We live in interesting times

Before the June Post we shall know the identity of the next Government of Great Britain. One lesser known fact relating to June 8th is that hopefully 2 TA 14s will have found new homes on that Day. The Dorset Auction House DVCA, email Brian Chant at brc@dvca.co.uk for details, has 2 for Auction at very competitive guide prices particularly for the Carbodies Drophead. Both cars have been with their former owner in Cornwall for the majority of their lives but sadly they must now move on.
Mulliners Saloon, chassis 21046 is declared as a 1947 car. She has the engine from chassis 20710 and a declared mileage of 70031, that may of course be around the clock. She was with the late Geoff Stobart in Cornwall since 1958, almost 60 years so lovely if she can find a kind new home. Many cars in such long ownership tend to remain quite original. Her Guide price is £4000-£5000. Plenty of photos on the Auction House site.

The second TA 14 for sale on June 8th is the pale green Carbodies Drophead Coupe that also belonged to Geoff Stobart. Geoff and Joan were stalwarts of the West Country Section of the Alvis Owner Club. The Edgecumbe Arms, Milton Abbott and even the legendary Jamaica Inn were graced by the Stobart TA 14s. Geoff was a Member of The Alvis Owner Club since the early 1960s and owned this car since 1962. His obituary was printed in the March/April 2017 AOC Bulletin No. 564. Very sadly Joan his widow recently passed away at the age of 93.
Geoff’s Carbodies, chassis 22094, engine 23318, has a declared mileage of 78871 but again that may be around the clock. The guide price of £5000/£6000 seems very competitive and a good opportunity to acquire a good Fourteen Drophead to restore. For those who appreciate American cars, Geoff’s red 1964 Cadillac convertible is also for sale at the same Auction.

The details of the Auction were sent from England to an Alvis owner in New Zealand who very kindly forwarded them on. The global Internet can be brilliant for the old car world.

Another example of global assistance comes in the form of the search for a Tickford Drophead. The search has come from the owner of the car in the 1960s and initially our records drew a blank on the numberplate KLE 746. With the assistance of the Archive Trust Motoring Historian the chassis number 22301 was identified and then our American Alvis Guru confirmed the 2014 advert for sale to save waiting for a visit home. So now if you own, or know of the whereabouts of 42 A 86 please get in touch otherwise the search will be ongoing in June. The good news for the former owner is that the car was offered for sale in 2014 for 60 000 dollars and appears to be in very good condition. She is 2 tone red and cream with tan hood and interior.

I was going to report on the availability of a very tidy Mulliners  but she has been snapped up before being advertised and went off to a new life in Scotland. There has been bit of a dearth of Fourteens coming onto the market recently but now there is quite a choice for prospective owners.

Car and Classic has a new entry for the Auction of a nice looking Carbodies on the 2nd June, chassis 22830, JPW 835. Guide price is £15/17k plus of course buyer’s premium at 15%.

Added to the above Car and Classic is advertising a Tickford for sale that has been stored in a dry garage since 1973 and with the same family since the 1960s. With only about 77 made at about £6k this is a great opportunity to acquire a restoration project.

It really is a good time to buy a Drophead at the moment.

Finally not to forget the Mulliners Saloon that has been part restored in Sweden near Stockholm to a really high standard. Price is negotiable and the only sea crossing necessary to bring her back is across the Channel, the rest of the trip from West of Stockholm is on very good roads.

A visit to The Herbert Museum in Coventry produced some interesting and useful information. Unfortunately the Museum is currently very short staffed and anyone wishing to carry out research may have to wait until staff numbers increase. The TA 14/TB 14 box file had gone missing but hopefully will be found in due course.

There was a fascinating map showing the Luftwaffe’s bombing plan for Coventry. It is later than the Coventry Blitz on the night of the 14th/15th of Coventry when one Alvis Factory was obliterated and the Cathedral almost destroyed. Copies of the full size map can be purchased from The Herbert Museum Coventry.

Main factory aerial view

Location of factory

The later box file for the TA 21 had some TA 14 photos misfiled and one lovely professional photo of a Woodie is below, who is she?


Not content with voyaging to Uruguay to deliver the Nave Plate, our intrepid enthusiast is now in possession of the 2 headlamp rings and glasses ready for his next trip out. Members of the AOC should by now have enjoyed his Article about his first trip in the latest AOC Bulletin, May/June 2017, Bulletin 565.

There is no stopping the global village of Fourteens.
The latest copy of The Alvis Owner Club Bulletin shows a new Member joining from India with a Carbodies Drophead. Chassis 22987 was indeed exported to India in 1949 and has survived looking pretty good to this day, see her on Gallery 2. Can you imagine driving around Mumbai in a TA 14?
Her current owner, since 1971, knows her history from 1956 and it is believed that her original owner may have been a Bollywood Star.
Another theory is the following:

Two TB 14s were exported to Mandinalla Motor Car Company of Karachi.
Mandinalla is also sometimes represented as Mandi Nalla a province of Bhopal 1934 the Rajah of Bhopal took delivery of a late SB Vanden Plas SB Speed 20 Drophead Alvis, chassis 11856, never U.K. Registered as far as we know. Is it possible he liked it so much he purchased a new Alvis Drophead after the war? Maybe a friend saw the car and decided to buy a new Alvis, more research to do.

For those who don’t rate TA 14 Specials as desirable cars, a recent trip in a 4 seater Special around the winding roads of Cornwall demonstrated just how much fun they can be. This one was constructed from the base of a Mulliners Saloon over 40 years ago and has preserved much of the car that would have been long gone otherwise. With the usual adaptation to twin carbs and improved back axle the car was very spirited but retained that unique Fourteen sound.

Plenty of Spares still remain to be inspected and purchased in Norfolk from the TA 14 Technical Advisor, details in The AOC Bulletin or send me an email. Also there may be a cache of Fourteen Spares becoming available in Cornwall.

Finally go to the main Alvis Archive site on alvisarchive.com to see 2 items of interest to us all:

The Trust has signed a lease for accommodation at Bowcliffe Hall, between Leeds & York. This will allow for Alvis Memorabilia etc. to be stored in one place. Later this year, by prior appointment this collection may be visited.

The Trust has applied for Charitable Status.




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3 Responses to We live in interesting times

  1. I have just scanned some slides of a Carbodies Drophead I saw in Mumbai in September 1969. I met up with the owner then and wonder if it is the car now mentioned above.

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