British Motor Museum – Collections Centre Open Evening – Report

On Tuesday evening 10th January, CSI sent two team members to cover the British Motor Museum’s Collection Open Evening. Unforeseen circumstances almost meant that they didn’t get to the event at all. This is what ‘Warwickshire World’ reported  – 

Three lorries have collided on the M40 near Warwick causing lane closures and severe delays today (Tuesday, January 10).

The incident took place on the M40 Southbound after Junction 15 at the A46 Warwick By-Pass Warwick / Longbridge Island.

The M40
Stock photo
This is what I said to Lauren, the BMM’s marketing assistant, in an email this morning – 
“Yesterday evening turned out to be an exercise in “snatching victory from the jaws of defeat”. I am referring to the fact that we got caught up in the traffic hold-up caused by two trucks crashing on the M40.
It took us about three-quarters of an hour to travel three miles along the A46. At one stage I thought that we would have to abandon the trip to Gaydon altogether as it was well past the 5.30 pm start time.
We did eventually get there and were greeted with great warmth and sympathy for the ordeal that we had suffered, has had other arrivals before us.
From then on it was as if nothing untoward had happened. We ate our delicious dinner, met Mark and then made our way over to the Collections Centre where we joined the last tour of the Workshop for the evening. All most enjoyable.”
Here are a few words describing the role of the British Motor Museum’s Collection Centre –
The Collections Centre is a 4500m2 store, housing around 250 cars from the reserve collections of the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust and the Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust.

The purpose of this building is to allow the public to access all the cars in our joint collections for the first time. It gives visitors a ‘behind the scenes’ insight into how we store and preserve our vehicles and includes the chance to see restoration work underway in the workshop.

It was the ‘Workshop’ that we were visiting. I had been to the car display section of the Collections Centre several times before but I had never undertaken a guided tour of the Workshop. It proved to be a very interesting experience made even more so by the presence of some particularly rare cars. Steve Laing, Head of Collections and his knowledgeable team, introduced the cars to the quests pointing out their salient features.

Presented below, in alphabetical order, are photos of some of the cars that were in the Workshop at the time of our visit –

Alvis

1928 Alvis FWD I.5 Ltr. Supercharged raced at 1928 Ards TT
1928 Alvis FWD I.5 Ltr. Supercharged raced at the 1928 Ards TT

1928 Alvis FWD I.5 Ltr. Supercharged raced at 1928 Ards TT. Rear.

Daimler

1950 Daimler DE36 5.5 Ltr. DHC
1950 Daimler DE36 5.5 Ltr, straight eight. DHC

1950 Daimler DE36 5.5 Ltr. DHC. Rear

Jaguar

Ian Appleyard's Jaguar XK 120 in which he won several of Europe's most prestigious rallies.
Ian Appleyard’s Jaguar XK 120 in which he won several of Europe’s most prestigious rallies.

Ian Appleyard's Jaguar XK 120. side view.

Ian Appleyard's Jaguar XK 120. Rear.

Lanchester

1904 Lanchester pre production 20 HP
1904 Lanchester pre-production 20 HP

1904 Lanchester pre production 20 HP. Engine

1904 Lanchester pre production 20 HP. Seats

1904 Lanchester pre production 20 HP. Rear

Leyland

1927 Leyland Straight Eight (7.3Ltr.) Tourer.
1927 Leyland Straight Eight (7.3Ltr.) Tourer.

1927 Leyland Straight Eight (7.3Ltr.) Tourer. Engine

1927 Leyland Straight Eight (7.3Ltr.) Tourer. Front Badge

1927 Leyland Straight Eight (7.3Ltr.) Tourer. Marchal Headlamp

1927 Leyland Straight Eight (7.3Ltr.) Tourer. Rear

Swift

1931 Swift 10 HP Swallow Saloon
1931 Swift 10 HP Swallow Saloon

1931 Swift 10 HP Swallow Saloon. Rear threequarters

1931 Swift 10 HP Swallow Saloon. Club Badges.
1931 Swift 10 HP Swallow Saloon. Club Badges. The significance of the Bean Car Club badge is that it acknowledges that in 1919, Hadley Bean (who made Bean Cars in Tipton) took a 50% holding in the Swift Motor Company. Swift had its antecedents in the Coventry Sewing Machine Company started by James Starley in 1859. 

Vauxhall

1904 Vauxhall 6 HP
1904 Vauxhall 6 HP

1904 Vauxhall 6 HP. Front threequarters.

1904 Vauxhall 6 HP. Rear.

1970 Vauxhall SRV Concept Car
1970 Vauxhall SRV (Styling Research Vehicle) Concept Car shown at the 1970 British Motor Show.

1970 Vauxhall SRV Concept Car. Interior

 

That’s all folks!

I hope that you enjoyed sharing our visit to the British Motor Museum’s Collection Centre Workshop, with its wonderful contents, in January 2023.

If you want to do your own research on what cars are held at the British Motor Museum click HERE

Nick

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