Page 1

Pennine Vanguard! 1970 Atkinson Borderer restored

Transport heritage Capon & Sons Ltd

Simply awesome!

OCTOBER 2017 £4.40



FGHT 8/80

ar Ph ch ot iv o e


MAN eight-wheelers

1950 Albion Clansman tanker

1939 Austin K2 NFS fire appliance


05/09/2017 11:43

Tel: 0151 733 3655 17 Montague Road, Widnes, WA8 8FZ

Phones: Mon - Sat 7:30am to 6pm Sun 9am to 5pm Shop: Mon - Sun 9am to 5pm

19,000+ items available on N Gauge

Commercial vehicles

76D28002 DAF 2800 tipper Alfred Hymas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £19.50 76DAF001 DAF 85 40ft Box Trailer Royal y Mail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £19.50

Oxford Diecast - Buses Oxford Diecast - Commercial vehicles

76WMB001 Willys MB Royal Navy NEW. . . . . . . . . . £5

NFG010 Foden FG Tipper Hoveringham NEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £5

Public Service vehicles

76LR2S001 Land Rover Series II SWB Hard Back Royal Mail NEW . £5 76DXF001 DAF XF Euro 6 CombiTrailer/Container Maritime Transport. p . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £21

1:72 Scale

76BI001 Beadle Integral East Kent . . . . . . . . . . . . . £15.50 NFG011 Foden FG Dray Fremlins NEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . £5

Cararama - Cars

OO Gauge (1:76 Scale)

76FBB001 Fowler BB1 16nhp Ploughing Engine No.15145 Rusty Dorset . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £14.50 76DR004 Duple Roadmaster Bamber Bridge MS NEW£14

713PND011 Land Rover 3 piece set . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .£8

Base Toys - Commercial vehicles

1:50 Scale

76FBB003 Fowler BB1 Ploughing Engine No.15436 Princess Maryy NEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £14 DB13 Karrier Bantam articulated flatbed "British Railways" Type A container . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £12

Corgi Collectables

76IR6001 Irizar i6 Translink Goldline NEW. . . . . . . £19.50

Commercial vehicles

CC16005 Volvo FH, Step-Frame Trailer, Anderson new tool. . . . . . . £68

76FCG004 Ford Cargo Box Van Royal Mail . . . . . . . . . £11

Corgi Collectables - Buses

76FOW001 Fowler B6 road loco "Atlas Norman E Box" . . . . . . . . £14.50

76IRZ005 Scania Irizar PB White. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £17

CC16007 Volvo FH, Maxwell Freight ‘Liberator’ cab only, new tool. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .£45

76MW6001 Bristol MW6G Royal Blue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £16 76MW6002 Bristol MW6G Hants & Dorset. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £15.50

OM46512A Wright Eclipse Gemini 2, Brighton & Hove, Mile Oak 1 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £33

O Gauge (1:43 Scale)

76FT028 Ford Transit Mk5 LWB High Scotrail NEW . . . £5

Corgi Collectables - Cars

76FT1006 Ford Transit Mk1 Marley NEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £4.50

VA08713 Vauxhall Viva GT, Elkhart Yellow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £24

76PD2004 Leyland PD2/12 Samuel Ledgard NEW. . . . £17

EFE - Buses

Oxford Diecast - Cars 76S143004 Scania 143 Short Curtainside Sandy Kydd NEW . . £19

76SCA04LL Scania R Series Topline low loader "McFadyens" . . . . £19

76SHL01ST Scania Highline Nooteboom 3 Axle Semi Low Loader 76WFA005 Weymann Fanfare Greenslades. . . . . . £15.50 Stobart Rail. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £21.50

15808 Leyland PD1 "East Kent" - "66, Ramsgate Harbour" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £29.71

43AMVT001 Aston Martin V12 Vantage S Volcano Red . £20

43AMZ002 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato 2 VEV (Jim Clark Goodwood 1961) NEW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £21 43RRP3002 Rolls Royce Phantom III SdV HJ Mulliner Fawn/Black . . . . . £21

76WFA006 Weymann Fanfare Birch Bros . . . . . . . . . . £15 76TR014 Mobile Trailer Southdown . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £7


25107 Bristol RELL "Cumberland" (RRP £27.50) BARGAIN£9.50 76AMVT001 Aston Martin V12 Vantage S Volcano Red NEW . . . . . . £5

43RSC001 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud I Sand/Sable NEW. £21

76VOL4003VolvoFH4Curtainside-KnowlesTransportNEW£21.50 36007 Leyland RTL - "Barton Transport" - "18 to Chilwell". . £29.71

Commercial vehicles

76CC002 Carlight Continental Caravan Arctic White NEW£6

Military ground vehicles

43RSD001 Rolls Royce Silver Dawn/Std Steel Maroon/Black. . £21

43VF003 Vauxhall Firenza Sport SL Honey Starmist. . . . . . . . . . . . . £19

Commercial vehicles

23404 Bedford TK flatbed lorry "Milk Marketing Board" . . . . . . . . . . . £18

23406 Bedford TK 2 Axle Flatbed 'British Railways' . .£26.35 76SDV001 Rover SD1 3500 Vitesse Targa Red NEW£4.50

76HST001 Humber Snipe Tourer Old Faithful General Montgomery Italy 1942. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £5.50

Northcord Model Company - Buses

43LR2S003 Land Rover Series II SWB Hard Back Post Office Telephones NEW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .£14

Military ground vehicles

76LRFCA001 Land Rover FC Ambulance Gulf War 76SET49 5 Piece Land Rover Classic Set NEW. . . . . . £25 Operation Granby 1991 NEW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £8.50 UK6034 ADL Enviro400H Hybrid Stagecoach Oxford £48 76VE003 Volvo 245 Estate Light Blue NEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £4.50 76QLB003 Bedford QLB Light AA Reg.12 Corps Germany 1945 . £11.50 43LRL002 Land Rover 1/2 Ton Lightweight Military Police. .£14

UK8020 ADL Enviro200 Dart London United . . . . . . . £49 76VO001 Volvo 760 Gold Metallic NEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . £5 76QLR002BedfordQLR79thArmouredDivisionNWE1944 £11.50 43LRL003 Land Rover 1/2 Ton Lightweight RAF (Red Arrows)£14

£4 P&P for 2 or more items £7 P&P Next Day (Orders before 2pm)

UK P&P £2

Sign up to our weekly newsletter at

Follow us on

All items in stock when advert created. Prices valid until 18/10/17. Errors excepted.

@hattonsmodels and


▲ My vehicle ‘find’ of the month! Photo Stephen Pullen.

Inset: Spotted on a car trailer at a vintage racing car meeting at Mallory Park in August. It my me smile anyway! Photo Stephen Pullen.


henever I go to an autojumble I love to rummage round in what many people think are the ‘rubbish’ piles. You know the sort of thing, those boxes of assorted unidentified bits and bobs that usually sit unnoticed under the display tables. Sometimes you can pick up a whole box of stuff for just a few quid, and you never know what you’ll find. Anyway, to prove it’s worth searching through these heaps, one such ‘find’ I came across many years ago has not only proved to be really useful to me to this day, but recently yielded yet another surprise! The ‘find’ in question was for sale at an autojumble about 20 years ago, and consisted of several boxes of cuttings from newspapers and magazines going back to the 1940s. However, the reason I bought them was that they were all about lorries and road haulage, and all had been filed by category – vehicle make, haulage company etc. The stall holder said they were compiled over many decades

by his late brother, who’d been a lorry driver all his life, and although other members of his family wanted to chuck the whole lot in bin, he said he just couldn’t bring himself to destroy his brother’s ‘life’s work’. The bloke only wanted a few quid for the lot, and was more pleased that they were going to somebody who would appreciate them. And I really do appreciate them, as now that I’m in this job they’ve proved invaluable, and I often refer to them when writing an article etc. However, the other day I stumbled across something at the bottom of one of the boxes that I’d never seen before – two old notebooks detailing transport cafes up and down the country from the 1950s through to the 1980s. But the best part is that they’re not just lists of addresses, as each cafe is categorised by county, and includes details of the menus and prices. To many people these books would just be rubbish, but as a snapshot of part the working life of a UK lorry driver back then I think they’re

priceless. I don’t know the name of the driver who compiled the contents of the boxes, but I’m really glad he did. I can only say, thank you, whoever you were. Another ‘find’ this month was the superb little Citroen restoration project pictured here, sitting outside the Bubble Car Museum in Lincolnshire (see this month’s ‘Ignition’ pages). The vehicle is a Citroen Type 350 fitted with a Perkins diesel engine, and was used by the owners of the museum in the Citroen 2CV restoration business they used to run in Somerset. You’ll be pleased to know that this little lorry is scheduled for restoration, and a replacement cab has been purchased in France and just needs collecting. I wonder what I’ll find next month!


October 2017

3 Editor Comment.indd 3


05/09/2017 13:14

t7s tEeR n n COo 1 0 2 CTOB

06 Simply awesome

The highly distinctive SGG 6 has been exhaling its special aura and presence ever since it first drove out of the Foden Sandbach works in 1957. And while it may have changed owners at least five different times, all those respective custodians have ensured this 60-year-old could still work up to its original 80 tonner rating.

14 Ignition

News and events from around the classic commercial vehicle word.

16 Readers’ letters

We hand the pen over to you now. So, what have you got to tell us?

20 Subscription form

Save money and get your copy of HC delivered to your door early by subscribing.

22 Classic convoy

Chris Newton reports from the 2017 Convoy in the Park event.


24 Albion Clansman

42 On location

28 Super Katy

44 Starting out

Dave Bowers visits a father and son restoration team with an eye for their family’s history.

Old fire appliances are very popular in Scotland, and attract a lot of interest. Bob Weir went to Laurencekirk to meet George Godsman and a ‘Katy’ classic.

32 Miles of memories for Meikle

Now an octogenarian, the passage of time may have forced Meikle Tennant to hang up his HGV driving keys for the last time. But that doesn’t stop him enjoying the many memories he has of more than 70 years behind one form of steering wheel or another.

38 Leyland’s lightweights part 3

Russ Harvey continues his look at the car derived vans and light commercials produced by British Leyland and Austin Rover.


Dean Reader reports from the Fawley Classic Vehicle Show.

Arthur Ingram tells the story of life at haulage and van hire company, Capon & Sons Ltd.

50 Eight legged MAN

Mark Gredzinski looks at the classic eightwheeled MAN at work.

56 Foden Records Dept

Years ago, John Sanderson managed to save important Foden archives from the waste tip. As Ed Burrows relates, they have recently been a pivotal source of material for two books.

64 Pennine Vanguard

Alan Barnes tells the story of the restoration of a classic Atkinson Borderer.

70 Workshop

Richard Lofting takes us through the process of repairing a rotten vehicle door.

74 HC Marketplace

The place to buy or sell anything related to classic commercials.



Contents Oct.indd 4

05/09/2017 13:13



“No two lorries are the same, that’s why you need a specialist to arrange your insurance cover” Eddie Johnson, HGV and Classic Lorry Insurance Specialist

The Classic Lorry Insurance Specialist or call 0161 410 1065 Classic Lorries is a trading style of ISIS insurance. ISIS Insurance Service Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial conduct Authority. Our firm number is 314533.

Transport heritage

Simply Awesome

SGG 6 was new as a six-wheeler in 1957 to Gavin Wilkie, a subsidiary of Glasgow Hiring Co Ltd. The firm was later taken over by Pickfords.

The highly distinctive SGG 6 has been exhaling its special aura and presence ever since it first drove out of the Foden Sandbach works in 1957. And while it may have changed owners at least five different times, all those respective custodians have ensured this 60-year-old could still work up to its original 80 tonner rating. Cornwall based Peter Bennetts has held the keys to this special slice of Cheshire hardware for the last 17 years and he invites Bob Tuck to head south west to see – and hear – an old friend.


gain – we reckon – it’s an age thing. While the trend of the classic vehicle movement seems destined to favour more modern tractor units like F88s; Atkinson Borderers and even Scania V8s, there still remains a dedicated hardcore slice of (perhaps) older enthusiasts who simply love the rigid eight-wheeler. Truro based Peter Bennetts is such a devotee although his passion comes with one important stipulation. Yes, he may love anything with four axles attached to its chassis but it must also be adorned with a Foden badge.

We’ll explain later why Peter has such passionate feelings towards this particular marque but what we cannot explain is why the man is still busy acquiring even more Foden eight-wheelers. The reason we ask is because Peter himself readily admits that for the last 17 years, he has owned what many reckon is the best ever Foden eight-wheeler: “Put together the ingredients of a Foden classic; in eight-wheeler form; with a heavy haulage pedigree (well it just has to be from that line of work, doesn’t it) and you end up with SGG 6. Simply put, nothing else comes close to emulating it.”


It was back in 1957 (when Peter was only about two years old) when his pride & joy first came onto the road as one of about six similar Fodens built around then for the heavy haulage world. Having the model code of FGHT 8/80 indicates it as a Foden Heavy Tractor with Gardner engine. The 8 denotes it has the eight-cylinder Gardner 8LW engine while the 80 means it is rated to haul an 80 tons payload. Which in practical terms means (once you add the weight of the ballasted vehicle and any trailer it pulls) it was fit to gross around 110-120 tons all up weight.


6-12 Foden.indd 6

04/09/2017 22:46

Words: Bob Tuck Photos: Bob Tuck/As stated


Inside the cab.

▲ The hand valve beside the seat is for the trailer air brakes.

▲ Peter Bennetts has owned SGG 6 since 2000.

Such a rating was probably first calculated on the drawing board but during his time as the owner of this Sandbach Special, Peter unearthed a terrific photograph that shows how Foden tested the rating in a more practical form. Amassing a total of 94 tons train weight, Foden hooked together a pair of loaded dumpers and put the heavy hauler on the front and took the roadtrain around the streets of Sandbach. Of course, it passed this test with flying colours.

▲ Peter getting in – easy enough with this cab.

◄ This photo shows the lever for the 3-speed auxiliary gearbox – it’s in the low position, close to the floor.

October 2017

6-12 Foden.indd 7



04/09/2017 22:48

Transport heritage

▲ View from the driving seat – good mirrors and a great all-round view through the screen. ►

Being fitted with the biggest Gardner engine then in build for road-going motors, it also came with the biggest exposed radiator Foden could fit. Normally used on export bound vehicles heading for seriously warm climes, it was felt that as it was destined for heavy haulage work, it probably wouldn’t travel at too fast a speed. It would consequently reach a higher operating temperature so the bigger radiator would thus help with cooling. Peter is told that his specific tractor was originally fitted with an 8-speed gearbox. However, Fodens from this era had long fitted reduction hubs to the double drive bogie on their heavy haulers. Once these four hubs were individually turned into the low position, this meant the vehicle then had another eight gear ratios albeit in seriously low form. While Foden seemed to have the gearing sorted, the original braking system fitted to this vehicle seems particularly dated. Yes, it may be hard to believe but this 80 tonner

relied on the unique Foden system which used the engine to drive a pump which created pressure to assist the hydraulic footbrake. It isn’t known why they didn’t fit full air brakes because an air compressor is fitted to the vehicle’s Gardner engine as air was needed to power the trailer brakes. Very strange. Built in ballast-box guise, it was new into service as a double drive six-wheeler. And registered SGG 6 in October 1957, it was bought by Gavin Wilkie who were then a subsidiary of Glasgow Hiring Co Ltd. This wasn’t the first big 6x4 Foden this haulier had bought, as the similar configured MGE 900 (with a smaller 6LW engine) had come new in April 1954. These two Foden six-wheelers apparently worked together when Wilkie had to move some seriously heavy loads and to do that, they tended to work in pull-push mode. One of their largest trailers then for the haulier was a 32-wheel girder trailer made by Crane’s of Dereham in Norfolk.

▲ Foden heavy haulers had these reduction hubs which allowed the gears to be doubled to a series of much lower ratios.

SGG 6 must have done all sorts of work for Gavin Wilkie although one of its the most memorable jobs was when it took a 30 ton casing to Glen Morriston and delivered it into the Hydro Electric Station turbine hall. With this load being 16ft wide, a template of identical dimensions was made so that it could be tried through the turbine hall access tunnel. The tunnel was then made slightly wider at various points but it’s recalled (by ex Gavin Wilkie manager Eric Nimlin) that the trailer steersman had to wear full oilskins as water was pouring through the tunnel roof. Eric recalls the only thing wrong with their Foden six-wheel heavy haulers was that they were – six-wheelers. When pulling hard on steep inclines (Eric mentions the A6 northbound at Eamont Bridge near Penrith) these 6x4s had a habit of lifting their front axle off the ground such was the amount of torque that went through the rear bogie. Eric later said he wasn’t surprised to learn that an extra

▲ Close up of the rear drive axle.


6-12 Foden.indd 8

04/09/2017 22:49

THE DISTINCTIVE WHITE QUEEEN SGG 6 steering axle was shoehorned into SGG 6 – although that came later in its life. And after it had been stolen – and then crashed into a wall.


In July 1965, the Gavin Wilkie heavy haulage fleet was taken over by Pickfords. And with SGG 6 being then only eight years old, it was still more than fit to haul its weight. The Pickfords fleet was then awash with all manner of (mainly Scammell) sixwheel ballast box tractors so the decision was made to convert this Foden into articulated tractor unit form. It was to give the Government owned Pickfords another six years service but during that time, it was stolen, as Peter was to discover. “I only heard about this when I was told about the book that was done on the life story of Ronnie Barker. The author had researched into the character of Norman Stanley Fletcher which was portrayed by Ronnie in the TV series ‘Porridge.’ I’m told the person it’s based on apparently stole SGG 6 but abandoned it after he crashed it into a wall.” Fortunately, it was easily repaired and it still looked good enough for work when Pickfords sold it (about 1971) to Rush Green Motors which was the normal disposal point for many ex BRS /

Pickfords vehicles. It was spotted here by the Cambridgeshire based Charles Rhodes who reckoned it would be ideal to go back to work hauling his assorted steam railway machinery / ploughing engines. However, prior to that happening, Charles took the Foden six-wheeler to the late Sam Satterthwaite’s Streetly Garage near Sutton Coldfield where it underwent a major rebuild. Describing Sam as ‘just’ a Foden dealer doesn’t do him justice because in the annals of Foden’s long and diverse heritage, Sam was to stand head & shoulders above many others in the knowledge; expertise and passion he had for this manufacturer. Peter was told that Sam was tasked with rebuilding the eight-cylinder Gardner engine but he also changed the original 8-speed gearbox: “I was told the original ‘box had an electrical shift mechanism which didn’t always perform right so a traditional (two lever) 12-speed was put in its place.” Charles must also have been aware of this Foden’s penchant for lifting the front wheels when under pressure so Sam was also tasked with adding a second steer onto the chassis but – no surprise – this extra axle had air brakes fitted to its two wheels. The final subsequent change to SGG 6 (apart from it getting a two-tone blue paint job) was its re-conversion back to a ballast box guise.

no matter what the cost – then SGG 6 would have been the first vehicle on my list. 11 YEARS WITH GARY GRYSA

For something like 17 years, SGG 6 worked away as and when required. In that time it went across to the Bristol area and was even given a change of livery. But in July 1989, Charles felt it was time to move it on and Gary Grysa reckons he was the luckiest guy around when he got the chance to buy it: “If I’d won the Lottery and could have bought any Foden I’d wanted – no matter what the cost – then SGG 6 would have been the first vehicle on my list. Everybody has something which floats their boat and to me, this was the one.” Gary had just sold a rare Foden timber tractor and had the funds to do the deal although back at their Woburn (Bedfordshire) home, the husband & wife team of Gary & Maggie soon realised the 33 year old eight-wheeler was ready for some serious restoration: “We had to do a lot to the cab as tin worm had caught up with it,” he says. “The ballast box had to be rebuilt

▼ The Foden has a very good steering lock and surprised me. Note the extra mirror fitted by Gary Grysa right on the back so you can see how close you are when hitching up to a drawbar.

October August 2017

6-12 Foden.indd 9



04/09/2017 22:50

Transport heritage

▲ I love this shot Peter found of how Foden tested the new tractors to see if they could pull their weight. Photo Peter Bennetts collection.

and half of the vehicle needed re-wiring.” When rubbing the paintwork down, Gary says that Maggie came across the original Pickfords lettering: “Maggie was able to generate a stencil by tracing the Pickford letters so we could re-paint it exactly like it was back then.” In the early 1990s – if they didn’t have enough to do – Gary, Maggie and many of their friends were creating the roots of what would be the Foden Society. And to coincide with the launch of this new club in ‘93, the freshly re-painted SGG 6 would be something of a stunning talisman to this new venture. Team Grysa certainly put themselves about and in their 11 years of ownership, the big eight-wheeler could be seen up and down the length of the country as it clocked up a total of 11,000 miles. Gary recalls doing Ted Hannon’s Northern Run on four occasions: “Doing the Northern Run was something like 600 miles round trip. And when the Foden only does 8mpg, it was quite an expensive weekend away.”

▲ When new to Gavin Wilkie, SGG 6 was originally made as a 6x4. Photo Bob Tuck collection.

Gary was not averse to letting other people drive this much-travelled motor and yours truly was one of the lucky ones. I did something like 30-40 miles – on one of Ted’s runs – on the hot seat of this fabulous motor which is simply great to drive if the roads are flat – or downhill. Going uphill is more challenging and on the climb up the A68 from Allensford to Castleside I still have visions of Gary stretching over the engine hump so he can move the auxiliary gear lever while I was shifting through the Foden’s main gearbox. What a pathetic novice I must have looked – but I loved every minute of it. SGG 6 was also a regular visitor to the Great Dorset Steam Fair where it’s become de-rigueur for all heavy haulage tractors

to hook up to the big trailer. TM413 – as it was known when worked at Pickfords – is a six axle Crane girder trailer dating from 1953 and tips the scales (with its tank load) around 90 tons. And SGG 6 has pulled it all on its own: “One year we arrived early at the Dorset Fair and I was asked if I could bring the trailer down to the main arena area,” says Gary. “I was the only one there but it was only about a mile. And apart from one short bit where the road was all wet – and I got a bit wheel spin – the Foden managed it fine.” Because of its variety of front & rear tow hitches – and air line connectors – Gary was often the first in line (and linked to the trailer’s drawbar). So, to make that hitching up manoeuvre a lot easier, Gary fitted an

▲ Gavin Wilkie also had this similar 6x4 Foden – new in April 1954. It’s seen when collecting a new girder trailer from Crane’s of Norfolk. Photo Bob Tuck collection.


6-12 Foden.indd 10

04/09/2017 22:51


What I’ve always loved about Fodens of old,” he says, “is the way they are put together extra mirror right at the back of the ballast box so he could see where he wanted to be from the Foden driving seat. Nice one. Gary also added a hand throttle to the Foden’s spec: “When you have to charge up the air on this big trailer,” he explains, “the throttle needs to be held on fast tick-over so a hand throttle made such a job easier.”


