© Trinity Men's Fellowship Webmaster David Sandham
I started off with motor vehicles on a moped. I purchased it when we lived in Fleet in 1961. I used this to get around in my “gap year” and then just before going to college I went berserk and spent a whole £10 on my first car, a 1938 Ford 8.
Below you see me “tinkering” with it, it did require a lot of tinkering to keep it going but this taught me how everything worked which came in very useful with many more cars to follow.
I kept the moped for many years as it was just SO reliable. I experimented with more powerful models including a Lambretta scooter, until I bought the car.
Whilst at college, where I met Di, the Ford died. Eventually I bought a Heinkel Bubble Car. That was the worst purchase I have ever made. It was nothing but trouble. It had to be towed back to Newcastle, by a mini!!!!
You can see it in the back garden of our first house where it became our first greenhouse!
Over the years I have had many cars but the best is our current Kia Sorento which drives like a dream and has pulled the caravan to Denmark twice. It is now just starting it’s 17th year with us from new
The bubble in David Milner’s family
1966, wife’s first BMW, the Isetta! Lasted 4 good years before sold for £40....£5 profit!
I bet you wish you had saved it David? Just look at the price of this one for sale?????
Above is possibly my favourite vehicle. A 1976 VW Westfalia Bay-window camper van. This vehicle is the only type created by VW as a campervan. This is a quite large water colour painting of the actual van with our Border Collie, Rikki. It is on our diningroom wall
After a Vespa 125 Scooter and a couple of BSA motor cycles, my first real car was a 1951 Triumph Renown Razor Edge Saloon in light metallic green, bought to impress my beloved Maureen and her parents as things were getting pretty serious about this time. A really good, solid car used for our honeymoon trip from Lenham in Kent to Poole in 1962 and kept for a couple of years. It was the first car I knew of to have 4 wheel steering; one of the u-bolts holding the rear axle sheared so when I accelerated the car went right and when I eased off the car went left! I’m proud to say I replaced that u-bolt myself.
In 1963 I got all worked up about a Jaguar XK150 but sanity, Maureen, prevailed and I bought a new Mini instead. Then I was into the world of company cars and there followed a succession of Ford Cortinas & Corsairs, then Triumphs such as a Herald 12/50 and a couple of 2500Pi’s.
As my career progressed so did the cars including that lovely MGBGT, the flash Roller with the personal plate (how I hate that now!) With some pretty interesting BMW’s and Porsches culminating in this lovely 1986 911SC Targa which used to put a great big smile on my face when I drove it.
Mind you, I mustn’t forget my mate Nobby who’s taken us on some wonderful car tours and will do again when this lot’s a distant memory!
Hope I haven’t banged on too much, Mike.
Peter W has sent photos of two “different cars”. His first car was Christmas 1953 and the second image is from the 1980s, Scout Camp day-trip to Alton Towers, Ken Cruxton at the wheel of the Log Flume!
It’s amazing what things you find to do during “lockdown” and the mention of your favourite or worst vehicle got me thinking about all the vehicles I have had during my lifetime and I think I have remembered them all, including their actual colours. Brenda’s cars are not included!!
My first vehicle was my sisters Vespa 125, which she had fallen off and said I could have it, I was 16!! I remember going to Tenby on it from Birmingham, maximum speed 40mph downhill with a following wind!!
When I was 17 myself and 3 friends decided to buy a Morris Minor for £20.00, unfortunately it was a wreck, cable brakes that didn’t work and a wooden floor with holes in!! We sold it about a month later for £12 10/-.
My next was an Ariel Leader, 250cc twin, luxury on 2 wheels.
While still owning the Ariel my pal and I decided to go to Spain on holiday for which we bought a 7 month old Minivan between us for £280, This was in 1962, Spain is quite a long way considering back then the only motorways were the M45 and M!, non in France or Spain. En route we camped in the back of the Minivan leaving the rear doors open for our feet to hang out of! In Spain we had the luxury of a 2 man tent and of course a Primus stove for cooking! You may remember back then you could obtain petrol coupons which allowed you to buy petrol in France at the same price as it was in England (no free market economy in those days)!! When we got back we sold the Minivan for £255.
I had enjoyed the Minivan so much I decided to go upmarket and bought a Mini Traveller Estate.
Next came a Triumph Herald and marriage so the motorbike had to go!
Then came a Vauxhall Viva followed by a Hillman Avenger and an Austin Maxi. The Maxi was probably the worst car I’ve owned as the gearbox failed on a trip to Bolton, an RAC rescue was required. A replacement gearbox was not cheap as I recall.
I then had my first company car, a Volkswagen Beetle. As we were living in Libya the aircooled engine was ideal for desert driving, although the plastic seat covers and no air conditioning made it less than perfect!! This was followed in Saudi by a Toyota Cressida, sheer luxury with cloth upholstery and air conditioning and room for our tent on the roof!!
Back in the UK my next 2 cars were Vauxhall Cavaliers (1600GL and 1800GLS) followed by a Rover 820Si. The Rover was probably the most luxurious car we have owned, the upholstery wrapped around you like a cushion.
My 3rd car was a blue Vauxhall Cavalier Mk2 1.6GL
I then had a BMW 3 series, followed by a BMW 5 series:
The next car was a Honda Civic followed by 3 further BMW 5 Series (an estate and 2 saloons).
I started motorcycling again when we needed a second vehicle but couldn’t afford a second car, so I had a Honda 70cc Monkey Bike followed by a Honda CD175 and then a Honda CB 360. Then a Honda CX500 and 5 BMW motorbikes,1 BMW K100RT, 2 BMW K1200LT's s and 2 BMW K1200RS.
