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Surrey Vintage Vehicle Society caters for veteran cars, vintage cars & classic cars, as well as commercials and motorcycles.

:: [ SVVS at Reigate Tunnel - September 2010 ] ::

The SVVS was again invited by the Reigate Business Guild to display our vintage and classic vehicles in old Tunnel Road above the Reigate Caves in the support of the National Heritage Open Day Scheme. The event was held in conjunction with the Cave Society. The following text and the photos are by Chas Moody.  


The vacuum windscreen wiper motor in the vintage Morris is not a particularly effective device. The one in our Cowley takes a while to get going these days but by the time we reached Reigate it was clacking away merrily. This did not bode well for our display however, as the rain which had been forecast for around mid-day and setting in for the afternoon had apparently arrived early and could well deter any would-be entrants.


Any apprehension was dispelled by the welcome sight of John Anson with his 1924 Bullnose Morris Cowley four seater tourer. John had arrived early having motored the thirty odd miles from Farnham and opted to stay dry by heading up the section of the display in the tunnel behind the area occupied by the Wealden Cave and Mine Society who were giving guided tours of the East and West Caverns which lead off from both sides of the tunnel.


It is good to have something low and sporty in the front of the display so it was a pleasure to greet Edward Lake with his immaculate 1959 Austin Healey 3000. This early model was one of 212 sold to the British market in 1959 whereas around 4000 went to the USA, some returning to these shores many years later.


Next arrival was Will How with his 1958 Lancia Appia Forgoncino, which is Italian for van, I was informed. This interesting commercial has a V4 engine of 1090cc capacity with a 5-speed gearbox and cost a mere 1,275,000 lira! 

Julian and Thelma Alderton are Reigate regulars with their 1947 M.G. Model Y Saloon, ..... is co-conspirator Tony Russell with the 1937 7W Ford 10 sports tourer.

We were pleased to welcome newcomer Robert Pull with his very smart 1963 Ford Consul Capri which he has owned for 28 years. This car was first registered in the Isle of Man and Robert attaches the original registration plates for display purposes.

Vehicles in the tunnel comprised the previously mentioned Bullnose of John Anson, Mike and Cynthia Ireland's impressive 1920 Dodge four seater tourer, the delightful 1929 Austin Ulster driven by John Rennie, Lionel and Denise Higginson's 1963 Series 1 E Type Jaguar and Alan Reid's 1932 Austin Seven special. 

By now our display in front of the tunnel was complete and the rain had almost stopped. Our vehicles created quite a bit of interest in Tunnel Road on this National Heritage Day, so many thanks to all SVVS members who attended despite the grim weather forecast which turned out to be nowhere near as bad as predicted. We had a couple of showers but most of us had a dry ride home, in fact furthest travelled John Anson reported having to stop first to put the hood down and next to find his peaked cap to keep the sun out of his eyes!


Report by: Chas Moody

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