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Dad's Car

Old 18th Mar 2021, 20:48
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Dad's Car

Finally watched the latest Top Gear tonight and the main part were the 3 presenters got to drive the make and model they remembered as their dad's were driving while they were children
BMW 323, Ford Fiesta mk1 and mk 4 Cortina
For me I never knew my dad but was brought up with Grandad as the father figure and first I remember he had was a Standard Vanguard through ex Police Wolsey 6/99 to Rover P1 3500.
oh and the runt of the litter a Vauxhall Velux.
Front bench seats and no seat belts...
I also remember sitting on Grandad's lap steering the car on the local roads
Memories. Sigh.
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 21:00
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Originally Posted by Kiltrash View Post
I also remember sitting on Grandad's lap steering the car on the local roads
I have a similar memory. My grandfather had an Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire and let me steer it whilst he drove slowly down the drive. Unfortunately, I ran over my grandmother's toe whilst she was standing at the edge and broke it . . .
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 21:05
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Cars I recall between about 1966 and 1972 were a Ford Zephyr probably MkIII and a Viva in Cornwall, then a VW Beetle, Daf 44, Ford Cortina Mk1 Estate and a Morris Minor in Kenya - the Minor was Dad's go to work car. Parents split in '72 and I returned to the UK with mum, but not before dad bought a Piper Colt - missed out on rides in the later Cessna 182, though the adult me thinks the money would have been better spent on his ex-wife and children...

I remember steering the Daf 44 round the Nairobi Game Reserve sitting in dad's lap!
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 21:15
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My Dad had an Austin A35 van circa 1966 which I vaguely remember him buying without windows in the rear half which he then had fitted as i think you paid less tax on purchase in those days??
Written off in a collision with a Renault Dauphine aquaplaning towards us!!
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 21:20
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In 1954, an FJ Holden ute, then a Morris Oxford, which had a heater (luxury!) and was traded in 1962 for a new EK Holden. Which didn't have a heater. 8 years later it was mine, and in Melbourne weather, a snuggle rug (struggle rug?) was a necessity to keep the GF warm.
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 21:21
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I remember Dad's Rover 2000SC, then a few company cars, Cortina, Cavalier. After that it got interesting, a New Datsun 280ZX, followed by a E23 BMW 735i SE, Porsche 925 then 944, Finally a 1989 Pontiac Firebird Formula 350 in black. Heady days
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 21:58
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Earliest vehicle I remember my father having was an old Chev ute, probably just pre-war model. The next he had was a Morris 8/40 tourer that has been converted to a station wagon, by building a wooden-framed laminex body on it from the firewall back.
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 22:19
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My old man had a fair few cars over the years including a Morris 8,a Bedford CA Dormobile and a Hillman Limp,he had never been required to take a driving test and was an absolutely atrocious driver ,I remember a trip up into the highlands circa 1971 where I did much of the driving and he of course was constantly criticising my driving,we had 2 of my Aunts along for the ride and they told me later in private that they much preferred my driving although I was still relatively inexperienced in those days - they dared not say anything in the car as he would have blown his stack .
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 22:27
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A Singer Gazelle and later on a Ford Cortina 1600E in bronze with black faux leather seats and wooden dash!
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 22:35
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A30, followed, logically enough by an A40, then two Singer Gazelles ( we were posh!) And finally an Austin 1100.
We drove from Colchester to Haverfordwest in the A30 ! Well over 300 miles, but I seem to remember doing the trip in one day! Not bad back in 1960.
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 22:41
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My dad could never afford car but he did have a push bike with an engine in the rear wheel to take him to work.
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Old 18th Mar 2021, 23:27
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The first one was a post war Fordson Thames 5cwt van, followed by a Ford E83 van with custom coachwork shooting brake body, then in 1956 a Commer van which had a weekend makeover amd became a glass sided estate car with folding rear seat, as mentioned earlier, a tax dodge.
Since then a line of Ford Zephyrs and Zodiacs.
Progress being what it is my present car does not have a heater, but has a very powerful airconditioner. Different priorities when you live on the Equator.
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 00:13
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Originally Posted by wowzz View Post
We drove from Colchester to Haverfordwest in the A30 ! Well over 300 miles, but I seem to remember doing the trip in one day! Not bad back in 1960.
Blimey I am genuinely impressed, Colchester (Uni) to home, an hour west of Brum, in the early 70's in a Morris Traveller was enough for me.......
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 00:15
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Remembering my dad's cars is more of a pleasant exercise or test for the old brain than anything else.

