IOTW(s)no.394

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

Finchingfield, Essex

The beautiful village of Finchingfield in North West Essex is set in a shallow valley through which flows the Finchingfield Brook. Its village green provides a focal point and its around this central feature that the village grew and expanded. The Network’s 2014 rally passed through the village during the course of its Saturday tour and many rallyists stopped to take photographs. Philip Butland was one such photographer and he captured the green and its surrounds immediately after a thunderstorm. The second b&w image here was taken in early March 1937 and apart from a distinct lack of traffic it seems that little has changed in the intervening 77 years. (B&W image courtesy of LAT Images – An Autocar photo scan)

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.393

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

An unusual view

TJ 1876 was a 1933 McEvoy Minor Special, which during the course of WWII was owned by an RAF Wireless Operator/Air Gunner. This image from the late Bev Hicks collection is one of seven depicting the car during this period and is unashamedly of the car itself, with no individuals featured. Photos of our cars taken from above only ever appear infrequently and there are fewer still of Minor specials. From this angle it’s clear that the area behind the McEvoy’s rear seats was destined to be primarily used for luggage storage and not for the conveyance of passengers. The nearside wartime headlamp shroud also helps date the photograph.

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.392

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

The Minor’s nemesis!

In February 1932 the Ford Motor Company launched their new ‘Eight’ model in the U.K. Designed in Dearborn, Michigan, the first prototypes began arriving at Ford’s new production facility in Dagenham, Essex during October 1931 with full scale production beginning at the new plant early in the new year. Within a matter of months the new Ford was outselling all other 8HP competitors, including the Minor which was having its most successful sales year to date, following the launch of the long wheel base models in the autumn of 1931. Less than two and a half years later the Minor was history with Morris launching a new Ford Eight inspired range, their own ‘Eight’, the car going on to become the company’s most successful pre-war model. This image of the 1932 Ford Eight, taken at its launch is a scan from the LAT Images archive (LATplate E2152)

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.391

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

While images of Minors, Midgets and Hornets taken in action at sporting events, along with those issued for publicity purposes by the manufacturers, provide vital information for enthusiasts and restorers, so also do those taken as family snapshots. While the photographer has dated this image, the Minor and nearside front quarter of the MG Midget on view would have provided significant clues to an historian or researcher had that not been the case. The indistinct image of a Minor Coachbuilt Saloon in the background is either a a 1930 or 1931 OHC model (rectangular chromed radiator surround, low headlights and front opening doors) while the hooded guards and original wheel centres on the Midget indicate a 1931 season model, the later strengthened wheels centres being introduced by Morris for the Minor in October 1930 and presumably for the Midget at the same time. Other clues as to the date of the photograph could well be established via a knowledge of women’s fashion of the period, something beyond the scope of the writer.

N.B. The saloon could also be an early (1930/31) Wolseley Hornet, the two models sharing the same body and very similar radiators.

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.390

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

A holiday snap?

Yet another eBay sourced snapshot – this being one of a series of three. It’s not clear if this is a pre, or post-war image, either from the attire of the  subjects, or from the appearance of the car itself. The 1933 Minor Saloon (OJ 3933) was first registered in Birmingham in the latter half of that year but had subsequently seen non-standard headlamps and sidelights fitted. The two front tyres are almost devoid of tread while an interesting vent has been fitted to the side of the n/s bonnet – perhaps to aid cooling? The shingle base upon which the accommodation has been constructed  indicates that the property is a ‘seaside-let’ and that this is yet another family holiday photo.

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.389

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

Very little is known about this re-touched image which first appeared in an October 1937 edition of The Autocar. The derelict £100 Minor IH 30?? is just six years old and was registered in mid 1931 in County Donegal and must have led a hard life, perhaps as a hire car as suggested by the cryptic and crooked sign. The range of hills or mountains in the background may provide a clue as to the location of these derelict vehicles. (LAT photo scan)

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.388

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

KP 5624 is a 1929 Minor Fabric Saloon that was at one time owned by Capt. Ian McLeod from Broxbourne in Hertfordshire. It has some notoriety in the Minor world as a well known and rare example of  a saloon being fitted with a supercharged engine. This photograph illustrates some of the changes that Capt. McLeod incorporated when he replaced the original engine with the supercharged unit. Most notably the fuel tank has been moved to the rear of the car – the fuel filler being visible on its flank. The triangular firewall brakets have been removed, although the reason why is not apparent, while the cast aluminium rocker cover is from an M Type Midget. The supercharger is also clearly visible thanks to the raised bonnet. The photo was definitely taken post 1960 as a blue MOT badge can be seen attached towards the top of the windscreen to the nearside. The snow on the ground might indicate the winter of 1962 but that is just conjecture.

NB Ken Martin has subsequently pointed out that the engine installed in KP 5624 looks to be from an MG PB, which with a three bearing crank is longer than the standard Minor unit, hence the re-positioned firewall and lack of triangular fire wall brackets.

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.387

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

1930 Gordon England Minor Two-seater special

Gordon England had an aeronautical engineering background and used these skills to good effect during the twenties when his lightweight bodied Austin Seven ‘Gordon England Cup’ models achieved much competition success at Brooklands. In 1929 he launched two Morris Minor special models, a Stadium Saloon and this pretty open two-seater. The Morris factory did not have such a model in their range and it is reported that Morris Motors approached the Gordon England concern with a view to G.E. designing a version that could be produced in volume at Cowley. The resultant model was named the Semi-Sports and 744 were eventually produced upto July 1931.

VO 4346 was a 1930 Nottingham registered car and had been fitted with polished wheel discs, a popular accessory at that time.

 

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.386

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

Just a prop!

This is not the first IOTW that has featured this Blackpool photographer’s Minor ‘prop’. The eBay sourced photo shows either a family or group of friends seated in the shell of an OHC Minor Tourer while a second image in the archive shows the same Minor and backdrop with two teenage girls onboard. A third image, taken later, once again displays the same backdrop but in this one the Minor has been replaced with a 1935-37 Ford Model C 10hp tourer. (Thanks to Mike Costigan for this information) Clearly, street photography was a lucrative trade in Blackpool in that early post-war period.

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk

IOTW no.385

By | IOTW

Click the image to see it full size.

1929 Schneider Trophy

The 1929 Schneider Trophy speed trial was held over a triangular 350 kilometre course around the Solent off the south coast of England. These bi-annual events attracted huge crowds along the shoreline and these images show a coastal car park at Gosport, Hants. One of Britain’s entries in 1929 was the Supermarine S6 (forerunner of the 1931 trophy winning S6B), the float-plane winning the trophy by achieving an average speed of 328.64 mph.  The second of the two images here is an enlargement of part of the frame of the first shot. It depicts a young couple using the roof of their 1929 Minor Fabric Saloon as a vantage point to view the competing aircraft. How many other Minors were parked here that day?

Sponsored by LAT Photographic Archive www.latphoto.co.uk