Issue 1, 2012

(CCC Note :- All the text below, except that marked as 'CCC Note' (as here) is taken straight from the FBHVC newsletter)

EDITORIAL

Welcome to the first newsletter of 2012. We have started the New Year dealing with two major consultations which will affect us all: the Historic Vehicles MoT Exemption Review and the proposals from the DVLA to close local offices. Thank you to everyone who has contacted us to put forward their views, we will make sure that your concerns reach the appropriate government departments.

The feedback we receive is very important to us. Our main research survey gathered the views of over 11,000 enthusiasts and the MoT survey that followed shortly after had over 4000 participants. The result of this research helps us to shape our responses to politicians and is invaluable to the historic movement. The full text of the survey reports can be found on our website www.fbhvc.co.uk and they make very interesting reading indeed.

WELCOME

Roger Wrapson

Although by the time you read this Christmas and the New Year will be a distant memory let me start by wishing everyone a very happy and enjoyable New Year. 2012 will present us with a number of challenges – the first probably being the deadline for the current MoT consultation.

One wonders if the bright young things of VOSA and DfT would have looked for changes with such gusto had they understood that we are part of a £4.3 billion pound industry and one of the few ‘good news’ stories of the day. Indeed, thanks to FBHVC inspired research, we can all hold our head up high – no longer consenting adults engaged in odd practices in the garage, workshop, or on the road, but instead the visible face of a significant and successful industry with prospects of expansion and world recognition for the skills we have available, and all the cache of being part of the UK’s GDP and Export earnings.

In the post-celebratory anticlimax ‘She who must be obeyed’ is selecting events for us to attend during the year and encouraging me to greater things in the garage, blissfully unaware of the important role she is playing in Mr Cameron’s economic plans for the UK. Long may it continue!

LEGISLATION

David Hurley

HISTORIC VEHICLES MoT EXEMPTION REVIEW

The Department for Transport issued a consultation paper in November 2011 proposing as its preferred option a complete exemption from testing requirements for all pre-1960 vehicles, a far wider proposal than had been considered within FBHVC. Other options being considered by DfT were complete exemptions for all pre-1945 vehicles and all pre-1920 vehicles, or do nothing. The background to the discussions on the MoT test consultations has been well reported in previous newsletters.

The three month consultation period was inadequate for FBHVC to employ its usual method to gain feedback on these wider proposals. Consequently, it was decided to gauge the views of enthusiasts by means of an on-line survey and full details were given in the last newsletter, on the website, and to the press.

Over 4000 responses were gathered on-line. The survey enabled comment on the choice of cut-off date and at the time of going to press these comments are still being analysed, although it has been possible to broadly categorise these opinions. Those taking part were asked to indicate the age of vehicle they owned, and this piece of information will also be taken into account when the final analysis of the results has been made.

Summary of Results

·       74% of respondents wish to see testing requirements for historic vehicles relaxed.

·       59% support the government’s preferred option of exempting all pre-1960 vehicles.

·       71% believe historic vehicles in commercial use should be subject to testing even if other pre-1960 vehicles are exempted; 14% said commercial use should make no difference to testing requirements..

·       53% of respondents said they would take their vehicles for test if this could be done on a voluntary basis; 33% said they would not seek a voluntary test.

The opinions and reasons for them were qualified in many of the responses with conditional statements that the choice only applied if various conditions were met. Most common conditions were that there should be:

·       no risk of restriction on use;

·       no risk of increased insurance premiums for untested vehicles;

·       no risk of insurers demanding (expensive) engineer’s reports;

·       some facility for a formal standardised test to demonstrate roadworthiness.

The report will be published in full on the FBHVC website, www.fbhvc.co.uk, when the analysis has been completed.

In the last issue we indicated that we are seeking clarification from the DfT on aspects of the consultation, in particular on the ability to submit vehicles that fall inside the scope of any exemption to a voluntary test. The necessity for an MoT test is enshrined in other regulations: first registration on import; as part of the V765 procedure; obtaining an age related mark; transfer of marks; re-licensing from unlicensed etc. In all these circumstances a test is necessary for safety reasons and the prevention of fraud, and in the case of the import of vehicles never registered in the UK, conformity with Construction and Use regulations where the current Individual Vehicle Approval test would not be appropriate. We will be asking the Department for Transport to seriously consider this.

We are very grateful to all those who took part in the survey and also to Jim Whyman who did the analysis and administration while working to a very tight deadline.

By the time this newsletter is published, the analysis will have been completed and the board will have considered all feedback received before finalising FBHVC's response to the consultation.

There is a similar consultation taking place in Northern Ireland called: Proposal on Possible Exemption of Certain Categories of Historic Vehicles from MoT Testing. We will be sending a response to the Department of the Environment Road Safety and Vehicle Regulation Division to this consultation as well.

TRANSFORMING DVLA SERVICES

This consultation issued on 13 December was a Christmas present we could have done without – so could staff of DVLA Local Offices throughout the UK, who that morning were told that all LOs would close during 2013. This action will remove all face to face contact by the user public with DVLA staff.

Briefly, the DVLA stance is that the progress of computerisation needs to continue. To quote: ‘This means driving forward existing services such as increasing take up of driver services on-line. It also means making other transactions available electronically where this is cost effective and maximising uptake by making them as user friendly as possible’.

