a ” Nippy” Austin, a Wolseley Hornet and a ” 12/40 ” Lea-Francis, so that the gathering was pleasantly comprehensive. Williams, in his pretty Austin Seven, gave a demonstration of decent getaway, if not such decent cog-swopping, and Kipps, Frost, Birkett and Capon held a committee meeting after lunch. Ashwood, Potter and Merrilees exuded Leaf lure, and a very fine Excelsior “Manxman ” represented the motor-cycling fraternity. The next meetings will probably be of a rather different character, and it is hoped to Stage a film show on April St —these race-starved days we could niiiri.ciate a showing of George Monkhouse’s Aleret’cks films, however many times we have already seen them. Whatever it puts. over, certainly the 75() Club merits your enthusiastic support. While haste rul ions are issued, no criticism from mikidc sources need be feared. Hon. See., S. 11. Capon, 159, Upper Tulse 11111. S. W.2. (Tulse Hill 6426.)


The event held on Sunday. relmniry 22nd, on Pirbright Common. corp.ktcd of 10 sections, which had to he des(..on ts, twice, mostly tricky climbs and as the ground was too hard for mud sections. Some 59 starters tackled the first test, a timed run over a rough course approximately I mile long, fastest time being put up by S. M. Berry in 27.4 secs., followed by E. French and J. H. Ford in 28 secs. and 98.1 sees., all mounted on 350-c.c. Triumphs. A very steep descent with a rigid -angle bend at the bottom followed and a very small percentage managed to reach the bottom safely and fewer still got round the bend. Competitors then tackled a steep climb up a narrow gtilley. After a cross-country dash,. the riders had another observed section, which Was mainly a test of steering lock and brakes, with plenty of ground clearance a premium. Two more tests were climbs through small copses, and then there Was a plunge through a small stream with lumps of ice everywhere. A further cross-country run to a couple of twisty sections on the side of a hill and a tricky descent through a wood

brought competitors back to the start. Good performances that were noticed, while wandering around the different sections, were put up by R. Petty, S. M. Berry, G. F. Robertson and S. E. Cunningham, while a very early Sunbeam, ridden by R. T. Viney, did remarkably well.D.S.J.

Elite Cup : 0. F. Robertson (” 350 ” Royal Enfield) lost 31 marks.

250-c.c. Cup : R. J. Petty (” 250 ” Triumph) lost 92 marks.

350-c.e. Cup : J. Blackwell (” 350 ” B.S.A.) lost 38 marks.

500-c.c. Cup : J. Butting (” 500 ” Sunbeam) 104 80 marks.

Service Cup : Cpl. Thoroughgood (” 350 ” Ariel) lost 69 marks.

Horne Guard Cup : F. Boguett (” 350 ” Triumph) lost. 81 marks.

Novice Cup : S. co; (“350” Sunbeam) lost 111 marks.


Quite a quantity of water has flowed under bridges and what not since anything appeared under this heading, and it seems ages since three of us spent Christmas Day journeying rapidly to Nailsworth and back in Wintry sunshine, that an 1,100-e.c; H.R.G. could try the Ladder, Ferriscourt and -suchlike acclivities ; incidentally, smooth rear tyres defeated it on the first named. The snow found the Gwynne undertaking certain Official journeys, when its lofty e. of g. did not impair the confidence it somehow inspires, in spite of haying no real road-holding qualities, while its remarkable easy starting propensities were doubly appreciated. Sundry veteran hunts resulted in the inevitable droll adventures, Stories of a Samson used as a “garden car” on an estate leading to inadvertent penetration of army-commandeered quarters, but no car, while a gypsy who had a “fleet of twocylinder Renaults” had apparently taken the road long since. In bitter cold a sketchy Austin Seven 2-seater was persuaded to function and the veteran Delage towed spiritedly to London, doing entirely all the braking down hills, if swaying precariously hither and thither on the rope when the towing car was coaxed up. to 40 m.p.h. All that had to be packed into a half-day’s leave and nearly wasn’t, first because ice defeated us up hills out of the village, and later because of .darkness and cold so intense that the driver in the Delage could barely operate the push-forward handbrake. The old car was hastily given a temporary home in a large cinema car park, and this was one of the few occasions when we welcomed a return by train, which, most unusually, left to time, arrived punctually and was quite reasonably warm and inhabitable. Many routine towing jobs of newly acquired or unwell vehicles have happened, often using a 1,100-c.c. II.R.G. which, driven for a short spell, proved very light on all the Controls, delightful to handle and a most convincing performer. It was this car which took us to a breaker’s yard where a V8 Apperson, a V12 Cadillac, an Alpine Steyr, a I’Lliplers, a La Zebre and a pre-191.4 Rolls Royce were located and, if they were hardly in condition to enter in the Register, it was significant how much better the Rolls Royce had withstood the elements than any of the others. Four days much-needed leave was spent seeing many interesting but unmentionable things at Various aerodromes, for which a war model Austin Ten saloon covered

some 400 miles most satisfactorily, although the gear-ratios seem singularly badly chosen. One lunch hour there was a brief but tonic trip in search of new tyres, preparatory to taking its owner west on night-flying duties, in the twin o.h.c. Anzani-Frazer-Nash, one of the more notable “locals,” which cruised at some 56 m.p.h. (2,800 r.p.m.) and went momentarily over 60 m.p.h., with no apparent effort, the camshaft gears rumbling in a curiously remote way, the exhaust quite silent. The H.R.G. went to one very snowy motor-cycle scramble (postponed) and then up to the 750 Club Meeting, and for the next meeting the elderly and most certainly comic Gwynne was used—it has done some 1,600 miles since being re-bearinged and, as far as can be ascertained, cruises at 45-50 m.p.h., averages 35 m.p.h. about the place and does its 40 m.p.g. on long runs, using 80 main jets in the twin Amals. One afternoon, too, we became cyclecarists for a brief spell, with a 1028 s.v. watercooled Morgan-J.A.P., which the Gwynne could barely hold on a circular dice over well-known roads, the Moggy being superior on acceleration from red. Inevitably, this variety motoring that has meant so much for many years must now ease up ; but, despite pessimistic newspaper items concerning basic rations, it seems impossible that it can cease altogether for, at any rate, a few months to come.