One of the many who enjoyed seeing SGG 6 on its various travels was Peter Bennetts. Now living just outside Truro (he was brought up near Penzance) he – and his brother Shaun – have been involved in the preservation world since about 1974. Initially with farm tractors (and classic Jaguar cars) Peter recalls getting the Foden eight-wheeler bug in the 1990s. “What I’ve always loved about Fodens of old,” he says, “is the way they are put together. They have always been well engineered and I always liked how they produced everything. Other vehicle builders of old may have bought in cabs; engines; gearboxes; axles and the like from other specialist makers but Foden had a foundry and they made the lot – and I loved it.” Peter also loved the timing of Gary’s decision to part with SGG 6 in July ‘00. By then, he was already the owner of several Foden eight-wheeler flats but really fancied a heavy haulage unit: “After doing the deal, I drove it back the 280 miles from Woburn and it went like a dream – as soon as I got the hang of the gears.” The Foden’s current 12-speed gearbox consists of a 4-speed main ‘box plus a 3-speed auxiliary of low; direct and then high. But as every Foden driver of old will tell you, the shift pattern is literally all over the place. Peter says the gears he tends to

▲ Keith Nicholl took this shot at Crossgates Café on the A74 at Beattock. Looks like the mid ‘60s just after Pickfords had taken the Foden over and not even painted the new fleet number on. By then it had been converted to an artic. Photo Peter Bennetts collection.

▲ When owned by Pickfords it was stolen and crashed into a wall. It looks as though it’s seen in this shot with some damage on the nearside wing / wheel trim etc., prior to repair. Photo Peter Bennetts collection.

▲ When Charles Rhodes bought it the Foden was converted into an eight-wheeler and had a ballast box fitted. It also had a change of colour scheme while Charles had it. Photos Peter Bennetts collection. October 2017

6-12 Foden.indd 11



04/09/2017 22:51

Transport heritage

▲ Sunters of Northallerton had a similar FGHT 8/80 but their one had a slightly larger crew cab. Photo Bob Tuck collection.

use (when running solo) sees him start in 1st direct and then shift to 1st high; he then goes back to 2nd direct; 2nd high and then 3rd high: “I might then shift straight to 4th high as 3rd high and 4th direct are almost the same ratio.” Over the last 17 years, Peter says that apart from fitting a new sheet to the ballast box, he hasn’t done anything cosmetically with the eight-wheeler: “I have overhauled all the braking system,” he says, “and stripped down all the rear hubs to fit new seals. Hardest part about that job was when it came to pouring in the fresh SAE 250 gear oil. It was like treacle and seemed to take an eternity to fill up.” Peter hasn’t taken SGG 6 to a huge number of shows (he does plan to attend the ’17 Dorset Steam Fair) but says that whenever it’s out, the Foden always has people looking at it. Those folk will also like listening to it because once Peter fires that eight-cylinder Gardner into life, I am mesmerised by its highly individual sound. Honestly it’s almost impossible to compare it to anything else as a straight eight – venting out through a upright exhaust stack – has a soft wonderful sound all of its own.” It isn’t practical for us to take the Foden for a spin but I can’t resist the shortest of

stints along Peter’s drive. The S18 is an easy cab to get into and the driving position is really very good as all round vision (through some great mirrors) is top drawer. The steering feels good although Peter comments that when the Foden was only 12 months old, it was sent back to the factory to get

power steering fitted. I regret not being able to sit in the hot seat for a while longer but the huge compensation of getting out the cab is being able to gaze at the countenance of such a stunning vista. “Simply awesome,” seems to sum up this huge slice of Foden history. You betcha. v

Specification Make / Model: Foden FGHT 8/80 fitted with S18 cab Chassis No: Year: Registration: Engine: Gearbox: Gross vehicle weight: Top speed: Fuel return:

41502 1st registered 21.10.57 SGG 6 Gardner 8LW 11.16 litres - 150bhp @1,700rpm Foden 12-speed (originally an 8-speed)

120 tons (approx) rated for 80 tons payload capacity 45mph 8mpg

▲ During the 1990s, Gary Grysa took the eight-wheeler up north to Ted Hannon’s Northern Run. Here it’s leading a long line of runners on the Military Road.


6-12 Foden.indd 12

04/09/2017 22:52

4210/ ,*0'$ !5'3*25 +)'& $)#'"!& *#"(

A"!C%(!'%4" A$!): >@!(4?

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


,**(&%$#" !+()*('


SEND YOUR STORIES TO STEPHEN PULLEN Heritage Commercials, Kelsey Media, Cudham Tithe Barn, Berrys Hill, Cudham Kent


▲ Just some of the entrants - and fantastic scenery - from previous runs. Photos Bob Tuck.


es – Jim Doig now tells us - there will be a West Coast Run in 2017, writes Bob Tuck. Back in the June ’17 issue of Heritage Commercials, we related the story behind the 20 years of the West Coast Run which Jim Doig (and his team of helpers) had organised. From its original two-day round trip from Dumfries to Oban and back in ‘97, the ‘West Coast’ event took on a life of its own as road-runners subsequently enjoyed all parts of Scotland including some of its far-flung islands as well. Perhaps it was no surprise that Jim told us that

after 20 annual outings, he was going to take a year off in ’17. That may have been his plan but once his legion of fans implored him to keep going, Jim relented and quickly put the wheels into motion to plan a route for this year. Jim tells us that he’s currently anticipating about 45 participants in the 2017 event which starts from the car park of the Edinburgh Woollen Mill in Moffat on the morning of Saturday 23rd September. The first night will be spent at Fort William: “We have two nights there,” says Jim, “as on the 24th we travel from

Fort William to Mallaig and back. The 25th sees us go to Strathcarron; Inverness and then Kingussie. Again, we have two nights here as on the 26th we travel to Spean bridge; Fort Augustus then back to Kingussie. We leave here on the 27th and travel over Tomintoul to Braemar and then back to the start off point at Moffat. In total, the run this year will cover 850900 miles.” Jim says the entry list is a mix of both regulars and first timers. No surprise that Bob Parker and Murray Leslie plan to do the run as they have partaken in all 20 of the previous West Coast events. Jim tells us that Terry Ainger is also on the entry list: “Terry used to live in Dover and when he did the run, he was one of the furthest travelled entrants. However, he’s moved north to live in Lockerbie and now he must one of the closest to the start off point.” Jim says that Terry blames his regular trips north to do the ‘West Coast’ as a reason why he’s moved house. Apparently, he enjoyed the Scottish scenery so much he decided he wanted to live a lot closer to it. It’s apparent that doing the West Coast Run can have this sort of effect on you. You therefore partake in this event at your peril as you may just fall in love with the place.

Albert Letts (1926- 2017)


eritage Commercials reader Albert Letts, was taken on his final journey by Vintage Lorry Funerals’ 1950 Leyland Beaver to Portchester Crematorium on 4th August 2017. This date was highly significant to his family as it was also the 10th anniversary of the passing of his beloved wife, Cynthia. Albert was the youngest of eight children and grew up on the Braunstone Estate in Leicester, leaving school at 14 years old to become a roofer’s apprentice, despite his fear of heights. In 1944, he was conscripted into the Black Watch and spent the end of the Second World War in Singapore, where he learned to drive. Albert’s first driving job was with IL

Berridge, a local engineering firm, and he used a Thornycroft with a petrol engine to deliver drop forgings, finished lathe products and even the lathes themselves, nationwide. Around 1966 Alfred Herbert bought IL Berridge and Albert was made redundant. However, he used his severance pay to purchase his first house for £3650, and joined The British Shoe Corporation. He started on Bedford TK and TL lorries, and progressed to DAF rigids with the Hush Puppy logo. Albert retired in 1991 and moved to Waterlooville to be near his family. With no qualifications to his name, Albert passed City & Guilds Computing when he was 82, and this enabled him to be in contact with relatives who had gone to Australia on £10 boat tickets. His lifelong passion was

gardening, and his produce often won prizes at Allotment Society Shows. Albert is deeply missed by his son Ian, his Daughter-in-law Lynne, and his two Grandsons James and Robert. If you want to know more about the activities of the 1950 Leyland Beaver then ring 01225 865346 or visit

Autumn Tractor World & Classic Commercial show


ractor World Autumn is less than a month away and with a wide variety of entries flooding in, it looks set to be a great show. Classic commercials and vans will be on display over both days plus the Steel Boys club will be attending for an end of season gathering. Classic commercials can exhibit over both days, plus on Sunday a Classic Commercial drive in day will take place. Those looking to reduce or expand their

collection may wish to note that there will be an auction, to be conducted by HJ Pugh, on the Saturday of the show and to enter lots please call 01531 631122 or visit the website: The show also represents the ideal opportunity to purchase parts for your project(s) and with numerous traders in attendance you are sure to find what you’re looking for – be it new or used. A list of traders is featured on the show’s website. Autumn Tractor World & Classic

Commercial show takes place on Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 October 2017 at Newbury Showground, Priors Court, Hermitage, Thatcham, Berkshire RG18 9QZ. Admission prices: Adults £10 (£8.50 advance), Weekend £18 (£14 advance) and under 15s are admitted free. A weekend camping pass (three nights) for two adults is £55 – or just £45 in advance. Dogs on leads are welcome. For advance tickets tel: 01697 451882 or visit the the following website on:


14-15 IGN.indd 14

04/09/2017 22:54


Places to visit – The Bubblecar Museum


s the name suggests, this museum mainly consists of ‘bubble’ or ‘micro’ cars. However, those with an interest in lightweights will be pleased to see a few light commercials are also on display, including rarities such as a French-made New Map Solyto. No, I’d never heard of one before either! These little 200cc vehicles were apparently made in the 1950s & 60s, and could be bought as a van, pick-up, or even a camper. Besides micro vehicles, the museum also has displays of classic motorcycles and bygones, which are nicely displayed in replica ‘period’ shopfronts. The museum is a nice way to spend an hour or two, and there’s even a café that does excellent tea! In addition, the museum also offers rides in a bubble car at certain times of the year. For opening times and admission costs please contact the museum or visit their website.

Events for October 2017

Visitors are advised to contact the event organisers prior to travelling. We cannot be held responsible for errors in this listing.

▲ French rarity – a New Map Solyto. Photo Stephen Pullen.

▲ The signwriting says it all! Photo Stephen Pullen.

The Bubble Car Museum, Clover Farm, Main Rd, Langrick, Boston, Lincolnshire, PE22 7AW. Tel: 01205 280037 Website:

GARSTANG AUTOJUMBLE Hamilton House Farm, Tarnacre Lane, Garstang, Preston PR3 0TB Tel: 07836 331324

21 October WHEELS BY LAMPLIGHT Ipswich Transport Museum, Old Trolleybus Depot, Cobham Road, Ipswich, Suffolk IP3 9JD Tel: 01473 715666

AUTUMN HISTORIC TRANSPORT GATHERING Amberley Museum and Heritage Centre, Station Road, Amberley, nr Arundel, West Sussex BN18 9LT Tel: 01798 831370

21-22 October 1960S WEEKEND Museum of Transport, Greater Manchester, Boyle St Cheetham, Manchester M8 8UW Tel: 0161 2052122

AUTUMN RUNNING DAY The Transport Museum, Chapel Lane, Wythall B47 6JX Tel: 01564 826471

22 October TRANSPORTFEST London Bus Museum, Cobham Hall, Brooklands Road, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 0SL Tel: 01932 837994

7 October CLASSIC VEHICLES DAY Ipswich Transport Museum, Old Trolleybus Depot, Cobham Road, Ipswich, Suffolk IP3 9JD Tel: 01473 715666

15 October RIPON 4X4 SPARES DAY & LAND ROVER AUTOJUMBLE Ripon Races, Boroughbridge Road, North Yorkshire HG4 1UG Tel: 01697 451 882

28 October TWILIGHT RUNNING DAY The Transport Museum, Chapel Lane, Wythall B47 6JX Tel: 01564 826471

7-8 October AUTUMN TRACTOR WORLD & CLASSIC COMMERCIAL SHOW Newbury Showground, Priors Ct, Hermitage, Thatcham RG18 9QZ Tel: 01697 451 882

CLASSIC LAND ROVER DAY Amberley Museum and Heritage Centre, Station Road, Amberley, nr Arundel, West Sussex BN18 9LT Tel: 01798 831370

8 October LAND ROVER DAY Rural Life Centre, Tilford, Surrey GU10 2DL Tel: 01252 659280 Email:

TROLLEYDAY The Trolleybus Museum, Belton Road, Sandtoft, Doncaster, North Lincolnshire DN8 5SX Tel: 01724 711391

1 October NEWBURY 4X4 & VINTAGE SPARES DAY Newbury showground, Chieveley, Berkshire RG18 Tel: 01697 451 882 SHILDON VINTAGE VEHICLE RALLY Locomotion, The National Railway Museum, Shildon, Industrial Estate, Dale Road, Shildon DL4 2RE Tel: 01904 685780

LINCOLN AUTOJUMBLE Hemswell Cold Store Hangar, No 1, Caenby Corner Estate, DN21 5TU Tel: 07816 291544 29 October PENRITH AUTOJUMBLE Penrith Auction Mart, Skirsgill, Penrith, Cumbria CA11 0DN Tel: 07836 MALVERN 4X4 SPARES DAY & LAND ROVER AUTOJUMBLE Wye Halls, Three Counties Showground, Malvern, Worcs WR13 6NW. Tel: 01697 451 882 October 2017

14-15 IGN.indd 15


04/09/2017 22:54

Your say

STEPHEN PULLEN Heritage Commercials, Kelsey Media, Cudham Tithe Barn, Berrys Hill, Cudham Kent



ay I first thank you for the magazine promoting nostalgia and pleasure. I have been a lorry driver since passing my test in 1973. I only just missed out on grandfather rights and took my test through the DWP. My first job, the day I passed my test, was a load of potatoes on a flat single axle trailer from Ely to London for a haulier called Vic Badcock. I did this job short term before moving to a single lorry company, Arthur Ashman of Somersham, carrying clay pipes out of LBC at Warboys. All these loads were carried on a Bedford KM rigid and were handball. Nearly all the brick workers at that time were Italian, and very hard workers. Offloading was also handball, so was very tiring. I then went up-market, and carted low loader loads and pole trailer loads for my fatherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s tree felling business with a Guy Big J4 with Gardner 180 power and David Brown crash box, ex Turner of Soham. This was followed by a Ford D Series with a V8 Perkins engine. The Ford was luxury with a heater, radio and somewhere to sleep -

across the bench seat instead of a plank from side window to side window in the Guy. Absolute luxury was when an Atkinson Borderer was borrowed from a friend of my father, with an add-on sleeper cab. My father retired in 1992 and so I worked for a local company, Terry Brown, Haddenham, in a Leyland Roadtrain with flat trailer, delivering five nights a week to London wholesale markets. These were loads of carrots, locally grown, to the old Stretham, Spitalfields, Borough and Covent Garden. Two nights a week I only did Covent Garden but had Weston International at Heathrow and Geekoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s and Pouparts of Southampton added. I once trained a young man to drive HGVs, and the day he passed his test, which I took him to, he informed my boss he would work cheaper than me. Five years of loyalty out the window, and he got my job! I took employment with Burgess and Walkers, who ran Volvo and Scania units. Our loads were in fridges, mostly meat and produce, to Tescos throughout the UK. My final job was with the Potter Group

from Ely, a subsidiary of Potters of Selby. The best job I ever had, thanks to Les Brading, the transport manager at Ely. He knew how to look after his drivers, and although I was in and out of hospital he kept my job going for me. Scania, followed by Mercedes 2640 units, were the main vehicles, and I was fortunate to get a new unit. The loads were all curtainsider and container movements. Unfortunately, after five years, I ended up in hospital having my pancreas, spleen, gall bladder and part stomach and bowel removed. As the pancreas had gone I was now an insulin diabetic, and so after 35 years of HGV driving, I lost my HGV licence. I appealed, trying to get it back, but as the Minister of Transport said, the law is set in stone. There is not a day I regret my choice of employment, and every day I miss being a driver. I am bored and unemployable but still have all my memories. Ted Impey Via email



bit more on the MAN that Chris Newton photographed for the September 2017 issue of HC. This was one of the last G90 models and was an 8-150 ECO. This was still the 6-cylinder but had quite a few engine mods. The vehicle belonged to Adam Cunningham and Son, based latterly in

Irvine, Ayrshire. They were confectionary and snack distributors, covering Central Scotland. When I first got involved in their maintenance in the early 1980s they had two Perkins-powered VW LT 35s, an FG, a Ford A series and a Leyland Terrier. When things finally finished in

2002 they had about 40 lorries, the bulk of which were MANs consisting of 7.5-tonners, and one 14-tonne and an 18-tonne. The odd balls were four Mercedes 814s. Ronnie Devlin Via email


16-18 Letters.indd 16

04/09/2017 22:56

STEPHEN PULLEN Heritage Commercials, Kelsey Media, Cudham Tithe Barn, Berrys Hill, Cudham Kent


ell, it appears that the riddle of the unidentified van in Austria has been solved. However, I wonder if the van that Bill Rudkin from Seaham, Co. Durham, mentions in the September edition of HC is the same one that I captured at Gaydon back in August 2015. Also, I have spotted the Foden on page 82 that will be appearing in the October issue. Many years ago, via Ted Connolly, I became the custodian of many coloured slides taken by the late Edward James Beazley. I made a crude attempt at converting them from slides to jpegs so the quality isn’t quite right. However, here is a picture that Edward took of the 1957 Foden on Madeira Drive, Brighton, way back on 4th May 1975. Jim King Billericay, Essex



found the article by Alan Barnes on the Bedford OSS/Scammell artic in the August edition of HC, to be of great interest. Back in the late 1950s, the company for whom I worked bought some Bedford ‘S’ type tractor units and box van trailers with Scammell couplings, the Bedfords being fitted with Leyland Diesel engines, as at the time, Bedford did not produce their own Diesel. The first modification that we did to these was to get rid of the Scammell electrical coupling, which was OK as long as it was clean, but as soon as it got greasy/dirty/wet, the lights would flicker

or not even work at all. This meant, of course, that the drivers had to physically unplug/plug-in the lights, in turn resulting in a few broken suzies until the drivers got used to them. With the above in mind, I can fully appreciate why the unit in the article had, at some time, had its automatic electrical connections converted to manual. Another problem was with the ‘S’ shaped cam on the tractor unit, which activated the automatic coupling and retracted the landing legs. If the coupling operation was rushed, or the trailer wasn’t on level ground, it was all too easy

to bend this ‘S’ shaped cam. Our answer to this at the time, was to make a wooden template of the cam profile, heat up the cam and reshape it to that of the profile. As the cams were made of mild steel, heating up didn’t have an adverse effect on them. I have thought many times since then that it might have been better to get our road spring repairer to make up a new cam out of spring steel, which would have probably lasted much longer. Keep up your fantastic publication. David Gray Via email October 2017

16-18 Letters.indd 17



04/09/2017 22:59

Your say

▲ 1955 Bedford ‘S’ Type, reg NYR 950. C Campbell, Leven, Kingdom of Fife.


▲ 1966 ERF LK4 reg 650 XEH. R Campbell, Dumbarton.


am attaching some photos from the Biggar Rally at Biggar, Lanarkshire, on Sunday 13th August 2017. I hope people find them interesting. The information with each photo was taken from the rally programme.

Alex Saville, Via email

▲ 1971 ERF LV, reg JMX 292K. G Tait, Peebles.

▲ 1986 ERF E6, reg D110 SYS. C Whytock, Carlisle.

◄ 1950 Albion, reg TZ 954. T Robinson, Co Tyrone.

► 1935 Albion, reg SH 4747. M Farrall, Chester.

▲ 1951 Albion Clansman, reg ESJ 336. T Dods, Carnwath, Lanarkshire.

▲ 1937 Albion CL125, reg EXA 321. A Galt, Dumbarton.


16-18 Letters.indd 18

04/09/2017 22:59

STEPHEN PULLEN Heritage Commercials, Kelsey Media, Cudham Tithe Barn, Berrys Hill, Cudham Kent


he article ‘Recreating the past’ in the August edition of HC took me right back to my growing years in our family haulage business. We were based in Bournemouth with a small fleet of Bedfords as per the article. We had four ‘O’ model artics, two fourwheel rigids, and, at one stage, a sixwheel Bedford. We also had an ex-Army ‘W’ model which we re-bodied from the original Army spec. We specialised in fruit and potato haulage from East Anglia, Covent Garden and the various docks. The artics carried 8-tons on Taskers of Andover trailers. As a youngster, I practised shunting the artics around our yard, and spent many hours repairing the vehicles from the age of about 12-years onward. On

occasion, I ‘road-tested’ them on quiet roads and farm tracks - and beyond! One ‘O’ model was petrol, the 28hp. The other ‘O’ model rigid had a Perkins P6, as per the Knowles fleet. I recall distinctly that the Bedford four-speed gearbox was not man enough for the torque of the P6 and needed lots of regular repairs. Incidentally, passed my test on the petrol model at the age of 17 and a couple of months. I recall a trip with my father driving a tractor unit to collect a new BTC trailer from London. We then went into Covent Garden to load. The trailer, a four-in-line, when loaded was very unstable. The reason was because it was fitted with a ball-type coupling, as used with RAF Queen Mary aircraft trailers. In order to get home with the load we had to move most of it towards

the back, thus taking weight off the hitch. A nightmare trip. I have lots of memories from those days, some good, some bad, such as changing gearboxes and diffs on the grass verge in winter, jumping in the river on the Winchester by-pass on a hot summer day en-route to Bournemouth, peering through ‘proper fog’, as it was in those days, firing up the Perkins with a flaming diesel-soaked rag, etc. The days of hard work, loading and un-loading, roping and sheeting, even changing a wheel, are all gone it seems. And no bad thing. Just some of my memories from my early years.

Mike Pocknell Via email


▲ This Commer is now owned by Glyn Swain and was featured in the January 2017 issue of HC.


n the August 2016 issue of HC there is a picture of a Ford K-Series Trader at Malvern, and also a brochure in the ‘From our archives’ feature. These lorries seem very rare now. One I knew well was a 1960s red long-wheelbase flatbed (Gloucester registered, four numbers followed by either FH, AD or DF), belonging to Wilkins Bros of Bampton Castle in Oxfordshire. They were farmers and also had a collection of 300 tractors plus many unusual implements. They are deceased now unfortunately, but I often used to buy loads of straw off them for my dairy herd up to about 2001. Their lorry was very well maintained, and was always under cover at night. It was later exchanged for a much later D1000 lorry. I often wonder if it survived, as it was a real

▲ One of two ex-Cheltenham Corporation Shelvoke & Drewry dustcarts sold into preservation.

‘time warp’ vehicle, and I believe it went to a collector. In the December 2016 issue, on page 65, is a picture of a two-stroke Foden S18 timber lorry belonging to Allinson Hodgeson of Cleddon Hall, a few miles from here and the birthplace of Bertrand Russell. This load of timber is typical of this firm’s loads! Talk about maximum weight! No health and safety in those days, they would have a fit! In the October 2016 issue, featuring the Ward La France wreckers, I was surprised to see no mention of the Panes of Upton-onSevern vehicle, which is still in use and also visits local rallies. I saw it at Abergavenny recently, which is a round trip of about 120 miles. Not bad for a vehicle of this age and type. Finally, please find enclosed a photo of

Glyn Swain’s Commer horse box (HC January 2017) as it was when he bought it at a sale near Cheltenham (not Tewkesbury). The owner then, a Mr Margretts, had a real collection of oddities including two ex-Cheltenham Corporation Shelvoke & Drewry dustcarts, which had been used for grain haulage before the Commers. These dustcarts were bought for restoring, but where are they now? I’ve enclosed a photo of one of these too. As stated, the Commers were ex-Midland Shires Farmers, now trading as Countrywide. In the photo, the Swains lorry KFK 665D in in the foreground, the other Commer being JFK 497C. The aluminium bodies were slightly different, both being quite low GVW. Gerald Richardson Penalt, Monmouth.

