1972' Atkinson Borderer
I have decided to reduce my Classic Car and Commercial collection, hoping to move to smaller storage premises, so sadly my lovely example is to be sold.
What makes this Atki so rare, is she has only had one commercial haulage operator from new!Unlike the majority of preserved Trucks on the Rally Scene today. In fact, a total of 4 owners, 2 were private enthusiasts,(including myself),
a Coach operator, plus its original,so I doubt she has had a very hard life, with possibly only a few drivers who have ever sat behind the wheel.
Her owners from new were a clothing and Textile Manufacturer at Devon (1971 -1987), sold to a coach operator, Kingdom's Coaches at Tiverton, to be used as a recovery truck, (1987-1997), then to its first private owner again in Devon,(1997-2011),then myself,(2011 to date). Owners of the Coach Company can only remember her leaving the depot on one occasion in their 10 yr ownership.
When I purchased her from the private enthusiast at North Devon,he had spent a great deal of time and money bringing her up to show condition, even fitting a tow ball to take his family caravan to Rallies & Shows.As one can imagine, 10 years stored out of use in a Coach Operators yard waiting to be used, would certainly make her deteriorate visually. An amazing article with professional restoration photograph's appeared in Classic & Vintage Commercials, 2006, which will be given to the new lucky owner. This gentleman also added lots of stainless steel nuts, bolts, bits'n bobs plus a sun visor, giving her more of a show truck look, which I removed for a more original British Operator's version.
I fitted a new Air Compressor and rear Air tanks plus hand-brake mechanism, and please note from one of the photograph's she is beautifully dry stored amongst my other Classics, so notice will be required to remove her.
Although out of current MOT certificate, I am sure she will only require a small amount of recomissioning, as she has had very little use since initial restoration.
My first Truck Rally was to proudly drive her back down to a rally at Yeovil, where I had the pleasure of meeting one of the drivers who drove her from new, filling me in on the History. A fantastic co-incidence, plus an honour, whereas his brother had even been the mechanic employed by the clothing company. In Devon all of her working life, on clean work hauling Box trailers loaded with textile clothing for J.P.Coats of Tiverton, later becoming J.P.Heathcote. I was told the drivers never slept in cabs, only hotels!
Fitted with a David Brown Gearbox, Kirkstall 2 speed rear axle, power steering, certainly makes this classic example of British Manufacture, a quick truck by 1970's standard's, and a pleasure to drive. The majority of my collection are cars, whereas I purchased & rallied this machine with a very close enthusiastic friend, who has sadly recently passed away, leaving me with many happy memories, so it is now time to let her go to a new owner.
Presently lettered in my own family's South Wales business name, although showing a few blemishes, would still be a smart addition to any Rally scene, before the new owner puts her into a livery of his choice.
Sad to see her leave, but hopefully a new owner will get far more use in the future.
I also have a 45ft Step Frame, Long Neck trailer, requiring restoration at a reasonable price if so required.