Vauxhall Matters

From a letter kindly sent to me by Mr Andrew King, who is the Hon Editor of Leading Link, newsletter of the Greeves Riders Association, some interesting facets of information have come to hand about the 1914 Prince Henry Vauxhall owned by Mr T W Badgery, Managing Director of Ward & Co, leather tanners of Worcester and Chairman of the James Motor Cycle Company in Birmingham. He gave it to Laurence Pomeroy Jun in 1945 when that gentleman was Technical Editor of The Motor, in recognition of Porneroy’s father having engineered these great cars and, of course, the first 30-98 Vauxhall.

Mr Badgery apparently designed the touring body for the Prince Henry himself and it was made for him by Grose of Northampton. He then obtained for it the Irish Reg No 01 246, which the police were apt to take down mistakenly as 1246, as was the Birmingham letter at that time. . . The car gave much pleasure and very good service until, in 1926, Mr Badgery bought a Chrysler two-seater and soon the Prince Henry was laid up. Incidentally, its owner had continued to ride a Lightweight James motorcycle until 1928. He was President of the Worcester AC for many years, and at the age of 89 spent a full day in the Judges’s tent at Shelsley Walsh. He died at the age of 91.

Back to the now old Vauxhall. In 1930 Mr Bert Greeves, then a young draftsman, tried to buy it for £20 but the asking price was an unattainable £50, so the deal fell through. Pomeroy later got the prize and had the car well restored, with some help from his many friends, and used it regularly thereafter. It was the subject of a Veteran Types article in MOTOR SPORT in February 1946, and then became a well-known sight with its gleaming bodywork and sharply-pointed radiator at VCC, VSCC and other events. Bert Greeves became Managing and Technical Director of the Greeves Motor Cycle Company.

My thanks for this fascinating snippet from the past, which I think does not appear even in Nic Portway book about the 30-98 Vauxhall and its forebears. W B