STEPHEN PULLEN Heritage Commercials, Kelsey Media, Cudham Tithe Barn, Berrys Hill, Cudham Kent October 2017

16-18 Letters.indd 19


04/09/2017 22:59


!YES! I WOULD LIKE TO SUBSCRIBE TO HERITAGE COMMERCIALS MAGAZINE DELIVERY / PAYERS DETAILS Mrs/Ms/Miss/Mr ............... Forename ............................................................. Surname ........................................................................................................ Address .......................................................................................................... ...................................................................................................................... .................................................................... Post / Zip code ......................... Country .......................................................................................................... Daytime phone ............................................. Mobile ...................................... Email .............................................................................................................. GIFT DELIVERY DETAILS Mrs/Ms/Miss/Mr ............... Forename ............................................................. Surname ........................................................................................................ Address .............................................................................................................. .................................................................................................................. .................................................................... Post / Zip code ......................... Country .......................................................................................................... Daytime phone ............................................. Mobile ......................................


that my subscription will continue at this rate with payments taken every 12 months - unless I write to tell you otherwise.

Instructions to your Bank or Building Society to pay by Direct Debit Name of Bank ................................................................................................ Address ......................................................................................................... ................................................................ Postcode ...................................... Account name ............................................................................................... Sort code Account number

Signature ........................................................ Date .................................... Originator’s Id number

8 3 7 3 8 3



All of our digital magazine subscriptions and issues can be downloaded from anywhere in the world and read on PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, Android devices, Kindle Fire, Windows 8 devices and any HTML5 compatible device.

1958 Dennis F8 fire appliance

1921 Leyland G Type van



JULY 20 JULY 2017 £4.40

The White Queen!

Direct Debits from the account detailed in this instruction are subject to the safeguards assured by the Direct Debit guarantee. I understand that this instruction may remain with Kelsey Publishing Ltd. and, if so, details will be passed electronically to my Bank or Building Society.

ONE OWNER 1976 Foden S83

PAY BY CHEQUE / DEBIT / CREDIT CARD UK: 12 issues £51.00 SAVING 10% £45.90 PLUS FREE MAGAZINE BINDER UK: 6 issues £25.50 (NO GIFT)


Photo archive

USA / EUROPE: 12 issues £64.49 (NO GIFT) Leyland Roadtrain 6x2

Selling Scammells in Africa

Peter Slater Ltd

REST OF WORLD: 12 issues £70.49 (NO GIFT) I enclose a cheque made payable to Kelsey Publishing Limited. (Drawn from a UK bank account)

Please debit my


Visa Debit


Card number Security number Valid from ............ / ............ Expiry date ............ / ............ Signature ............................................................. Date ...................................


FREEPOST RTKZ-HYRL-CCZX Heritage Commercials Subscriptions, Kelsey Media Ltd., Cudham Tithe Barn, Berry’s Hill, Cudham, Kent,TN16 3AG


*Discountt calculated from printt issue price of £4 4.25. FREE gift no ot included with dig gita al subscrip ption orrders.


Heritage Commercials Subscriptions, Kelsey Media Ltd., Cudham Tithe Barn, Berry’s Hill, Cudham, Kent,TN16 3AG, England


PHONE TOLL FREE FROM USA:1-888-777-0275 (7am-3pm EST) INTERNATIONAL ONLY PLEASE CALL: 0044 (0)1959 543 747 Free gift is subject to availability and is for new subscribers only. For details of offers valid for current subscribers go online at If applicable your free gift will be delivered within 25 working days on receipt of your order. This offer is available until 20th October 2017. Kelsey Publishing Ltd uses a multi-layered privacy notice which details how we are committed to protecting your personal information and will keep the information you entrust, safe and secure. For full details visit or call 01959 543 747. By submitting your data this indicates your consent, until you choose otherwise, that we and our partners may contact you about products and services that will be of relevance to you via direct mail, phone, email and SMS. You can opt-out at any time via email on data.controller@ or call 01959 543 747.



SUBSCRIBE TODAY & RECEIVE A FREE MA AGAZINE BINDER This month we are offering UK subscrribers a FREE Heritage azine Commercials maga binder worth £9.95 5 to keep your issues safe.




Make dog-eared, torn and damaged magazines a thing of the paast, keep your issues in pristine condition and safe. Each binder will store a year’s worth of magazines and will fit snugly onto a shelf keeping your baack issues u to refer all in one place ready for you back to whenever needed.

CRIBER S B U S *20% saving based on cover price of £4.25 per issue. UK Direct Debit print offer only.



d events and products Prefe rential rates on our associate ucts to choose from prod of e A constantly refreshed rang othe r Kelsey titles on s offer ion First access to subscript urite brands favo your on Exclusive discount s petit ions com only r Free entry into subscribe



Fill in the form and send to: FREEPOST RTKZ-HYRL-CCZX, Heritage Commercials Subscriptions, Kelsey Publishing Ltd.,

Cudham Tithe Barn, Berry’s Hill, Cudham, Kent, TN16 3AG


CALL OUR SUBSCRIPTION TEAM 01959 543 747 & quote offer code HCMP1017 Hotline open: Mon - Fri 8am - 6pm.

On location

Classic convoy

This immaculate Kenworth, reg OMY 460P, looked and sounded awesome. Just what everyone needs to pull their caravan!

Chris Newton reports from the 2017 Convoy in the Park.


he Convoy in the Park event was held at Donington Park in Derbyshire on 23rd July 2017. As well as a massive selection of modern trucks there were plenty of classic lorries to be found, and these photos show just a few, including my favourite of the day. v

▲ T W Bowler of Stockport brought along this fantastic left-handdrive 1977 Scammell Crusader, reg TJA 470R.

▲ Perkins-powered Dodge 300, registration number GAX 399C, in the colours Fred Sherwood Transport of Long Whatton, Leicestershire.

▲ I wasn’t going to miss the opportunity to snap this very rare 1979 GMC Astro 95 tractor unit, reg FNC 324T.

▲ ‘Brutus’ - a very striking Peterbilt with very fancy artwork.


22-23 OL1.indd 22

04/09/2017 23:18

Words & photos: Chris Newton


▲ John Thompson’s Scania 141 V8 eight-wheeled tipper was my overall favourite of the day.

▲ The superb 1977 Volvo F88, reg REK 208R, of AP Colson.

▲S Clark & Sons Haulage Ltd ERF EC11 Olympic in immaculate condition. Note the appropriate registration number, S18 ERF.

▲ Finally, we have the Volvo FL10 4x2 tractor unit of Reece Cooper, reg R169 RLY.

▼ Simon Gibson Transport’s striking Volvo VN2000, reg V184 KRL, is certainly a classic of the future.

September 2017 October 2017

22-23 OL1.indd 23



04/09/2017 23:19

Classic restoration


Words & photos: Dave Bowers


The Albion was new in 1950, and originally fitted with a van body for H Samuel Ltd.

Dave Bowers visits a father and son restoration team with an eye for their family’s history.


his story starts with a father and son team, who both go by the name of Robert Townsend, who shared an ambition to own an old lorry. However, it couldn’t be just any old lorry, as they decided it also had to have a connection with their family’s past – and the Albion Clansman FT35L pictured here fitted the bill perfectly. As Robert Senior explained: “My father had an Albion Clansman that he used for shifting cattle around when the family had a farm at Haslingden, near Preston. This had the registration number HTF 236. My father was one of four sons, and the lorry was bought for one of his brothers, otherwise there were too many sons to work on the farm. But this son didn’t take to making livestock deliveries with the lorry, so my granddad then took it over. I remember going out with him in this lorry during the 50s; I would sit in a specially made seat at the back of the cab.” The Townsend family have run their garage and petrol station in the village of Warton, near Preston, since about 1920, and in view of this long-lived connection, they decided it would be nice to buy and restore their Albion Clansman as a fuel tanker rather than as a cattle wagon. However, finding a suitable

tanker body for sale was going to be far more difficult than finding a lorry of the required type, so this took priority and was bought before the Albion was found. Robert Senior recalled: “We found the tank on a farm in Wales and it was bought for pretty much scrap money. It had been used on the farm for selling paraffin to customers. All the

while it had sat outside on blocks, which hadn’t done it much good, but we could see that it could be put back into good order. And the oval shape at the back and the front of the tank looked just right to us for this age of lorry.” After arranging transport back to Warton, the tank was left alone to await the arrival of a suitable lorry that it could be installed on. And fortunately, a cross-country journey to a sale in Nottingham allowed this father and son team to put in a successful bid on an Albion FT35L, which went under the auctioneer’s hammer as a flatbed lorry at the time. This vehicle carried the signwriting ‘KN Wilson, Plant Hire & Demolition’ on the cab doors.

Museum exhibit

Father & son team, Robert Townsend Jnr and Snr.

Robert Junior added: “Although this lorry was built in 1950 it hadn’t seen much use, which may have had something to do with changes in the licensing laws, as by 1959 it had been put into the Bradworthy Transport Museum (now closed). In fact, it wasn’t used again until 1980, and as you can imagine, its condition was still in very good order. Later on, it spent a number of years in a breakers yard together with five other classic wagons. I drove it home with Dad following behind in my Range Rover. The Albion ran well up to about 35mph, but you wouldn’t want to push it much harder than that. And you wouldn’t want to travel that fast with a full load in the old days! The Albion-built EN286E 4.88-


24-26 Albion.indd 24

04/09/2017 23:24


▲ The Albion as bought at auction in 2013. Photo Robert Townsend collection.

▲ The cab was built by E Wigglesworth & Co of Stanningley.

litre diesel engine and five-speed gearbox, including a crawler gear, were in good order, as were the brakes and suspension. The only problem was that, even though there was nothing wrong with the engine, it put out quite a lot of fumes, so as Dad had followed in my Range Rover, it took quite a while before

▲ The simple interior so common of lorries of this period.

the interior no longer smelt of diesel fumes!” One of the first jobs was to remove the no longer required flatbed body, and this soon found a new home when sold to Hugh Turner of Dumfries, who was keen to fit a body to his Albion Chieftain that was nearing completion after a long restoration. This was

featured in the August 2016 issue of Heritage Commercials. According to a plate found on the inside of one of the doors in the cab, this lorry would have left the Scotsoun factory as a bare chassis unit, and the cab was added later at the works of E Wigglesworth of Stanningley, near Leeds,

◄ ▲ The ladder and fuel can storage cage were made by SMS Limited of Warton. Note the brass paraffin tap visible just above the ‘Albion’ plate. October 2017

24-26 Albion.indd 25



04/09/2017 23:26

Classic restoration the Albion’s chassis frame, so the tank was lifted, lowered and secured on new hardwood carriers, and held in place with new nuts and bolts. A local engineer, Roy Chedsworth, who trades as SMS Limited of Warton, was commissioned to make the cage at the back for the storage of oil and petrol cans, and he also made the ladder, and the walkway over the top of the tank.

Recovery vehicles Coachbuilders and Signwriters. The first owner was H Samuel Limited of Hunters Road, Birmingham, the high street jewellery firm. The original registration document details this vehicle was originally supplied as a van to the firm; perhaps as transport for shop fitters? With a busy garage business to run, it was decided to outsource most of the work on the Albion, and the preparation, sandblasting and respray work on the tank was done by a local specialist. The choice of paint was dictated by the shade of blue the lorry arrived in, which was still in good order. The only other task with the paintwork was to remove the signwriting and substitute ‘J Townsend, Supplier of Quality Fuels’. Robert Junior was anticipating that a respray of the doors would be required before completing this exercise, but true to his word, the signwriter who took on the job managed to remove the original signwriting without damaging the original finish. After a bit of checking, measuring and lining up, it was most agreeably confirmed that the tank brackets aligned perfectly with

In addition to the Albion, it’s now proposed that another vehicle will be restored that has a working connection with the Townsend garage business. This is an ex-Royal Navy long-wheelbase Series I Land Rover, bought by the family at the famous Ruddington disposal sales, and then kitted out for recovery work with a Harvey Frost crane. A couple of other vehicles that did serve the garage well in the recovery role were a Volkswagen LT, and a Ford Cargo for the heavier jobs. Robert Senior recalled: “The Volkswagen was a good vehicle, and I remember one night I was out on a recovery job when I needed both vehicles and the Volkswagen had been left at home. I phoned my wife and persuaded her to drive it, although she had never driven a truck. So, son Robert, who wasn’t old enough to drive at the time, came with her to do the gear changes. Unfortunately, that truck disappeared one night when someone stole it, and it was never to be seen again. It was a handy little recovery truck that was really missed: a real workhorse.” In addition to the period oil and petrol cans in the caged carrier mounted at the back of the Albion, rummaging through some of the many

odd parts that the garage has accumulated over the years resulted in a brass tap being unearthed. This had been used at the garage for dispensing paraffin to customers, so this has been fitted at the back of the tank. The delivery pipes fitted along the sides are of modern plastic construction. As a result of the garage office being rearranged, I was also shown an interesting collection of paperwork from the past, such as a ‘Transit of Animals Record for Road Vehicles’ form, as used when Townsend’s ran the Albion cattle truck, registration HTF 236. There were also receipt books and a petrol coupon that probably dates back to the Suez fuel crisis of 1957. No doubt these items would make nice additions to the display when the Albion tanker is taken to shows. One item that Robert Junior would particularly like to add to the back of the tanker is a matching Albion number plate sign, perhaps displaying the mandatory speed limit for this type of vehicle – 20mph or more likely, 30mph? Robert Junior concluded the interview with the following words of praise for this classic Albion: “It has only broken down once, and this was when a bolt fell out so that the diesel pump stopped working. So, following the usual approach whenever someone’s in a situation such as this, we salvaged a bolt from elsewhere and so we were soon on our way again. We also adjusted the vacuum assisted brakes, so these work well.” No doubt the family connection with their garage business will be further reinforced when the Land Rover has been restored with period lettering and the Harvey Frost crane mounted on the back once more. v

▼ The tank was found on a farm in Wales, but looks perfect mounted onto the Albion.


24-26 Albion.indd 26

04/09/2017 23:27

The Cotswold Oil Engine & Preservation Society


proudly present our famous and respected

2017 BRING & BUY SALE ;J#"@H B'=-@"C* ED=I'F:8J""* F= E8@J("@H* ;!>D=C 0D% (8@ B/5.

?D$@IG@= /(8 253< Gates open 7.30

All prices held again

Vendors fees: Cars £6, 4x4 with trailer £10, Van £10, Lorries £15, Trade £12, Visitors/Buyers just £2 per head


Sat Nav HP18 9JX

NO PRE-BOOKING Just turn up set up - sell up - buy up

Note: It is usually all over by 2pm.

Future dates:14th April and November 3rd 2018 6&=(8@= 'F>D

A=) BFF@ 4J==') 531+< 935/3, ADG'"@ 5<99< 77+1,+

5th, 6th & 7th May 2018

Classic restoration

A sight our grandparents would have dreaded - a ‘Katy’ at full speed driving to a potentially dangerous incident!

Super Katy

Old fire appliances are very popular in Scotland, and attract a lot of interest. Bob Weir went to Laurencekirk to meet George Godsman and a ‘Katy’ classic.


aurencekirk is a small town next to the main trunk road between Dundee and Aberdeen. Apart from being home to some old commercials, its main claim to fame is the unusual pastime of making snuff boxes. Boasting a special type of airtight hinge invented by James Sandy, these Victorian boxes are now sought-after antiques. The area around Aberdeenshire is also a hotbed of classic commercial enthusiasts. George has lived in the area most of his life. He is a retired electrician to trade, and spent many years as a volunteer for the Auxiliary Ambulance Service (AAS). He said: “The Auxiliary Ambulance Service dates back to the Second World War, and the immediate post-war years. I was too young to serve during the conflict, but joined up as soon as I could. I remember

they were asking for volunteers to drive the ambulances. I can recall thinking that they were great lumbering things, and we spent most of our time on training maneuvers. When the AAS was eventually replaced, I spent 33 years as a volunteer for the Red Cross.” Because of his connections with the emergency services, George has always had an interest in their old vehicles. Many of the types were based on contemporary

Owner & restorer George Godsman.


28-31 Super Katy.indd 28

04/09/2017 23:29

Words & photos: Bob Weir


Specification Make / Model: Austin K2 Year: Registration: Engine: Transmission: Brakes: Top speed: Tyres:

1939 GLC 997 6-cylinder petrol (3,124cc) 4-speed Hydraulic with vacuum servo assistance 50mph 10.50 – 16

commercials, and this is part of the attraction. The vehicles are also getting thin on the ground, and rarely come up for sale. When he spotted the Austin K2 at an auction in 2001, he could not resist the opportunity to make a bid. “Looking back the vehicle was in a pretty poor state,” he recalls. “The bodywork was in a mess, and the interior left a lot to be desired. I sometimes liken it to a skip full of rubbish! I had to work five hours a day for eighteen months, to restore the Austin back to its proper state.” The Austin K2 will be no stranger to commercial vehicle enthusiasts of WW2. In January 1939, just before the outbreak of the war, Austin had been ordered by the UK government to increase its lorry production. The new range became known as the Series I. The line-up initially consisted of two basic models, the K2 and K3. These lorries had a respective capacity of 2- and 3-tons. A 1.5ton pick-up, designated the K30, was later added to the range. All the vehicles were equipped with a six-cylinder overhead valve petrol engine, 4-speed transmission, hydraulic brakes and a spring suspension. Externally, the Austin’s appearance was very similar to its main competitor the Bedford ‘O’ Series. It was not long before the lorries acquired the nickname the ‘Birmingham Bedford’.


The K2 or ‘Katy’ saw active service in most wartime theatres, and was particularly popular as an ambulance. Civilian versions

▲ George’s restoration is spot on, as there were very few creature comforts in a K2 cab!

▲ George has gone to great lengths to track down period equipment. The attention to detail is superb. ►

The Coventry Climax trailer-mounted pump is a much sought-after accessory.

October 2017

28-31 Super Katy.indd 29



04/09/2017 23:30

Classic restoration

▲ Old emergency vehicles run in the family. The K2 pictured next to George’s son’s 1960s Land Rover fire appliance.

also saw extensive duty as a fire appliance with the National Fire Service (NFS). Production of the K2 continued long after the end of hostilities, and into the 1950s. These later versions had a load capacity ranging from 2to 5-tons, and were fitted with a 4-litre engine producing a maximum of 90hp. The only noticeable difference in the post-war lorry’s appearance was a revised radiator grille. George carried out all the restoration work himself, using a variety of hand tools. Fortunately, his son Graeme owns a garage in Laurencekirk, which means the Austin is stored out the weather. He said: “My son is a mechanic to trade, and opened the garage almost 30 years ago. My grandson Kevin is also involved with the business. They handle most things from cars and 4x4s to light commercials. “I am a self-taught mechanic, and picked up most of my restoration skills on the job. If you are interested in the hobby you tend to bump into different people like joiners and welders, and you learn the skills as you go along. I had already restored an Austin Princess A135 ambulance, so I’d had a bit of practice. “When you are restoring an old vehicle

you need to be methodical, and have a lot of patience. This particularly applies to refurbishing items like the metalwork. If you try and rush things, you often run into difficulties. It’s important to do the job properly first time around, to avoid any future problems. At the end of the day commercials like the K2 are historic vehicles, and need to be preserved for the future.” George likes to check on a vehicle’s provenance, and was keen to find out

some history about GLC 997. Unfortunately, despite his best efforts, he drew a blank. “When I sent off to Swansea for the documents they came back with an address in Dundee,” he said. “I had absolutely no idea how old this address was, but I was determined to make some enquiries. I used that old standby the phone directory, but could not get anywhere. For all I knew, the address was several decades old. It may have even been related to a former wartime Firemaster, but this is just speculation.”

▲ George also restored this superb Austin Princess ambulance.


28-31 Super Katy.indd 30

04/09/2017 23:30


‘GLC’ indicates that the Austin was originally registered in north-west London, but this may not have any relevance to the vehicle’s wartime service. George certainly remembers that the dire state of the lorry, suggested it had not been roadworthy for many years. He said: “I could tell from experience that the lorry hadn’t been a runner for some time. It was full of rusty holes, and these don’t appear overnight. Exactly how long, remains a mystery. I know that these Austin fire appliances were used in the surrounding area, because my father was a volunteer in one of the units. They had fire stations in all the big towns in Scotland, and many would have been using the K2 as standard equipment. “Mechanically, the lorry was also a nightmare. I had to spend a lot of time stripping things down to the bare bones, and rebuilding parts from scratch. Fortunately, you do feel a sense of achievement as you make some progress, and the restoration begins to take shape. Compared to modern equipment, most of the parts were fairly straightforward. This made them easy to repair.” Like the majority of fire appliances when they are withdrawn from service, the K2 was also missing all of its fire-fighting equipment. George said: “When I got the lorry it was so full of other rubbish there was no room for the proper equipment! I managed to get hold of the right bits and bobs by going to shows, and rummaging through autojumbles. I enjoy going around the stalls, because you meet so many interesting people. I have also built up a network of useful contacts over the years. This comes in handy when you are tracking down that elusive part. My efforts took a summer show season, but it was worth it in the end. “Looking back, I’d also had plenty of practice before I got hold of the K2. The Austin Princess had also thrown up plenty of challenges. Not only did this old ambulance lack all of its kit, somebody had actually spent some time living in it.” The Coventry Climax portable pump was an excellent find, and is a much soughtafter accessory. Coventry Climax was a British forklift truck, fire pump, racing car, and other speciality engine manufacturer. With the closure of one of their customers, Swift in 1931, they were left with a stock of engines. These were converted to drive electric generators, giving the company an entry into the fire pump market. The company’s trademark ‘Godiva’ model saw

Looking back, I’d also had plenty of practice before I got hold of the K2.