The consultation majors on increasing use of their existing vehicle licence transactions on-line (and telephone) services, but their (loaded) figures actually show that more than 50% of private users do not avail themselves of these facilities. Their so-called customer survey was based on on-line users only, ignoring the majority who do not, or cannot, use this facility for their transaction. There are vague promises to engage with ‘intermediaries’ but whether this is to provide computer access only, or a genuine replacement for end users with queries is also unclear. For individuals who are not computer literate are unlikely to use a DVLA provided facility.

The document then promises at some unspecified time in the future, to simplify other processes to enable additional transactions to be added to on-line facilities, no doubt on a cost effective basis. What they don’t mention are various transactions where we all, as old vehicle owners, necessarily have to go to our Local Office.

Examples include:

·       Taxing an historic vehicle for the first time;

·       Authentication of copy documentation for transmission to Swansea in lieu of valuable originals;

·       Same day receipt of replacement tax discs for lost or stolen discs;

·       Same day receipt of tax discs for taxing at short notice (including paper MoT and insurance cover notes);

·       Taxing vehicles where there is also a change of taxation class e.g. unlicensed to historic, PSV to PLG;

·       Taxing a vehicle exempt from MoT (I wonder how long Post Offices will be able do this?);

·       Reinstatement of an original registration number where this had been replaced at some time in the past but has remained dormant;

·       Inspection of vehicles which require an age related number or a chassis number;

·       Inspection of imported vehicles requiring UK registration.

The FBHVC will be responding appropriately and remind all clubs and individuals that they may also send their own responses to this very important consultation. Hard copies of the consultation are available by writing to Corporate Affairs Directorate, D16, DVLA, Swansea, SA6 7JL. (The consultation did not provide a contact name or phone number.) Or www.dft.gov.uk/dvla then click on consultation. The consultation closes 6 March 2012.

 

Nigel Harrison has also written on some of the above points elsewhere in the newsletter.

 

RED TAPE CHALLENGE

This response has been received at the FBHVC office following our various responses to items in the ongoing Red Tape Challenge:

Earlier this year, you helped provide ideas as part of the Red Tape Challenge on road transportation. The Department for Transport has just published its response to the suggestions that you and others put forward. These include:

·       Scrapping the regulation requiring motorists to hold a paper counterpart to their driving licence by 2015 – saving drivers up to £8m.

·       Improving the regulation surrounding the notification process for vehicles that are not in use on the road (Statutory Off Road Notification or SORN). Once drivers have notified the DVLA that their vehicle is SORN, they will no longer have the burden of annual renewal.

·       Only issuing hard-copies of V5 vehicle registration certificates for fleet operators when needed (and possibly for private motorists in the future).

·       Introducing a limited exemption from drivers’ hours rules so that those who also drive as Territorial Army reservists in their own time can continue to do so.

 

If you want to learn more, the DfT press notice is here: http://www.dft.gov.uk/news/press-releases/dft-press-20111215. Details on what we are doing for all 376 regulations from this theme in the Red Tape Challenge can be found at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/consultations/gov-20110520. Across all themes so far, of over 1200 regulations considered through the Red Tape Challenge, we have agreed to scrap or improve well over 50%.

FUEL STABILITY ADDITIVE TESTING

Unfortunately the testing on the fuel stability additives suffered another set-back at the end of last year. Delays resulted initially because of unexpected contamination in the corrosion testing process, which forced the abandonment of the test programme about half-way through the 13 week test cycle. The cycle was started again in the late summer/early autumn, but difficulties were then experienced in making the test severe enough to ensure that candidate additives were adequately put through their paces. This unfortunately led to further delays while the test protocol was refined to ensure that the method would select only those candidate additives offering real protection against potential corrosion from petrol containing ethanol. The Federation recognises that these delays are unfortunate, but wishes owners of historic vehicles to be reassured that any endorsement given for a protective fuel additive will be of real value. This important objective is regarded as overriding the pressing need to issue endorsements at the earliest opportunity.

FIBREGLASS FUEL TANKS

Last year we raised a question about legality of fibreglass fuel tanks with the Department for Transport following a number of enquiries from members.They confirm that regulation 39(2)(c) of The Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations requires all petrol tanks on vehicles first used after 1 July 1973 to be metal. This applies to all vehicle types. There are no requirements on the material of diesel tanks.

The only exemption from the requirement for road vehicles is for vehicles with fuel tanks approved to Directive 70/221/EEC or ECE Regulation 34. These permit plastic tanks provided they have passed impact resistance, mechanical strength, fuel permeability and fire resistance tests.

EU LEGISLATION

FIVA meeting with the European Commission on roadworthiness testing and registration

FIVA met with officials from the European Commission’s DG MOVE (responsible for Roadworthiness Testing), and DG Enterprise, (responsible for vehicle registration) in November. During the meeting, the Commission officials explained their view that the definition of a historic vehicle in the existing Roadworthiness Testing Directive needs to be changed and that a definition of a historic vehicle should be built into the Commission’s work on vehicle registration. The Commission sought help to shape its views on a definition and FIVA is currently asking all ANFs to provide up-to-date information about their Member State type-approval, registration and roadworthiness testing regulations applicable to historic vehicles and to also gather as much information as possible about problems experienced by FIVA members when attempting to register their vehicles in another member state.

