Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Fiat Siata Spring

I photographed this car at the Northern Classic Car Show at G-Mex, Manchester, in August 1991.
It's a 1968 Fiat Siata Spring, built by Siata and based on the Fiat 850. The Wikipedia article about Siata says about the Siata Spring:

'In 1968, after a detailed market research among Italian youth, Siata launched the Siata Spring, asports car based on parts from Fiat 850, with front end styled by Enrico Fumia in 1966. The Siata Spring was produced until 1970, when Siata went bankrupt, but the assembly line was purchased by a newly formed company called ORSA (Officina Realizzazioni Sarde Automobili), which moved it to an assembly plant near Cagliari, where it resumed the production of the Spring based on the SEAT 850 Special, thus increasing the engine displacement to 903cc with 47BHP, disc brakes on the front wheels and a maximum speed of 125 Kph. Because of the 1973 oil crisis sales of sports cars in Italy went down, forcing ORSA to end the production of the Spring in 1975.'

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

RGS Atalanta MG

Taking part in the Classic Car Invitation Race at the Autumn Historic Car Races organised by the Aston Martin Owners Club in September 1992 was the car pictured below.
According to the programme of the event it's a 1956 RGS MG, but this H&H auction site in 2008 said that it was a 1957 car. The H&H site gives some history of the car.

Monday, 29 December 2014

Leyland Beaver

This is an unusual vehicle I photographed at the Trans Lancs Historic Vehicle Rally at Heaton Park, Manchester in September 1998.
It's not shown in the main body of the programme of the event, but is listed at the end of the list of participants as a late entry. It's simply described as a 1948 Leyland Beaver entered by Alan Wheelwright of Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire, but I've seen it elsewhere described as a 1950 model and a replica, constructed by Ken Wheelwright, of the original transporter which was owned by Land Rover.

Sunday, 28 December 2014

AC Cobra

Event 6 at the VSCC & HGPCA Richard Seaman Memorial Trophy meeting at Donington Park in May 2001 was described in the programme as 'A 2 Hour 15 Minute Race Of The Historic Motor Racing News Gentlemen Drivers for Pre 1966 GT Cars and Pre 1963 Sports Cars'. One of the cars entered in this race was the one pictured below.
It's a 1964 AC Cobra, driven in the race by David Pennell and Dickie Attwood, It's got the 289cu in (4.7 litre) engine and you can read here what H&H Auctions said about the car when it came up for auction in December 2002.

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Connaught B Type

This car was entered in the Cheshire Building Society Allcomers Race at the Richard Seaman Memorial Trophies meeting at Oulton Park in July 1987.
It's a 1955 Connaught B Type, the same kind of car with which Tony Brooks won the 1955 Syracuse Grand Prix - the first foreign Grand Prix victory for a British car (although it wasn't a World Championship race) since Henry Seagrave won the 1923 French Grand Prix in a Sunbeam.
The car has got a 2½ litre Alta engine
Here's the car during the race at Lodge Corner being driven by David Duffy

Friday, 26 December 2014

Friday's Ferrari

This is one of David Piper's cars again, photographed at the Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in July 1994.
It's a 1964 Ferrari 365P and it appears to be one of the two cars which David Piper has with Chassis number 0824. That's David Piper, second from the left.

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Karrier Bantam

Walking along L'Aumône towards Saumarez Park in Guernsey last week I spotted this odd structure covered with foliage at the side of the road.
On walking round the side of it this was revealed......
......and this was the view from the front......
It's a Karrier Bantam which, judged by the growth of the foliage around it, has been there for some considerable time. It would have looked something like this originally:
This is a 1974 Karrier Bantam Flat Bed truck, photographed at the Trans Lancs Historic Vehicle Rally at Heaton Park, Manchester in September 1996. The programme notes say about it:

Entered by T Marron, Littleborough, Lancs
Operated from new by F & T Chadwick of Greystones, Hawkshead, Cumbria, Coal Merchants. Sold in 1992 to Mr Pringle of Barnard Castle for preservation, but no work was carried out. Bought by present owner in Nov 1994 and cab & chassis have been renovated including new flat boarding.

