Auto Review News Q4 2016

By Rod Ward

Our new Auto Review printers, Wood Richardson of York, have just delivered the fifth batch of two new Auto Review titles for 2016 (see below).

We are hoping to at last set up a new zeteo website for Auto Review in the near future. The old zeteo.com website which used to host Auto Review and MAR Online has not been updated for two years, as we have been unable to get into it since our last web providers collapsed. When we are back online with a new Auto Review website you will be able to access all the last news. But for now…

The latest two Auto Review titles, now available, are 125 Gloster Album and 126 Optare Album. You can read more about these new publications below.

You can order any Auto Review book direct from us by email, telephone or snail mail (payments by Paypal to rod-ward@tiscali.co.uk) – add £1.00 p&p per title UK, £2.00 EU, £3.00 elsewhere. Send mail orders to R & V Ward, 81 Main Street, Monk Fryston, Leeds LS25 5DU (for payments by cheque or via Paypal) or if you wish to pay by credit card you can order online via Oxford Diecast online at our new link: autoreviewbooks.co.uk

Auto Review 125 and 126 have just arrived, and the next three titles are now completed; 127 Kaiser-Frazer-Willys and 128 Sentinel Album, the first two new publications for release in early 2017. I have also completed an extensively revised and updated 45a Jowett Album (with an appendix on other vehicles made in Yorkshire) which has around 40 new illustrations, a new cover, and revised text, following input from readers of the first edition. Stocks of a number of other early Auto Review books are now running low, so there are likely to be more reprints in 2017 and 2018.

129 The air-cooled Volkswagen is also now completed, for release in spring 2017 and I am currently working on two other titles. Keith Jenkinson has sent the images, and is in process of completing the text, for 130 Micro Caravans. I have begun writing the text and accumulating images for 131 Maserati. As soon as these two are finished, i will be tackling the complex tale of 132 Delage, Delahaye and Hotchkiss. I hope to have all these completed by the end of 2016.

If you have anything (photos, advertising material etc) we can use for these publications, and/or for any of our other future publications, please send it to me as soon as possible. A big thank you to all those who have recently supplied photos and other material.


Auto Review 125 Gloster Album
by Rod Ward

 

gloster-album

The Gloucestershire Aircraft Co was set up in 1917 to assemble warplanes in the Great War. H P Folland began his career at the Royal Aircraft Factory in 1912, where he was responsible for the FE.2B, SE.4 and SE.5A. Nieuport & General Aircraft at Cricklewood had been set up in 1916 to licence-build the French Nieuport 17 fighter. When the 1917 Burbidge Report said that the RAE should cease designing and building aircraft, N&G snapped up Folland, and he designed the Nighthawk fighter. When Waring closed N&G in 1920, he moved to the Gloucestershire Aircraft Co Ltd, taking the Nighthawk design with him. He went on to produce the Bamel racers and Schneider Trophy seaplanes.

In 1926 the firm’s name changed to the Gloster Aircraft Co. Folland designed the famous Gloster single-seater biplane fighters, Grebe, Gamecock, Gauntlet and Gladiator. In 1934 Gloster was taken over by Hawker, then Hawker merged with J D Siddeley’s empire in the Hawker Siddeley Group. In 1936 Folland left Gloster,. In 1939-42 Gloster built Hurricanes for Hawker, but in 1940 a contract was awarded to build Britain’s first jet, its engine designed by Frank Whittle. The E.28/39, which first flew in 1941, led to the twin-engined Meteor, the only jet used in combat by the Allies in the Second World War. The delta-wing Javelin of 1952 was the last Gloster aircraft to be built.

At this point we look at Saunders-Roe, formed in 1929, when A V Roe left Avro and with John Lord took a controlling interest in the famous Isle of Wight boat-builders S E Saunders (see Auto Review 44: Fast Boats). The firm was renamed Saunders-Roe (Saro) and produced flying boats in the 1930s, combining Sam Saunders’ hull technology with Roe’s aviation expertise. After a number of ill-fated designs, including the enormous Princess flying boat, in 1951 Saro took over the Cierva Autogiro Co and went on to produce the Skeeter helicopter. In 1959 Saro built the SR.N1, the first practical hovercraft, for the NRDC. Also in 1959 Westland took over Saro’s helicopter and hovercraft activities. Another abortive design was the SR.53 rocket-propelled fighter.