I've stopped for a cup of tea.

But I do remember when I first bought a car with a bigger engine displacement than he ever had (apart from his Spitfire). I wondered at the time if he would have been proud of me, or envious, or perhaps a mixture of both. I wish I could have bought him the car of his dreams. I once dreamt that I met him in heaven, his face clearly before me, and he was grinning and pointing to a green Vanwall that seemed to be his.
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 01:25
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Apart from his family,my dad's only interest was,and is his cars.He had a long list of them before I arrived,but the first I remember was a tax-free Simca Aronde,which he bught when stationed at RAF Geilenkirchen,and like some posters above' remember sitting on his lap,aged 5or6,driving along German roads.Next came a Hilman Minx,also tax-free which was brought back to the UK.Then followed Zephyr mk3,brand-new Cortina mk1,kept for only 2 weeks before changing to Zodiac mk3,Zephyr mk 4,Viva HB estate,Zephyr mk 3 (in which he taught me to drive,and at my first attempt at reversing,I backed into the neighbour's brand-new Hillman Hunter),Escort mk 1,another Zephyr mk 4,Rover 2000,Mercedes,Rover 3500,two more mercedes,Kia,and then 2 more mercedes.When last year,he said that his present car,an old Merc wouldn't be worth putting through another MOT,and he might give-up driving,now aged 86,I bought a 1964 Humber Sceptre(his choice),of which he is the registered keeper and said he could keep and use that for as long as he wished,for the limited amount of driving he does now.
Well,as an insomniac,that's passed a bit of time tonight,remembering all those !
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 03:26
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Wonderfully heart-warming story, ex82watcher. Thanks. I might have to make that list now...

... An early Ford Consul (my great aunt said you could not tell the front from the back), a Ford Fairlane, a Simca, a Borgward Isabella TS, a Renault Gordini, a Ford Cortina Mk 1 GT, and a Fiat Abarth come to mind.

Last edited by jolihokistix; 19th Mar 2021 at 03:51.
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 08:36
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These threads are so nice to remember what seemed like such good times.

The first motorized transport I can recall my father having was a motor driven push bike in the early 50s. I can remember waiting for him by a horse trough at Ealing Place about 3pm to return from LHR from early shift.

This was followed by a 1957 Standard 8, 195x A30, 1959 Morris Cowley, 1963 Austin Cambridge (1st Automatic) and a 1966 VX490. I drove the VX490 and it was a great car to drive.

I can still recall huddling up in the back of the Standard to keep warm (no heater) and what then seemed like long trips to Chatteris in the Fens to visit family but with a fabulous benefit of passing a number of V Bomber bases on the way.

Wonderful memories.
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 08:50
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Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
Blimey I am genuinely impressed, Colchester (Uni) to home, an hour west of Brum, in the early 70's in a Morris Traveller was enough for me.......
Yes, looking back, I've no idea how we did it, especially as there were four of us (Mum, Dad, Sister and me) in it. Whenever I see one nowadays I still don't know how we all squeezed in!
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 08:53
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On a similar track, does anyone remember the personalised "strip maps" that the AA provided, giving precise turn by turn route directions for your journey? Invaluable in the days before motorways.
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Old 19th Mar 2021, 09:05
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Originally Posted by wowzz View Post
On a similar track, does anyone remember the personalised "strip maps" that the AA provided, giving precise turn by turn route directions for your journey? Invaluable in the days before motorways.
I remember my mother using them once (my father never learned to drive). I was about 16 and had been on holiday to a remote, off-grid, cottage in Pembrokeshire with a friend the year before. My mother decided it was just the place to go for a family holiday. I was appointed navigator, with the AA strip maps. She loaded the car, a Standard Vanguard estate, with me, my two brothers, my baby sister and my father, who by then was using a wheelchair. The journey took all day, from the south of England to a small cliff top cottage very close to RNAS Brawdy (I remember Fairey Gannets flying overhead). The cottage was reached down a very rough, steep, unmade track, and I remember my mother being terrified that the brakes might fail. Goodness knows why, she'd had the courage to drive a couple of hundred miles with four children and a severely disabled husband to a place that was about as cut off from anywhere as it's possible to get in the UK.
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