A brief history of the National Fire Service (NFS)

he National Fire Service (NFS) was created in August 1941 by the amalgamation of the wartime national Auxiliary Fire Service and the local authority fire brigades. The two organisations numbered around 1,600 units. The new authority was brought into being, purely because of the emergency situation of the Second World War. The NFS was in charge of all the UK’s firefighting until 1948, when it was phased out. The Fire Services Act 1947 had been put on the statute books the previous year, and the existing fire services now reverted to local authority control. The NFS had both full-time and parttime members. The service was open to both men and women, and the uniform was the traditional dark blue doublebreasted tunic, and peaked cap. The cap was retained by fire services after the war. Being part of the NFS involved long hours. When they were not actually out on a call, members were asked to perform vital wartime jobs in factories near to the

widespread service during WW2. “I was fortunate to get hold of the auxiliary pump,” said George. “A lot of wartime NFS Katy’s used these pumps, and I wanted to get one to complete the restoration.” Coventry Climax continued to manufacture and develop fire pumps after the war, although it was also involved in other projects. In 1970 the fire pump business was sold to Godiva Fire Pumps based in Warwick. This company is still trading. By contrast Coventry Climax was not so fortunate, and went into receivership in 1986. Once he had finished the Austin’s

fire stations. This made sense as lots of these temporary firefighters had worked in manufacturing during peacetime, although the extra duty was entirely voluntary. War service could be dangerous. Members had to attend the aftermath of German bombing raids and coastal shelling from France, even while the attacks were still taking place. Casualties were high, and one 19-year-old volunteer was killed on active duty. He was posthumously awarded the Certificate for Gallantry. The NFS was divided into about 40 Fire Forces. These were subdivided into Divisions. Each Division had two Columns and each Column had five Companies. At its peak, the strength of the NFS numbered had 370,000 personnel. This included 80,000 women, who were mainly employed on administrative duties. The Chief of the Fire Staff and Inspectorin-Chief throughout the war was Sir Aylmer Firebrace, former Chief Officer of the London Fire Brigade. He retired in 1947. restoration, George rallied the K2 for many years. “I used to drive it to shows,” he said. “But now I am in my eighties, I prefer to use one of my son’s trailers. My driving license has also been amended so I can only drive cars, and light vehicles. People still come up and show interest, and many people of my generation can remember seeing these old fire appliances back in the old days. The K2 has won its fair share of rosettes, including at the Scottish Transport Extravaganza held at Glamis. The lorry has given me a lot of pleasure, and I intend showing the ‘Katy’ for the foreseeable future.” v

▲ The ‘Katy’ was a familiar sight during the war years. October 2017

28-31 Super Katy.indd 31


04/09/2017 23:31

Life in transport

Words: Bob Tuck Photos: Meikle Tennant collection/Bob Tuck

Miles Of Memories For Meikle

Now an octogenarian, the passage of time may have forced Meikle Tennant to hang up his HGV driving keys for the last time. But that doesn’t stop him enjoying the many memories he has of more than 70 years behind one form of steering wheel or another. He talks to Bob Tuck about his life on the farm; in road transport and of course on the preservation scene.


or something like 18 years, it was one of the most evocative sights that are ever likely to grace the preservation scene. Seeing the fully sheeted 1955 Atkinson eight-wheeler and Crane drawbar trailer in the livery of Tennant’s of Forth was one of those visions that just made your

Meikle’s father James with the horse ‘May Morn.’

heart melt with pleasure. With the distinctive profile of Meikle Tennant normally at the wheel, this Scottish based outfit could be seen in all parts of the UK mainland – and also across in Northern Ireland – as Meikle was a great believer of putting himself and his drawbar outfit, out and about so everyone

could enjoy seeing it. At the outset, I’ve got to admit as being a big fan of this diminutive Scot for something like 25 years. Yes, he may be modest in stature but – like many - I’ve discovered he has a wiry strength both of body and spirit that comes

Meikle Tennant pictured in July ’17. I really liked the Atkinson motif on his shirt plus his snazzy bracers showing a variety of tractors.


32-37 Tennant.indd 32

05/09/2017 12:12

HGV MEMORIES ▼ Meikle recalls that in his four years at Andersons that he drove all of these vehicles at different times.

▲ Meikle recalls that Mitchell of Biggar – owners of this Albion – were regular visitors to the family farm delivering feed & fertiliser.

across in tenacity of action. A guy who gives short-shrift to time-wasters or slackers, he will of course give freely of his time in support to many others who do give their best efforts – or as the man himself puts it: “I can’t suffer nonsense.” This trait is obviously part of his genes because even when a youngster, Meikle’s father James always told folk: “That lad doesn’t have a lazy bone in his body.”


Home for Meikle has generally been around the Lanark area of southern Scotland with his start out in life – to parents James and Helen – being at Mildew Cottage at Netherton where their farm’s 187 acres housed 40 Ayrshire cows; 120 sheep and a permutation of arable crops like oats; turnips and potatoes. Like many of us past a certain age, Meikle might have to think a bit to recall what he was doing yesterday but his memories of 70+ years ago are more than vivid. That recall goes for most of his working life and as the hours slip away in conversation, we are mesmerised how the names of customers; work mates and even specific details of the loads he delivered can be spoken about so clearly. With two brothers and three sisters, Meikle recalls it was from the age of 11 that he was given specific daily jobs around the farm which started out at 5am with the prep’ work in the byres prior to milking. Collections of this milk were then done in 10 gallon churns and the haulage contractors of Tennant (no relation) from nearby Forth and then Ramage of Douglas would do the transport work. Meikle’s early years is made up of a mish-

▲ Bob Duncan was the regular trunk driver of this AEC Mammoth Major

▲ Meikle had a short stint shunting for Charles Alexander & Partners. Their main HQ was at Aberdeen but they also had a depot in Glasgow. October 2017

32-37 Tennant.indd 33



05/09/2017 12:12

Life in transport

▲ Best wagon he ever drove – and best job he had – was his time with SAI Scottish Agricultural Industries.

mash of all sorts of ‘new’ things happening. Even appreciating mains electricity for the first time can be recalled by a youngster who was to be mesmerised by machines; engines and anything mechanical whether it was road going; rail going steam engines or static machines & generators adapted to power all manner of farming needs. And it was to be that interest (and passion) that was to ensure young Master Tennant was well served for his life ahead. Such a life – of course – had its ups and downs. As early as the age of 14, Meikle leapt at the chance to have the shortest of drives of any wagon that would happen to come into the yard: “I remember driver Adam Lowe coming into the yard with a Dennis Centaur,” says Meikle. “And when he let me turn it round, I thought I was the cat’s whiskers.” There’s always plenty things to do on a farm like the Tennant’s but while trying to sort out a faulty machine in 1958, the machine bit back and Meikle lost two fingers on his right hand.

Almost 60 years later, our man is still thankful to the two surgeons involved – Mr White and Mr Ross – who were able to repair the amputation in such a way that Meikle could still grip with the remaining fingers / palm area.


One thing we can all say about life is that we never know what’s in store for us. And while Meikle would probably have been more than happy to spend his life on the family farm, with the premature death of his father (at the age of 61) those plans went awry. Meikle recalls at one time he even considered buying a small farm – with a small haulage operation – but when local haulier (and friend of the family) Sam Anderson was asked whether that business was viable, Sam reckoned it wasn’t a good idea. A better idea was for Meikle to go and drive for Sam on shunting work – tip the load the night trunker had brought in and then re-load

▲ Coatbridge based William Nicol specialised in moving long steel pipes. They favoured the marque of AEC.

him for the next night: “In the early ‘60s Sam had about 60 vehicles which were mainly AECs although with some Atkinsons,” says Meikle, “and pay rates then varied as to what you drove. Artics were top rate (31p an hour in today’s money) but those rates dropped 1p for an eight-wheeler and extra 1p if you just drove a four-wheeler.” No HGV licence required back then and Meikle’s test drive was a ride round the block with Anderson foreman Jimmy Miller in the cab. Even though Meikle was still adapting to his hand injury, the years he’d spent on the farm driving all sorts meant he was a natural on an eight-wheeler: “I always shied off the artics but one day when I had to move four of them out the way to get my eight-wheeler, Jimmy saw I was OK with them and he soon moved me up.” It may be something like 55 years since Meikle shunted his first Anderson artic but he can recall the load he delivered: “It had 11 tons on for Perth; then 6 tons of cement for

▲ When Meikle came off driving and onto security work at Cummins, he got into preservation. He is seen here with his favourite MasseyHarris tractor.


32-37 Tennant.indd 34

05/09/2017 12:13


No HGV licence required back then and Meikle’s test drive was a ride round the block Dundee and 4 tons of salt for Balirgowrie,” he recalls. Weights moved and hours worked – in days of old – were often more than the law normally permitted but it was a way of life for almost everyone (unless you worked for the Government owned British Road Services). But when Anderson moved the 22 ton red hot ingots from one local steel plant to another, they were a job and a half: “You had to swathe yourself in wet towels when you were tying the load down,” he says. Meikle did about four years with Anderson but as he’d married his wife Grace in ’63 (they were to have two children, Jillian and Fiona) he began looking for more local work so he could spend more time at home. He had a few months with the large Aberdeen fish haulier of Charles Alexander (shunting out of the Glasgow depot) but a far better job was to be the four years he had with SAI – Scottish Agricultural Industries – moving bulk feed. And with the four-wheel Leyland Super Comet bulker, Meikle found a lovely wagon to drive: “I really enjoyed going back on the farms.” When Meikle started on with William Nicol at Coatbridge he did want a job at home but as that concern specialised in moving long pipes – all over the UK – then our man found himself heading for distant Kent. “We normally left on a Saturday and got as far as Doncaster. On Sunday we’d reach Rochester in Kent and then Monday saw us tip at Hooe and then get back to Corby to collect a back-load. If you did Stamford to Coatbridge in one hit then you were paid 16 hours.” The distinctive pipe-carrying Nicol fleet had a lot of AECs but Meikle recalls one day being given an ‘awful’ JFK BMC which carried 10 tubes, 27ft long that were 9ft wide on the bolsters which meant your route through London was over Tower Bridge. Not the best of pullers, Meikle recalls having to call out a BMC mechanic with a drastic loss of power and pushing out excessive blue smoke: “The mechanic diagnosed that the air intake was collapsing every-time I put my foot down so he forced some wire into the trunking to give it some strength – and it did the trick.”

▲ His first big commercial vehicle was this 54G ERF which he used for farm work as and when.

▲ Meikle also restored this distinctive ERF eight-wheeler although he only kept it for a couple of years.


After 10 months with William Nicol, Meikle found a job working for the Lancashire carpet concern of Greenwood & Coope. Our man’s day would start from Lanark at 6.30am but he only drove as far south as the Moss Café at Carlisle where he would change vehicles with a similar van loaded with up to 30 drops of carpet material. Generally, these motors were TK Bedfords and Meikle could drive three different vehicles a week doing a variety of drops around various shops: “The only

▲ Meikle had to be cajoled into buying this Atkinson eight-wheeler which is seen at Norwood after being towed back from Broxburn. Carrie is looking on. October 2017

32-37 Tennant.indd 35



05/09/2017 12:13

Life in transport

Meikle was to own this 1955 Atkinson eightwheeler for something like 20 years

▲ Wherever it went, the Atky drawbar outfit certainly turned heads.

problem with that job,” recalls Meikle, “was how different areas of Scotland had different half day closings and it could drive you nuts if you forgot and a shop wasn’t open when you got there.” Meikle wasn’t a big fan of the TK Bedford (describing them as Luton Tin Cans) but after a good stint on the carpets, our man made the decision to come off the road. Better pay & conditions plus the prospect of working fixed hours (albeit doing shift work) was the attraction for Meikle to take on a security job at the Cummins engine factory at Shotts. He was to do this for 15 years but with some spare (day) time on his hands, Meikle was to give his best efforts to the preservation world. No surprise that his first love was with tractors and at one point, his collection was nine tractors strong + 11 stationary engines. When we ask about his favourite a big smile

comes on his face: “It has to be the MasseyHarris one I had from 1949 with the Perkins engine.” When you are brought up on a farm like Meikle was then you know first-hand the huge manner of things a good tractor can do for you. Of course, Meikle was to move across to heavier commercials with his first one being a 54G ERF that had been used by D&M Smith of Wishaw: “I was told when working at Smiths, this little four-wheeler apparently did two loads to London from the old airport at Renfrew. The loads were crated and after being put on the back of the wagon, they were just sheeted down as normal. Nobody knew at the time, but these crates apparently contained gold ingots.” No samples of precious metal were left in the cab by the time Meikle got it but he was able to use it for a bit of farm work before he

▲ Meikle spent three years on the Atky’s restoration. He was also asked if it could be used as a backdrop in the TV series ‘Strathblair’ and for that, this cattle float body was added.

sold it on. His next long-term project was to be WRB 501 and while it proved to be a terrific servant for him, Meikle recalls he almost didn’t buy it: “It was in 1984 when I was working at Cummins that a guy called Billy Brown just pestered the life out of me. He kept on about this eight-wheeler which needed saving and apparently I was the one to do it. I wasn’t at all interested but in the end he dragged me round to the back of Broxburn Co-op where this showman’s motor had been lying for about 5 years.” After eventually tracing the vehicle owner (Junior Bliss) a deal was done and Meikle’s ERF four-wheeler was used to tow the Atky back home to Norwood House at Auchenheath: “Before I took the tow bar off,” says Meikle, “I tried to give it a jump start. And as it coughed straight into life I at least knew it was a runner.”


Meikle was to own this 1955 Atkinson eightwheeler for something like 20 years. He was to spend three years on its restoration (he asks us to mention Alastair Weir as being a big help in the re-build) and while he did originally consider painting it into the colours of Sam Anderson of Newhouse, he eventually got the nod from Tennant’s of Forth to copy their old livery: “They are no relation but the fact that they used to come to our old farm was the main reason I wanted to have it with their paint job.” The Atkinson was new to Bamfords of Alfreton but within a year it passed to Woodcocks of Chorley who ran it until 1966. It then had the next 18 years or so on the showman’s scene before Meikle rescued

▲ Meikle’s daughter Jillian – and the dog Carrie – seen while driving on the Dunbar rally road run in ’93.


32-37 Tennant.indd 36

05/09/2017 12:15

▲ This was the last Scania Derek bought and then modified. When taken on by Gallacher’s, they kept the original paint job. Photo courtesy Derek Parnaby.


▲ Meikle driving on the Bath run. You can just see Stonehenge in the background.

it from a lingering demise. For its first 12 months it had hauled a four-wheel drawbar trailer and Meikle was to recreate such a configuration when he rescued a similar Crane four-wheel trailer from the scrapheap at the Shotts factory after an extension had been built. No surprise, this outfit generated all sorts of attention when it came onto the preservation scene and Meikle was even asked to use it as a prop on the TV series ‘Strathblair.’ In its time, WRB 501 – and Meikle must have been photographed by loads of people. Although the first time I asked for an interview for Truck & Driver magazine regarding this outfit (when I went to the 1993 Dunbar Vintage Vehicle Rally) I was promised that Meikle’s daughter Jillian would drive the outfit on the event’s regularity road run. Jillian was only 28 at the time but she handled this cumbersome outfit with consummate ease. In fact she drove that steadily that Meikle’s German Shepherd dog – Carrie – spent the entire run fast asleep on the engine hump top. This beautiful dog was to be part of the fixtures & fittings of the Tennant outfit that drove far and wide across the UK mainland. If Meikle – or Jillian – was not at the helm then good friends Adam Moir or Arthur Ramage was generally taking control. In May ’96, Robert Laidlaw was to ask Meikle if he would drive his Reid’s Transport Leyland Octopus and trailer across to an event in Northern Ireland so – in turn – I asked Meikle if he could put yours truly onto the Atkinson’s insurance so I could also go across the water but driving the Atky. I can hardly put into words what a great time I had and even though this three day stint at the Atky’s wheel occurred more than 20 years ago, the memories are still more than vivid. It was great. I had started my working life in ’64 as a driver’s mate in a Leyland Super Comet car transporter with similar four-wheel drawbar trailer but I was a complete novice in how to reverse such an outfit. Because of this, I first asked Meikle for any advice he could give me about going backwards with such a handful: “The only suggestion I can make,” he said then, “is that you never drive into a situation unless you know you can also drive forward out of it again.” I have never forgotten those succinct words.

▲ Robert Laidlaw – who owned Reid’s Transport at Minishant – often asked Meikle if he would take his 1957 Leyland Octopus out and about. I accompanied this combination when they drove to the South of England for the ’96 Bournemouth to Bath run.


We all know that nothing lasts forever but Meikle’s long-term relationship with his Atkinson ended in rather a sad fashion. In May ’04 when heading north up the A74 from Carlisle late at night, a foreign driven HGV drove straight into the back of him without attempting to brake. Not surprisingly all sorts of damage was caused to the outfit which included the doors being jammed on the Atky’s cab that drastically slowed the rescue of the cab’s occupants. Arthur Ramage was riding with Meikle at the time and he had a nasty injury to the back of his head. The dog was OK but subsequently Meikle realised he’d incurred a bad injury to his hip which meant (in all practical terms) his days of driving classic golden oldies were over. The Crane drawbar trailer was a twisted heap while the insurance company was to also write

off the Atkinson but the subsequent disposal etc of its battered remains still leaves a bitter taste in Meikle’s mouth more than 13 years later. For someone who has 82 years of life behind him, Meikle has many memories which can still generate a tear or two – if he thinks about them. On the up side, his memory store is more than overflowing with far more happier times. Like many of Meikle’s friends and family, I too have many memories of this particular man – and the various steeds he’s driven. And whenever his name comes to mind, I immediately think of a bespectacled profile – with a smile on his face – who always seemed to enjoy being at the wheel of a headturning classic. Enjoy your memories Meikle you have generated many more for your thousands of followers. v

▲ Meikle giving Carrie an ice cream on one of the breaks in the Bournemouth to Bath run. October 2017

32-37 Tennant.indd 37


05/09/2017 12:16

Classic lightweights

Leylandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Lightweights


When this splendid Metro 310 van was photographed it had covered just under 17k and was only on its second owner. Photo Russ Harvey.

The Metro years 1982-1990 Russ Harvey continues his look at the car derived vans and light commercials produced by British Leyland and Austin Rover.


he Austin/Morris Mini 5cwt commercials soldiered on, cornering the small light commercial market until the Metro van appeared on the scene. The Metro was developed under the guise of ADO88 (Amalgamated Drawing Office) by the design and engineering department of BMC. This was replaced by LC8 during 1977, before the Mini-Metro car appeared on the market during 1980. A significant year for the Austin MiniMetro was 1982, when the up-market and extremely stylish saloon versions were launched, badged as Vanden-Plas and MG. However, at the opposite end of the scale, the basic Austin Metro City appeared, and this was

â&#x2013;˛ The dash came straight from the saloon. Photo Russ Harvey.

to form the basis for the Metro van that was to roll off the production line before the end of that year. British Leyland (BL) had no plans to add a factory pick-up to compliment van production. The Metro van surprisingly was badged as a Morris upon its 1982 launch, but during 1985

a name change saw the commercial referred to simply as the Metro 310 - the Morris name was dropped. The Mini and Metro vans would have overlapped production, but make no mistake, from the time the Metro van variant was launched it was always intended as the


38-40 BL Pt3.indd 38

05/09/2017 12:18

Words: Russ Harvey Photos: As stated

successor to the Mini van. When the Morris name disappeared from the Metro, so did the marque, so, sadly, it was the last vehicle to carry the famous name. The Metro 310 remained in this guise up until 1987, but later it became known as the Rover Metrovan and continued in production up to 1990. The face-lifted Metro range followed and emerged as the Rover 100, but sadly there was no place for the van in Rover’s plans utilising the increased engine capacity of the K-series, so what may have been sadly never was! The Metro van was available with a choice of engines and trim levels. The retail prices of the four models in the new range were as follows upon launch: 1.0-litre van started at £3,211, the 1.3-litre van was £3,387, the 1.0L specification were £3,529, and the 1.3L was priced at £3,705. Suspension and tyres were carried over from the saloon range, 135-12 radials were fitted to 1.0 models and 155/7012 radial tyres to 1.3 models. All Metros had Hydragas suspension front and rear, inertia seat belts and a load space floor mat. BL offered a three-piece folding raised plywood floor, to assist loading the cargo area due to height of the rear sill. This ‘Unipart Easy-Load’ floor retailed at £83.50 but made loading much easier.


▲ Neat engine bay complete with 1275cc motor. Photo Russ Harvey. ◄ A steel bulkhead and mesh screen was fitted behind the seats. Photo Russ Harvey.

Unofficial Metro Van Conversions

The ‘unofficial’ Metro van had already been produced before the official BL version appeared. At least two dealers had exploited the late arrival and decided to produce a van conversion based on the saloon. Dealer Wicliffe Motor Company of Gloucester & Stroud came up with their own conversion named the Mercia van. This was based on the Metro of your choice, and an additional cost of £200 to the purchase price was all it took to convert. British Leyland dealer Bletchley Motor Car sales had very similar ideas and also produced a Metro van. Their model was based on the Metro City and boasted a payload capacity of 5.4cwt. This one was referred to as the Metro Camion van and continued to be offered after the factory version was launched. The Camion even retained the rear seats. Bletchley Motors indicated that over 150 such conversions were produced - do you know any that survive? Incidentally Bletchley Motors also carried out a conversion of the Maestro van into a pick-up.

▼ The Metro could carry a 310kg payload and had a load space of 38.2cu ft. Photo Russ Harvey.

Metro 310

The Metro van offered a 310kg payload with a capacious load space within a compact exterior, and it was agile and economical with superb manoeuvrability. There was a choice of the lower powered Metro 310 City or the larger engined Metro 310L, both of which were fully compatible with unleaded fuel. The tailgate lifted well out of the way on gas-assisted struts to reveal a load space of 38.2cu ft, and there was minimal intrusion in the cargo area by the shallow wheel arches. Behind the driver was a fitted steel bulkhead and mesh screen, and to prevent damage to the sides, hardboard panels October 2017

38-40 BL Pt3.indd 39



05/09/2017 12:18

Classic lightweights

▲ South Glamorgan County Council, Highways Department, Rover Metro 310 1.0 City van G971 VOU, seen working in Cardiff in June 1990. This was a Western BRS vehicle on contract hire to the council. Photo Mike Street.

were fitted. A rear lamp unit was installed assisting night-time loading operations. Both the City and L models were fitted with servoassisted, ventilated front disc brakes with 4-piston callipers. The saloon cab provided good visibility, with well laid out controls and instruments, and a heated rear window was standard to assist rear visibility. The sales literature of the day quickly pointed out the benefits of driving such a van. The METRO 310 CITY was practical, economical and comfortable, equipped with the 1.0 power unit, that offered value for money as well as being a rugged load carrier. It benefitted from a fully adjustable driver’s seat and both seats came fitted with head restraints. The vinyl seat trim was hard wearing and easy to clean, and the fitted carpet could be replaced by a full rubber floor covering-where required at an extra cost. Plenty of stowage space was available with large door bins for accommodating clipboards, order books and the like, and a parcel shelf was also provided. The METRO 310L came equipped with the 1.3 litre engine plus a number of additions in

style, equipment and comfort. A stereo cassette player and twin door-mounted speakers was fitted. Both seats were fully-adjustable, providing comfort for both the passenger as well as the driver. Fabric seat facings were fitted, whilst the vinyl trim was a no-cost option. Additional equipment included driver and passenger armrests, a rear wash/wipe system and a digital clock. Fleet users were quick to order and deploy the Metro van, and large orders were placed by the Royal Mail, British Telecom and local authorities. Some of the larger utilities were also quick to see the benefits of the small compact van, and electricity companies and gas suppliers often found use for them for their meter readers. Water companies and local councils were eager to use them for various tasks. Even the armed forces found use for them!

