Patrick Boniface reports from this year’s Wrotham Classic Transport Rally which, these days, is organised by the Malling Lions.
Since the last Wrotham Classic Transport Rally there has been a change of leadership, with the Malling Lions having taken over control of running the show from The Friends of Wrotham. This year’s show, the 42nd to take place on the site just a stone’s throw from the famous Brands Hatch racing circuit in Kent, aimed to raise money for a variety of regional and local causes including the Leybourne Scouts who marshalled the event.
The oldest commercial vehicle attending the show was a 1930 Bedford Buffalo that was displayed by Wrotham Heath local, William Pearce, who also exhibited a 1936 AEC Mammoth Major. Most of the exhibitors were drawn from within a 20-mile radius of the display ground, but the reputation of previous shows did lead Suzanne Evans to negotiate the Dartford crossings with her 1946 Studebaker M5 and 1952 White Motor Company WC 20.
Richard Gilbertson, from Hastings, made an equally long journey to the show with a wonderful Mercury Tanker of 1957 vintage. This particular vehicle saw service with Shell, BP and, later, Southampton Co, which kept it operational for a further decade until 1983, when it was bought for restoration.
This report comes from the latest issue of Heritage Commercials, and you can get a money-saving subscription to this magazine simply by clicking HERE
Hadlow Down Traction Engine & Historic Vehicle Rally