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Tatra T87

This is a photograph taken at the Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in July 1997 and is a of a car which is a rare sight in this country.
It's a 1946 Tatra 87, a streamlined car with a very low drag co-efficient, and I should have moved a little to the right when taking the photograph as you would have then seen the little fin on the back which helped the stability of the car. You can read about it in this Wikipedia article.

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Guernsey, December 2014

It was grandson Edward's second birthday in December so we were off to Guernsey again, this time accompanied by his uncle David who had come over from the USA to join us.
Here's Edward blowing out the candles on his birthday cake with mummy
And here's granddaughter Eliza with grandma and getting to know her uncle David
Eliza's nearly five months old now
Here's Edward with his new bicycle

We got to see the Christmas decorations in St Peter Port......
....... at the Weighbridge Roundabout...... front of the Town Church......
......and in the Market Square.
Here's Edward at Le Friquet Garden Centre with grandma's camera - he tends to grab any cameras left unattended and start pressing all the buttons......
......this is a photograph he took of grandma's handbag.
Edward loves his little sister and is always trying to give her 'cuggles'......
......which probably accounts for the look on her face in this photograph.

Monday, 22 December 2014

Morris ¼ ton Post Office Telephone Van

I took this photograph at the 6th Northern Classic Car Show at G-Mex, Manchester in August 1987.
It's a 1954 Morris ¼ ton Series II Post Office Telephone engineer's van, and I've found a photograph of this actual van on the website of the Morris Minor Owners Club which says this about the Morris van:

'The main users of these vehicles were the General Post Office and the Royal Mail. The Royal Mail vans were each assigned to a specific driver, unlike the Post Office vans which were shared out and driven by anybody. Consequently, the Post Office vans took a bit more of a hammering than the Royal Mail vans, so in an attempt to reduce the damage to the front wings caused by careless parking, the Post Office had specially produced rubber wings fitted to their Series II vans.
These distinctive green split-screen Post Office vans were also fitted with an opening driver's-side windscreen. Hinged at the top, the driver could push open the windscreen to provide ventilation and stop his cab misting up. It is features like this, and the wooden ladder on top of the roof that make the Series II Post Office van one of the most distinctive and different Morris Minors of them all.'

I particularly remember the bit about the rubber wings because many years ago one of my responsibilities when working for GPO Telephones was to assess reports of traffic accidents involving GPO vehicles and deal with the insurance companies representing the drivers of the other vehicles involved.

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Maserati A6GCS

This is one of the cars that took part in one of the Shell Ferrari Maserati Historic Challenge races at the SeeRed meeting at Donington Park in September 2004.
It's a 1947 Maserati A6GCS and says this about the car:

'When the Maserati brothers sold their ailing company to the Orsi family in 1937, they agreed to stay on for a decade. One of their final contributions to the company they founded was a new naturally aspirated straight six engine. It was dubbed the A6 in honour of Alfieri Maserati, who had died in 1932 from complications after an accident. Introduced to the public in 1946, the new 'six' would serve Maserati for over a decade.
While the engine had debuted in the company's first road car, it was quickly adapted for competition use. One of the biggest changes was an increase in displacement from 1.5 to 2 litre, by virtue of a larger bore and stroke. The engine was constructed using a cast-iron crank case with an alloy head. Relatively simple in design, this head featured a single overhead camshaft. Breathing through triple Weber carburettors, the 2-litre A6 engine produced around 130 bhp.
Mated to a four speed gearbox, the A6 engine was installed in a conventional ladder frame. This was constructed from round-steel side and cross members by specialists Gilco, who were also responsible for many of the early Ferrari chassis. Suspension was by double wishbones and coil springs at the front and a live axle and semi-elliptic leaf springs at the rear. Houdaille lever arm shock absorbers were found on all four corners, as were the hydraulic operated drum brakes.
Although officially known as the '2000 Sport', the new Maserati sports racer was much known as the A6GCS. That was short for Ghisa (cast-iron, referring to the engine), Corsa (competition) and Sport. The first A6GCS sported a coupe body but this was quickly abandoned in a favour of a much lighter 'siluro' or cycle fender body, created for Maserati by Medardo Fantuzzi. One of the design's most recognisable features was a single headlight (monofaro) mounted in the grille.
The A6GCS was campaigned by the works team and also offered to customers. Development on the car was continuous, so no two were exactly alike. Among the first changes was the adoption of an alloy cylinder block and to the final models dry-sump lubrication was also fitted. The very last car sported a twin-cam cylinder head that had been developed for the A6GCM Formula 2 racer.
Eventually little over a dozen of the original A6GCS were produced before it was replaced by a new model that included all the updates. Introduced in 1953, this 'series 2' was accordingly known as the A6GCS/53. Due to rule changes, Fantuzzi developed a new fully-enveloping body, replacing the original siluro style.
Raced by some of the time's most talented drivers like Luigi Villoresi and a young Alberto Ascari, the A6GCS faced strong competition from among other machinery the very first Ferraris. They nevertheless managed to score victories in sports car races throughout Italy in the late 1940s. That success would lay the foundation for a long range of Maserati sports and Grand Prix racers.'

