Vintage Stony honours the late Jim Clark

| 4 Jan 2018

Stony Stratford town centre was inundated with old cars for the ninth Vintage Stony on New Year’s Day. Pre-war cars and motorcycles crammed into the historic Market Square while post-war machinery lined the High Street, plus the Cofferidge Road car park and anywhere else that there was a space.

The event featured a minute’s noise to mark the 50th anniversary of double F1 World Champion Jim Clark’s passing. Lotus guru Brian Buckland had driven to Stony in the famous ex-Clark Elan development car, registered 997 NUR, courtesy of Gregor Fisken, while historics ace Simon Diffey brought his beautifully turned out Lotus 20 formula junior single-seater. In the foreground is Howard Wilcox’s glorious Brough 11.50 Superior, which landed the prize for Best Unrestored Pre-War Motorcycle. The winners were announced by Town Crier Matt Ireland, and presented by Diffey. Furthest Travelled was Alan Brown, who had a storming run up from London in his low-chassis Invicta. 

Spirit of the Show was jointly won by Mary Antcliff and Nigel Dowding for, as event organiser Ray Cobley pointed out, their sterling efforts last year raising funds for Prostate Cancer UK. As Nigel recalled, their much-rallied 1934 Aston Martin Mark II (above) was bought as a barn-find in 2012: “Four years later we took part in the Rally of the Incas through Chile, Argentina and Peru, which was a fantastic event.”

“This is a bit embarrassing,” said Cobley when it came to the next prize. “Our independent judge David Evans MBE, after consulting his former chauffeur, showed me a photo of my car as the one he would like to take home! David then explained their criterion: they had chosen a car that his chauffeur could drive, plus it had to be one that he could get into – he’s now 70 – and big enough to take a couple of mates with them to the pub.” Cobley’s fabulous two-tone 1927 Humber 14/40 saloon is one of about 20 known to survive from 801 built between 1926 and ’29.

A brilliant turnout of 14 Austin Sevens included the lovely 1934 De Luxe saloon (above) that Ian Tolley bought 11 years ago. “I’m doing what most old people do,” he remarked, “and going back to my first car, which was a Seven Chummy in 1966. This one was restored by the previous owner, so I’ve just been keeping on top of it.”

Nearby was this similarly immaculate Ford E494A Anglia, which was first registered on 2 January 1953 and has had only six owners from new. It still has the original chassis and engine, having covered just 28,000 miles, but features a few sensible upgrades to make it more usable, such as an export water pump and heater, plus a Raymond Mays anti-roll bar as well as rear telescopic dampers and a front Panhard rod.

Plenty of hardy individuals stayed despite the lunchtime deluge, including this evocative pre-war trio featuring a gorgeous 1936 Alvis Silver Eagle (on the left). As the notes on the windscreen pointed out, it was unusually originally ordered with the P100 headlamps and the throttle on the right instead of in the middle.

Vintage Stony and the summer Classic Stony fixture have so far raised about £50,000 for nearby Willen Hospice. There’s more about the events here