Metro Pick-up for ‘Esso’

There were a few Metro vans converted into pick-ups, most being one-offs. However, the closest you could get to an ‘official’ Metro

▲ Metro pick-up converted by Austin Rover for use in the Esso refinery near Southampton. Photo courtesy Helena Davies.

pick-up was a conversion that was carried out for the Esso refinery at Fawley near Southampton. Previously they had used Mini pick-ups and Esso approached their local BL dealer looking for replacements. With 50 Metro pick-ups requested, the local Austin Rover Group dealer Dibden Purlieu Motors of Southampton, were of course happy to oblige and set about producing their own Metro pickup. Surprisingly, these were registered on the log-books as Metro pick-ups from new back in 1985. Following this success another batch of 60 conversions was carried out by Dibden the following year. The basis for this pick-up was the Metro City 1.0 van, and the conversion added £575 to the basic van price of £3373 from Dibden’s. This conversion bridged the gap after the Mini pick-up had been withdrawn in 1982 and the decision by Austin-Rover not to produce a factory version. The body conversion was carried out in conjunction with Corvesgate Coachcraft, based in Bournemouth. The Metro van had its body and roof panels cut down behind the B-posts, the lowered side’s required supporting strengtheners to be inserted. The original van floor remained but was covered with plywood. The cab-back panel was produced from glassreinforced plastic (GRP), and this was attached to the roof section and fixed to the original metal load-bed. GRP panels were also used to line the internal body sides, and it was finished off with a GRP metal-edged hinged tailgate. I have managed to locate and track down one these rare survivors in West Wales, sadly in a sorry state, but it’s not known as to how many others survive. After the demise of the Metro van a decade would elapse before a successor appeared, albeit for a brief period and produced in far too few numbers. I am of course referring to the Rover 25 Commerce and the MG ZR Express vans. Once again, my thanks must be recorded to Mike Street for his help with archive photographs, Daniel Pyke for his Metro sales literature and the ‘Metro Owners Club’ for their help assistance and guidance. Go to their website - – for more details. v

▲ Austin Metro 310 1.0 Mail Van B673 GVK, new in March 1985 to the Head Postmaster in Morpeth. Photographed at Rothbury in 1987. Photo Mike Street.


38-40 BL Pt3.indd 40

05/09/2017 12:18

pirit of

h t r o w e l t hut

RACE DAY - 01.10.2017 The ‘Spirit of Shuttleworth’ trophy

Anticipated Sprint Participants (All pre-1939): Triumph 3.5hp, Delage Racer B, Frazer Nash Norris special, Lorraine Dietrich, Vauxhall Viper, Rolls Royce 20hp, Riley 12/4 special, Lea Francis Hyper, Alvis Powys-Lybbe special, Wolseley-Siddeley Coppa Florio racer, Bugatti Type 37, Austin 7-Nippy, Vauxhall 30/98 Rowley Racing special, Morgan super sports, Berliet/Curtiss Racing, Bentley 3.0 litre, Railton LST special, Frazer Nash TT Rep, Frazer Nash Anzani enquire Boulogne, Mors Curtiss, Ronart W162 56, and Delage Type X cope De L’Auto, plus more! End of season finale with vintage aircraft flying displays and mock air races, ground show entertainment and static exhibits, visiting car and motorcycle clubs, and the Shuttleworth Sprint!

Family entertainment at this top class vintage airshow, including period paddock, live music from the Glamourphones, flight simulator, free model making, tour of the picturesque Regency Swiss Garden, free vintage bus rides to The House (former Mansion open for tea & cake 10.00-14.00), and much, much more! Line up of aircraft includes the race winning DH88 Comet, record breaking Mew Gull, and visiting Mystery Ship. Come in 1920’s fashions and get into the spirit for fabulous day out! Old Warden Aerodrome, Nr Biggleswade, Bedfordshire, SG18 9EP

Registered Charity No. 307534

On location

Words & Pictures: Dean Reader

▲ Organiser Graham Charles’ 1952 AEC Mammoth Major petrol tanker in Esso livery.

Fawley Classic Vehicle Show Throughout the summer months there are loads of small classic vehicle shows held up and down the country. Dean Reader paid a visit to such an event held at Fawley in Hampshire on 25th June 2017.


t is quite easy to get used to the same old shows appearing, and dare I say it, the same old classic cars and commercials attending. So, it made a great change when I attended a new show local to me. Organised by Graham Charles, who himself owns a stunning AEC fuel tanker, 2017 was this event’s first year, and I am sure it will be even bigger and better next year, should it happen. Teething troubles are bound to appear, but several exhibitors, and even visitors, offered some friendly tips with regards entertainment.

But, all that aside, the variety of exhibits made it all worthwhile: tractors, military, heavy goods vehicles and even an open topped bus added to the diversity. Another plus is the fact that modern classics are welcomed in all categories. Yes, I feel Graham is onto a winner with this show; and the blazing sun certainly added that extra something! v ▼ This stunning 1937 AEC Matador lorry carries what must be the ultimate period accessory! ►


42-43 Fawley Classic Vehicle Show.indd 42

05/09/2017 12:32


▲ This 1968 Morris half-ton van is a Hampshire show regular. ► A 1951 Morris J-Type van looking resplendent in green and black.

▲ You’re almost always guaranteed to see a proper ‘farm style’ Land Rover at a show, such as this 1952 Series I. ► More modern vehicles were also welcomed, such as this 2013 Scania P360 eight-wheeler – a future classic.

▲ This superb 1950 Austin K4 carries the livery of Lee’s Domestic Stores, Fina agents. These lorries look huge until a person stands alongside! October 2017

42-43 Fawley Classic Vehicle Show.indd 43



05/09/2017 12:32

Transport heritage

Starting out

Arthur Ingram tells the story of life at haulage and van hire company, Capon & Sons Ltd.

▲ An interesting photograph from the 1930s, which shows one of the Ford ‘AA’ model vans recently completed in the livery of Crompton Parkinson Ltd, and destined for the demonstration of their electric light bulbs. The location is the main garage at Vale Royal, and just to the rear of the Ford van can be glimpsed No 24 (YV 5361), one of the old FWDs in the fleet undergoing repair with the engine removed.

y first job in transport was shortly after leaving HM forces and an earlier job as a draughtsman. The drawing job was ok, but my interest in transport as a hobby took over, and I started to search the ‘Sits. Vac.’ column of the trade press for something suitable. One such vacancy was for a traffic clerk for a north London haulier, and after the usual letter and an interview, I was taken on. Whether I was the only applicant I never knew, but I liked to think I clinched the job because of my enthusiasm for the subject, which impressed the boss. The company had very early beginnings, and were probably not in transport, for the original notice of the establishment of a

Private Limited Company, was in October 1919, and listed the business as being hay, corn, soot and manure merchants, and as a cartage contractor. The first director was H T (Henry) Capon, with the address given as Maiden Lane, York Road, and in later years the company stated that they were “Carriers Since 1891”, so that was probably when Henry Capon first entered business on his own account. With the demise of horse transport, the original basis of the business became motor transport, later developing into three spheres of operation: general haulage, contract van hire, and van hire on a casual basis, or selfdrive which was most unusual. I had a mixture of emotions when I first


visited the company, for although it was not just an open yard with a shed for an office, which was often the case with small haulage companies, it did embrace proper brick-built offices and garage. But the location was at the far end of a short cul-de-sac with the grand title of Vale Royal. I later discovered that it was previously known as Pleasant Grove, a name which conjures up ideas of a green and pleasant place to work, rather than the surprise which greeted any visitor not familiar with the area. For the short street was home to a horse slaughterers, a tripe dressers, a furniture factory, commercial bodybuilders, the transport business and the long, low building which housed the ‘Patent Steam Carpet Beating Company’.


44 Capon.indd 44

05/09/2017 12:35

Words: Arthur Ingram Photos: Arthur Ingram Collection


▲ One of the many Ford model AA vans operated by the company during the 1930s, displaying a copious amount of advertising. Contact hire has been a lucrative business for transport contractors right through history, for it possesses attractions for both parties if handled correctly. Here, No 67 in the fleet is probably fresh from the paint shop, for it is parked across the street for photography, and the bodybuilding works of W&T Robson is just out of sight behind the van. The photograph also illustrates how narrow Vale Royal is. The firm of Steam Carpet Beaters is visible on the right. ◄ In 1932 the company secured a substantial contract for ten vans for Crompton Parkinson Ltd. The vans were painted in a variety of styles and liveries and were designed for publicity as well as deliveries. The transport manager related the story of one driver who rather sheepishly announced: “The van fell over, guv!” – yes, the high body was a little unstable if cornered too fast.

The company offices were in what had originally been built as a private house for the senior director, presumably to keep a close eye on the business. It was on three floors, and even featured a south-facing sun terrace on the top floor - but this actually looked out over the glass-roofed garage toward a high railway viaduct. Within the company was a rumour that this arrangement did not last very long, for the director’s wife was not impressed with the surroundings, and most of all when she took her morning bath on a winter’s morning, all the hot water had been taken by the drivers topping up their radiators! When I joined the company in the early 1950s, a large part of the British road haulage industry was under state control in the shape of the British Transport Commission. So, as free enterprise carriers, our sphere of operation was severely restricted. The general limit was within a 25-mile radius of a stated company base, but certain exceptions were possible and in this respect the company was

▲ The first of a batch of Four Model AA Ford vans for the Great Northern Laundry, who were located close to the Finsbury Park station of the old LNER, probably the inspiration for the company name. The van body features bi-fold doors on the nearside, making for easy access, while a step is provided at the rear. Laundries were big business during the period between the wars, providing a prompt service for most families except the very poor. Loads usually consisted of large baskets for the best service, with the legendry ‘bagwash’ for the less well-off. For speed of operation, laundries usually employed van boys to do much of the handling, while the driver was often employed in the role of agent and salesman. October 2017

44 Capon.indd 45



05/09/2017 12:35

Transport heritage

the fleet had at one time included Dennis vans, Berliet six-wheelers, FWDs with drawbar trailers

▲ A good period photo showing loading of one of the many C-type Morris-Commercials operated during the 1930s. They included box van, tilt van and dropside types, and were used both on general haulage and contract hire. On this occasion, the vehicle is being loaded with an old style of hollow block, and the location might be one of the nearby railway yards, for much of the work originated from the railway companies. This lorry dates from 1933 and, according to a press report of September of that year, 12 of this type had been acquired, and featured removable name boards in order to display the customer’s name. The last of them remained in use until the mid-1950s.

able to obtain permits for vehicles to travel up to 40 miles from base, to collect building materials for delivery within the stated limit. Such was the limit of control that each vehicle had to carry a copy of the permit whilst operating within the terms of the exception. So, the general haulage vehicles were mainly confined to the delivery of bricks and bagged cement which came within the ‘building materials’ heading. The basic design adopted was flat platform bodywork with a detachable tailboard, all constructed in light alloy for the lowest unladen weight as well as durability in view of the loads carried. This part of the fleet was mainly petrol engined Bedford O-types, plus a couple of Dodge with Perkins diesels and a solitary Commer of underfloor engine layout, joined later by the S-type Bedfords.

From all this I was able to ascertain that in addition to the Morris-Commercial C-types, and Ford model AA vans, the fleet had at one time included Dennis vans, Berliet sixwheelers, FWDs with drawbar trailers, and even Fordson agricultural tractors adapted for road use. There was even a short cinefilm of these tractors at work in the nearby Kings Cross railway goods yard. This first task resulted in being a real fillip to my transport interest, but was never to be repeated. The next surprise, a little later, was when

I was given a brown coat, a torch and a notebook and pen. “Go and get the numbers of all the tyres of the fleet” I was told. Now, I knew all about tyre sizes marked on the tyre sidewalls, but never realised that each tyre carried an individual identity number. With a fleet of about 60 vehicles, this task took some time, and not without a fair amount of cursing on my part. Creeping about under every vehicle (no inspection pit), was not what I had joined up for, and trying to decipher numbers on old tyres that had been subjected to ‘kerbing’, and those on the inside of ‘twins’, was a job I was glad to get completed. You can imagine my astonishment when I heard some time later, that the fitter was alerted to the fact that the garage had been forced open one night, and all the lorries were up on bricks, and the wheels and tyres stolen. I now thought that all my hard work of recording the tyre numbers would be appreciated. But my pride was dashed when I was told that the insurers were not the bit interested in the numbers — just list the total by size, and we will settle the claim. The staffing of the company was arranged so that one director was in regular attendance, and it was he who oversaw the day-to-day running of the business. His brother, who was the senior director, attended the office perhaps twice a week, or as required. An accountant kept control of the regular payments, expenses and wages, while I was expected to handle enquiries, customers, queries from drivers and general tasks connected with


Naturally I was full of enthusiasm for this first job in transport, and I was given a shock when soon after I began work the senior director said; “Go and clear out the bathroom” — this was not the sort of job I was expecting! It turned out that as the offices were located in what had been a normal residence, the bathroom had been retained but used as a dump for any paperwork no longer required. The place really was full, even to the extent of the bath being full of drivers’ old log sheets, and with these it was possible to build up a guide to the extent of the fleet in pre-war days. Also of interest were the numerous manufacturers magazines and brochures, which started me off with collecting such diverse material as The Bedford Transport Magazine, Tyre News, Payload magazine, and Commercial Motor, as well as various auction catalogues.

▲ One of a second batch of Dennis 45cwt vans allocated to a contract with the London County Council in 1938. It is finished in the dark green livery of the Supplies Dept., and was probably used for the delivery of food to the many schools and institutions provided for the very large municipality. The photo is embossed with the name of ‘Clement, Butler & Cross’, and old established bodybuilders located at Brentford in Middlesex, who had produced distinctive bodywork for both cars and commercials during their existence.


44 Capon.indd 46

05/09/2017 12:36


▲ Probably one of the largest vans owned by the company in pre-WW2 days was this 3-ton Commer Luton for a firm of bed manufacturers, who were based in the old Palace of Industry building which once formed part of the British Empire Exhibition of 1924. Difficult to discern in this view, the cab includes small windows just above the front wings. Whether these ‘kerb windows’ were fitted to both sides is not known. At the cessation of this contract, the van was repainted red and employed on general haulage work.

vehicles, our transport manager and his two fitters. I was also expected to handle wages when the accountant was on holiday, and to do any typing and invoices when the regular typist was not available. Although I had the title of traffic clerk, the work was not so concerned with handling traffic orders and loads as is usual in a traffic office. The two fitters handled the regular servicing of the entire fleet, and there was always one vehicle in the garage for major overhaul, being worked on as time permitted. Other specialist tasks were put out to local agents as necessary. The two fitters usually handled breakdowns, repairing vehicles if possible at the roadside. The brick lorries as we called them, were subjected to punishing work on difficult sites, and this often resulted in broken half-shafts, prop-shafts or road springs. Tyre problems were handled by a local dealer.

▲ A pair of Bedford 5-tonners with van bodies fitted, idle after shifts with the Royal Mail at Christmas. The Post Office hired many vans from various contractors during the busy pre-Christmas peak, but they spent most of the shift waiting at Mount Pleasant or one of the temporary sorting depots. The local one to our yard was in the old Metropolitan Cattle Market, between York Way and Caledonian Road, Islington.

as vans were the Post Office and the local Gas Board. The Contract Hire part of the fleet was mainly concerned with small vans finished in a livery chosen by the customer. They were operated under an A-contract licence if we supplied the driver, or a C-hiring licence if the customer paid their own driver. Most were operated on a daily basis, returning to the garage each night, except for one contract for a couple of 5- tonners which were kept at the customer’s premises, and returned only for servicing or repair. The contract fleet was the least troublesome, probably because they were not as hard- worked as the heavier vehicles, had regular drivers, and were under constant

supervision by the hirers. The situation was far different for the self-drive vans, as explained later. The van fleet was made up of a variety of vehicles, ranging in capacity from 5cwt to 30cwt embracing Austin GV2 and GV3 models, based on the A40 car chassis, Jowett ‘Bradford’ with its two-cylinder engine, the popular Ford E83W 10cwt, MorrisCommercial J-type, and a pair of Austin K8 ‘Three-Way’ vans for an electrical wholesaler. Painting and lettering was carried out according to the wishes of the hirer, and included the usual greens and blues with contrasting lettering, while one Ford was finished in a striking cerise shade with raised


In many ways, the company was forwardthinking. The heavier vehicles all had white tailboards, with two rear lights and two red rear reflectors. All drivers were issued with peaked caps, complete with a company badge (see photo), which denoted a smart driver carrying a box. To keep in touch with certain vans in the fleet (no mobile ‘phones in the 1950s), a two-way radio station was set up, with the aerial located at the top of a high water tower just across the street. This was another of my duties. There were occasions when large vans were required for seasonal traffic, so the company had several lightweight containers which could be used in conjunction with the 5-ton flats. These containers had no floor, but were fitted with double doors at the rear and a single rolling shutter on the nearside. They were normally stored in the open on empty oil drums, easily lifted on to a vehicle and quickly secured with C-clamps. While I was with the company the main customers for the vehicles

▲ This Contract Hire 5cwt Jowett Bradford van is posed prior to entering service with a firm of printers, and is finished in a bright shade of green. Alongside is one of the floorless containers, still bearing the Royal Mail stickers from the last job. To the rear of the van is the main rail line from Kings Cross, and just visible beyond is Fredrick Street, the location for the epic shots in ‘The Ladykillers’ The house in the film was built at the end of the road, and the local children were promised a street party so long as they didn’t vandalise the set. October 2017

44 Capon.indd 47



05/09/2017 12:36

Transport heritage

▲ The strain put on a chassis, springs and tyres is obvious in this view of Bedford No 302 as it is loaded close to the kilns of the London Brick Company works at Stewartby. This work was hard on the hands, and as gloves weren’t issued, many drivers/loaders used protective pads cut from old lorry inner tubes. The white tailboard, reflectors and twin rear lights were part of the company’s efforts towards road safety.

chrome letters! As indicated above, the most troublesome part of the fleet was that allocated to the Self-Drive service offered by the company, which by its very title was prone to all sorts of problems. It consisted mainly of small vans including Ford, Bedford, Austin, Jowett, Trojan and Morris-Commercial types ranging from 5- to 30-cwt capacity — a van for all occasions. Smallest in the fleet were the 5cwt Jowett ‘Bradford’ vans, which were popular because of being the cheapest to hire, either by day, weekend or longer as required. They were

▲ One of the Bedford O-types seen unloading at the Rawlplug Co premises near Hendon after the journey down from the London Brick works at Stewartby, Bedfordshire. The unusually high stack of bricks on the right meant a lot of throwing up to a stacker on the top. This was the first lorry driven, previously driving was limited to cars and vans.

quite easy to drive and capable of hard work in the right hands, but not really suitable for self-drive hire. As part of my job I had to check that the hirer could handle the vehicle, and the first problem to be overcome was the fact that the gear change mechanism was opposite to that of most other vans current at that time. First gear was positioned down toward the floor and the driver, with second speed located up and to the left, and the third or top gear being down and left. The result was the poor old engine suffered from drivers continually trying to start in top gear, and then attempting to change down when they

realised the mistake. By comparison, the most popular vans were the Morris J-type with its large capacity body and sliding doors, and the Austin A40 for its driver comfort. The vans came in a variety of colours, and most carried no form of identification, which tended to suit private hirers. For the specialist ‘rag trade’, one of the Morris J-type vans was built as a high-roof gown van with hanging rails, a fixed bulkhead and lockable single rear door. During busy periods, we had to resort to hiring vans from another contractor, who happened to be involved with house

▲ Two of the Bedford O-types loaded and ready to leave the London Brick Co works at Stewartby. They will head south, probably to one of the ‘new towns’. The loads appear to be 3000 each of ‘keyed’ bricks, i.e. those designed to accept a covering of plaster or render.


44 Capon.indd 48

05/09/2017 12:36


the Austin A40 vans were popular with individuals who normally drove a car removals, so they often had vans standing idle between moves. It was J Neil & Sons of Stoke Newington, and in the trade they were well known for their ageing fleet of Ford AA and BB vans. On more than one occasion the local Gas Board would ‘phone and implore us to urge Mr Neil to mend his vans. Evidently when the old gas cookers were carried, the legs went through holes in the floor!


As mentioned above, the Austin A40 vans were popular with individuals who normally drove a car, but needed a little more space than that provided by the usual boot. One such customer arrived on a Friday to arrange a weekend hire, and all seemed correct with the driving licence, his ability to handle the vehicle, and the fact that he paid cash for the hire and the deposit required, before he sped away. It was early on the Sunday morning when I was visited by the police, who seemed to know all about the van, but just wanted to check the details in so far as the driver was concerned. After telling them all I could remember about the transaction, they departed with the words, “You’ll read all about it in the newspapers tomorrow”. The next day it all came to light. Our van had been used to carry a haul of guns and ammunition stolen from a Territorial Army Centre in Essex. It was some time before we were able to recover the van, and later I had to make an appearance at the Old Bailey for the trial. On another occasion, a Morris PV van was hired from us, and a police interview ensued. This time the hirer had used the van to stage a hijack of a BRS van loaded with carpets somewhere to the north of London. Another appearance at the Old Bailey ensued in due course. Such was the variety of working for a haulier, but it was four years well spent for the experience gained. It provided a start to commercial driving, and the company started me off with examinations for the Institute — and I can still remember the not-so-sweet smell of the tripe-dressers next door! v

▲ One of the Self-Drive section of the fleet photographed in the yard after being painted in the fleet colour of ‘Post Office’ red, with silver transfers for fleet number and owner’s name. This type of van did not prove popular with hirers, so no further additions were made.

▲ The introduction of the 7-ton S-type, or ‘Big Bedford’ in 1960, was acted upon by the company as being suitable for larger loads in the building materials part of the business. The first was obtained soon after introduction, and several more followed. Seen here is an example from 1953, unfortunately posed against the rather dilapidated remains of the company stables. This building was later rebuilt and a ramp installed to provide access to the first floor for light vans.

► Several vehicles were added to the fleet following the partial denationalisation of British Road Services, with the emphasis being placed on contract-hire vans. I visited several BRS depots to inspect vehicles, prior to the bidding process, and one vehicle that joined the fleet was this Bedford JCV van, which had just received our fleet number. It was on contract with a firm of printers in the City, and had originally been part of the fleet of Thomas Tilling and based at their spacious garage at Searles Road in southeast London. October 2017

44 Capon.indd 49



05/09/2017 12:37

Transport heritage

Eight legged

MAN Mark Gredzinski looks at the classic eightwheeled MAN at work.


he rigid eight-wheeler has predominantly been a British staple which often never found much favour in other countries. Manufacturers like Foden and AEC built good reputations with such vehicles, while foreign lorry makers had little in their portfolio to challenge the home-grown products. However, things were about to change; MAN trucks were a relative newcomer to these shores but once they had a foot in the door with artics, so to speak, it was time for them to have a slice of the eight-legger pie as well! In 1975 MAN Concessionaires (GB) Ltd imported ready assembled MAN vehicles from Germany in tractor form. Later that year at the Harrogate Tipper Show, they demonstrated a new eight-wheeled tipper directed at UK operators for 30 tons GWV. This was the 30.232VFK powered by an MAN six-cylinder 232bhp naturally aspirated 11.045-litre diesel. Like all MAN heavy tractors and rigids, it featured a column gearchange in the Saviem derived steel tilting cab. With its low central engine hump the cab was both roomy and quiet since the insulation was extensive, and the absence of a conventional gearstick arrangement meant less holes to allow engine and road noise through. A couple of years later, a conventional floor mounted gear

change was introduced but the lorry was still very quiet. This was in part because of its subdued engine note, due to internal design features in its combustion chambers. The MAN had low gearing which was suitable for mud-plugging but early models had no topend for motorway work, and this affected fuel consumption. In 1979, Leyland products (including Scammell) held a healthy quarter of the eightwheeled tipper market. By then, the improved MAN 30.240 was on stream with its power

uprated to 246bhp. It was available as the VF for flatbed or skip/tanker road work, and the VFK as an 8x4 rigid tipper. The latter had inter-axle and cross-axle diff-locks on the hub reduction rear axles to aid traction in tricky conditions. The tandem bogie was a wellestablished and strong MAN design with good articulation and a forgiving ride. A 16.5-inch diameter clutch fed power through to the ZF AK 6-90 splitter gearbox giving 12 forward speeds, and by now the lorry was earning good praise from operators and drivers alike.