MEP Historic Vehicle Group Meeting

The European Parliament Historic Vehicle Group held a meeting on 1 December. The Group invited William Borthwick (DG MOVE Clean Transport and Sustainable Urban Mobility) to attend to explain the motivation behind policy initiatives to achieve clean urban transport and to discuss related initiatives and their impact on historic vehicles. Also attending was Dutch emissions expert, Rudolf Rijkeboer.

Mr Borthwick explained the Commission’s desire to reduce carbon emissions to help mitigate against climate change and the need to substitute oil for both environmental and security of supply reasons and explained the implementing measures which include developing and promoting alternative fuels and developing access restriction zones. In the ensuing discussion it was noted that:

·         E10 fuel damages historic vehicles and that there is therefore a need to ensure supply and availability of fuels suitable for historic vehicle use.

·         Work by the fuel companies to develop fungible fuels should be examined to assess their impact on HV use.

·         Emissions from historic vehicles are not a part of the problem identified by policy makers as: the vehicle emission legislation which has been developed over the past 40 years has proved successful in reducing CO; PM is still being addressed but it is a problem caused by modern vehicles, not historic vehicles; the new current concern is NO2 emissions and is primarily a consequence of catalytic converters designed to reduce NOx.

·          ‘Use’ does not need to be a component of a regulated definition of a historic vehicle: historic vehicles will generally be used less than other vehicles but that a ‘use’ criterion is not appropriate for inclusion in regulatory texts as it is unnecessary and would prove difficult to regulate and enforce.

·         FIVA has maintained discussions with the European Commission on the roadworthiness testing Directive and participated in consultations on the functioning of the Internal Market vis-á-vis registration/re-registration of vehicles and on individual vehicle type approval and that FIVA has meet with officials from DG MOVE and Enterprise where the focus of debate was the definition of a historic vehicle. Malcolm Harbour MEP noted that the EP Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee Report has identified vehicle registration as one of the top 20 single-market-related sources of consumer dissatisfaction and frustration.

European Commission consultation on alternative fuels

FIVA has submitted views to the European Commission on a consultation on the future infrastructure requirement to ensure the increased use of alternative fuels in the EU. The submission stated FIVA’s view that both traditional fuels and E5 must remain available on the market to ensure the continued use of historic vehicles because experience has also shown significant technical problems for historic vehicles by the use of E10 - with vehicles most likely to be affected being vehicles ten years old or older, carburettored vehicles and first generation direct spark ignition vehicle.

DVLA LOCAL OFFICE CLOSURES

Further to David Hurley’s article on the actual consultation here is a bit more detail on the work of the Local Offices and the possible consequences of their closure.

Original document certification: The whole purpose of having a certified copy is that there is then no chance of the original documents being lost in the post. If DVLA Local Offices are to disappear, then there needs to be a system whereby certified copies can be made of original documents which are still acceptable to DVLA Swansea, at a location which is no further away than the DVLA Local Office.

Checking of Insurance and MOT:The common feature of the many transactions is the need to check the MoT and insurance. If a registration number is not yet allocated to the vehicle, the MoT and insurance is recorded under the chassis number, and it is difficult to see how this could be checked electronically. The other option for DVLA is to assume that the vehicle has an MoT and is insured. The onus would then be on the owner to get the MoT and insurance changed to reflect the new registration number before the next Continuous Insurance comparison is done between taxed vehicles and insured vehicles.

V55/5 Vehicle details form:Where a vehicle is not actually registered the way of conveying this information to DVLA for historic vehicles is via a V55/5 form: a ‘catch all’ complicated carbonised three page form, not available for download, where only around a third of the information requested on the front of the form is applicable to an historic vehicle. It is difficult to see how this could be done electronically. Would the substitute be either a walk-in service, or using the post?

Proof of ID:Currently when a vehicle is being registered for the first time with DVLA (except for a V765 application), proof of ID is required. Would an electronic check of the proposed keepers driving licence now be sufficient, if a check is still deemed required?

Application documents:With some types of applications there will be a dating letter and photographs. Unless there is some form of ‘walk in’ service where these items can be scanned and sent to DVLA Swansea, it looks as if it would need to be a postal application, causing an extra delay.

Vehicle Inspection:DVLA have the option to inspect a vehicle before it is registered. Often this is done at the DVLA Local Office. If an inspection is required, there needs to be some form of ‘drive-in’ service, which is no further away than the DVLA normal inspection location.

Applications for non-computer users:The assumption of DVLA appears to be that if an applicant has no access to the internet at home they can adequately use the on-line facilities of a ‘walk-in’ service. On the DVLA’s V765 list of clubs, around 25% of club signatories don’t declare an email address. In one historic vehicle club, only just over 50% of members declare an email address. It is likely that if someone is not familiar with using email, they would struggle with using a keyboard and mouse for an on-line application. DVLA appear to be suggesting that electronic transactions should be used instead of a paper based transaction. Although a high proportion of transactions will be electronic, seeing that a significant minority of individuals are unfamiliar with the technology it is suggested that some kind of paper based transaction needs to remain as a plan B option.

From a DVLA standpoint the number of registration or taxation class changes which relate to historic vehicle is comparatively low. It would not be surprising if some, or all, of these transactions remain paper based.

