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PostPosted: Mon Sep 18, 2017 11:08 pm 
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surfblue63 wrote:


The last I heard (through Facebook) was that someone had bought that car, blind!! :shock: It's a good car essentially but obviously been modded abit and quite crusty in places. The seats are out of Murph's old Radford! It's still got it's original Surf Blue paint on it here and there which is nice to see!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 12:02 am 
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A few more titbits of info following the weekend looking at a '66 998 Cooper Radford barn find. I had it on display in Mancherster and noted it has the same 608 mirror mounting as mine, ie NOT the Mini mounting bracket many seem to think was right. It's a January 66 manufacture but was completed by Radford just slightly before mine looking at the job number and the registration date, even though mine's a '65 car. (My 'S' sat around Longbridge for almost two months!!). Its Tweed Grey originally like mine was and many were, still has it's Wilton carpet in amazing condition and black vinyl trim instead of leather which means it's still mint!! Another feature it has is a rear screen demister in the shape of a heater element across the rear shelf with a wire guard in front of it! I knew they were listed as an option but never seen one like it!! The dash still has it's Radiomobile in place and loads of original features, virtually untouched under the bonnet with the Radford perforated cream coloured underbonnet sound proofing still fitted. It's original colour was apparently Sand over Sable but like mine was overpainted with a solid colour later in life and the silverline acylic number plates are identical to mine and I'm convinced date from the 60s, maybe even original fitment??

Anyway, more Radford news. I bought some documents off Ebay a while ago and they consisted of a letter written (dated July 2001) by the original Radford London showroom manager Nicholas van Der Steen to Chris Willows at BMW. The brief letter mentions the new BMW MINI and Nicholas goes on to explain how he sold Radford Minis from the showroom from day one to the likes of the Beatles, Stones, Sellers, Hayley Mills, Roman Polanski etc. He also includes a Radford press release outlining "Operation Jack Horner", which was the presentation by Sellers of Britts new hatchback for her 21st birthday, even though she was 23 in 1965, so that bit's wrong! So actually a present for her 23rd birthday. Anyway Nick also encloses some photocopies of the photos from that day in October 1965 and mentions his archive that they came from.

A bit of a long shot but once I'd read that I wondered whether he still had this archive he spoke of but when I searched his name on the web it transpired that he passed away in 2015. No Radford production records survive but if anyone had them, would it have been Nicholas? There's so many mysteries about these cars , especially the first owners' details! That goes for me and alot of current owners who would love to find out who originally owned their cars. Anyway, undeterred I decided to see if he had any surviving relatives, and sure enough his widow still had her name on the motor company that Nicholas had been the director of for many years. Once he left Radford he went on his own dealing in mainly European new cars in the 70s like Alfas, Lamborghini, etc and his last company was listed so I had an address! I wrote to his widow Gillian and after a few weeks got a response by email!! But sadly she explained that she no longer had any Radford documentation. :( . Now whether it had been disposed of I don't know but I had it in print that Nicholas had spoken about having an "archive" so am gutted with the result. It's always worth a try when you get a lead on something like this but they don't always turn out the way you hope. Sadly!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 10:15 am 
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Pete wrote:
A few more titbits of info following the weekend looking at a '66 998 Cooper Radford barn find. I had it on display in Mancherster and noted it has the same 608 mirror mounting as mine, ie NOT the Mini mounting bracket many seem to think was right. It's a January 66 manufacture but was completed by Radford just slightly before mine looking at the job number and the registration date, even though mine's a '65 car. (My 'S' sat around Longbridge for almost two months!!). Its Tweed Grey originally like mine was and many were, still has it's Wilton carpet in amazing condition and black vinyl trim instead of leather which means it's still mint!! Another feature it has is a rear screen demister in the shape of a heater element across the rear shelf with a wire guard in front of it! I knew they were listed as an option but never seen one like it!! The dash still has it's Radiomobile in place and loads of original features, virtually untouched under the bonnet with the Radford perforated cream coloured underbonnet sound proofing still fitted. It's original colour was apparently Sand over Sable but like mine was overpainted with a solid colour later in life and the silverline acylic number plates are identical to mine and I'm convinced date from the 60s, maybe even original fitment??

Anyway, more Radford news. I bought some documents off Ebay a while ago and they consisted of a letter written (dated July 2001) by the original Radford London showroom manager Nicholas van Der Steen to Chris Willows at BMW. The brief letter mentions the new BMW MINI and Nicholas goes on to explain how he sold Radford Minis from the showroom from day one to the likes of the Beatles, Stones, Sellers, Hayley Mills, Roman Polanski etc. He also includes a Radford press release outlining "Operation Jack Horner", which was the presentation by Sellers of Britts new hatchback for her 21st birthday, even though she was 23 in 1965, so that bit's wrong! So actually a present for her 23rd birthday. Anyway Nick also encloses some photocopies of the photos from that day in October 1965 and mentions his archive that they came from.

A bit of a long shot but once I'd read that I wondered whether he still had this archive he spoke of but when I searched his name on the web it transpired that he passed away in 2015. No Radford production records survive but if anyone had them, would it have been Nicholas? There's so many mysteries about these cars , especially the first owners' details! That goes for me and alot of current owners who would love to find out who originally owned their cars. Anyway, undeterred I decided to see if he had any surviving relatives, and sure enough his widow still had her name on the motor company that Nicholas had been the director of for many years. Once he left Radford he went on his own dealing in mainly European new cars in the 70s like Alfas, Lamborghini, etc and his last company was listed so I had an address! I wrote to his widow Gillian and after a few weeks got a response by email!! But sadly she explained that she no longer had any Radford documentation. :( . Now whether it had been disposed of I don't know but I had it in print that Nicholas had spoken about having an "archive" so am gutted with the result. It's always worth a try when you get a lead on something like this but they don't always turn out the way you hope. Sadly!


Interesting Stuff Pete - over on Pistonheads there's some chat about Nickolas's Lambo / Alfa period, it's in the classic Lamborghini thread.

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1968 Mk2 Morris Cooper S
1994 Jap Mini 1275 Auto 'project 70s backdate'


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 3:35 pm 
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Just found this Pete... ;)

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BWfVM127.jpg


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Nidge

1968 Mk2 Morris Cooper S
1994 Jap Mini 1275 Auto 'project 70s backdate'


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:43 pm 
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Thanks Nidge. he also had a sales role at Richard Miles I think!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 10:43 pm 
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Mr. van Der Steen is mentioned in a letter related to a race car being ordered at Richard Miles Dowton London in December 1966.
He is referred to as the Senior sales executive by Andrew Hedges.
It would be interesting to learn if this is the same gentleman and if he was working at both Radford and Miles at the same time.

download/file.php?id=17231


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:38 am 
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I am always fascinated by the story's of long gone garages and dealerships, as people walk by these buildings today they have no idea what iconic business and buildings were once stood there.

Malvern site today, apparently the cycle shop is number 72
also old planning permission cert for an illuminated sign from around the time when it would have been a showroom, i wonder what the sign was to be :)


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:21 am 
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Just found this shot of Macca in his Radford, outside his house in Cavendish Avenue, c.March '67...

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FABS 1967 d8d67013e3793f95166.jpg


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1968 Mk2 Morris Cooper S
1994 Jap Mini 1275 Auto 'project 70s backdate'


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