Sold: 1947 14hp 4-Light Saloon.

Auctioned on Friday March 6 at Sheffield Auction Gallery.

Sold: 1947 14hp 4-Light Saloon.

This is the most numerous Lea-Francis model of all, introduced in 1946 on a development of the pre-war beam-axle, rod-braked chassis. The pre-war engine was increased in volume to 1767cc giving 65-70bhp. Around 1500 were built by the time it was replaced in late 1950 by a more modern design with headlights in the wings, independent front suspension and hydro-mechanical brakes. The coachbuilt body is unusual for using a stressed skin construction with aluminium on a mainly wooden frame, with a steel floor, giving a weight of only 25cwt. Around 60 to 70mph cruising is possible, with 25mpg on long runs, combined with reliability. But it impresses by the unfussy way in which it performs, thanks to the excellent torque and top gear performance.

This one time Coventry registered Lea-Francis demonstrator car, Chassis no: 2490, has been in the same ownership since 1961 and is now offered for sale in the Sheffield area. Thought to have done only 37,000 miles, it was last serviced in the late 1990s by Barrie Price. The car looks sound, has been kept in a dry garage, but has had panel repair in the spare wheel compartment and would benefit from a re-spray with some paint having gone inside. The rear light clusters are from a more modern car. It is an original and complete car, very useable after re-commissioning. Until recently it was occasionally started and driven short distances.

This car was auctioned on Friday March 6th 2015 at the Sheffield Auction Gallery, A.E. Dowse & Son, Windsor Road (off A61 Chesterfield Road), Heeley, Sheffield S8 8UB. It sold for £3200. The buyer’s premium including VAT is 21%.
Posted November 2014

Ex-Arthur Stevens 14hp Sports sold

JRT 946 Ch.no:7100 makes £23k at South Western Vehicle Auctions, October 31 2014.

Ex-Arthur Stevens 14hp Sports sold

The last but one 14hp Sports, Ch: 7100, raced by Arthur Stevens in the 1950s, was sold at South Western Vehicle Auctions on October 31 2014 for £23,320. Revealed to the Club in 2012 after the Club’s General Secretary was contacted to value the car, 7100 has spent several years in a lock-up into which it is believed to have been driven. Although grimy and neglected it appears to be basically sound. It was the first of three 14 Sports chassis fitted with IFS and was the last but one 14hp Sports, built in 1949. It was first owned and driven in the early 1950s by Arthur Stevens, here seen at Goodwood in 1953, who developed the car for racing with some success. Although it is not known whether the car retains his modifications, it retains the wire wheels fitted by Stevens and may also still have the higher 4:1 back axle. We would very much like to know who bought this historic car and hope that the new owner will shortly be contacting the LFOC as he starts the restoration.
Posted November 2014

Engine fault rectified! (After 50 years).

After half a century in storage, this 14hp Sports is now restored and back on the road.

Engine fault rectified! (After 50 years).

Chassis: 7082, Engine: S2717 originally S3695, Reg.No: KLK 459, Original colour: Blue.
Supplied new to Folletts in London in 1949, fitted with a 12hp engine, later replaced with 14hp Sports engine.
At last! After many, many years Peter Salkeld (pictured with car) has returned KLK 459 to the road. Bought in 1959 for £375 10s when Peter was 25, it was used daily and for touring in Europe. In 1964 the timing chain siezed the timing gears, so it was pushed into a lock-up and stayed locked up for the next 43 years (inset picture). Unfortunately the lock-up was 26 miles away from home so work on the car was initially just a few hours a week starting in 2007. Restorations should not be rushed.
Improvements incorporated are negative earth wiring, relay controlled headlamps and horn, medium/long wave radio (1980 vintage), flashing turn indicators, hazard warning lights, rear fog lamp, seat belts, secondary door locks and a screw-on oil filter. Possible future improvements will be to fit front hydraulic brakes. The remaining current work is replacement leather door panels, with new floor carpet, tonneau and hood. The seats have been re-upholstered. Peter has done all the work himself, using local Kent and Sussex firms for painting, welding and other work beyond his resources. It has had one new rear wing, otherwise all original parts have been used. The car now looks great, drives well on 16inch radial tyres maintaining 60psi plus oil pressure and steady water temperature. With just minor fettling now needed as with any new rebuild, we look forward to seeing Peter and the car at our 2015 Annual Rally!
Posted November 2014

1949 Lea-Francis ‘Bill Skelly’ Special for Sale

An opportunity to acquire this unique Sports based Special with racing history.

