The trustees have made a proposal to the Board of the Alvis Owner Club to fund the leasing of a property to house the archives. This was accepted at the recent Directors and Officers meeting. The proposal also included applying for charitable status.
We would be very happy to hear from anyone with experience in setting up and running a UK charity to help guide us through any pitfalls not covered in the very helpful Charity Commission website. Please leave a comment below if you can help in any way.
It is said we are all only six people removed from everyone in the world but if you are an Alvis Owner it could be fewer. Three examples arose recently.
Clive Taylor is collating material for a series of books on Alvis in Competition and his plea for information has yielded some good results via the usual sources of the AOC, the VSCC and the Register. So when the current owner of the ex-Birkin Speed 20 got in touch it generated interest in its history. We were able to make contact with a previous owner who was delighted to share his information and in the process he asked about two other Alvis he had owned, not least the ex-Le Mans front wheel drive WK 8045 and a TA14 which were also researched.
The photo caption of the Fischlin Speed 20 in the February Bulletin omitted to mention the man in front of the car is Patrick Rollet, President of FIVA and the brains behind the Fougeres Rally, popular with Alvis folk. The Fischlins acquired a Graber cabriolet a few years ago, a well known car, but they hadn’t known that the first owner, Cookson, was Patrick’s wife’s godfather. We met up with the Fischlins for lunch yesterday and exchanged some car books. Perusing the VCCSR’s Revue annuelle 2016, I came across this photo – a Speed 20 not known to the AOC for some years – a Rivers Fletcher special chassis 11859. More material for Clive’s book.
Last month Neil Millington came across a business park in Yorkshire that had office space to let and enquired on behalf of the Trust. He left a message on the answering machine. The next day just happened to be when a few Alvis friends had decided to have an away day in Yorkshire and were meeting for lunch. I thought he was having a joke when he said he had received a call back, the lady who called was most enthusiastic, even knew what an Alvis was and would welcome the AAT as a tenant. It turned out that not only was the property manager the niece of an enthusiastic TD21 owner but that the current owner of the park was in the process of researching the car owning history of the previous owner of the park who, we had discovered from looking at their website, was a serial Alvis owner.
Eliane Schleiffer has announced this year’s Graber Treffen is being held in the Lucerne area on May 27/28 staying at the Hotel Waldegg in Engelberg, one we enjoyed on the 2005 Swiss Tour, and displaying the cars at the Swiss Classic World show on the Sunday. If you are a Graber owner and have not received the invitation, leave a comment.
AOC members can look forward to the thirtieth Bulletin edited by John Lang in February with another 120 page bumper edition of news, articles and event reports from around the world. John follows a long line of Editors who work hard for club members to produce a substantial publication six times a year aided and abetted by a Managing Editor and proof readers. John, who lives in Australia, said “It has been a bit full on but I love Alvis people. We have a fabulous club in Victoria (includes interstate & internationals) of which I am now in my 15 or 16th year as editor. I enjoy the stimulation from the Bulletin in trying to make it work each couple of months and the people I communicate with overseas that otherwise I wouldn’t know existed. Just like having pen pals when everyone else these days has FB “friends.””
While the internet can provide easy access to news and information the greatest asset of the Alvis Owner Club has always been a printed Bulletin you can touch, smell, pick up and read. Given the choice, most people still prefer to reach out and pluck a Bulletin from the bookshelf, but it is also nice to refer to any one of 563 editions at the click of a few keystrokes.
So what are you missing if you are not receiving Bulletin 563? Firstly, a long list of Alvis people waiting to help you enjoy Alvis ownership; news of the Club events; reports of Alvis owners’ activities, such as in France….
THE BULLETIN No. 563 JANUARY / FEBRUARY 2017
9 Board Draft Minutes
16 NEC Report
24 An Admirable Alvis- The Fourteen Part 2
45 The 200 Mile Race Car
Letters to the Editor
62 Competition Round Up
69 Quelques nouvelles de Suisse
72 Chantilly Art & Elegance
77 NZ Report
78 Landing the 12/70 in Australia
82 London New Year’s Day Parade
92 Brooklands New Year’s Day
96 Barn Find TB14
In the Workshop
102 Silver Crest
106 Does Your Clock Work?
108 TA21 Twin SU Conversion
AOC members might not have spotted that a new Membership List is available on members’ section of the AOC website as a 120 page PDF download. It does not include any car details as a census has yet to be completed. Members might like to check that their details are correct or in fact there at all and you should contact the membership Secretariat with any corrections. If you are not an AOC member but still own an Alvis do please update us by clicking on UPDATE YOUR DETAILS
Following comments from some readers that they found the Piano Black theme on the website a tad funereal and hard to read we have changed it – do you like it?
More items have been added to the site with new answers to ASK A QUESTION, a Used Car Road Test on the TD21 page and the announcement of a power steering option on the TE21 page – you can navigate there from the index on the right of the page, or click on these links
If you own or have owned a Speed 25 please let us know. While there are over 100 25s with current AOC members the are at least 150 more that have been recorded with owners since 1953. Where are they now? Click UPDATE YOUR DETAILS
There are some additions this month with a 1938 article on the Speed 25 page about EXK 225, one of the many surviving Cross & Ellis Tourers, and new article on serial Alvis owner Sir George Burton can be found by clicking here.
Regular visitors to the website may have noticed some changes designed to make navigation easier. Instead of header bars of several topics there is now an alphabetical index down the right hand side of the page.
Have a look at the new layout and in particular, published today, is a page on RESTORATION STORIES starting with Chris Chilcott’s latest acquisition.
Several other Restoration Stories new pages have been included and some older posts incorporated into them. Older posts can now be found by date or subject. Provision has been made to ASK A QUESTION and to UPDATE YOUR DETAILS.
The Alvis Owner Club Stand this year supports the Show’s theme “Heroes” by featuring two of the cars of Douglas Bader. The show runs from November 11 – 13 (Friday-Sunday) http://www.necclassicmotorshow.com
Bader lost his legs in 1931 then rejoined the air force in October 1939 and was declared fit to fly in February 1940 after war had broken out.
In August 1941 he was shot down in France and was a prisoner of war in Germany where he escaped and recaptured and then transferred to Colditz. This story was documented by military historian Mark Felton in a book called “Zero Night”
Douglas Bader started owning Alvis Cars with a 1954 TC21/100 Drop Head Coupe (DHC), the “Grey Lady” with Manumatic transmission.
Next were two TD21 dropheads before moving on to his final TE21 DHC which is also on show.
Douglas Bader was not shy of adventure, so the fact that he stuck with Alvis cars until well after the end of their production, is testimony to their quality and performance.
He was also a member of the AOC and appeared at the 1972 National Alvis Day at Crystal Palace where he led the cavalcade with J.J. Parkes, who was Chairman and Managing Director of Alvis Limited from 1946 to 1973.
Also on show – a 1958 GraberTC108G first owned by Madame Ceppi of Leon Frésard S.A. of Bossecourt in Switzerland who made presentation boxes for watches. She part-exchanged it for a Graber TF21 in 1966.The display includes two Speed 20s, a Charlesworth drophead and a Vanden Plas 2-door saloon.NEC photos by Paddy Steel