I did not expect to come upon any references to cars in “After Kilvert” by A. L. Le Quesne (Oxford University Press, 1978), although it is an excellent book about the changing conditions in the Welsh countryside much the same as that touched on in the references to motoring on Welsh roads in the 1920s that has been appearing in the V-E-V columns of Motor Sport, in the case of Le Quesne’s book, at any time between 1870 and 1970. The surprise reference, apart from a mention of “. . big Sentinel steam lorries thundering along the main road up the valley at a fearful lick between the wars (the road in question is that through Clyro, from Hereford to Brecon), is about the cars used at one of their meetings by the Kilvertians (members of the Kilvert Society whose interest lies with the Diaries of the Vicar of that name, which describe his life in the area in the 1870s), which are described by the author as “. . . typical Kilvertian cars, Triumphs, Morris Oxfords, Cortinas, that sort of thing — no Minis, no 2000s.” This is an interesting associating of persons of a certain class and interest with their cars, as seen by this Oxford historian . . .
In something the same way, I find it interesting that whereas when Lew Grade was trying to persuade the actress Shirley MacLaine to do a TV series for him in England in 1971 he put “a full-time chauffeured Rolls-Royce” at her disposal, as well as a butler, a cook and a gardener, in the house in Windsor Park that he had leased for her use for five years, as she tells us in “You Can Get There From Here” (The Bodley Head, 1975), it was a “hired Daimler” that took Jessica Mitford from the family house at Swinbrook in the Cotswolds to Buckingham Palace for her coming-out presentation, just before the war, as she tells us in “Hons, and Rebels” (Victor Gallancz, 1961), And when her father and mother went to Germany the Nazis lent them “a chauffeur-driven Mercedes-Benz.”