1949 Lea-Francis ‘Bill Skelly’ Special for Sale

Bill Skelly was a student apprentice with Lea-Francis in 1949 and with the help of chief engineer Albert Ludgate and the Much Park Street, Coventry, factory, built up this special based on a 14hp Sports chassis shortened and fitted with a 1674cc dry sump racing engine. The body was designed by John Wyer and based on racing driver Dudley Folland’s Ferrari 166 SC he was looking after at the time, although the nose was slimmed down and fitted with an identifiable Lea-Francis radiator grille on the lines of the 2½ Sports. It did well in competitions starting with a class award at Bo’ness hill climb in 1949 and 1st Class wins at Goodwood in 1949 & 1950. Bill Skelly sold the car in 1952. The main picture (© Peter McFadyen) shows Martin Overington competing in the 2011 Donington Classic meeting, the period photo shows Ted Lund, a club racer in the 1950s/60s, at Snetterton. Owned by Ian Melville-Brown in the 1960s who used it as a fast road car, it was acquired by Ivan Dutton in the early 2000s and fully restored for new owner Martin Overington. It re-appeared on the Classic Racing circuit in 2010 and has full HTP (Historic Technical Passport) papers and a bundle of history. It has a newly rebuilt road engine and also a race engine about half rebuilt. The present owner, Robert Spencer, is asking around £150,000 for this super looking original Lea-Francis Special and can be contacted at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or mobile 07977540579
Posted October 2014

Pre-War LeaFs at Prescott & Peterborough

A picture round-up of Lea-Francis cars at VSCC Prescott and at Peterborough in August 2014 for the VSCC 80th Anniversary Celebrations

Pre-War LeaFs at Prescott & Peterborough

1 Colin Poynter prepares for his first Sunday run in the 1928 Ulster. His best time was 54.13 seconds in Class 3. 2 Our Magazine Editor Robin Sawers stands proudly by ‘Horatia’ in the Orchard. Robin has owned this P Type 2-seater before, but sold it 11 years ago to buy ‘Hotlips’ the 14hp Sports that has now gone to a Club Member in Denmark. 3 Richard Houlgate rounds Pardon in his Hyper Replica in Class 4. 4 Now moving on to the VSCC 80th Anniversary Celebrations at Peterborough immediately after Prescott, our Chairman Alan Lupton sprints enthusiastically to his Corsica Sports. Being a VSCC ‘Expert’ he has just 10 minutes to plot his route and get underway in the Acorn Rally. 5 Geoff Elster joined some tours in his extremely smart P Type 4-seater. In June Geoff drove the P Type to the Beamish Rally, a round trip of over 900 miles. 6 The Stevens P Type. They drove up from Knighton in Powys and helped with marshalling. 7 David & Maggie Smith set off with a grin on the Acorn Rally in their P Type 2-seater plus dickey.
Posted August 2014

LFOC runs first ever continental tour

Eight Lea-Francis cars drive to Germany’s Middle Rhine region for local rally.

LFOC runs first ever continental tour

At the kind invitation of P Type owner Horst Meinert, who lives in Bingen where the Nahe flows into the Rhine, LFOC members drove down over two days in early September 2014 through Holland, Belgium, France and Germany to join the two LeaFs of Horst and Rudolf Mayr for a four day tour which included a local light-hearted classic car rally and a run in our cars exploring the Middle Rhine. Highlight of the trip was the Mauseturm Rally on Saturday 6 September where we joined around 40 other classics for a 70 mile run. The rally was divided into several levels of difficulty, with the LeaF contingent in the ‘fun’ class, answering clues and completing simple tasks along the way. The other driving day toured the Middle Rhine with a visit to Eltz Castle and Koblenz. Car of the trip was Steve Chittock’s 1950 14hp Saloon, third from left, which glided along majestically throughout.
Posted September 2014

Lea-Francis Owners’ Annual Rally June 8 2014

Another fine turnout of Lea-Francis machinery at our fourth visit to Broughton Castle

Lea-Francis Owners’ Annual Rally June 8 2014

Over 30 cars attended this year’s annual rally once again held in the grounds of Broughton Castle, the enchanting home of Lord & Lady Say & Sele. Here is a selection. 1. Line-up of cars built at Much Park Street, Coventry between 1939 and 1954. 2. Malcolm Hall once again brought his truly immaculate 14hp Sports. This car won the GT Andrews Trophy in 2011 for the best restoration. 3. Peter Baston & Katrin stand proudly by his award winning Hyper. 4. Geoff Elster, this year’s winner of the GT Andrews Trophy, delivers Lord & Lady Saye & Sele to the marquee for Prize-Giving. 5. David & Johanna Frolich prepare to return in Hotlips to Copenhagen. 6. Some of the 2014 Prize-Winners line-up for a photo call. From l-r: 1948 14hp Sports, David & Johanna Frolich; 1950 14hp 4-light Saloon, Steven Chittock; 1928 P-type, Geoff Elster; 1951 14hp Estate, John Blundell; 1947 14hp Special belonging to Adrian Slade which won the newly created award for Specials; 1948 14hp Sports, Malcolm Hall. Pictures 4 & 6 from Robin Sawers

