That Stork

Publication last March, by kind permission of Mrs. Barton, of the first-war cartoon of the La Cigogne Squadron of French flying-aces, has aroused much interest. One correspondent, Mr. Clemons of Selby, says there were four such Squadrons, all flying Spad fighters powered by 200-h.p. Hispano-Suiza engines. He tells us that SPA-3, the most famous of these Squadrons, had a stork mascot with its wings at the bottom of the down-flap, which became the famous Hispano-Suiza radiator mascot and was associated with Georges Guynerner, the second top-scoring French ace, with 54 victories to his credit, but that SPA-26’s stork emblem had its wings at mid-flap, which made it appear as if it was flying inverted, not easy for a stork but quite easy in a Spad!

Our correspondent goes on to say that SPA-73 Squadron used the stork mascot with its neck turned round, to look over its tail, again difficult for the bird, he observes, but essential for a fighter-pilot! Apparently SPA-103 also had a stork for its mascot but with its wings at the commencement of the down-flap, and it was Capt. Rene Fonck, top-ace with 75 official victories (hut he claimed 127), who flew with this Squadron. Mr. Clemons reminds us that after the war Fonck manufactured high-grade cars in small numbers. They were made at Fraisses-Unieux, as four-cylinder 2.2-litre and straight-eight 4.4-litre chassis. These, too, had a stork mascot, but no doubt one with the wings as in SPA-103’s emblem . .

Of the pilots in the cartoon, one seems to be Heurtaux, who reached the rank of Air Force General, and the last, de la Tour, was the artist; this would explain why he was able to present Mrs. Barton with his cartoon. Another correspondent remarks that the manor house in Kent in which his parents live was owned in the 1920s by a Mr. Crossley, presumably the brother of Mrs. Barton’s. second husband, and that a relative has confirmed that this gentleman was definitely mechanically-minded, having an early electric generating plant and a chamber organ, the latter blown by a water pump driven from a stream diverted to flow through the cellar As proof of this, it is said that the cellar still floods at intervals!—W.B.

V-E-V Miseellany.—One of the ways in which we can partly repay the pleasure we derive from readers’ correspondence is to put seekers after information in touch with one another. As when the owner of a 1912 Vinot living in Buckinghamshire was able to contact the owner of a similar car living in Holland, who wanted information. Incidentally, the English owner also has a 1908 25-h.p. Vinot, with Salmsons tourer body, which has had only two owners from new. A 1905 chain-drive Vinot was discovered in pieces in Northampton some 18 months ago, it having been dismantled in about 1915 and its engine used as a power-pack. Its parts were scattered everywhere, the wooden chassis holding up the roof of the building where it was found. There were Humber, Model-T Ford and Morris parts mixed up with the Vinot-et-Deguingand parts but a London motor trader has commenced rebuilding operations. A 1929 Darmont-Morgan 3-wheeler was bought literally off a scrap-truck in Paris in 1960 and was used by its new owner for several months, after which it was laid up for nearly 16 years. It is now to be restored and work on its vee-twin engine may be carried out in England.

Pre-1939 cars and other vehicles will feature in the Great Herefordshire County Show, to be held at Bromyard on July 10th/11th. A 1939 Bedford 30 cwt. lorry, with slight front-end damage, is for sale in Sussex. A vee-twin Baughan cycleear, probably the only one remaining, has been moved from its village of origin in Gloucestershire to Lincolnshire, by a rebuilder who also has a sports Austin 7. The Armstrong Siddeley has come a long way from the days when we described it as “the car nobody wants” and pre-war examples were virtually given away. Now there is a flourishing Armstrong Siddeley QC, with a printed quarterly magazine, Sphinx, and this Club can supply as-new spares for most models, The Woburn Rally for these cars will take place on May 9th; the Secretary is: J. Hubbuck, 90, Alumhurst Road, .Bournemouth, Hampshire. The Manchester VCC is promoting a rally for pre-war cars on May 9th in the form of a run from Manchester to Southport. Details from: Dr. R. M. Pickford, 32, Cleveland Road, Heaton Moor, Stockport, Cheshire, SK4 4BS. We have received a cutting from a reader relating to a Walker & Hutton car, apparently made in Scarborough around the year 1900; does anyone have any information on this rare make, the builders Of which are still in business as electrical engineers? Perusal c>f the many one-make club magazines we receive continues to provide editorial enjoyment; the current issue of the Mercedes-Benz Club Gazette, for instance, contains an erudite article about the reasons why Mercedes and Benz merged in 1926, this merger being a direct result Of the appalling poverty into which Germany was plunged after the Naval blockade of 1919 and the invasion of the Ruhr by France and Belgium in 1923, a state of affairs which is, fortunately, not comparable with our present inflationary financial plight, although -something of the sort is nibbling at the edges! The Mercedes-Benz Club rallies at Donington on May 9th, a busy day for one-make activities. The VSCC has its Curbprough Speed Trials also on that Sunday.

