Vintage miscellany, September 1965

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The Vintage Austin Register has its rally at the Austin works in Longbridge on September 26th, with driving tests and Pride of Ownership contest to commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the Austin Motor Co. The Bull-Nose Morris Club holds its rally at Oxford on September 26th. The new Hon. Sec. of the Bullnose Morris Register is Robin Barradough, 27, Oakfield Road, Rugby. A 1924 fixed-head coupé Austin 7, a very rare model, took part in the Rhayader Carnival this year.

Early transport scenes in Bristol.—Some time ago we referred to a Reece Winstone publication “Bristol As It Was—1939-1914,” which contained some fascinating street scenes and pictures of early vehicles. At the beginning of this year a companion volume, “Bristol As It Was—1914-1900,” appeared and has even more transport pictures of interest to historians. For example, two splendid touring cars, probably Charrons, are seen outside the Tramway Centre in 1911, there is what looks like a single-cylinder Rover passing a motor-‘bus in Corn Street in 1914, a Charron taxi waiting by Clifton Parish Church in about 1913, a 5-h.p. Royal Mail 3-wheeler van, apparently built by the Avon Motor Co. of Keynsharn, outside the G.P.O. in 1904, and a picture of a 5-h.p. Humber of circa 1903 (AE 32), included presumably because it was a local vehicle.

Then there is a large picture of a Royal Mail van, possibly a Renault, which carried mail from Small Street to Fishponds and beyond, on hire from the B.T.C.C., in about 1912, and another showing P. J. Kerswell, pioneer motorcycle builder, with what is captioned a 31-h.p. Guillodat forecar—the V.C.C. should enjoy identifying these vehicles.

The centre-spread of the book is devoted to motor vehicles and trains—there is a 1907 Beeston-Humber converted from private car to van by a Bristol carpet merchant, its driver Fred Bartlett, being still on the firm’s staff in 1957, a 12-h.p. Clement-Talbot (AE 1), the fire-brigade of 1907 with their engine, make unspecified, a Bristol & Colonial Aeroplane Co.’s service van, converted from a Blue Taxi (a Renault?), in use during the Circuit of Britain Race, a 1910 delivery van (Renault?) with B.T.C.C. body, an American touring car owned by the Chief Constable and photographed in 1923, the author offering as its identity 1918 Buick, type 57 Cadillac or 1920 Overland (MOTOR SPORT readers forward!), a solid-tyred ‘bus at the terminus of the Suspension Bridge route in 1906, and an even-earlier ‘bus. Later pictures show James Valentine flying a Duperdussin monoplane in the Round-Britain Air Race and a 1903/4 White steam car and early motorcycles and cars are seen in other pictures. Those who like old street scenes will be vastly entertained and train fanatics will be enthralled. The pictures are all extremely clear. The book is available for 10s., post free from Reece Winstone, 23, Hyland Grove, Henbury Hill, Bristol, 9, on mentioning MOTOR SPORT.

Discoveries.—The Bedford box-van mentioned last month turns out to be of 1937 vintage, so is of no interest to Vauxhall Motors, but should be acquired by a H.C.V.C. member nevertheless. A 1938/9 Trojan, looking exactly like a 1928 model, its van body converted into a caravan, lies in the open near Stourbridge and should be saved before winter engulfs it. At the moment it forms part of a small-holding fence! A 1927 Daimler chassis lies in a Yorkshire breaker’s yard and a 1929 o.h.c. Wolseley 12/22 fabric saloon was destroyed near London recently, because no-one would give it a home, although it was mentioned in these columns—shame!

Some spares for un-named pre-war cars are for disposal via a Cambridge reader and someone else has found some Coventry-Premier parts in a brickyard in Salop. The engine from a Swift is driving a saw on a Wiltshire farm, where a 1930 Straight-8 Chevrolet has been converted into a lorry. We also hear of a Citroen trackless vehicle thought to be lying derelict in a woodyard in Switzerland. In Clermont-Ferrant station yard someone has photographed a rather derelict small French sports car, which is probably an Amilcar.

Apart from discoveries, information is sought about restoring an 1899/1911 International Auto Buggy, which is being rebuilt in Dublin and an Australian reader seeks data about a 1920 12-h.p. Chenard-Walcker.