â&#x2013;˛ This 1982 model was photographed in the early 1990s in Walsall. It belonged to John Smith of Melbourne in Derby, and often carried solid fuels like coal.


50-54 Eight legged Man.indd 50

05/09/2017 13:03

Feature: Transport heritage Words & photos: Mark Gredzinski

H Brown of Barnsley were well known operators of MAN tractor units, many of which hauled scrap metal. Their 1979 VF 30.240 flatbed had a grille feature that is not immediately noticeable - the letter ‘N’ has been replaced by an ‘M’ to read MAM! The photo was taken in October 1986 at the Tyburn road in north Birmingham. This lorry was later refurbished in Brown’s brighter new livery and the last grille letter reverted to the conventional MAN logo.

Trumpet blowing

The 1981 MAN brochure demonstrated more than fulsome praise for its own range of rigid eights. “Unquestionably the finest eight-wheel tipper in the business” was the rather bold opening line. While there was an element of truth to this, there was many a Foden or old Scammell Routeman that might have spanked them in the mud, and could carry a better payload as well. Foden still had a great reputation among tipper men and Leyland Octopus and Constructor models were definitely up there too. The MAN was not marketed as an off-road machine as such but pulled well in general quarry circumstances, although the lock on the power steering was not very generous for tight turning. Many operators liked them as although they were a little more expensive than some makes, they were built to last which worked out better in the long run. Rival makes like Volvo with their FL10 were up to half a tonne lighter, but the robust MAN was found to be better suited for the demands of heavier duty site work. Subsequently, by 1986 MAN tippers had close to 10 percent of the market as sales steadily climbed towards the end of the decade. Overall, the MAN eight-legger gave a very good account of itself and this was reflected by its acceptance over a relatively short period of time. In 1990, it was replaced by the F90 range of rigid eight models. These sported an entirely new cab that would feature some even more powerful engines. v


▲ Captured on the M6 in June 1993, this MAN eight-legger was seemingly a long way from its base. WH Malcolm of Brookfield in Scotland were no strangers to MAN lorries, having run them since at least 1976, among many other makes. ◄ Leaning over with a full load in March 1995, this MAN was run by Drinkwater Sabey. In 1978 H Sabey and Co amalgamated with WW Drinkwater to form the new company. This head-on photograph shows the appearance of slots under the grille and the slightly higher cab mounting on this machine, one of the last of the model to be produced.

▲ Based in Kingswinford, not far from Dudley in the West Midlands, AE Hawkins run brick and block haulage together with tipper work. Nowadays, Scanias feature heavily, but back in March 1996 this ten-year-old MAN was in use and newer F90 models followed. October 2017

50-54 Eight legged Man.indd 51



05/09/2017 13:04

Transport heritage

▲ Pulling up the Aldridge Road in Great Barr, Birmingham, with a full load of waste, this MAN was on hire from Birmingham based Speedway Ltd Truck Rentals. The photo dates from September 1987 and the lorry was on its way to tip at a local landfill site.

▲ Eggbeer’s Transport of Newton Abbott in Devon has run MAN tippers and artics over a number of years. In July 1990, when this picture was taken, a more powerful 30.291 model is shown with a 12litre 286bhp turbocharged and intercooled diesel. ▲ This photograph dates from August 1995 and was taken in the vicinity of Gloucester docks. It depicts a roll-on/rolloff bodied MAN 30.240 operated by Quickskip of Hereford, who still use MAN lorries today.

◄ A major building project in central Birmingham was the Broad Street redevelopment. It involved thousands of tons of earth and clay being moved. In March 1987, this un-liveried and hardworking 1979 MAN was one of many old and new tippers engaged on site.


50-54 Eight legged Man.indd 52

05/09/2017 13:05


▲ Geoff Burrows Transport ran this 30.240 MAN eight-legger tipper. A 1983 model, I managed to get it on film in July 1990 and I think it came from the Cannock area of Staffordshire. ◄ This MAN 30.240 tipper was operated by J Harrison & Son of Ashbourne in Derbyshire. VRA 329Y would have been a 1983 model, and this was one of the last years in which the MAN had four headlights in the bumper. Later models had twin oblong units. This photo of ‘Pippa Jean’ was taken around August 1990 in Great Barr, Birmingham.

Quite a few Derby based quarry operators used MAN tippers it seems. This 1988 example belonged to WB Birkett and Sons Ltd who today use up to date MAN tippers, but in a white Hanson livery. October 2017

50-54 Eight legged Man.indd 53



05/09/2017 13:05

Transport heritage

▲ Foundry Services were I think based around the Tipton district near Dudley in the Black Country. My innocent attempts to record their vehicles on film would occasionally be rewarded with a twofingered salute from the driver but that’s part of the game of being a truck photographer!

▲ Based in the village of Minster Lovell near Witney in Oxfordshire, J&P Conlon ran this 30.291 model. It was seen here in 1988, passing near Stanway in Gloucestershire.

▲ Leigh Environmental had a big fleet of various rigid and articulated lorries, with many premises around the country. This 30.291 was photographed in June 1989, so was quite new at the time. It was taken near Lichfield in Staffs, but actually came from the Killamarsh depot from Sheffield. I miss seeing the bright lime green Leigh Environmental livery.

Birmingham based BFI Wastecare used this MAN 30.291. It was seen leaving the local Aston Expressway in February 1992 and the stains on the tipper body indicate the filth that often spills from loaded waste.

▲ I was coming home from a trip to north London in March 1991 when I spied this MAN 30.240 operated by Seagrave Express Haulage. It was local to the area and the shot was taken in the Euston district of the capital.

▲ Coleman & Co have been in business for over 50 years. Based in Birmingham, they used to run Magirus Deutz tippers in the 1970s. In February 1986, I photographed this fairly new MAN eight-legger in the centre of Birmingham, engaged in demolition near the Aston University complex.


50-54 Eight legged Man.indd 54

05/09/2017 13:06

On InstrucLons from Richard Sandercock Esq his reLrement sale at

Saturday 21st October 2017 at 10am

To include 5 Steam Engines, Leyland Lorry, Machine Tools etc. Burrell 5NHP ex Hentons Compound Road Locomotive Conqueror of 1924 together with her 6tn Traction Wagon (probably built for Burrells by Foster), Marshall 54” Heavy Duty Threshing Machine (also 1924), Davies of Shrewsbury Stationary Baler and 5 Knife Chaff Cutter. Burrell 7NHP Showman’s Road Locomotive Wait and See from the Hunt Family Collection. Garrett 6NHP Portable Engine and 1918 Leyland petrol Lorry. Waller of Stroud Gas Works Exhauster, approx. 18” by 2’ stroke, inverted vertical Steam Engine. Blackstone 15hp Diesel Stationary Engine with Carters patent spring injection system. 1928 Marshall ‘S’ Type, converted in early preservation times, work done, to be sold in test and in steam. Aveling & Porter Steam Roller, ex. Thursford, work done, to be sold in test and in steam. Verbeeck 52 Key Organ with 100+ books of music, ex. Gladiator Club, in 7.5tn period Leyland Daf Lorry. 1946 Field Marshall Series 1, with PTO and cross-tread tyres. Vauxhall Combi 55 plate Works Van (no VAT). Matbro Telehandler, new to Dingles Workshop and only used there. Niftylift 12m Cherry Picker. Workshop Machinery Including Richards ‘Heavy’ Type horizontal borer 5ft sq. rotating table, 14ft between centres Dean Smith & Grace no 1609 lathe, 3’6” between centres with tooling Tos Lathe, 14’ between centres CSEPEL Morse5 Radial Arm Drill Herbert 18V Mill, table 76” x 30” Rigid Threading Machine with Whitworth UNC BSF & UNF Dies Set of Four Somers Vehicle Lifts (20tn combined) 5ft sq. Forming Block, 5 Drill Presses, Work Tables & Stands, Welders, Compressor, Shaper, Clamps, Grinders, Fly Press, Nuts, Bolts, Steel Stock etc. Cylinder Boring Machine, 2no. Valve Face Cutters, HYD Test Pump and stock including injector parts, boilers, pressure gauges, ammeters, door joints, packing, various lamps and Dingles Motion Cover and other Plates. An eclectic mix of other lots from Richard’s collection of books and ephemera including turret clock movement, early gestetner duplication system, the most amazing American built automatic four station apple-peeler.

This Sale will be held WITHOUT commission to purchasers but there will be VAT on those items used in the Dingles Contract Engineering Business. Catalogue in course of preparation - likely to be available early October. A list of items for sale together with photographs will gradually build on For more information please contact John Wakeham 07977 479686 or Ian Caunter 07813 068935

Transport heritage

Words: Ed Burrows. Images: Ed Burrows, David Bloor, Douglas Baglin/Tone Petch, Globetrucker Organisation, Wobbe Reitsma, John Sanderson, Henk Veldkamp

Foden Records Dept

John Sanderson’s archives of Foden engineering drawings, manuals and a wealth of other material are probably unequalled.

Years ago, John Sanderson managed to save important Foden archives from the waste tip. As Ed Burrows relates, they have recently been a pivotal source of material for two books, a magnificent history of Foden exports and the recreation of a publication planned by Foden to mark its centenary in 1956 and abandoned at the proof stage.


or anyone interested in unearthing aspects of Foden history, ask around and sooner or later you’re pointed in the direction of John Sanderson. He has never pushed himself as the go-to guy. His position in the scheme of things has come about simply because those in the know respect his accumulation of knowledge – and the efforts he’s made pursuing his own interest in collecting and saving Foden material that would otherwise have quite literally been lost to a waste incinerator or landfi ll site. We talk in the room John Sanderson has set aside for his Foden archives. “What’s that over there?” I ask. “This? It’s the rocker box cover from an experimental two-stroke V4. It’s the only bit that survives, so far as I know,” comes the reply. We speculate it must have been developed at a time when engines were going up in power, and ponder where

a V4 would fit in the scheme of things. A precursor to developing a V8 perhaps? The world may never know. From time to time, other intriguing non-starters have come into John’s possession, including an experimental 4-valve head dating from 1977 – and to cap that, the block of a prototype Foden straight-8. John Sanderson’s reputation is such that he’s contacted by a steady stream of people who variously drove Fodens for a living, or once owned a fleet of Fodens, or are ex-Elworth Works employees. Whether clearing the attic, cupboards or their garage, they call him. “I’ve go such-and-such. Before I chuck it out, I thought it might be of interest to somebody. I was given your name…” Or sometimes: “I believe you might have engineering drawings for…” John Sanderson is a man who always has time for a chat. The conversation eventually

▲ The big rad of this Dutch-operated 1955 FG8/24 indicates Gardner 8LW straight-8 power. The DAF cab replaced the original S18 unit.

gets round to the inevitable. “How long were you with Foden, then?” The reply comes as a surprise. “I wasn’t.” The origins of his interest are deeper rooted than that. Whereas most small boys develop a passion for a particular football club, John became a


56-62 Foden.indd 56

05/09/2017 13:09

FODEN HISTORICAL ARCHIVES passionate and committed Foden fan. Whilst in retirement he no longer works the land, he still lives on the family farm where he grew up. He remembers Fodens making deliveries. The farm is down a onevehicle-wide lane. The trucks had to go further on to reverse round. Their drivers used to lift five-year old John up into the cab, proceed to the turning point and set him down again as they came back past the farm. One of his father’s cousins worked at Foden and used to sneak him in as a Saturday morning treat. Later, as a schoolboy, hanging round the Elworth Works gates eventually led to being allowed in for a wander round as a matter of routine. Foden News magazines are an important historical source. John has finally amassed a complete set. This began with the family doctor, who during John’s boyhood also happened to be Foden’s medical man. Knowing of John’s interest, the doctor passed copies on. John Sanderson’s mechanical knowledge was acquired maintaining the farm’s tractors and other equipment – and, over the years, nine Foden restoration projects. The massive archive of documents, photographs, brochures and engineering drawings of which he is the proud custodian finally hit the mother lode the day he was tipped off by a demolition contractor. Foden’s old main office block was about to be reduced to rubble and its contents junked. It took several trips, but John retrieved everything of value. He gets phone calls – and visits – from restorers as far away as Australia. One Aussie was bringing a Foden steamer back to life and was desperate for working drawings. John was happy to oblige. Towards the end of our conversation I query a reference he makes to parts books. “Yes, a complete set,” he says, unassumingly. “Getting on for two hundred – and workshop manuals too, of course.” He was given a full set when Sandbach was closing down. To all intents and purposes, John Sanderson has become the Foden Records Department. It was therefore only logical that Wobbe Reitsma should turn to him for help in researching and locating material for his new book on Foden exports, and its predecessor, on Foden specials. To describe these two books as awesome is not hyperbole. Unlike John Sanderson, who resides in Foden’s home turf of Cheshire, Wobbe is a Dutchman. But deep interest and persistence easily overcame the possible obstacles of distance and language. Being on the outside looking in perhaps added unclouded perspective. All credit too for never having worked in the truck business. The fact is, until retirement in 2012, Wobbe Reitsma spent 46 years as a VAT specialist with the Royal Dutch Treasury. But following his boyhood interest in trucks, he gained HGV and PSV licences in the 1970s. As a volunteer at a Dutch public transport

▲ For the Dutch, the S18 cab was too cold in winter and too hot in summer, hence the locallybuilt coachwork cab and Boalloy units on these two drawbar outfits.

▲ It’s a Poden – with a ‘P’. A Portuguese custom-cabbed late 1960s 16-tonner. ‘Foden’ was too like a local swear word.

▲ Craned up in the air and Buenos Aires bound, one of a batch of DGs shipped to Argentina in 1947 via Glasgow docks. October 2017

56-62 Foden.indd 57



05/09/2017 13:09

Transport heritage

At the end of World War Two in 1945, mainland Europe’s truck manufacturing sector was knackered

▲ Foden South Africa exported to neighbouring countries. This Cummins-powered 1978 eightlegger has a Rhodesian Railways built cab.

was too close for comfort to the Portuguese equivalent of an English four-letter expletive. The book is all the more interesting for the reason that what worked on British roads couldn’t automatically hack it overseas. Permissible gross weights were often substantially higher than was legal in the UK. This and climatic conditions compelled Foden to engineer customspec export vehicles with stronger chassis and more powerful engines, matched by commensurate gearbox, axle, suspension and cooling system specifications. For hot climates, cabs required tropical double-skin roofs. And for many overseas territories, sleeper cabs appeared long before they became standard options for home market artics. Prior to Foden abandoning them in the mid-1930s, steam traction engines and steam wagons were exported to Argentina and, more significantly, to South Africa and Australia. Down Under, besides general haulage, steamers typically operated in agriculture towing drawbar trailers, and in the logging industry. At the end of World War Two in 1945, mainland Europe’s truck manufacturing sector was knackered. Industrial reconstruction to support economic recovery was initially helped by the availability of vast numbers of redundant US, British and Commonwealth military vehicles. A high proportion of these had petrol-engines, leading to a situation where in Holland for example, after the first stages of economic recovery, repowering war-surplus trucks with diesel engines became commonplace.

As well as the trucks and their operators, Wobbe Reitsma reveals the some of the business and technical ups and downs arising from Foden’s quest for overseas success. Whilst the book doesn’t set out to Foden Special Vehicles record every single Foden export, it certainly Wobbe Reitsma’s fascination with Fodens began in the 1980s. After amassing sufficient goes a long way to doing so, evinced by the material to write magazine articles, he began inclusion of what was probably the only to contemplate doing a book. His first, ‘Foden direct export to Austria – a crane carrier in 1963 – and the only known goods vehicle Special Vehicles’, published by Roundoak in to have operated there, a 1940s DG6/10 2012, was the result of ten years’ research. dropside six-wheeler and drawbar trailer Now, five years on, Old Pond has published combination. its companion volume, ‘Foden Export Amongst many Foden types unfamiliar to Vehicles’. As truck books go, they are as good British roads, what could possibly be more as it gets. Their 200-plus landscape-format obscure than a Poden? That’s actually how pages contain hundreds of photographs, they had to badge them in Portugal. Foden mostly large format, with extended, richly detailed captions that complement narrative background detail on Foden trucks and business operations that spanned every continent. For those brought up on UK Fodens, an abundance of eyeopeners testify to the lengths the Sandbach engineering team went in tailoring vehicles to match the needs of individual overseas customers – and on top of that, the extent of customising by Foden overseas subsidiaries and sales agents. As a result, both visually and in terms of specification, a big percentage of export Fodens differed markedly from their UK counterparts. A first dip soon has you drooling. An early1960s S20 cabbed Foden 10x4 tridem-bogie 40-tonner. An ore-train grossing 115 tons, hauled by a Foden half-cab 6x4 with sidetipping bodywork hauling two 4-axle sidetipping trailers. A Foden S10-cabbed 4x4 supplied in 2000 with a 405bhp Cummins M11. It could easily be mistaken for a Dakar Rally desert racer. And a bonneted Foden 6x4 with a Cummins NTC335 and a sleeper cab. ▲ One of a fleet of 40-ton dumpers operated by Costain in Dubai. Many were retired with over a million miles on the clock. Who knew such things existed? museum, these days he drives classic 1950s and 1960s Leyland buses when they turn out for historic vehicle events.


56-62 Foden.indd 58

05/09/2017 13:09


▲ An FG6/20 fitted with the Foden South Africa version of the S20 cab. The three-axle rigid transported explosives.

In theory, because British makes were not affected by cessation of production, they had the opportunity to gain an edge by introducing a new post-war generation of trucks. Foden was not slow to take advantage of the situation and in 1948 introduced a range of chassis fitted with its new S18 cab. Beyond this, like it or not, the British Government imposed a rationing system for the raw materials. Allocation was conditional on exporting fifty percent of output. In Foden’s case, although sales were made to European operators – with Holland, Belgium and Portugal prominent destinations – far greater importance was placed on Commonwealth countries and others within Britain’s sphere of influence. Inevitably given their strong links with Britain and healthily

▲ Originally in service with Armstrong of Wigan, this Caterpillar C10380 engined Alpha was photographed in Malta in 2010.

expanding economies, Australia and South Africa assumed particular significance. So much so, Foden subsequently established assembly subsidiaries in both these countries.

Local assembly

Partial local assembly was also an issue in some of the countries where cash-strapped operators were importing directly, or where sales and service agents were being appointed. In these circumstances, to win sales, Foden offered the option of shipping trucks in CKD (completely knocked down) kit form. In the eyes of British classic truck enthusiasts, Fodens fitted with the timberframed sheetmetal S18 cab are amongst the

most revered products to roll out of the old Elworth Works. Further afield however, it was not so welcome. An alternative version was introduced with a metal frame and double-skin insulated hot climate roof. Beneath the styling, with its distinctive concealed radiator – relatively novel at the time – were the characteristic hallmarks of a British ‘gaffer’s truck’. Which is to say the interior was rudimentary. It was draughty and lacked a heater. This led some Dutch operators to replace the S18 cab with DAF or other units, heralding the use of DAF cabs decades later for the Alpha range, launched in 1998. For the S18 and its successors, locally built or modified cabs also became common on Fodens in other overseas markets.

▼ A Swiss operated, Caterpillar engined, 1991 Foden S106R-4450 on a 20,000km Switzerland-Mongolia round trip.

October 2017

56-62 Foden.indd 59



05/09/2017 13:10

Transport heritage

European sales began to decline in the second half of the 1950s Power became another issue. The standard-fit 102-112bhp Gardner 6LW diesel was adequate for the weight and speed restrictions applying in the UK prior to the higher limits introduced in the mid-1960s. But in parts of Europe, and further across the globe, in the late 1940s operators wanted more power. In Holland at that time for example, legislation permitted 50 tonnes gross laden weight. For a Foden six- or eight-wheeler rigid with a drawbar trailer, even the 150bhp of a Gardner 8LW or 6LX was not really satisfactory. European sales began to decline in the second half of the 1950s as continental manufacturers introduced higher power outputs and well-appointed cabs. From the 1960s and during the decades that followed under Paccar ownership, despite intermittent successes with Cumminsengined chassis, the major barrier to continental sales penetration was the lack of a sufficiently-big dealer network. South Africa was a different story. PostWW2 demand kicked off with exports of S18-generation trucks of all configurations, and half-cab mining dumpers. One Foden dumper customer took delivery of its first in 1956 and over time purchased 155 units. Nothing succeeds like success, resulting in a South African assembly operation being established in the mid-1960s. With exports mostly in part-CKD form, Foden South

▲ With S10 Mk 5 cab and Alpha grille, this Cummins-engined 4x4 oilfield surveying truck was supplied in 2000.

Africa was given free rein to customise chassis, fit locally manufactured parts and build its own cab variants. The quest for more power was met by the 180bhp Gardner 6LXB towards the end of the 1960s, together with Cummins and Rolls-Royce diesels.

Doghouse sleeper cabs

Wobbe Reitsma diligently records Foden’s fortunes through the Americas, the Middle East, across Asia and in Australia

and New Zealand. The first Down Under diesel exports were made as soon as Foden switched from steam. Post-WW2 sales were built on the reputation of the S18 cabbed generation. Along with customers in the construction and mining industries and the heavy-haul sector, in the 1950s S18cab eight-leggers were being fitted with locally-built ‘doghouse’ sleeper cabs for multiple-trailer livestock transport. Later specifications offered Cummins, Rolls-Royce

▲ In 1977-98, Foden South Africa produced a fleet of 169 of these 50-tonne rated Dockspotter terminal tractors.


56-62 Foden.indd 60

05/09/2017 13:10

FODEN HISTORICAL ARCHIVES and Caterpillar options, with outputs of 500+bhp. Alphas were exported to New Zealand as late as 2003. Another recent book in which John Sanderson’s custodianship of Foden archives has been of fundamental importance is Julian Hollinshead’s privately published ‘Foden 1856-1956 Centenary’. Originally put together by Foden executives with publication planned for 1956, for reasons that remain a mystery, although almost all the pages reached the proof stage, production stopped before it reached a printing press. With a philosophical forward by William Foden, eldest son of founder Edwin Foden, as a defining piece of history it’s gold dust and, as such, an important addition to books about the make. Julian Hollinshead was instantly intrigued when he spotted the proofs whilst chatting as John Sanderson was leafing through a section of his archives. Puzzled why the book had never seen the light of day, he immediately decided that recreating it would be a stimulating and worthy challenge, all the more so as there were blank spaces in the proofs that to fill would require a digging. The book chronicles 10-year old Edwin Foden’s failed attempt to making a working model steam engine, his apprenticeship at the Elworth Foundry and eventual

▲ A 1960s’ South African eight-wheeler tractor with a local version of Foden’s S20 cab. The engine was a Cummins NH220.