Reverting to the interesting information to be found in Club magazines, the current Bulletin of the Riley Register carries special features on the Riley Kestrels and the V8 Autovia and an explanatory guide to pre-war models. by Tony Bird. This guide lists 44 different Riley types, from Adelphi to Wentworth. Then the AM Quarterly, journal of the Aston Martin OC, has a most informative interview with Gordon Sutherland, who acquired the Aston Martin Company in 1932. The Club has started a Dudley Coram Memorial Fund, which W. Lloyd, 446, Hatfield Road, St. Albans, Herts., is looking after. A Type-W four-cylinder Minerva, thought to be of 1910/11 vintage, with some vital parts missing has changed hands in Australia. Information is sought about any of the V8 Autovia cars such as their Reg. Nos., present whereabouts, etc. Letters can be forwarded. The Bean CC has changed the date of its annual “Beano”, which starts from the old Bean factory at Tipton, to May 16th..

Irish Fixtures

In spite of the present vicious “troubles”, Ireland seems to retain a happy knack of putting on carefree and enjoyable motoring events. The Irish Veteran & Vintage CC intends to have its rally over the 1903 Gordon Bennett circuit again this year, on July 9th-11th, for cars made before 1931, the oldest 70 entries to be eligible. Run under FIVA International rules, a 25% reduction fee in ferry charges from the mainland applies, the rally venue being about 40 miles from Dublin. Details from: E. P. Cassidy, Mountgorry, Swords, Co. Dublin. Tel: 740786 or 401257.

Those who feel like a faster Irish exercise may care to note that racing is scheduled to take place at the historic Phoenix Park course on September 18th/19th. A 12-lap event for Historic Racing Cars is envisaged, with good starting money and discounts on hotel and ferry costs. The person to contact is Bill Morris at Lower End, Leafield, Oxon, who will no doubt to taking his ERA.

V-E-V Odds & Ends—An 8/18 Talbot coup:5 which has not been on the road since 1938, has been acquired recently by an STD Register member who also has an 18/55 Talbot. The latter is the fourth Talbot of this type in the Register and is a late-model two-seater with dickey. From the loM comes a note to remind us that over in that Island there is no overall speed-limit, no seat-belt law pending, no MoT tests, no tyre-tread regulations, that car tax starts at £8 up to 1,000-c.c., with a maximum of £25 a year, and that the late T. G. Moore’s Type 35A Bugatti and Frazer Nash-BMW have been left to his son, who is a member of the Manx Classic Car Club. A 1921 ABC and a 1922 Morris coup: have recently been restored on the Island. The 17th National Standard Register Rally takes place on June 17th, at Belvoir Castle. Details from: J. R. Davy, Popehill Cottage, Draycote, Rugby, Warwicks. Entries are requested for a rally and steam-vehicle event at Bow Lee, Middleton, Lancs., on the site of the old RAF Station off the M62, on May 22nd/23rd. Details from: A. Raumsley, 7, Heybrook House, Entwistle Road, Rochdale; Lancs.

Doug Baird has taken over Chairmanship of the aforesaid Manx C.CC from Cecil Clutton, the latter becoming Vice-President. The owner of a 3-litre Bentley who has had the car since 1960 without discovering who put it together in its present form, seeks our help. It is car no. 497 (1924), engine no. 1164, Reg. No. GI-I 2493, and the significant thing is that the rear axle carries the chassis no. (ST 4001) of the first 4 1/2-litre Bentley that was involved in the now-legendary Le Mans White House crash. The chassis was said to have been used afterwards for tests of early 6 1/2-1itre Bentley engines and broke up during a race at Brooklands. All this must, surely, be known to the well-documented BDC, but not, presumably, who built up this hybrid 3-litre in recent years. Letters can be forwarded. It is nice to learn, from a CaffynsLtd. Bulletin, that the 1899 Benz Dogcart damaged last summer in a fire in their Tonbridge workshop is being slowly but surely restored by a 73-year-old employee, the bodywork being rebuilt from ancient ash found in the Company’s Eastbourne coachworkis and with mahogany from a defunct cabinet works in Tunbridge Wells. New solid tyres, new lamps, and new upholstery are in hand and the ‘target is the next Brighton Run, for the Benz which Caffyns Ltd. acquired in 1935 has taken part in this event on 31 occasions and has only once failed to arrive. Another Hooker-Thomas engine, like the one in the racing car “Nanette”, featured in these pages recently, is said to be on show in the Lytham St, Annes Motor Museum, although it appears to have a vertical-shaftand-bevel-driven o.h. shaft, which is another variant on Parry Thomas’ original form of drive. An unidentified Bugatti, probably a late-model Brescia, has been found at North Shore, New Zealand.

The Western Mail in conjunction with the County of S. Glamorgan is holding its customary Road Safety Run for pre-1940 cars on June 12th, based on Cardiff. There are the usual classes for veteran, vintage and post-vintage vehicles, including commercials, that for 1931-39 sub-divided into over and under 2-litres, and entrants are offered a free dinner for two, etc. Details from : Shirley Pridham, Western Mail & Echo Ltd., Thomson House, Ilavelock Street, Cardiff, CF1 1WR. The Bentley DC “On the Road” day is May 23rd, when it is hoped Bentleys will be set in action all the World over, to commemorate the Club’s inaugural run of 1936. The President will be at home to receive a World-wide taped “phonein” from Bentley enthusiasts.