2014 LFOC Annual Rally Awards

Directors’ Cup (best overall in the concours): John Blundell, 1951 14hp Estate.
G T Andrews Trophy (best new restoration): Geoff Elster, 1928 P type 4 seater.
1st Vintage Concours: Ian Newton, 1929 P type 4 seater.
2nd Vintage Concours: Jonathan McM Turner, 1928 S type Hyper.
1st Post-vintage Concours: Mike Lea, 1948 14hp Sports.
2nd Post-vintage Concours: Steven Chittock, 1950 14hp 4-light saloon.
Mike Lea (best special based on a production Lea-Francis): Adrian Slade, 1947 14hp Special.
Derrington Trophy (best overall in the driving test): Peter Baston, 1928 S type Hyper.
1st Vintage Driving Test: Geoff Elster, 1928 P type 4 seater.
1st Post-vintage Driving Test: David Frolich, 1948 14hp Sports.
Salad Servers (most amusing driving test): Rod Holt, 1952 14hp Special.
Vintage Long Haul: Martin Ashman, 1929 P type 2 seater + dickey, 150 miles.
Post-vintage Long Haul: David Frolich, 1948 14hp Sports, 343 miles

2014 LFOC Annual Trophies

L T Delaney Memorial (promoting the Lower Ford Street Cars): Peter Baston, 1928 S type Hyper
Harry Spence (best reported aggregate in competitive events): Graham White, 1928 P type 4 seater Special.
Ken Rose (promoting the post-war sports cars): 1948 14hp Sports, Malcolm Hall.
Albert Ludgate (services to the club): Trevor Smith, 1929 P type 2 seater + dickey.
Cliff Wright (promotion of the 14hp): Trevor Bradley, 1950 14hp Estate.
Posted June 2014

Lea-Francis 2.5 litre Sports to be sold

1950 Motor Show car Ch: 5238 is being prepared for sale in California.

Lea-Francis 2.5 litre Sports to be sold

This right hand drive car, completed in late 1950 and used by Lea-Francis as their Motor Show car in October of that year, was exported to Vaughan Singer Motors in Hollywood, California in March 1951. They sold it to Perry Peron, a race driver and motor boat enthusiast. It was finished in electric blue with beige leather interior. The b&w inset photo shows the car on the FCCA (Four Cylinder Club of America) stand at the 1952 Petersen Motorama.
Passing to Don Shoenfield of Venice, California in the early 1960s the car was eventually stored in Schoenfield’s back yard in non-running order until the last owner, Irv Charles, acquired the car in the early 1970s by which time the colour had been changed to red. Irv Charles commenced a restoration, repainting the exterior to the current silver over black, and re-upholstering the interior with black vinyl. The car has been stored in Irv Charles’ garage but rarely used in the last few years due to his declining health. It is now being re-commissioned for the road by David Berger and will be offered for sale in the near future. This three owner car has led its entire life in rust-free California and there are no missing parts. If you are interested in having the opportunity to acquire this rare English sports car, or would like more information, please contact David Berger at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
More information and pictures about this car can be found at http://tinyurl.com/LF25Sports
More information about the 2.5 litre Sports can be found here
Posted: May 2014

New award for Lea-Francis Specials

Concours judging to be introduced for specials at the 2014 Annual Rally.

New award for Lea-Francis Specials

A new award for Lea-Francis based specials will be presented for the first time at the 2014 Annual Rally & Concours at Broughton Castle. This trophy (pictured in the development stage) has been created by Mike Lea, builder of one of the Club’s finest specials, and will be awarded at the discretion of the Judges to the best special based on a production Lea-Francis car that was beyond economic restoration to original condition.
Posted: April 2014

Oldest surviving Lea-Francis car for sale

1923 Lea-Francis D Type 2 seater, Meadows 4EB engine and body by Motor Bodies.

Oldest surviving Lea-Francis car for sale

Originally delivered new to Gloucester Garages in 1923, this delightful Lea-Francis D Type 2 seater was the first Lea-Francis car to be fitted with a Meadows engine, a 10hp 1250cc Meadows 4EB. Owned by the same family since 1955, the car is now for sale. The car has been used regularly over the years for VSCC and LFOC events and, although unused for some time, would take very little to re-commission for the road. It is the oldest existing Lea-Francis car in the UK, has rear wheel brakes, a body by Motor Bodies Ltd and a tiny single dickey. It currently rests near Nottingham.
Anybody interested in purchasing this pretty & unique early Lea-Francis car should in the first instance contact Colin Poynter, the Lea-Francis Owner’ Club Registrar for Pre-1937 cars, Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Posted: February 2014