Pressing on...

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

If it can be assumed that readers of Motor Sport like to drive to the full extent of their abilities and sometimes feel irritated by those mimsers who progress at a crawl on uncongested 60 and 70 mph roads, they should be amused by, and give recognition to Mr William Cobbett, a private enquiry-agent engaged on behalf of the plaintiffs in a court case in 1961 against the ETU, which was accused of ballot-rigging. In an attempt to show how letters posted in a certain way would arrive too late to be accepted in the ballot, Mr Cobbett drove round a substantial slice of England, checking on postal collection times in 10 towns as far apart as Peterborough, Boston, Huddersfield, Bishop Auckland, Whitby and so on, stopping to post a letter in each town. It had to be done in two days and, giving evidence, Mr Cobbett said he left Croydon in January 1960 and drove to Doncaster, via Peterborough and five more towns, in a day.

While he was describing his drive through Cumberland he was interrupted by the Judge, who observed that it was a remarkably good run, 52 miles, for instance, having been completed in 70 minutes, “and some of us know the country between Kendal and Blackburn” commented Mr Justice Winn. “I agree I had to move, in parts, my Lord”, replied Mr Cobbett. The Judge, saying that the witness must have covered a good deal of ground at high speed (“I did, my Lord”, admitted Mr Cobbett), remarked that he was not sure the whole enquiry was not contrary to public policy. In other words, the enquiry-agent had pressed on a bit too quickly…

Even admitting that cars were reasonably quick by 1960, one should spare a thought for Mr Cobbett and his rather fascinating run, which presumably involved catching the last post in towns quite far apart, before most of our Motorways had been completed. Although an average speed of 45 or so mph is not much, these days, it was less easy then; I would love to know what car was used, for this somewhat unusual commis­sion. – W .B.

You may also like

Related products