IOTW no.398

By | IOTW

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Dutch Rally September 2009

Halbe Tjepkema hosted a Minor centric rally adjacent to The Hague in September 2009. Six of us attended from the U.K. and had a tremendous time over the long weekend. We stayed on Kaag Island and in order to reach our destination it was necessary to negotiate a stretch of Dutch motorway which has a minimum speed limit of 50 mph. On the flat this wasn’t a problem and as much of this part of the Nederlands is very flat indeed and so most of the time we kept within the law. However our fully laden Minors did not like any inclines at all and this brought the wrath of the truckers upon us, but thankfully not that of the police. (This photo wwas taken by Roger Lucke on 12th September 2009)

Chris Lambert

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IOTW no.397

By | IOTW

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This Getty Images shot of Piccadilly Circus was taken in May 1932 and features a Minor Fabric Saloon in the middle foreground and a Wolseley Hornet Saloon at circa three o’clock. There are other Morris cars to be seen along with a Green Line coach that plied its trade between Chesham and Croydon, crossing the centre of London to do so.

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I(s)OTW no.396

By | IOTW

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KJ 5909

The 1935 MCC London-Exeter Trial took place on the 27th & 28th December 1935, competitors starting from Virginia Water in Surrey. Cars commenced leaving from 11:27 PM on Thursday evening onwards, travelling through the night to the breakfast control point in Exeter. Minor owner J Lyle was a regular competitor at these national trials in his 1932 Two-seater (KJ 5909). The two images shown here were both taken on Simms Hill in Devon where the Minor clearly needed assistance in order to scale the summit. Had the climb been unaided Lyle would have qualified for a ‘Simms Hill’ Trophy to go along with his Silver Award presented by the Motor Cycle Club. (Images: LATplate C7803 & Morris Owner clipping from February 1936 edition)

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IOTW no.395

By | IOTW

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Autocar Trophies

Throughout the thirties, The Autocar magazine donated trophies for many of the national motoring events of the day including both the RAC and Scottish rallies. Unlike conventional trophies of either a plate or a cup The Autocar preferred small art deco figurines. The two statuettes featured here were awarded to competitors who took part in the Scottish Rally in 1935 and 1937 respectively.

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IOTW(s)no.394

By | IOTW

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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)

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IOTW no.393

By | IOTW

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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.

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IOTW no.392

By | IOTW

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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)

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IOTW no.391

By | IOTW

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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.

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IOTW no.390

By | IOTW

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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.

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IOTW no.389

By | IOTW

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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)

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