V-to-C Miscellany, October 1996, October 1996

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The VCC is all systems go preparing for the Centenary Veteran Car Brighton Run on November 3. The entry is a record already, with 600 applications, whereas the previous highest number was 499 pre-1905 cars in 1991. This year there are entries from 22 countries, including more than 50 from America, and the oldest is Daniel Ward’s 1896 Panhard Levassor which won the Paris-Marseilles-Paris race and took part in the first Emancipation Run of 1896. It is making its first appearance since restoration and has not done the London-Brighton since the epic 1896 Run. As a sop to the media there is to be an assembly of cars that did do this Run 100 years ago but are not venturing out on the Sunday, and the Science Museum has apparently agreed that the Evelyn Ellis 1895 Panhard will be allowed out in daylight for this publicity affair. More importantly, the Metropolitan Police have agreed that this time Sunday’s route can used closed roads from Hyde Park Corner down Constitution Hill, the Mall and along Horse Guards Parade.

Neil Jordan’s documentary film Michael Collins had its premiere at the recent Venice Film Festival. The Irish Republican leader was ‘shot and killed’ when his car was ambushed in 1921 during the Irish Civil War. Collins was in a Leyland Eight, which went back to the Leyland factory with bullet holes in its bodywork. One wonders what car was used in the film, which must have depicted this fatal ambush?

The Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon has purchased the lssigonis sketches for £5,520 at auction, with a donation of £1 ,000 from the Science Museum, and these will be on view to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the great designer’s death, in 1998. A collector has some of the drawings, however. W B