Now I’ve stopped motorcycling I have exchanged the bikes for my favourite car, and it is the only vehicle I keep in the garage it is our Jaguar 4.2 XKR convertible, made for summer driving.
Trust I haven’t bored you!!!
Norman has remembered every vehicle he has owned, I think it is good going if I remember what day it is - David S
Mike Malyon shows us some of the very lovely vehicles he has had
Stephen Habgood has sent in details of what is both an excellent car and a lockdown project
This was my car, but I decided to strip it down because there was a lot that needed doing to it. It is currently a running chassis.
Needs a bit more work on it!
I bought this car on being demobbed from Nat Service in 1956. I had learned to drive during my time in the Cheshire Regt. in Berlin driving Ford Willis Jeeps and Austin 3 ton lorries. The car, chassis no. LB3 was pillar box red and was a ‘drop head coupe’. This because the previous owner had turned it over and had had to cut off the roof! It had cable brakes adjustable by tightening what I think were called butterfly clips attached to the cables below the bodywork. Consequently, braking was somewhat precarious. The saving grace was that Humphrey was flat out at 47 mph. Yes, it was called Humphrey. Looking at the photo, the klaxon horn between the headlights put me in mind of my favourite band leader of the time, Humphrey Littleton.
Having been demobbed on the 10th September 1956 and having to start my university course on the 11th September and Latin being one of my subjects, the car became known as ‘Gibbus’ the Latin for a Hump. Strange how ones mind works in ones early years!
The controls were strange, in that the accelerator was situated between the clutch and the foot brake and the indicators were manual the driver putting out his arm on the offside for turning right, the passenger when turning left put her arm, yes the OG, put her arm through the gap between door and the plexi window to alert the following traffic of our forthcoming intention to manoeuvre to the left.
In wet weather, the passenger had to use an umbrella not overhead but under the extended legs as spray came up through the inadequate floor boards.
Gibbus, nee Humphrey, gave us three interesting years of faithful but tardy service until a speeding taxi crushed us against a garden wall rendering us ‘totalled’!
PS. The horn is still alive and intriguing people in Leister.... with a strong constitution and ear muffs!
Above David’s car, below a restored one.
David Milner’s first car!
Morris 8 Tourer
My first car. 1964
You all know what this is. The engine was shot but I was able to help my uncle Wally ( mechanic) rebuild the engine. I learnt a lot, including some new English !
I then had to “run it in “ for 500 miles. Not much traffic then, happy days.
Something different. 1971
I found this in a second-hand car dealers in West Acton. Prototype Austin Healey 3000 coupé. First name in log book - Donald Healey. Bodywork by Jensen Cars. Heavily modified engine and very hairy !
When I married I had to sell it for the house mortgage deposit. After the chap had paid me he said, “ I have the only other one of these” - he had travelled up from the Isle of Wight. Ah well.
Aston Martin DB3 - wheel to wheel quality. A friend and I bought this to renovate and re-sell. We paid £450. This did not work out, shame, probable worth now......200times what we paid. Happy days!!!
Stay very sensible and very best regards, Victor
Remembering our motor vehicles
In this section members will provide information about one or more of their memorable motor vehicles - First, worst, best?
Victor has sent in some pictures of his early cars …and what cars they were!!!!!
Details from the gov.uk website
Since Victor sent in this information we have been doing some research on the internet. I found pictures of a Prototype Healey and the number plate confirms it was the one owned by Victor. The colour has been changed. On checking the Gov.uk car tax site I found that it was still taxed. The photographs are from the NEC Classic Car Show of 2015. I just wonder what that car is worth now??????? (David)
“It’s more glorious than when I had it and there are a few changes to it. The radiator grill is different and there appear to be only 2 carburettors rather than 3 when I had it.
Another thing I remembered is that it was fitted with disc brakes all round. It was a 4 speed gearbox with overdrive on 3rd and 4th and the acceleration in 2nd gear..... from 20 to 70 ... was brutal !
I may be wrong but it was probably built in 1965 so gained pride of place at the NEC for being 50 yrs old. I have really enjoyed reminiscing.” Victor
(It was made in 1967 …… see the info at the bottom left of this section. David)
In 1987, out of curiosity, I bought a kit car magazine. There was what I thought was a really smart looking utility vehicle in it and, for a laugh, I said to Chris: “Would you like me to build you one of these?”. To my amazement (and joy) she said: “Yes please.”. So that was it, we visited the Rickman Brothers’ factory in Hampshire, where the kits were made, liked what we saw and ordered a Rickman Ranger (later to be called Rosie). Motorcyclists amongst you might know of the Rickmans from their bike building and racing days.
After delivery, 140 hours of labour, most of it after our young children’s bedtime, saw the car complete. We had it for 13 years, it travelled to France and Germany, carried canoes and towed our caravan but in the end it had to go. Forever rust-free but running on mechanical components designed 30 or 40 years earlier
Have you noticed how I’ve hardly aged since this photo was taken? (Who said: “should’ve gone to Specsavers”?)
Here’s the body in the mould at the factory. Rickman supplied the body and chassis and a few items of bespoke metalwork. Everything else was to be taken from a MkII Ford Escort.
The rolling chassis completed and drivable.
The project was only possible because I had use of a farmer’s barn and yard. In true farming tradition, my rent was to rebuild the barn doors with the timber which had been in stock for the purpose for the last 10 years.
The Escort estate is where the mechanical components (all refurbished) came from.
Towing the Escort’s shell to the scrap yard. The shell probably weighed ½ a ton but the farmer managed to get it it up to ¾ ton by filling it with more scrap.
The finished car in the line-up at a factory open day.
Lester’s Kit Car - such a big project to take on.