RESEARCH

A £4 BILLON HOBBY

That is the title of the report into the findings of our recent survey - and that is the economic value of our historic vehicle movement.

The work underpinning this result was undertaken in conjunction with the Historic Vehicle Research Institute over the summer of last year. Information was actually collected in four different surveys - clubs, museums, traders and individuals. The first three groups were asked about what they did, their annual turnover, their hopes and concerns for the future. Individuals were asked about the vehicles they owned, what they did with them, how much they spent and a little about themselves. This gave researchers information about both sides of the equation - what people spend, and what businesses receive.

The four sets of data were analysed during the autumn (this involved four large Excel work books, each with multiple worksheets, the largest of which had over 11,000 rows and 170 columns). The initial plan had been to announce the results in November, but finding that the River Room in the House of Lords would be available for a reception on 6 December, publication was delayed slightly to take advantage of this rather special venue, which is only available for such purposes by courtesy of the Lord Speaker.

Our president, Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, hosted the reception and Baroness D’Souza, the Lord Speaker, kindly welcomed our guests who came from both Houses of Parliament (many being members of the All Party Parliamentary Historic Vehicle Group, of which Lord Montagu is also president), the press, trade and academic contacts.

 

FBHVC vice president, Lord Steel of Aikwood, introduced proceedings. The headline research results were presented by the research project leader, Geoff Smith. These showed an encouraging situation:

 

Economic Value: £4.3 billion with nearly £1 billion from exports.

Average owners spend £2,900 on their hobby excluding vehicle purchase and restoration.

 

Employment:                       28,000 working for some 3,800 businesses.

57% of specialist traders have been in business for over 20 years.

 

Vehicle Use:                          0.24% of total vehicle miles with over 80% used no more than once a month.

There are over 850,000 pre-1981 vehicles in Britain.

 

Cultural Issues:                    Nearly 70% of vehicles are worth less than £10,000.

Over 30% of owners have a household income below £25,000.

59% of vehicle owners are in employment and 38% are retired.

 

Public Interest:                     4.5 million attendances at FBHVC club events.

35% of historic vehicle owners perform voluntary work.

 

The Next Five Years:          Over half of traders expect their turnover to grow.

Over 40% expect to recruit new or additional staff – approx.

66% of traders have concerns about business regulations.

68% of traders are concerned about regulations affecting vehicle usage.

This was followed by a question and answer session chaired by Greg Knight, chairman of APPHVG, with the research team of Dr Paul Frost, Dr Chris Hart, Dr Jaime Kaminski and Geoff Smith. Mike Penning, Parliamentary Secretary of State for Transport commented: ‘We have no plans whatsoever to restrict the use of classic and vintage vehicles - not as long as I am in my position. I see them as an important part of our national heritage’.

The research findings (which can be found in full at www.fbhvc.co.uk) show that the economic and employment record for the past five years and confidence for the future both buck the national trend, with the economic value of the movement having been at least been maintained in real terms despite the recent difficult trading conditions. It is excellent news that the number of people earning some of their living from the movement has increased by 1000 since 2006, and reassuring that traders are generally optimistic for the future, with many predicting growth, leading to more jobs. On the downside, many traders are concerned that the burden of regulations faced by small businesses may stifle this potential.

We are grateful to all the enthusiasts who completed the online survey, the traders, museums and clubs who returned the questionnaires. Additionally we owe our thanks to the research team without which this valuable information could not be obtained and to Jim Whyman who tirelessly did the analysis and administration.

Printed copies of the report have been sent to all club main contacts and to all traders and museums which responded to the survey. Further printed copies are available from the secretary at £5 each, including postage.

TRADE AND SKILLS

Tony Davies

Now that 2012 is upon us I would like to wish you all a happy New Year and busy and enjoyable times with your classics.

You may recall from my piece in the last Newsletter that I will be launching our more specific web-based trade and skills survey in April. The key objectives of this survey are to establish the personal opinions of historic vehicle enthusiasts on the availability, or otherwise, of relevant restoration skills.

From the analysis of our earlier survey one of the very early lessons learnt was that clubs per se do not undertake much restoration work. Hence it is important to solicit the opinions of club members as individuals.

The 2012 questionnaire for individuals will be slightly shorter and less complex than the initial version and will take about 10 minutes complete. Nevertheless, I plan to build in a ‘save’ facility to enable it to be completed in more than one visit if a break for dinner etc. is called for.

April 2012 is the target date for going live with this web-based questionnaire and I encourage all members of our clubs to respond as individuals. Understandably individual members will have much more experience of vehicle restorations than our clubs, so please point your members to the trade and skills section of the FBHVC website and ask them to complete the questionnaire between April and August. The URL and password to enable your club members to access the questionnaire will be printed in the next newsletter.

You may also recall that earlier this year I proposed that a series of one-to-one interviews with some of our trade professionals should be undertaken. The hard-copy questionnaire for this survey will be similar to the web-based version but slanted towards the professional practitioners. This exercise too will be launched in 2012 with around 50 of our trade supporters contacted to enable us to understand the trade’s viewpoints on the same subject of skills availability.

