V-E-V miscellany, March 1983, March 1983

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David Rae, formerly Field Service Manager for Dunlop’s, has joined Vintage Tyre Supples as their Sales Manager. The ex-John Smythe Type 23 Brescia Bugatti, which apparently hit a telegraph pole at Brooklands before the war, causing damage that necessitated a new chassis frame and front axle, work being curtailed by war, is now being restored in Cirencester and should appear again next year. A Type 44 Bugatti chassis is being carefully rebuilt in Wales and should reappear in due course with a new open body. A reader asks if anyone can tell him about the fate of a Phantom II Rolls-Royce Continental which originally had a two-door Henry Binder body. It was imported into Kenya by a Dr. Walker of Mombasa soon after the war and sold to our correspondent’s father-in-law, Mr. B. H. Ryder, who was building a house at Diani for his retirement, so that the Rolls-Royce was given an estate-car body to replace the worn original body and used the transporting building materials, etc. Our correspondent then took it over, in 1960, and used it in Nairobi as a family-car, but gave it away on leaving Kenya the following year. It is thought that it then went to an Italian-owned estate in Kenya, after being rebuilt. The reader, who still has the car’s “Flying Lady” mascot, thinks it was a 1930 model, chassis no. possibly GX-18. and it could be identified perhaps by the long spring leaf made from two Bedford lorry spring leaves, and welding of the clutch housing, beautifully done by an Italian firm in Mombasa, after someone had dropped a pair of calipers into the clutch pit, which had been carried round and had nearly cut through the housing. If anyone knows anything of this lost P2, letters can be forwarded.

Yet another memory of Rolls-Royces that were converted into char-a-bancs, to tantalise members of the R-REC, has come in from Denys Axel-Burg, of 30/98, Bugatti and vintage aeroplane enthusiasms. He says he remembers during his boyhood, not only the splendid display of elegant machinery on the taxi-ranks in Salisbury, such as the Vickers-built Wolseleys and 23/60 h.p. Vauxhalls which predominated, but that the Silver Star Bus Company of Amesbury ran not only the usual Leyland Lions and Albions but at least one converted Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost, possibly with a lengthened chassis frame. — W.B.