Behind the car in this photograph is the later version of the A6GCS, the 1955 model of Lukas Hüni.
Here's the car at Redgate Corner during the race, being driven by Belgian Marc Devis.

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Car and Helicopter

This is a photograph I took at the HSCC Spring Historic Race Meeting at Oulton Park in May 1987.
The car's a Jaguar C-type, possibly a replica, and the helicopter appears to have the registration G-TOFF, If that is so, it's an Aerospatiale AS355F1 Ecureuil II, then owned by Atlantic Computer Leasing and since then re-registered several times, now bearing the registration G-OHCP.

Friday, 19 December 2014

Friday's Ferrari

This is a photograph taken at the Christie's International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in July 1992.
There were 32 cars in a special Ferrari feature at this meeting and this photograph of four Ferrari 250GTOs shows three of them, plus one other which took part in the meeting but wasn't part of the official display. The ones in the display were numbered and notes in the programme gave some detail of each car. For all the Ferrari 250GTOs the following details were shown:

Front-engined V12; 3 litres; 280bhp at 7500rpm; ifs/coil
springs; rigid axle rear/semi-elliptic leaf springs.

The first car (No. 20 in the windscreen) is a 1962 model, serial number 3505GT (then owned by Edward & John Harrison) and the programme said this:

20 250 GTO
Entered by the UDT/Laystall team and driven by
Innes Ireland this car won the 1962 Tourist Trophy
race at Goodwood.

Next to that (No. 28) is also a 1962 model, serial number 3909GT (then owned by Takeo Kato) and the programme said this:

28 250 GTO
A Scuderia Filipinetti car for 1962/63 before going to
Frenchman C Bourillot. Ran in many of the long distance 
races including 1962 Tour de France and Montlhery
1000 Kms, 1963 Nurburgring 1000 Kms, Spa 500 Kms -
3rd overall.

The next car wasn't officially a part of the Ferrari special feature, but took part in the BRDC '60s GT Race at the meeting driven by Frank Sytner. It was then owned by Sir Anthony Bamford and is a 1963 250GTO, serial number 4399GT.

The last car in this group (No. 2) is Nick Mason's 1962 model, serial number 3757GT, which also took part in the BRDC '60s GT Race and about which the programme says:

2 250 GTO
3rd overall for Ecurie Francorchamps in 1962 Le Mans
('Elde'/ 'Beurlys'); 3rd overall 1962 Tour de France; driven
in many UK events in 1964 by Peter Clarke.

Thursday, 18 December 2014

What is it?

I took this photograph at the Silverstone Historic Tribute meeting in June 2004 where, as usual, I didn't take a note of any of the cars I'd photographed thinking that I could identify everything later. I've had no luck with this one though. There was no lettering on the car to identify the make but I remember looking at the tax disc and I'm pretty sure the name of the car was shown as three initials (as in BMW, TVR etc) and the badge above the number plate seems to indicate some Scottish connection. As the photograph shows, it was in a group of cars publicising a Coys auction, but I've done a thorough search on the internet and can't find a photograph or anything whatsoever about the car. A check on a car registration number site shows that the number OGS 525 now belongs to a Daimler SP250 Sports - I suppose it could have been built on an SP250 chassis, but those cars weren't introduced till 1959 and the car in the photograph looks a little bit older than that.