Welcome to the following traders who have recently joined the Federation as supporters:

A & C Soda Blasting

Autofarm

Triumph-Recycler.com

EVENT NEWS

Colin Francis

Earlier in 2011 I mentioned an event in China and I hope some people did not try to go. I have since learned that taking classic cars into China is very difficult unless one has the correct contacts. The problem lies with the Customs and the organisers left this to their visitors to sort out. Similar experiences with Customs, who required a large deposit should the car not be re-exported, also happened in Quebec a few years ago. Some of us may remember carnets and their use on events in Europe before the EU, although Europe was used to events and cars crossing boundaries, I doubt if China and Quebec have such experiences. I mention Quebec as there will be a Belgian event there from 28 September to 6 October 2012, see www.seasunrally.com. However for people in the south of England they have an event in Belgium from 29 June to I July. Two of my Belgian friends, Joseph Lambert and Willy Lux, are also organising an event in Belgium from March 31 to 1 April. As there are three separate categories all people are catered for. See www.classicspringroads.be for more details or email jos.lambert@pt.lu

Of course, nearer to home, we have Drive it Day on 22 April this year when MK Classic Tours are organising their very popular event from Woburn. See their website for details or email mkclassictours@aol.com. The HRCR (a member club) also has an Easylarity Rally on the 28 April as the next stage after Tours. You can get details from their website or that club.

I recently competed on the Winter Challenge to Monte Carlo, which used to be called the Monte Carlo Challenge when it was a FIVA event. The CRA attempted to run the event in the early nineties style and, although they succeeded in many respects, I was amazed at the way events have changed in the last 10 or 15 years. There is now a lot more emphasis on complicated regularity which makes the events mostly a mental (navigation) not a driving experience. The biggest change is the emphasis on regularities these days and the British system where the regularity starts again at every timing point makes it even more complicated. Fortunately most continental organisers do all timing from the start of a regularity so one complicated element is removed from their events. It is worth checking this point in the regulations of an event before entering. The downside for continental organisers is that if they have to cancel a section it can affect the whole of a regularity.

CLUB NEWS

David Davies

Firstly, some of the many anniversaries being celebrated this year.Congratulations to the Bullnose Morris Club which will be celebrating its Diamond Jubilee in 2012, the highpoint being a Jubilee rally in September: www.bullnose.org.uk. The Renault Owners Club also celebrate 60 years making them the oldest UK and European Renault Club, full details are on www.renaultownersclub.com/diamond.shtml. The magazine of the Ford Model T Register draws our attention to the centenary of OMC Ford – originally the Oldham Motor Company - who has just celebrated a 100 year connection with the Ford Motor Company: www.modeltregister.co.uk. The London Austin Seven Owners’ Club has announced a 90th anniversary run to Brighton on 1 April: www.austinsevenownersclub.com. The Daimler and Lanchester Owners’ Club tells us that 2012 is the golden jubilee of the V8 Saloon www.dloc.org.uk. The Singer Owners Club reminds us that 1961 saw the introduction of the Singer Vogue: www.asco.org.uk. Another manifestation to celebrate 90 years of the Austin Seven by the Pre-War Austin Seven Club will be a demonstration run from Land’s End to John O’ Groats - starting on 7 April. www.pwa7c.co.uk

The current issue of the L E Velo Club magazine has a useful and informative article on motorcycle tyre removal and refitting. www.leveloclub.org.uk

Citroenian- the excellent journal of the Citroen Car Club has some depressing statistics for you: pothole damage costs UK drivers on average £400 in a year and he will encounter 10 potholes every day. The average road in England is resurfaced every 65 years. At the current rate of funding it will take councils 11 years to repair last winter’s damage. www.citroencarclub.org.uk

The magazine of the Wolseley Owners’ Club, obviously keen to recruit members, has an article on why you should buy a Wolseley 6/80: www.WolseleyOwnersClub.com and in similar vein the year book of the Rover P4 Guild has a highly informative buyer’s guide. www.roverp4dg.org.uk

CooperWorld the magazine of the Mini Cooper Register tells us that there is a possibility of the much loved Dunlop SP44 tyre being reintroduced www.minicooper.org

The magazine of the Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club has a thought-provoking comparison road test between a Mk 3 Ford Zodiac and a 2.4 Mk 2 Jaguar www.jec.org.uk

The Cumbria Steam and Vintage Vehicle Society magazine tells us that facsimiles of the first (1931) edition of the Highway Code have been printed to celebrate its 80th anniversary.

The Octagon Car Club Bulletin has an informative little story about the colour of your sparking plug insulators and a useful dissertation on Lucas T type distributors. www.mgoctagoncarclub.com

The DAF Owners’ Club magazine has some startling statistics comparing a Ford Focus to an Austin/Morris 1800. www.dafownersclub.co.uk

The Ford Y & C Model Register has yet more remarkable statistics concerning the Ford plant at Dagenham which at its peak in 1953 employed 40,000 workers. There is also a useful list of Ford car body colours and their modern equivalents (and there’s me thinking that all Fords are black...) www.fordyandcmodelregister.co.uk

A most interesting article in the Military Vehicle Trust magazine tells us that 2012 is the 75th anniversary of the first flight of the B17, the Flying Fortress. Out of the 12,731 produced, there are around 30 in museums around the world and less than 12 are still airworthy. Sally B, based at Duxford, is the only operation example in Europe www.mvt.org.uk

There is an article on a melancholy but important subject in that excellent magazine produced by the Bentley Drivers’ Club concerning the hidden pitfalls in bequeathing your beloved historic vehicle. www.bdcl.org