► Note the double-skin ‘tropical’ roof on this 20-ton rated Australian-operated DGTU6. The load itself weighed 24 tons. ▼ A 150bhp, straight-8 Gardner 8LW engined FG8/24 road train truck/tractor, supplied by Foden Australia in 1955.

September October 2017

56-62 Foden.indd 61



05/09/2017 13:11

Transport heritage

Together, the two titles present a rounded view of Foden history and contain a wealth of previously unpublished material ownership of the business. It goes on to chart Foden’s progress manufacturing agricultural machinery, then stationary steam engines, traction engines and steam wagons, followed by the switch to diesel power – including marine two-strokes – and Foden home market truck development and exports. Julian Hollinshead joined Foden as an apprentice – and the company’s exports are very much his orbit. He spent much of his career as an overseas technical trouble-shooter, a job which took him to 19 countries. This naturally made Julian an invaluable information source for Wobbe Reitsma in the course of writing his book on Foden exports. Together, the two titles present a rounded view of Foden history and contain a wealth of previously unpublished material. Foden Export Vehicles is available from the usual sources, and online direct from the publisher – – at £29.95. ‘Foden 1856-1956 Centenary’ is available direct from Julian Hollinshead, 6 St John’s Way, Sandbach, CW11 2LY, telephone 01270 760575, price £10 plus £2 p&p. Proceeds are being donated to North West Air Ambulance and Christie’s Hospital. v

◄ Dutchman Wobbe Reitsma’s impressive new book celebrates part of the Foden story never fully explored in print before. ▼ Spotting the proofs of the 1956 centenary book planned but abandoned by Foden, all credit to Julian Hollinshead for deciding to recreate it and publish it privately.

▼ This Cummins NH220 engined 1960s S20 export cabbed HC6/24 flatbed hauled three-trailer roadtrain grossed 112 tons.


56-62 Foden.indd 62

05/09/2017 13:11

• includes eds, Rare Bre afts r C l a r u R n io t c u &A •


Country’s C u s Leading g

Saturday 11 – Sunday 12 November 2017 100 years of Fords Fordson son & Ford and NEW HOLLAND W HOL LLAND

Origina Original l con condition vintage machines lovingly restored machine es lo

Horticultural Equipment – featuring The All British Auto Culto lto

Commercial Vehicles & Land Rovers Trade Stands T


SUNDAY 8 OCTOBER 10.30-3pm



01323 833125

Special display of Allard cars and Love tractors (the only examples in Europe). ALL EXHIBITORS WILL BE GIVEN A FREE LUNCH BAG AND RAFFLE TICKET


In the Bodle Street Gree en Village Hall an exhibition of photographs off P&J Tours over the last 20 years all over the world is expected to be shown, plus another by well-known farming photographer Kim Parks. Refreshments will be available, provided by Debs Broad and her fundraising charity team of ladies. Try her famous bacon baps; they are something very special indeed. Please take part in th he raffffle, f which will be drawn at 2.30pm. Do come and enjoy the vehicles and please give a donation n to Prostate Cancer UK (the amount collected will be published in the local press and parissh magazine).


Classic restoration

Pennine Vanguard Alan Barnes tells the story of the restoration of a classic Atkinson Borderer.


ith something suitable being required to transport their Cuthbertson tracked Land Rover, Stewart Kaye and Mark Griffiths paid a visit to the yard owned by Kev Dennis near Skegness. Stewart recalled the visit in July 2010: “We had gone to look at a Ford D Series and trailer which we thought would be just right to carry the Cuthbertson. However, having carried out an inspection of the Ford we decided that it was really in need of more work than we wanted to have to do so that one was crossed off the ‘shopping’ list. However, it would have been rude not to have a look around the yard to see if Kev had any other ‘goodies’ tucked away!” “Depending on your point of view this turned out to be either a good idea or a bad idea. While there were no more Fords to be had, Mark spotted a partially dismantled Atkinson Borderer tractor unit ‘hiding’ in the corner of one of the sheds. I knew that Mark had fancied an Atkinson and we had both spent a deal of time searching through the advertisements and trawling the ‘Interweb’ searching for a suitable Atkinson restoration project. Until that visit to Kev

we had not come across anything suitable, but Mark now had a gleam in his eye as we had a look at the remains of the lorry in the shed.” “The Borderer was a 1970 model and still had its registration plate, LUP 521J, but was in pretty rough condition. It was a sleeper cabbed version which we both liked, and looked as though all the vital parts were still

there. Mark made the decision there and then to buy the lorry and a deal was agreed which included the lorry, all the parts which had been stripped off it and a few other suitable spares. Mark and I returned the following weekend in a Land Rover 110 and collected all the loose parts, while Kev delivered the lorry to our lock-up in Slaithwaite a few days later.”

▲ LUP 521J during its time with C M Varley & Co Ltd. Photo Mark Griffiths collection.

64 64-69 Atkinson Borderer.indd 64

05/09/2017 13:17

Words: Alan Barnes Photos: As stated


▲ One of Barratt’s sleeper cabbed Atkinsons. Photo courtesy Colin Barrett.

‘Pennine Vanguard’ in Barrett’s yard on a frosty morning in December 2016. Photo Stewart Kaye.

“We managed to unearth a few details about the history of LUP 521J which had been new to Robert Oliver Plant transport at Etherley in Bishop Auckland, and there are a few pictures of the lorry from those days. It was then sold to C M Varley animal feeds, apparently for use primarily as a shunter, but details of the lorry then become rather vague. However, at some time before it ended up with Kev Dennis, the tractor unit had been involved in an accident which had seriously bent the bumper beyond any hope of repair and had also caused damage to the nearside fibreglass panel and the timber behind it.” “The extent of the damage became clearer as Mark started to strip down the Atkinson, and it quickly became apparent that the project was going to be a major rebuild rather than just a few weekends of tinkering. However, the chassis was found to be in good condition and as we had already had the lorry running, the engine, gearbox and drive axle all seemed to be OK. At sometime during its life the Atkinson had lost its fuel tank and gained one from an ERF C Series, all of the air tanks were rotted through, the door pillars were either broken or ‘soft’, and the timbers in the sleeper section were only really fit for a bonfire.” “Mark took the decision to replace the ash cab timbers and we borrowed a van and set off from Huddersfield early one

▲ Mark recovered the Atkinson in 2010 and began the restoration. Photo Mark Griffiths.

▲ In the workshop and the cab is stripped down. Photo Mark Griffiths.

▲ The engine was found to be in very good condition. Photo Mark Griffiths. October 2017

64-69 Atkinson Borderer.indd 65



05/09/2017 13:17

Classic restoration

▲ Mark had originally planned to restore the lorry in Varley colours. Photo Mark Griffiths.

Sunday morning for the long journey to Lymington in Hampshire. We were on our way to meet Jill Honeybun and buy a set of cab timbers for the lorry. While we were there we also noticed that propped up in the corner was a very well repaired rear dash panel that had been refurbished by the late Ken Honeybun. Mark decided to buy this as well and I added a few more goodies which I thought would hasten the progress of the restoration of my Atkinson gritter. A long round trip but well worth the time an effort as with our ‘shopping’ unloaded in the lock-up we were able to admire the pile

▲ Colin Barrett supplied a replacement door from an Atkinson that used to run in the Barrett fleet. Photo Stewart Kaye.

of nice new parts which would make the restorations much easier.”

Rolls-Royce quality

“Over the next few months the work on LUP 521J progressed. Mark painted the new rear dash panel and the two of us spent an evening fitting it, and with that in place Mark decided that it was time to tackle the cab timbers. Luckily, he was able to call upon his friend Arthur Nasey, a first-rate carpenter who over the years has been responsible for renovating many classic cars including Rolls-Royce and Bentley. It must

be said that the two of them certainly got on with the job as in little over a day they had the old frame off and the new one in.” “Mark then moved on to the chassis which he began to clean and paint in red, as he had originally intended to keep the Atkinson in the C M Varley colours. Although the work was making good progress the first ‘distraction’ was soon to arise in the guise of an ex-Co-op ERF LV wrecker which Mark also owned. This lorry had been run for a while in ‘as found’ condition but now Mark decided that it needed ‘tidying’ up, work which would also ▼ The chassis now with green top coat. Photo Stewart Kaye.


64-69 Atkinson Borderer.indd 66

05/09/2017 13:18

ATKINSON BORDERER RESTORATION include putting the ERF back into its Co-op livery. This project meant that work on the Atkinson came to a halt and it was put into storage in another building which we had at that time. Unfortunately, although the lorry was under cover this building had no electricity and was not really suitable for use as a workshop.” “While Mark concentrated on the ERF, and the Atkinson remained in store, we received a major setback when out of the blue and within a couple of months we lost the use of both of the lock-ups. We had six wagons which needed a new home and a frantic search was made for some suitable premises until eventually I found a shed in nearby Oldham. The building was perfect, the only downside being the 26-mile round trip, and for Mark it was even further as at that time he lived on the far side of Huddersfield. At that time, I had just finished the Atkinson gritter and I agreed to buy LUP 521J from Mark as my next project” “Mark had already done much of the hard work and had also stripped down the lorry, so what I bought at the end of 2013 was basically a very large Atkinson jigsaw puzzle. In early December with help from my friend Colin Barrett of J Barrett Haulage fame, the Atkinson was moved to the garage in Oldham which just happened to be next door to the J Barrett yard. When I bought the lorry from Mark I had more or less decided to put the wagon into the J Barrett livery and Colin was only too happy to grant permission. The company ran several Atkinsons during the 1970s including a sleeper cabbed Borderer but that was a Jennings ‘pigeon loft’ version.” “Mark’s work on the Atkinson had been held up by his ERF project and now my project was on hold for a time while I finished converting a box van into a horse box for my daughter. When that was finished my attention again turned to the Borderer. Mark had already found the correct type of fuel tank, which had been fitted, but this had come from a lorry with twin fuel tanks and it did not have a fuel gauge sender unit fitted. Luckily, I found one, hardly a stone’s throw away, in the J Barrett stores.” “My plan now was to get everything on the chassis back to how it should be and then prime and paint it. I managed to get hold of a full set of airtanks that were in excellent condition and these were fitted and piped, and then tested for air leaks. Next came the brakes which not having been used in anger for many years were found to be in excellent order, with all the slack adjusters working as they should. Thomas Lowthian, an excellent painter, then painted the chassis for me. He also painted the engine in the correct shade of Cummins beige.”

◄ Rebuilding the rear of the cab. Photo Stewart Kaye.

▼ The rebuilt cab rubbed down prior to painting. Photo Stewart Kaye.

Building the cab

“Now with the work on the chassis more or less completed, the next job was to start building up the cab. Mark and Arthur had already replaced the frame on the day cab

▲ The cab in primer. Photo Stewart Kaye. October 2017

64-69 Atkinson Borderer.indd 67


05/09/2017 13:18

Classic restoration

▲ The engine was painted the correct shade of Cummins beige by Thomas Lowthian. Photo Stewart Kaye.

▲ Top coats being applied. Photo Stewart Kaye.

section but had not done any work on the sleeper cab extension. The roof would also need sorting out as the one fitted was made from two roofs fastened together and this had been quite badly damaged. I saw one advertised in the back of Heritage Commercials and luckily Colin Barrett would have one of his wagons in the area within a couple of days so the deal to buy the roof was done. Judging by the colours when I rubbed it down the replacement roof appears to have come from an Atkinson operated by W J Riding.” “After all the recent upheavals and moves the last thing I needed was more bad news, but in May 2014 I was told that the owner of the building I was in wanted it back as he planned to use it for a new MoT testing station. Colin Barrett came to my rescue and provided space for the Borderer in a

barn at his home, a generous offer which I was only too pleased to accept. LUP 521J was on its travels once again, being moved to the barn on the back of Colin’s Seddon Atkinson wrecker.” “Its new ‘home’ was ideal, having both electricity and a powerful air compressor, and I was soon back to work. I made and fitted new floor panels using Zintec steel, and the doors were rebuilt using new timbers and a driver’s side doorskin from Colin’s stores to replace the original which had a corner missing. Atkinson cabs are ‘tricky’ beasts, and fitting new doors into a newly built frame is not as simple as it first seems. However, with many adjustments and a lot of wood planing, both doors eventually fitted and closed quite nicely.” “I had been putting off tackling the sleeper section of the cab as I had never

seen it together, and just had a few bits of badly rotted wood as clues as to what should go where. I had a new pair of corner timbers from the frame parts that Mark had bought but these were original length and had to be cut, the question was where. I used the rotten bits as a guide and then bit the bullet and took my jigsaw to them. This now gave me a guide as to how the rest of the sleeper cab had to be built, and with a lot of head scratching and quite a lot of swearing I managed to complete the sleeper frame. The original upper metal back panel was quite rusty so this was replaced. For some reason, the Borderer had been fitted with fire-screened rear windows and I decided to retain these as J Barrett did a lot of tanker work and so they would be appropriate. I used the same Zintec steel for the sleeper cab side panels and I re-fitted all the aluminium strips on the outside of the back panel and on the sleeper cab sides.”

Previous damage

▲ With the paint finished the signwriting was applied by Stuart Sutton. Photo Stewart Kaye.

“The nearside cab panel had been damaged at some time and aluminium plates had been riveted on as a repair. These were removed and the panel repaired using fibreglass and filler. Fitting the front panels was a lot easier than I had imagined and I had them lined up well enough to fasten down properly on the second attempt. Just in case I had made any mistakes with the alignment it occurred to me that it might be a good time to get the windscreens fitted. They were fitted by Walkers Windscreens of Huddersfield and I have used Dave before and he always does a fantastic job. He fitted them in no time and proved that, much to my relief, I had got the front panels in the right position.” “My stock of Atkinson spares was raided to fit out the cab combining existing parts from the Borderer with some replacements and a few new bits and pieces. The badly worn seats were re-upholstered by Tony


64-69 Atkinson Borderer.indd 68

05/09/2017 13:18


▲ ‘Pennine Vanguard’ had its debut on the Huddersfield Halloween run in October 2016. Photo Mark Schofield.

Archer in Huddersfield who did another fantastic job.” By the summer of 2016 the Borderer was nearly ready for the final painting but following the last move Thomas Lowthian, who had painted the chassis, was not available. Over a bacon butty in the J Barrett canteen I mentioned to Colin that the Atkinson was just about ready for some paint and Steve Rothwell, one of Colin’s drivers who owns and rallies a couple of very nice ERF’s, asked me who I was going to use. I told him that I didn’t really have a clue. Steve revealed that he had painted the ERFs and offered to paint my cab. Having seen his work, I jumped at the chance, and over the

next few weekends Steve and I rubbed down, filled, primed and top coated the cab using two pack. I must say that were pleased with the result, particularly given the fact that we painted the wagon in a barn.” “Stuart Sutton, who is entrusted with the signwriting for all the J Barrett fleet, came and hand painted the logos and pinstripes. This was done in the style of the livery used on the fleet in the 1970s, and what a cracking job he has done. The Borderer was now really beginning to look the part and it was time to fit all the new old stock lights, wipers etc that I had been collecting over the previous months. Mudflaps with the Atkinson logo and correct Atkinson wheel

▲ Colin Barrett at the wheel on the Halloween run. Photo Stewart Kaye.

trims were fitted at this stage.” “I was determined to get the Borderer finished in time for the Huddersfield Halloween rally at the end of October 2016 and even though we didn’t get to the start of the event we managed to get to the end point at the Carriage House, Marsden, to mark its first rally appearance.” “I am very pleased with how the Atkinson has turned out and I really must thank Colin Barrett for all his help and encouragement, particularly when things went wrong. Hopefully the Borderer and I will get to quite a few shows next season - that is if my current project, a rare Seddon Atkinson 200, does not get in the way too much.” v

Detail shot showing the sleeper cab conversion. Photo Mark Schofield.

October July 2017 2017

64-69 Atkinson Borderer.indd 69


05/09/2017 13:19


Words Words&&photos: photos: Richard RichardLofting Lofting

Door Skinning PART


There was plenty to cut out and weld in before the skins could be fixed in place.


This corrosion is at the top of the door frame - it just shows how it can eat the metal away.


As a reminder, the door panels just back from the sandblasters having a trial fit in the new skin.

Richard Lofting takes us through the process of repairing a rotten vehicle door.


ack in the January 2017 issue of HC, I said I would show the fitting of a new door skin, after going through the prep for sandblasting. However, as with all these things when there is a third party involved, it doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t always go according to plan! The owner of the doors that I am re-skinning wanted to have the inside sprayed in the same colour of the car. This sounded simple, but again complications - it transpired that the car had been resprayed at some point in its life and was either not the original colour, or the code for that particular paint was not available. So, I was again working with a third

party, as the guy that was respraying the whole vehicle was tasked with sourcing the paint. I duly supplied one of the removed door skins for it to be sent to a local paint supplier who has the gear to scan the paint colour from the panel and then produce a code for the mixing of the correct colour. As the car is eventually going to be resprayed in two pack paint, this is what I was supplied with. It should never have taken so long, but by the time everything was in place, paint in hand etc., there was a string of other jobs in the workshop, blocking our spray booth. Anyway, I digress! As mentioned in the


After welding up the lock hole, the new lock position was marked on the panel.

previous article, the only difference with the new door skins was the position of the door lock hole, so I used the correct section of the old door skin as a template, and carefully welded a piece of steel into the hole in the new panel. This was linished back before marking the new hole position as it slightly overlapped the old one. The cutting of the new hole was done carefully with a drill followed by a die grinder fitted with a carbide burr and then warding files. The lock outer ring was used as a go/no-go gauge as the filing proceeded, to get an accurate fit. Once all the rotten sections were cut out and replaced with new metal, the only job to do apart from the painting was to attach a new section of channel at the bottom of the door that houses the seal. However, the only channel that could be found was from a Rover car and was slightly narrower than the original. It was decided that either the


70-72 Workshop.indd 70

05/09/2017 13:22

The offending bearing, after the rollers and cage have been removed.


I used a section of the old door skin as a template to get the right position.

Select the size that will fit through the centre of the bearing.


After drilling a central hole, I used a die grinder to remove the bulk of metal and finished off with warding files.


I used the lock ring itself as a go/no-go gauge until it just fitted.


As required, the inside of the door was painted in the finish colour of the car.


The seal retainer was smaller than the original, and the only one available was from a Rover.


A complete new section was fabricated for the bottom of the door and butt welded into position. The seal channel was pop riveted in place.

seal from a Rover or a Sunbeam would be used as they both use the same sized channel. Although it was originally spot welded in place I decided to pop rivet it on - at least then if it transpired that it was in the wrong place it could be easily moved later on. The other benefit would be that the paint would not need to be removed like it would if welding or brazing was used for its attachment.

Advanced Products

When older vehicles were built, panel bonding glues were not even thought of. I know we all strive for originality, but if we can incorporate modern technology as we make repairs, the end result will look original but last a lot longer. Vehicles today have their panels bonded on rather than welded on, and the adhesive used is very strong and is ideal in this situation, as it will bond to the two surfaces and keep out the ingress of moisture


As an aid to keep the rust from starting in the flanges, a bead of panel bond was applied all-round the door frame.

between the skin and the door frame. A bead applied before the door is fitted to the skin will ooze into any gaps. Fitting the skin is just a matter of turning the flange on the new skin with a hammer and dolly, or you can purchase a door skinning tool which folds the flange over by leverage. Work your way around the door turning the flange a bit at a time - do not turn the flange in one go or it could distort the metal, especially where there are curved sections. In this particular case, there was a row of spot welds holding the top of the door skin to the inside frame. These will be plug welded and then linished back, and will be hidden under the window trim. The usual approach is to braze the skin at the corners of the window frame before turning over the flange. This gives the opportunity to make adjustments if there are any misalignments. I reasoned that the top of the skin had to align

with the corresponding part of the frame, and securely clamped the two together. Before rebuilding the door internals I will fit the hinges and check for alignment on the car. If the door then appears to be twisted it can be twisted the other way while on the car until the fit is satisfactory.

HEALTH AND SAFETY ■ Be careful of cut edges as these are very sharp and will cut flesh easily.

■ Grinding sparks will travel a long way in a workshop, so keep well clear of flammable substances. ■ Always use appropriate PPE, gloves, goggles and breathing mask as necessary. ■ If using welding equipment, be aware of all the safety implications for you and any bystanders before starting the job.

October 2017

70-72 Workshop.indd 71



05/09/2017 13:23

Xxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxx

on page 20 TOOLS REQUIRED ■ Angle grinder with cutting and grinding disks.

■ Various spanners for stripping door ■ ■ ■ ■

components. Panel beating hammers and dollies. Tin snips and/or bench shear. MIG welder. Spot-weld drill.


Care was taken where the top edge was spot welded. In this case I plug welded it.



The door was fitted to the skin and aligned, and then clamped into position.

Start with a hammer and dolly, and work your way around the flange knocking it over bit at a time. Don’t go all the way to start with.


Finally knock the flange down tight all the way round.


The skin finally on the door ready for a trial fit on the vehicle.


Pay particular attention where there is a change in the direction of the panel.


The newly finished door edge, nice and tight with no gaps.



70-72 Workshop.indd 72

05/09/2017 13:23

About Us Do you like dealing with people the old fashioned way, direct communication, face to face meetings, then County are the people to call. We pride ourselves in offering our clients that personal and friendly touch, getting to know you and your business which enables us to provide ongoing support and helping you to achieve your short and long term objectives. Over the years we have built up a loyal following of repeat customers who like our personal touch and the service we can provide. If you are interested in any of our products, or are currently looking at a new purchase, please contact us where one of our small dedicated team will be happy to discuss options available to you. We can offer: - Hire Purchase - Enabling you to take advantage of tax relief - Finance Lease - Tax efficient on balance sheet leasing with no usage or mileage restrictions - Re-Financing- Fast, efficient way to introduce capital back into your business - Practice Loans -Tax/VAT Funding, medium term unsecured loans

Web: Email: Tel: 01455 200150 tweet: @countyassetfin

linkedIn: County Finance Group Limited

Advertise for FREE with HC Marketplace - The place to buy and sell


Choose one of the following methods: EMAIL



Kelsey Media, PO Box 13,Cudham, Westerham TN16 3WT

FREE ADS TWO GREEN GODDESS FIRE ENGINES Two Green Goddess Fire Engines complete. Dry Stored. 1st 2,000 miles 2nd 1,500 miles. Lancashire 01706211368. ÂŁ5,000.

To place an advert within our classified section, phone 0906 802 0279 Calls cost 65p per minute, plus your telephone companies access charge

For complaints or any queries about the premium rate number, please call 01959 543723, available 9-5pm, Mon-Fri.

