Cars in Books, September 1971

With reference to your articles on “Cars in Books”, I might draw your attention to an interesting passage in the book “Delius, As I Knew Him”, written by Eric Fenby (Icon Books). The year is 1928 and I presume the car must be a Model T. I quote the passage below:

“We climbed up into the ancient Ford with its yellow curtains, a lovable old bone-shaker familiar to unknown visitors as the Delius ensign at the railway station, and were soon on our way down the station lane. This grand old chariot had never failed them. In its heyday they had toured Italy in it, but now it did no manner of work for six days, but on the seventh day, Friday, out it came to take them off to market. It remained their trusty servant until a few months before Mrs. Delius’s death, when it was sold to the chauffeur. But such was its devotion to the Delius household that it had no mind to serve others, not even the little fellow who had tended it with such care for years. It had taken the hill over to Fontainebleau a thousand and one times with all the impudence of a Bluebird, but on its first outing with its new master it had not the heart to mount it. Halfway up the hill it refused to go an inch farther, and then it ran backwards, mounted the kerb, and smashed itself up on its side.”

The passage comes from Chapter 2, page 11, where Eric Fenby, the composer who collaborated closely with Delius, is describing his first visit to the home of Delius in Ores, France. I was greatly surprised to find reference to a car in a book of this nature, let alone give the “make” of the car.

Michael Shenton.