Sunday, October 30, 2005

Anglia Nights

Seeing the photograph in the papers of that clapped out 1960s Ford Anglia 105E which may or may not have been the now missing Harry Potter car, has taken me back to my youth again. Even though this was the seventies - the decade that was more bile than style - these cars even then seemed pretty naff. That is unless you were able to step out in one of those cool cat Super Anglia 123Es - which packed a monstrous (wait for it) 1200 engine and was actually used, without irony, in rallies and motorcross. These could look quite sporty if there were numbers and extra lights fitted.

But the 105E, nah, you wouldn't want to go on the pull with one of those. The only pulling you were likely to be involved with would be on the other end of a tow rope; or with clumps of your own hair when once again, you found yourself slumped on the kerbside waiting for dad or uncle or mate to turn up to rescue you yet again from your broken car and shattered dreams.

To be fair this was the 1970s and I suppose these ugly, stunted Studebaker wannabees, these runts from the American streamline design with their sadly self conscious tailfins - how typical that the stylishness from across the pond was nodded to and then minimised to a mere suggestion - were getting old by then. And we were able to pick them up, if not the girls, quite cheaply.

And for a while they, these Anglias, were our mode of transport. Everyone I knew seemed to have one. Minis were more expensive for some reason. Hillman Imps lived up to their name and hardly ever started, their posh doppleganger the Singer Chamois: nicer seats, tidier trim, little bit plusher, was its engine stinker-equal, capable of starting but only running on the understanding that it could blow at least one gasket every five miles. A pact had to be made that all journeys had to end with the engine reduced to a watery-oil-mess; and your hands, trousers, shirt sleeves and wallet, ruined. I daren't start on the Triumph Herald. My first car a sublime looking convertible was so unstable through stealth rust, only the paint- work kept it whole. Thoughts of it make me shudder almost as much as it used to.

The Ford Anglia. For a while, probably between 1972 and 1974, for those with little money, they were probably the best of a bad crop.

My parents had a Triumph Toledo and a Hillman Hunter...

I was 4 in 1974
My first car was a maroon Ford Anglia which I purchased for the princely sum of £50 in 1973.

It went okay - that's about all I can say.
Some of my most memorable experiences occurred on the back and front seats of these old motors so I, for one, shouldn't be too hard on them.
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?