Rumcar News – the periodical from the Register of Unusual Microcars that bravely reports on the darker side of motoring has a tantalising photograph and reference to a BSA Ladybird - who can tell us more? www.rumcarnews.co.uk

There is a photograph of the first Vauxhall ever made in the Newsletter of the Vauxhall Owners’ Club claiming that it is the property of Vauxhall Motors. Where is JNM 400 now? www.vboa.org.uk

The Austin Ten Drivers’ Club magazine has an illustrated article on pre-war windscreen wiper motors. www.austintendriversclub.com

The Imp Club magazine informs us that the Rootes Archive Centre Trust has embarked on the praiseworthy project to collect the memories of those people involved in the manufacture of vehicles for the Rootes group. Anyone who might be able to help should contact Kimberley Benoy on 07961 995756 or kimberley_benoy@hotmail.com

A singular warning is given in the official journal of the Daimler and Lanchester Owners’ Club concerning brake vacuum servo hoses. Make sure that any such hose will resist a vacuum - it might well resist pressure but it might collapse if subjected to a vacuum. www.dloc.org.uk

Rolling, the magazine of the Road Roller Association always has a collection of atmospheric period photographs of rollers in action but this month there is something different - an illustrated feature on postage stamps that bore images of steam rollers. www.r-r-a.org.uk

Jampot, the magazine of the AJS & Matchless Owner’s Club tells us that the club is considering a production run of crankshafts for the 650cc twins - members only, possibly, but anyone interested should contact Roger Jenner at secretary@jampot.com for more information.

The Historic Commercial Vehicle Society News has an article on a LGCO B type bus from the Great War which survived as a railcar in the Australian bush until 1956 – at least. The same magazine recounts the adventures of one Dominic Bleumven, from Nantes, who planned a 1300 kilometre trip around all the WW1 Western front battlefields from the Belgian coast to the Swiss border in his magnificent De Dion lorry. His intention was to arrive at his destination on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 2011 – did he achieve this?

The Armstrong Siddeley Owners Club magazine has an article on the North-East Restoration Club - an organisation that could usefully be replicated elsewhere in the country. www.siddeley.com

The Wolseley Register tells us that the 8-seater Wolseley limousine used by General Douglas MacArthur in Australia in WW2 has survived and has/is being restored www.wolseleyworld.com

A unique photograph appears in the magazine of the Autotruck Club it shows the then Duke of York, later to become King George VI at the Lister factory in Dursley at the controls of a Lister Autotruck in the 1930s. www.autotruckclub.org

Some thought-provoking statistics from the past in the bulletin of the BSA Front Wheel Drive Club: in 1921 there were 873,700 vehicles on Britain’s roads – and 62,621 accidents. In 1928 there were 2,036,000 vehicles and 147,582 accidents. In 57% of the accidents the speed was stated to be under 10 mph.

Staying with ‘accidents’ there is a report in the Lea-Francis Owners’ Club magazine of an accident in 1925 when the composer Sir Edward Elgar lost control of his Lea Francis whilst driving through Bromsgrove. Subsequent to all this excitement, Elgar always employed a chauffeur. www.lfoc.org

The magazine of the CSMA’s Classic Vehicle Group has a most interesting article on polishing your cherished vehicle. www.csmaclub.co.uk/classicvehiclegroup

Issue 223 of the Riley Register bulletin contains some fascinating photographs of production techniques in the factory in the 1930s – no fancy CNC machines in those days! www.rileyregister.com

A world record has been achieved according to The Cultivator from the Vintage Horticultural and Garden Machinery Club. 24 Anzani Iron Horse cultivators indulged in a mass orgy of simultaneous cultivation in Surrey on 29 August. The youngest participant was 14 year old Henry Bruce and the oldest was over 70 years old. www.vhgmc.co.uk

The Wessex Vehicle Preservation Group reflects that ten years ago we had Steve Jobs, Bob Hope and Johnny Cash: now we have no jobs, no cash and no hope... The newsletter also points out that it is unwise to be irreplaceable; if you can’t be replaced, you cannot be promoted.

The Morris Commercial Club quarterly magazine has a photograph of the sad remains of the Morris Commercial factory in Foundry Lane, Soho – has in now disappeared? There is also an illustrated feature on the still-born Austin Ant. www.morriscommercialclub.co.uk

The Fire Service Preservation Group warns us of the proposals to close the London Fire Brigade Museum as part of the LFEPA annual budget review. All those opposed should subscribe to www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/lfbmuseum. Also the Kent Fire and Rescue Museum has been put into store with the strong possibility that the remarkable collection of artefacts and vehicles will be dispersed and sold. www.f-s-p-g.org

The Wirral Classic Car Club has a report on a visit to the extraordinary Humber Collection of Allan Marshall in Dalton Street, Hull.