Update 4 Jan 2015: Someone has responded to my photograph of this car on Flickr to say that it's a 1955 HAR and you can read all about the car here.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Bristol L5G

Another photograph from a Trans Lancs Historic Vehicle Rally at Heaton Park, Manchester, this time a single deck bus from the 1995 event.
It's an ex-North Western Bristol L5G with a Burlington B35R Body. It's not listed in the programme of the event, but it was apparently owned at the time by Mike and Colin Goodwyn of Matlock and you can read something of its history here.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Sauber-Mercedes C9

Here's one of the cars that I photographed when I went to see the Donington Collection a couple of months ago.
It's a 1987 Sauber-Mercedes C9, a Group C prototype that was run by Kouros Racing in 1987 with official backing from Mercedes-Benz. The car wasn't very successful in that season but when Mercedes-Benz took over the running of the team the next year several victories were achieved and they went on to dominate the World Sports Car Championship in 1989. This is what says about the car.

Monday, 15 December 2014

Sunbeam Tiger

The Autumn Historic Car Races organised by the Aston Martin Owners Club took place at Oulton Park in September 1993 and included a race which is shown in the programme of the event as the 'MG Car Club/AMOC Thoroughbred & Classic Sports Car Championship Race'. One of the cars that took part in that race was this Sunbeam Tiger.
Wikipedia says this about the Sunbeam Tiger:

'The Sunbeam Tiger is a high-performance V8 version of the British Rootes Group's Sunbeam Alpine roadster, designed in part by American car designer and racing driver Carroll Shelby and produced from 1964 until 1967. Shelby had carried out a similar V8 conversion on the AC Cobra, and hoped to be offered the contract to produce the Tiger at his facility in America. Rootes decided instead to contract the assembly work to Jensen at West Bromwich in England, and pay Shelby a royalty on every car produced.
Two major versions of the Tiger were built: the Series I (1964–67) was fitted with the 260 cu in (4.3 L) Ford V8; the Series II, of which only 633 were built in the final year of Tiger production, was fitted with the larger Ford 289 cu in (4.7 L) engine. Two prototype and extensively modified versions of the Series I competed in the 1964 24 Hours of Le Mans, but neither completed the race. Rootes also entered the Tiger in European rallies with some success, and for two years it was the American Hot Rod Association's national record holder over a quarter-mile drag strip.
Production ended in 1967 soon after the Rootes Group was taken over by Chrysler, which did not have a suitable engine to replace the Ford V8. Owing to the ease and affordability of modifying the Tiger, there are few surviving cars in standard form.'
The race programme says that it's a 1964 car which means that it's a Series I car, but it shows the engine capacity as 4727cc which seems to indicate that it's got the 289 cu in engine which was fitted to the Series II car and confirms the last sentence of the Wikipedia article that 'there are few surviving cars in standard form'.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Alfa Romeo

The third race at the Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in July 1995 was the 'Coys of Kensington GT Race for the John Wolfe Trophy' and included several Alfa Romeos including the three pictured below.
From the left they are:
No. 45 the 1961 Alfa Romeo Giulietta SZ of Carol Spagg
No. 44 the 1965 Alfa Romeo Giulia TZ of Said Marouff
No. 46 the 1959 Alfa Romeo Giulia SS of Gregor Fisken

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Motor Cycles

The programme for the SeeRed meeting at Donington Park in September 2005 included the following piece:

'Golden bike era celebrated
Two-wheeled racing variety will once again be provided by the Lansdowne Classic Motor Cycle series. Two races, one on each day, will feature up to 40 racing machines from the 1950s and '60s such as Matchless G50s and Manx Nortons.
For the first time there will also be a parade of special bikes, including one of the six famous George Beale Honda 6 replicas, owned by Dennis and Derek Bunning: an iconic bike of the '60s.
Also 100 years of Velocette will be celebrated with the appearance of the 500cc Velocette Thruxton which won both the Barcelona 24 hours and the Brands Hatch 500-miler in 1966. Keith Heckles, who rode the bike to second place in the '67 Production TT, will race it on Sunday.'