Terms and conditions for private advertisers 1. The advert copy provided by the customer must be legal, decent, honest and truthful and comply with the code of the Advertising Standards Authority ( HC Marketplace may amend the advertisement to ensure compliance with these requirements. 2. HC Marketplace is not able to verify the

truthfulness of any statements made by a customer in the advert copy. Accordingly, the customer will be responsible for any losses, expenses or other costs incurred by HC Marketplace which are caused by an untrue statement made deliberately. 3. In order to meet its production and other editorial requirements, HC Marketplace reserves

the right to re-classify, edit the copy or alter the size or colouring of any advert. 4. Whilst every effort is made to include your free advert correctly, due to the large volume of adverts we receive, we are unable to take telephone calls should an error occur. You are welcome to resubmit your corrected advert for inclusion in the next available issue.

5. We can only accept one photograph per coupon. 6. Please enclose a stamped address envelope if you would like your photograph to be returned.




Category For sale

Parts for sale


Parts wanted


Picture enclosed

Name:............................................................................................ ....... Address:.................................................................................... ....... ................................................................................................................... .......

................................................................................................................... .......

Area/County:........................................................................... Telephone: .................................................................................. *Not published

Email:.................................................................................................. Signature: ................................................................................... I confirm that I am not a dealer Date: .................................................................................................... On occasions Kelsey Media Group, publisher of HC Marketplace, shares selected information with its sister companies within the Kelsey Group of companies and with other reputable companies, who may contact you about products and services that may be of interest to you. If you DO NOT wish to have the details given here passed on, please tick this box â??



Take advantage of FREE ads for readers


online post Kelsey Media, PO Box 13, Cudham, Westerham, TN16 3WT, England

AEC MERCURY 1965, £6,000. Chassis CAB. In chassis mechanical condition. Tillotson CAB requires restoration. 470 engine on the button 6 speed. Runs and drives. Gwynedd. 07889 193981.





£Open to offers. Lovely example of a classic Mustang. Took 5 years restoration and finished to a high standard. Mechanically perfect with AVU 470 engine. Ashanco exhaust brake with 6 months MoT. 07783 145601.


1960, 28,600 miles, £1,950. Cab and chassis (part restored) with some parts to finish, was a horsebox, with V5. Tyne and Wear. 07711 100358.


1959, £5,000. Flatbed lorry, 16ft, 6 cylinder BMC engine, four speed gearbox, 6 Goodyear tyres. New bed floor fitted 2 years ago. Set of ramps included. Tax and MoT exempt. Carmarthenshire. 07817 086053.


1968, 43,900 miles, £9,900. 2 axle rigid body. 01593 721236.


1933, £5,000. In need of full restoration. The truck was feature in the 2011 film Captain America: The First Avenger, with the certificate of authenticity held. The reason for the sale is that of the owners ill health. 01534 867294. 12,558 miles, £10,950 ono. First registered on 23rd September 1955 and originally registered to the Southampton Fire Service, The Flatbed Bedford S Type (16ft bed) in 2007,and has adjustable ramps. It is equipped with a 17,500lb, remote controlled electric winch, in an integral locker and comes complete with 4 sets of straps and hydraulic jack. The bodywork has been sympathetically restored but the inside of the cab has not been touched.

ERF 1970, 33,000 miles, £POA. 7.5 Ton Timber Body Truck Perkins 4236 Diesel. For restoration. Cheshire. 07817 169046.

84 PF


£Offers. Fire appliance with Merryweather escape ladder 1971. Ex Bristol Fire Brigade. V8 Perkins diesel, dry stored, last used 2 years ago. Avon. 07855 376107.

TK 1971, £POA. 4 Cylinder Diesel 14' Chassis and Cab - No to a good home!. Essex. 07979 010841.


TWO GREEN GODDESS FIRE ENGINES £12.000 or very close offer. Coupling tractor unit. Solid cab. 07503 198216.

DENNIS FIRE ENGINE £5,000. Two Green Goddess Fire Engines complete. Dry Stored. 1st 2,000 miles 2nd 1,500 miles. Lancashire 01706211368

1950, £4,000. Dry stored for 35 years. Runs and drives with all original equipment. Can deliver for cost. Lincolnshire. 07759 473380.

Take advantage of FREE ads for readers

£3,500. 4X2 t/unit cummins 240 engine choice of 4. Also 1996 EC11 ERF 4X2 sleeper Cab t/unit. £3,750. Lincs. 07759 473380.

October 2017 75

Send us your AD FREE!

HC Marketplace

Email FREE ADS to:





8,000 miles, £POA. Left hand drive, cherry picker, good condition. Previously used to wash aircraft - additional engine and generator to rear and stainless steel tanks in rear of body. More info and pics call Ed. 07544 748011.

1965, 32,000 miles, £20,000. And crane drawbar trailer. MOT April 18. Very good condition. Caithness. 07799 615380.



3,500 miles, £14,000 ONO. New Tyres, Cab Restored, MoT Exempt, TAX Exempt, New Battery, Engine re-built, Pump re-built,Vehicle in show condition. Co Durham. 01388 818082.


£POA. Two axle rigid, roller door back and side, alloy body, 7.5 kg, not been used for 2 years but runs well, no MoT, ideal for preservation not many left. Cornwall. 07909 660992.


1953, £POA. Fitted with a meadows engine, was new to pickfords and has lot's of history restoration is 95% done. 07966 646296.


£12,000. 80 ton 6x4 on air double sleeper, MoT exempt, 500 cummins. Wiltshire. 07734 829626.


£4,250. Engine 180 Gardner 10 ton turner winch. Heathrow Area. 07836 625995.

1964, £POA. Car transporter. Carrimore five car trailer in good working order with MoT. Cars sold separately. Part exchange possible. Kent. 07768 276115.



14SC 1R/23

1978, £7,750. Ex fuel tanker unit, 50t gross. Turned into ballast tractor. C/P with Detroit 4 cyl 2 stroke engine. Generator. Very good order. MoT exempt. Still have fifth wheel. I have lots of panels to sell separately. Essex. 07733 112184.

£25,000. Leyland 375 engine, 6 speed gearbox and Eaton two speed axle. This is the 23rd Super Comet built in 1985 for National Benzole. Very light to drive. Tyne and Wear. 07711 100358.


£2,500. 4x2 t/unit cab rough but good runner. Also s/a 301 t/unit 1986 VGC £2,750. Lincs. 07759 473380.


£40,000. Stunning show vehicle, fully restored to immaculate condition throughout by current owner. Garaged. Will be sold with full 1 yearMoT and LEZ. 07831 611227.

online post Kelsey Media, PO Box 13, Cudham, Westerham, TN16 3WT, England



2 900X20 TYRES


£12,000. Fitted with Cummins L10 running and operational was tested until a year or so ago. Worcestershire. 07889 924947.

HYDRA 12T/120 1968, £7,500. 4x2 crane. In good working order. Recon box and new clutch. 3 owner. Warwickshire. 07940 504622.


Ring for details. Collection/delivery to and from shows/sales tractors, agricultural machinery, plant, commercial and military vehicles etc. Winch for non-runners. large or small equipment moved. Short notice, evenings/weekends no problem. Fully insured. www.daveallentransport. (T). Dorset. 01308 868741 or 07798 845112.


£140. Radial tube pattern tubes and flaps, good 10mm tread, no cracks in sidewalls. 07811 378092.


Very rare. Sand blasted to bare metal. rust cured. red oxide. applied 1st primer. rubbed down 2 find low and high spots Finished off coats filler primer All need sanding down with block you can put own colour on. Surrey. 07957 819664.


£POA. Door skirts, wings, front screens, windows, rubbers, 900 X 20 offset bar tread tyres, unused black seats/ back rests, mirror, cab light, new pedal rubbers, radiator flap, etc. 07710 350602.

1969, £3,000. DS21 2.2 engine, as new tyres, rebuilt radiator and exhaust, 2 leather tunics pipe keys, very poor health forces this sale. 01452 780475.


COMMERCIALS WANTED SCAMMEL ROUTEMAN Wanted. 8 wheel tipper wanted. Would consider flatbed. Must be good mechanically. Don't mind a bit of recommissioning. Cornwall. 07805 039684.

SCAMMELL ROUTEMAN Wanted. Cornwall. 07805 039684.


Ring for details. Servos and HydroVacs, some models off the shelf in exchange, new leather diaphragms available. Ring to discuss your requirements. Collection Service available. CLASSIC SPARES: Devon. 01626 891645.

Wanted. Or similar in fair condition, must have MoT, petrol or diesel. N Somerset. 07816 340317.

VINTAGE LORRY 4 WHEELER Wanted. Something like Thames Trader, already done up and just needing sign writing. Any make / model. Shropshire. 07929 373862.



THAMES ET6 4AD LORRY Wanted. In running order. Cash paid. Shropshire. 01691 688448.

£POA. Off /Side New shop soiled. Kent. 07860 366802.

1,000 GALLON TANK UNDER COVER £350. With flow meter. Also Leyland springs, brand new for old Leyland. Offers. Yorkshire. 07969 992979.

Take advantage of FREE ads for readers

£POA. New old stock front steel bumper. never used light surface rust perfect. West Midlands. 07974 570426.

October 2017 77

Send us your AD FREE!


£60. Lancashire. 01257 483280 / 07957 495563.


£POA. 200+ truck tyres. Retirement forces sale. All new and unused. Ask for our list. Worcestershire. 07887 887848.


£POA. For sale or can do exchange parts and engines, please phone Ray. Kent. 07900 036151.



£POA. For Bedford CA Dormobiles. Also fits some Bedford CFS. Phone for details. Kent. 01303 252870.


£100. Pair rear doors in good order. Three engine covers £30. Two grills £60. Plus lots of other parts. Beds. 07923 500329.



£Offers. 8x 235/75R x 17.5 on 10 stud wheels. Little wear. Suit low loader. Also 8x 11.22 x 20 on 10 stud wheels. Somerset. 07836 598208.

PARTS WANTED 24"WHEELS/RIMS £POA. With all glass, bench seat. Excellent inner wings, floor. No welding required. S.yorks. 07949 328421.

JAGGER £5 plus P/P. Genuine Ford with Ford logo on stem. 01482 374376.


£25 the pairTwo N.O.S. Grilles. £25 the pair. Two N.O.S. Grilles. Lincs. 07966 436171.

FORD D SERIES CAB WINDOWS £POA. Kent. 07860 366802.


£10 each or £15 the pair. 212 type lamp, glass x2. 5.5in diameter. Avon. 07855 376107.


£220 ovno. Ex Scammel Routeman tipper. Engine oil pump, tipper pump, starter motor, alternator pulley drive, alternator shaft drive, new clutch drive plate, gasket. All stored inside, very good condition. Buyer collects. West Yorkshire. 01484 510973.


£950 ono. Very good, two dif sumps. Toyota 2.5 turbo diesel, good, £350. Garwood winch, GMC, duck, good, £450. 4 Bedford army wheels, £80. Sussex. 01323 509769.

Wanted. With 2 scallops and tyrelocking rings. Netherlands. 0031455320246.

8.25X10 TYRES

Wanted. 07710 077128.


Wanted. CF 2279 Petrol cylinder head or a complete engine. It is a slant 1983. so a Vauxhall engine would do. Beds. 07949 775212.



£Best offers. And Ruston 3 cylinder VRO for restoration. Kent. 07774 688715.

MATADOR DRIVE TYRES £30. And brackets. 01224 861974.


£POA. One complete with wheel for Bedford MK. Kent. 07860 366802. Wanted. Six cylinder diesel good used or new old stock as per picture. West Mids. 07974 570426.


£POA. 23 Sets of white metal bearings, 3 Con Rods, Valves, Valve Springs plus lots of other N.O.S parts,also a few used. Prefer to sell as job lot. Lincs. 07966 436171.


£100 for pair or best offer. Two 12.00 R 22.5, in good condition 16mm of tread. Lancs. 07523 503296 / 01995 606521.

GARDNER 2 and 3

Wanted. Cylinder LW type engines. Kent. 07900 036151.

online post Kelsey Media, PO Box 13, Cudham, Westerham, TN16 3WT, England



£30. Two 50 page volumes on Bedford models from 1923 to 1986 in VGC. Good text and archive photographs. Cleverland. 01642 658052

£30 inc UK PandP. Road crane, cement mixer, log carrier, snow plough truck, flat truck with dozer. 5 trucks in all most in vgc. Merseyside. 01744 637052.



£POA. From 1962 to date, almost complete set. 01708 551542.


£Offers. 13 parts in all, good condition. 07985 691137.


MODELS Matchbox, Lesney 1.75 scale Diamond T No 15, £15. Major pack S-type Bedord car transporter, £10. Mercedes and trailer (no canopy), £5. Greyhound bus, £5. Airport crash tender, £5. Includes p&p. £Various. Tel.07784 373469. Suffolk

All makes, lovely condition. Doors, boot opens, all makes. Oldest lorries, trailers, etc, £5 onward, can post. Some 1:24 models in boxes, 1990. Some 1980s, and books, 1960-70, 80s, 90s, offers, can post. From £3, can post. Tel.07971 687318 or 07827 954068. Devon



Old and new makes, most haulier names. All models and boxes mint condition. Tel.01291 423392. Monmouthshire


£50 Can post. For 6 x 4 G.S. DG6/10. Very comprehensive instruction book that covers the dismantle and re-assembly ofeverything from Gardner 6LW to electrics. Plenty of informative drawings. Lincs. 07966 436171.

£40. Over three hundred Vintage Commercials and heritage magazines plus other truck literature. Kent. 07866 692848.


10 MODELS PLUS £13. Daf + sheeted load. Ford + Weetabix container, Transporter + hovercraft tidy/played with 3. Includes PandP. Merseyside. 01744 637052.


Wanted. Of firm closed in early 1970s, Fleetwood Fish Transport, my first driving job based at Hartlepool depot. Phone or text Norm!. Merseyside. 07923 801189.

£125. To include display cabinet. 07831 748762.



£40 the lot, Wanted. Austin 7 handbooks (all models). A40 Somerset, Minor van, Herald, Spitfire, Vitesse, S Minx, Austin 8, Gazelle. Newnes Motor Repair Manuals Vol 1, 2, 3, 4. Newnes Commercial. Newnes Charts. Bedfordshire. 07799 416221.

LEYLAND 410 CYLINDER HEAD Wanted. Derbyshire. 07971 310275.

VARIOUS 1940, £POA. 1964 Leyland Lorry Thistle Badge and driver’s lapel badge, £85. Morris Marina van/estate (Sun-Tor) rear light clustors and bumper, £90. Mini Mk I 3-50 B rims, unused Dunlop 51161, offers. 10 3-50 wheels with unused tyres, offers. Many more Mini bits. Herts. 07583 691352 or 01763 272706.

£POA. Foden, Guy, AEC, made by ex driver, no plastic used. Also conversions, alterations and repairs however small. Cars as well like coachwork, shooting brake, pick up bodies on your old Dinkys, etc. Bucks. 01442 831319

Take advantage of FREE ads for readers

£59.00 + pandp. New in original box with all packing. Mint, never out of box. 01325 350174.

October 2017 79

COMMERCIALtrader the place to buy and sell BOOTS




RUSH GREEN MOTORS Langley, Hitchin, Herts SG4 7PQ Tel: 01438 354174 Fax: 01438 353560

Largest varied stock of Commercial Vehicles and Spare Parts in the UK Pre 1940 to 1990. Bedfords always purchased UK & Continental Vehicles including EC, ATKINSON, ALBION, BEDFORD, B.M.C., COMMER, DODGE FORD, LEYLAND, MAUDSLEY, SCANIA, SCAMMELL, SEDDON, THORNYCROFT, VOLVO etc.






Cab fabrication to metal wood fibreglass Complete repainting 2pk system basecoat & lacquer RESTORATION


CLASSIC SPARES Brake and clutch hydraulic spares for post 1935 classic and vintage buses, coaches and commercials. Kits for master cylinders, wheel cylinders and slave cylinders. New and recon cylinders. Brake hoses from stock or made to pattern. Cylinder resleeving service

Contact: Ian Wonnacott, Classic Spares, The Forge, Fore Street, Kenton, Devon EX6 8LF. Phone & Fax: 01626 891645





Over 100 stalls 10am to 3pm

Admission £1


Training Centres at Warrington, Wakefield and Mobile ADR, DCPC, Forklift and DGSA Consultants

Full ADR including Tank Module and Class 1 Explosives with 35 Hours DCPC £600


SUNDAY 8 OCTOBER 10.30-3pm



01323 833125

Special display of Allard cars and Love tractors (the only examples in Europe). ALL EXHIBITORS WILL BE GIVEN A FREE LUNCH BAG AND RAFFLE TICKET


In the Bodle Street Gree en Village Hall an exhibition of photographs off P&J Tours over the last 20 years all over the world is expected to be shown, plus another by well-known farming photographer Kim Parks. Refreshments will be available, provided by Debs Broad and her fundraising charity team of ladies. Try her famous bacon baps; they are something very special indeed. Please take part in th he raffffle, f which will be drawn at 2.30pm. Do come and enjoy the vehicles and please give a donation n to Prostate Cancer UK (the amount collected will be published in the local press and parissh magazine).


Heritage Commercials Kelsey Media Cudham Tithe Barn Berrys Hill, Cudham, Kent, TN16 3AG EDITORIAL Editor: Stephen Pullen Email: Art Editor: Philip Silk Contributors: Bob Tuck, Alan Barnes, Ed Burrows, Mark Gredzinski, Dave Bowers, Bob Weir, Arthur Ingram, Richard Lofting, Chris Newton, Russ Harvey. ADVERTISEMENT SALES David Lane Office: 01778 420888 Mobile: 07795 031051 Email: Production Supervisor: Nic Lock 01733 362702 MANAGEMENT Managing Director: Phil Weeden Chief Executive: Steve Wright Chairman: Steve Annetts Finance Director: Joyce Parker-Sarioglu Retail Distribution Manager: Eleanor Brown Publishing Operations Manager: Charlotte Whittaker Audience Development Manager: Andy Cotton Brand Marketing Manager: Kate Chamberlain. Events Manager: Kat Chappell SUBSCRIPTIONS 12 issues of Heritage Commercials are published per annum UK annual subscription price: £51.00 Europe annual subscription price: £64.49 USA annual subscription price: £64.49 Rest of World annual subscription price: £70.49 Contact us UK subscription and back issue orderline: 01959 543747. Overseas subscription orderline: 0044 (0) 1959 543 747 Toll free USA subscription orderline: 1-888-777-0275 UK customer service team: 01959 543 747 Customer service email address: Customer service and subscription postal address: Heritage Commercials Customer Service Team Kelsey Publishing Ltd Cudham Tithe Barn, Berry’s Hill Cudham, Kent TN16 3AG United Kingdom

Next month

On sale October 20, 2017.

THE MAGNIFICENT EIGHT Standing head and shoulders above almost everything else, John Brownbridge’s painstaking recreation of a huge slice of Northumbrian transport folklore was to really test his metal. But his fully restored ex F&F Moffat 1974 Atkinson Defender eight-wheeler is now a tangible example of what dedication can achieve.


Website Find current subscription offers at Buy back issues at Already a subscriber? Manage your subscription online at Back Issues: 0845 873 9270 Books: 0845 450 4920 CLASSIFIEDS Tel: 0906 802 0279 (premium rate line, operated by Kelsey Publishing Ltd. Calls cost 65p per minute from a BT landline; other networks and mobiles may vary. Lines open Monday-Friday, 10am-4pm)

The Leyland FG was a popular commercial in the 1960s, and early 70s. John McNairn from Coatbridge owns a nice example with plenty of bottle, as Bob Weir found out. Kelsey Classifieds c/o Classified Central Media Central House, 4th Floor, 142 Central Street London, EC1V 8AR Fax: 020 7216 8557 DISTRIBUTION Seymour Distribution Ltd, 2 East Poultry Avenue, London, EC1A 9PT Tel: 020 7429 4000

PRINTING PCP Printers Kelsey Media 2017 © all rights reserved. Kelsey Media is a trading name of Kelsey Publishing Ltd. Reproduction in whole or in part is forbidden except with permission in writing from the publishers. Note to contributors: articles submitted for consideration by the editor must be the original work of the author and not previously published. Where photographs are included, which are not the property of the contributor, permission to reproduce them must have been obtained from the owner of the copyright. The editor cannot guarantee a personal response to all letters and emails received. The views expressed in the magazine are not necessarily those of the Editor or the Publisher. Kelsey Publishing Ltd accepts no liability for products and services offered by third parties. Kelsey Publishing Ltd uses a multi-layered privacy notice, giving you brief details about how we would like to use your personal information. For full details, visit www. , or call 01959 543524. If you have any questions, please ask as submitting your details indicates your consent, until you choose otherwise, that we and our partners may contact you about products and services that will be of relevance to you via direct mail, phone, email or SMS. You can opt out at ANY time via email: or 01959 543524. Heritage Commercials is available for licensing worldwide. For more information, contact

MOUNT HAWKE MUSIC MAKER There are certain things you must do when heading to the deep South-West, and partaking of a Cornish Pasty or their local cream tea are well up that list. But if you get the opportunity then look up Martin Caddy and ask if you can listen to the magical sound of his 1951 ‘O’ type Bedford. Bob Tuck reckons that alone is worth the long trip as it’s simply music to the ears.

PLUS Workshop. On location. News and events. & More.

082 Next month.indd 83

05/09/2017 13:24








Illustration: Graphicrepublic / Freepik

SY11 4AS

H T 4 2 23RD &





ADVANCE TICKETS Adults: £12 | Children under 15: £5 Family (2 adults & 2 children): £29 Weekend Camping Ticket: £45 On the Day Prices: Adult £14 | Child £7 | Family £35

Truck Entries | Trade Stands | Enquiries Sponsorship | Weekend Camping


Call 01406 373421 Trade enquiries, call Helen on 07545 160353


All attractions are subject to change. Booking closes Midnight Friday 22 September



SHOW Newbury Showground Hermitage, Chieveley, Newbury, RG18 9QZ 1/2 mile from M4 Jun 13/A34 roundabout.

7th & 8th October 2017 Opening Times:

Sat 9am-5pm Sun 9.30am-4pm

Admission: Adult £10.00 at gate, Advance £8.50 Weekend £18 at gate, Weekend Advance £14 Weekend Camping (3 NIGHTS) £45 Advance, £55 at show Admits 2 adults into the event. Under 15s free. Dogs on leads welcome. SATURDAY SATURDAY Large HJ Pugh Vintage Auction Sale • Large Auction sale by HJ Pugh Call 01531 631122 call 01531 631122 or SUNDAY SUNDAY Vintage sort out & Agrijumble spares day • ClassicCharity Commercials Van Display Tractorand Road Run Drive in Sunday Day of Classic Trucks • Vintage Sort out and Agrijumble BOTHspares DAYS day • Charity Tractor Road Run Classic Commercial & Van Show

Discounted Advance Tickets


Tel: 016974 51882



TRUCK & VAN DRIVE IN DAY FEATURES • Restoration area, Trade stands, books, models, toys and agrijumble • 100 Years of Ford & Fordson plus New Holland tractors • County & Roadless tractors plus 4 wheel drive conversion tractors • John Deere tractors & machinery • 70 years of the DB Cropmaster plus DB Selectamatic feature • Regional and National Club stands and privately entered exhibits • Classic Land Rovers, stationary engines, miniature steamers, horticultural equipment and classic plant Our Sponsors