The MG Car Club magazine offers a solution for blue badge holders who have open cars. They suggest that you take a look at www.parkingforbluebadges.com/shop/bluebadge/pie-guide-blu-badge-double-protector.html Another call to the philatelists amongst us: there is also an article on stamps that feature MGs. www.mgcc.co.uk

The Allard Owners Club report the disturbing and dispiriting news that fraudulent FIA homologation and standard labels are in circulation. Beware when purchasing seats, helmets, overalls, etc www.alllardownersclub.org

In the process of conserving their latest addition, a 0-4-0 saddle tank steam engine, the Scottish Vintage Bus Museum reports that the smokebox was filled to the chimney top with empty lager cans and bottles thoughtfully deposited by the good people of Dunfirmline www.busweb.co.uk/svbm

A somewhat unhinged application for a 500cc Speedway JAP engine is described in the magazine of the Morgan Three-Wheeler Club. Marcus Claesson adapted such an engine to power his (successful) racing outboard www.mtwc.co.uk

The newsletter of the Hillman Owners’ Club has a delightful period drawing of a Hillman convertible of the 1950s. There is an account of a visit to one of those wonderful Australian scrapyards - Flynn’s Wrecking Yard in Cooma, in the Snowy Mountains - more than 4,000 vehicles so we are told. www.hillmanownersclub.co.uk

The magazine of the TR Register has an educational article on the use of a multimeter to fault find. www.tr-register.co.uk

There is an article on the almost lost art of winding HT coils in Buzzing from the National Autocycle and Cyclemotor Club. There is also an account of a journey from Spain to Surrey with a Minimotor which took nine days from Bilbao and 925 miles, with a fuel consumption of 276 mpg. www.thebuzzingclub.co.uk

The Triumph Roadster Club magazine has some useful advice on the use of DOT4 and DOT3 brake fluid. www.triumphroadster.org

Those lavender Morris Minors again! An impressive line-up of the survivors is featured in the Morris Minor Owners’ Club Magazine for November. There is also an intriguing article on the use of bicarbonate of soda as a non-destructive blast cleaning medium. www.mmoc.org.uk

There is a magnificent panoramic photograph of Citroens which occupies both the front and back covers of the Traction Owners’ Club magazine and we are reminded that the International Citroen Car Club Rally will be at the Great Yorkshire Show Ground in Harrogate 9-12 August www.traction-owners.co.uk

The Traditional Car Club magazine features the largest IC engine in the world. The Wartsile-Sulzer RTA96-C which weighs in at 2300 tons and uses 1,660 gallons of heavy fuel oil per hour on its most economical setting. I am awaiting the appearance of the first preserved example at the Great Dorset Steam Fair sometime in the near future... www.traditionalcarclub.co.uk

As we were going to press news reached us that the future of Stanford Hall, the country park not far from Lutterworth in Northamptonshire, as a venue for gatherings of historic vehicles is in doubt as a result of change of ownership.

Further to the wish expressed in the last issue to witness a steam roller at Prescott, the Bugatti Owner's Club Autumn Classic in October saw the inauguration runs of the Steam Car Club of Great Britain Hill Climb Championship. This new event is the only steam car competition to be held in Britain, possibly the world and might even be the first competition ever to be open to steam cars only.

MEMBER ORGANISATIONS

All of our member organisations are listed by name on our website but it is the responsibility of individual clubs to add or amend their own club and event details.

Welcome to the following organisations who have recently joined:

Donington Collection (Musuem)

Club of Ancient Automobiles and Rallies GB (CAARGB)

Club Peugeot

The Register of Automobiles with Coachbuilt Bodies by Abbotts of Farnham

DRIVE IT DAY, 22 APRIL 2011

This year’s Drive It Day promises to be bigger and better than ever judging by the amount of interest already being shown.The event is usually held on the nearest Sunday to 23 April, which is the day was chosen six years ago to commemorate the 64 cars that set off from London on 23 April 1900 on the first day of the Thousand Mile Trial – an incredible undertaking and one which we believe deserves an annual celebration.

We have had so many requests to advertise DID events that we have made a dedicated page on our website events section for just this day. The same rules apply as for other events – member organisations may add details using their ID number and password previously issued. Please do take advantage of this free service for your club and also note that the FBHVC office is unable to do on behalf of member clubs. The service is purely for member organisations only.

In addition we have teamed up with Dragonfly Design Ltd and commissioned a rally plate design which clubs may order direct from Dragonfly themselves: www.dragonflyhouse.co.uk Tel 0800 783 8634; email sales.desk@dragonflyhouse.co.uk

As well as the Royal Oak at Bishopstone in Wiltshire, where the landlord will be delighted to welcome all comers on the day, the famous Ace Café on the North Circular Road will provide a venue for enthusiasts in north London. The Federation will be on hand to meet and greet members and explain its work and activities while the café will be providing its own blend of nostalgia and refreshment to patrons.

OBITUARY

Tony Beadle,

1943 – 2012

The Federation has received very sad news that Tony Beadle died on Saturday 7 January from complications following an eight hour operation to deal with a serious heart condition. He was admitted to Harefield Hospital before Christmas after being told he had suffered a heart attack and needed a triple bypass and new heart valve - news which came as a complete surprise to him. 

He was a member of the FBHVC board from 2003-2007, and continued to be a much valued member of the legislation committee. Although he originally trained as a draughtsman and project engineer he moved into freelance writing in 1971. Standard Triumph people will remember him as the original editor of Triumph World magazine and the organiser of eleven Triumph World Picnics but he also had great interest and influence in American cars and drag racing and edited a number of other magazine titles. He was also a committee member of the Society of Automotive Historians in Britain, editor of the SAHB Times, and a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers. He was the author of six books, the last one being publishing at the end of last year. The Taylor Bedmobile of Sedgeford is the result of two years diligent research.He was a member of numerous clubs, emphasising his love of all things automotive, among them: Club Triumph, Triumph 2000, 2500, 2.5 Register, Chiltern Vehicle Preservation Society, Fairthorpe Sports Car Club, Ford Sidevalve Owners Club, Register of Unusual Microcars, Uxbridge and District Classic Vehicle Society and was a founder member of the Standard Triumph Forum.