Here are photographs of three of the bikes which took part in the races.
The 1958 500cc Manx Norton of Dave Beckett
The 1958 500cc Matchless G50 of Tim Jackson
The 1962 350cc AJS 7R of  David Lock

The colours of the number plates differ to comply with the relevant ACU regulations:

'The front and side number plates for each class of motorcycles are:
Class Background Numbers
F125cc Red background White numbers
125cc Black background White numbers
250cc Green background White numbers
350cc Blue background White numbers
500cc Yellow background Black numbers
Over 500cc White background Black numbers
Formula 400 Blue background White numbers
Supersport 600 White background Blue numbers
Formula 600 White background Blue numbers
Supermono Black background Yellow numbers
Stocksport Red background White numbers
FII Sidecars Red background White numbers
Open Sidecars White background Black numbers (incl three wheelers)'

Friday, 12 December 2014

Friday's Ferrari

This is a photograph of a Ferrari taken in the paddock at the Richard Seaman Memorial Trophies meeting at Oulton Park in June 1981.
It's a 1965 Ferrari 275GTB, serial number 06901, and when it was sold by Coys of Kensington in January 2000 they had this to say about the car:

'Description: 1964 Ferrari 275 GTB Registration no. KPJ 233C Chassis no. 06901 This right-hand drive car we are proud to offer was originally supplied to Sir Max Aitken, later to become Lord Beaverbrook, and has been well known to the Ferrari Owners' Club for many years. Recently 06901 has been the subject of a no expense spared 'ground up' restoration to Concours standards by well known marque specialists. Finished in Rosso Corsa with tan seats and fitted with its original Campagnolo alloy wheels, this superb 275 is accompanied with a folder containing numerous invoices and V5 registration document.'

Note that shows that it is a 1965 build but the Coys' description attributes it to 1964. The list of Ferrari models show that 448 examples of the 275GTB were produced between 1964 and 1966.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Outside the Pallot Museum, Jersey

I've previously showed photographs taken in May 2013 of the tractors inside the Pallot Museum in Jersey and now here are a couple taken outside the museum building of two others in a rather more distressed state.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

The Original Silver Ghost

This car was on display at the 12th Northern Classic Car Show at the G-MEX Exhibition Centre in Manchester in August 1993.
It's a 1907 Rolls Royce 40/50 with a Roi-des-Belges body built by Barker & Co. Because of the appearance of the car, the silence of the engine and smoothness of the ride AX201 was given the name 'The Silver Ghost', a name that was eventually given to all Rolls Royce 40/50 models although Rolls Royce didn't officially recognise this fact until 1925.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Williams FW08B

In July 2000 the Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone celebrated 50 years of the Formula One World Championship with a display of cars representing those 50 years. One of the cars present, though it never actually raced in a Grand Prix, was the car pictured below.
It's the 6-wheeled 1982 Williams FW08B, conceived in an effort to improve traction and also to reduce drag compared to the conventional wider and larger rear tyres then used. Before Williams were able to use the car the FIA announced that all F1 cars should have four wheels, with two of them being driven. 

Monday, 8 December 2014

Allard K3

The Allard Motor Company was only in existence for about 13 years, between 1945 and 1958, and in that time produced about 1900 cars, mostly designed to be fitted with large American V8 engines. They were never a common sight in Britain and the K3 shown below is, I think, the only one of this model that I've ever seen.
The photograph was taken at the Hawthorn Memorial Trophies meeting at Oulton Park in June 2008 and although the car isn't shown in the programme of the meeting, I understand that it's the Cadillac-engined vehicle of Mark Butterworth.
Here's Mark Butterworth in the Allard K3 negotiating Britten's chicane

Sunday, 7 December 2014


This is a car which took part in the Thoroughbred Grand Prix Championship race at Donington Park in September 2006.
It's a 1982 Osella FA1D with 3 litre V8 Ford Cosworth engine, seen here at Redgate Corner being driven by Terry Sayles during a practice session. Osella competed in Formula One racing from 1980 to 1990,

Saturday, 6 December 2014


On our trip to the USA in May-June 2007 we stayed in Riverton, New Jersey, not far from Philadelphia and on the other side of the Delaware River. On several journeys from Riverton we'd driven past a car lot full of Volkswagens in various states of disrepair and I decided one day to pay the place a visit and take a few photographs. Here they are:

They were on N Pavilion Avenue, Riverside, but I notice on looking at Google Earth recently that they no longer appear to be there.