After the Second World War, Saro had turned its Beaumaris flying boat factory to bus body manufacture. This became very successful, many buses were built there. In later years the plant was used by Cammell Laird to produce refuse collection vehicles, and to build more bus bodies. The Laird Centaur half-track Land Rover was built at Beaumaris, then the plant was acquired by the German Faun concern. Back in Gloucestershire, at the turn of the 1970s Hawker Siddeley Group merged Gloster with Saro, to make fire appliances and tanker bodies. Gloster-Saro was based at the Gloster Hucclecote plant. Most of their emergency tenders were built on Reynolds-Boughton chassis. In 1984 Gloster-Saro acquired Chubb’s fire appliance operation, then in 1987 the company merged with Simon Engineering to form Simon Gloster Saro. So in this publication we combine the stories of two pioneering British aircraft companies with bus and fire appliance manufacture. ISBN 978-1-85482-124-2 £5.95


Auto Review 126 Optare Album
by Tony Greaves

 

optare-album

In this publication Tony Greaves looks at the history of Optare of Leeds, for whom he worked in a design capacity in its first decade. Optare arose in 1984 as the rebirth of an old-established and respected Leeds coachbuilding company, Charles H Roe. The story of Roe is told here, as an overture to the Optare years. Optare led a chequered existence with various changes of owner and successive management buyouts.

In 1990 Optare joined the short-lived United Bus Group, along with DAF and Bova. In 2000 Optare had a new owner, Hungary-based North American Bus Industries, but it returned to independence in a management buyout in 2005. In 2008 Optare was acquired by the company which also owned East Lancashire Coachbuilders, whose heritage is also described in these pages. In 2010-2011 a majority stake in the newly combined company was taken by leading international bus manufacturer Ashok Leyland of India, whose background is also described in this publication.

The author

Tony Greaves, a life-long bus enthusiast and resident of Leeds, qualified as a graphic designer in 1971, (‘In those far-off days before the widespread use of computers, when the ability to draw was required’, he says). Tony then worked in graphic design in a freelance capacity from 1981 onwards. When Russell Richardson became managing director of the new Optare company, Tony contacted him to offer his services. This resulted in Tony Greaves supplying advertising material, designing company and vehicle logos, stationery, doing print, photography and (very unexpectedly) bus design for Optare. From 1985 to 1996 Tony was therefore in a unique position at Optare, working closely with Russell Richardson. Most of Tony’s photographs in these pages were intended for publicity purposes, some of them posed, or ‘action shots’ with the operator. Since ceasing his personal involvement with the company, Tony has watched more recent developments at Optare with close interest. ISBN 978-1-85482-125-9 £5.95


Auto Review 2016 titles: all now available
117 Cord Corporation: obviously Cord-Auburn-Duesenberg, but also Checker cab, Stinson aircraft,
Vultee, American Airlines and much more, all owned by E L Cord at one time or another..
Available now
118 Borgward Album – including Pionier, Borgward, Hansa, Lloyd, Goliath, etc
Available now
119 Atkinson, Seddon and Seddon Atkinson
Available now
120 A car less ordinary: Retro, repro & pastiche cars, plus novelty vehicles
Available now
121 Made in Spain: Hispano-Suiza, Pegaso, Seat, Voisin, and many, many others
Available now
122 Dennis Album: including cars, buses, trucks, fire appliances etc
Available now
123 Tiny Wheels: micro cars, city cars, bubble cars, Aixam, Ligier, Keicars, Smart etc
Available now
124 Volvo Album : All cars, trucks, buses etc
Available now
125 Gloster Aircraft: Including Saunders-Roe, Nieuport and Gloster-Saro
Available now
126 Optare, plus Charles Roe, East Lancs, etc By Tony Greaves
Available now


Here is the 2017 Auto Review publishing programme:
Auto Review 2017 titles
127 Kaiser-Frazer-Willys: including Henry J, Graham-Paige, Whippet, Jeep and much more
for publication in February 2017
128 Sentinel Album: motor buses, trucks, steam vehicles, locos, TVW, Doble, HSG, Garner, Straussler etc.
for publication in February 2017
45a Jowett Album, plus an appendix on other Yorkshire-built vehicles.
for publication in February 2017
129 VW air-cooled: Beetles, Transporters, Karmann-Ghias etc
for publication in April 2017
130 Micro caravans: Tiny trailer and motor vans. By Andrew Jenkinson
for publication in April 2017
131 Maserati Album: including road and racing cars etc
for publication in June 2017
132 Delage, Delahaye, Hotchkiss: including US, French and British Hotchkiss firms etc
for publication in June 2017
133 Scammell Album: Trucks, mechanical horses, trailers, dumpers, plus other UK heavy haulage marques: Unipower, HHT, Rotinoff, Annis, Pacific etc
for publication in August 2017
134 Westland aircraft: from the Great War to date
for publication in August 2017
135 AEC-ACV-Maudslay including AEC, Associated Daimler, Maudslay marine engines, rail locos, cars, trucks, buses, Ruston, Sunbeam, BUT etc
for publication in October 2017
136 BMW Album: to include the stories of BMW, Dixi, Isetta, Glas, BFW etc
for publication in October 2017