Possibly his greatest contribution was that he was the instigator of Drive It Day in 2006, an event originally started to commemorate the Thousand Mile Trial in 1900, but which has proved to be the best showcase for the historic car movement in the UK, being celebrated by nearly all of the FBHVC member organisations throughout the country.

We have lost a good friend and great supporter of the historic vehicle movement and extend our sympathy to his wife Jennie and son John.

NEC CLASSIC MOTOR SHOW AWARDS

FBHVC member clubs scooped a number of awards at last November’s show. Among them:

Most improved club magazine: WinnerAllard Owners’ Club, Runner-up Austin Counties Car Club.
Club magazine of the year: Winner Triumph Sports Six Club, Runners-up Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club, TR Register, Land-Rover Series 1 Club.

Club of the year:Runner-up Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club.

Best club show/event: WinnerAC Owners’ Club,Runner-up MG Car Club.

Best club run/rally: WinnerDe Dion Bouton Club, Runner-up Cambridge-Oxford Owners’ Club.
Most interesting selection of cars: Winner Club Peugeot UK,Runner-up Vintage Sports-Car Club.
Best themed club stand: Runners-up Jowett Car Club, Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts Club.

Best small club stand WinnerAustin Counties Car Club,Runner-up Midlands Austin Seven Club.

Best medium-sized club stand: WinnerPre-1940 Triumph Motor Club,Runner-up Bexhill 100 Motor Club.

Best large club stand: WinnerMilitary Vehicle Trust, Runner-up Morris Minor Owners’ Club.

THE HERALD PUB, CANLEY ROAD, COVENTRY

Bernard Robinson

Triumph Sports Six Club Courier Magazine Editor

After a piece in April 2011 Triumph Sports Six Club Courier Magazine on the proposed demolition of the Herald pub in Coventry I thought at least we could document its demise in the Courier and I redoubled my efforts to gain permission to at least photograph the pub’s passing before it was lost forever.I needed to contact the current owners (Admiral Taverns) who couldn’t have been more helpful and were very keen that some of the Herald’s heritage was preserved. The problem was the site was sold and contracts were due to be exchanged, so entry into the premises as quickly organised for the following day.

The pub itself was situated just a few yards from Canley Station (Canley Halt as was) and the Canley factory site is just the other side of the tracks. In fact Canley Road used to continue over a level crossing but this was replaced by a footbridge in the ‘90s and the loss of drive-by passing trade seemed to be a major factor in the Herald’s demise.

The first thing that greeted me on arrival was the Herald sign and I took the opportunity to have a good look round the site and take a few exterior photos. Once inside and my eyes adjusted to the gloom (I had to use the flash as all windows had steel shuttering) I felt the atmosphere was very ‘Mary Celeste’ with many items left in place (glasses, seating etc) just where they were on the day the doors were locked for the last time. Entering the lounge bar I spotted the stained glass panel of a herald, not the type of Herald I would have preferred to find, but a really nice period bar decoration none the less! The thought that all this would soon be smashed and lost seemed a great shame to me.

I finished the photo shoot and contacted Admiral to see if there was any possibility of acquiring any items before the demolition. The speed of the sale caught me out but as Admiral Taverns were still keen to preserve some of the heritage, if I sent an email listing the items we would like they would forward this on to the new owners of the site, LNT Group.

My wish list was as follows: Herald pub sign, ‘The Herald’ neon lettering and some outside signage. The TSSC general manager, Nigel Clark, had said on seeing the photos: “Wouldn’t it be good to replace the TSSC HQ coffee bar with this?” so I included ‘the lounge bar itself with the stained glass herald motif behind it. Eventually we heard from LNT who were very keen to support the heritage preservation of a fellow group of classic car enthusiasts and offered to donate the items to the club if we could dismantle and collect them: a fantastic response and much more than we were expecting.

Time was now of essence as demolition was scheduled for the following week. The demolition crew guys helped us drag the bar outside and then lifted it with a digger onto a trailer. Amazingly, none of the ceramic tiles imbedded in the front were damaged! Next to benefit from the power of hydraulics was the pub sign. A strap was quickly placed around the top and an initial lift proved it would slide off its mounting spike, and up it came. We then scoured the pub for any associated memorabilia, the main item being the stained glass herald panel from behind the bar, then the neon backlit lettering on the lower outside wall. A final look round the site provided some more outdoor menu board style signs, the ground spike for the big pub sign and a very nice hand pump for the bar.

Now we have plenty of time to restore and place everything into HQ and this will be a long big project, but will add some period atmosphere when done. I have been told by a few ex-factory employees that they remember the pub well and it was mainly used by guys that worked on the Canley Road side of the factory, situated as it was, close to the original Ivy Cottage site. So an appeal now, if anyone from Coventry or the factory who may be reading this has any information on the Herald pub I would love to round out the story. 

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