Ian Robertson – Regalia
1934 Southern Cross Speed Model Tourer
Having just finished a 5 year restoration of a Healey 3000 I went on the Cotswold VSCC trial with a friend and decided I wanted to do it so immediately looked for a car and stumbled across a pile of bits known as a 1930 Triumph Super 7 which I had never heard of. The plan was to put it together quickly the way it was because it was just going to get wet and muddy. Alas, every last nut and bolt was removed and just about everything that moved was renovated including the engine, wheel bearings, radiator, brake system, etc. However, my wife insisted that it should not be trialled, so I offered it to Keith Gibbs, the son of the family who owned it in the early 1960’s,which is where it now fittingly resides.
Having just finished the Super 7 restoration and been banned from trialling it I was talking to a MJH and he mentioned a 1932 Triumph Southern Cross Tourer rolling chassis had just been found in Nuneaton some 6 miles from me. Arrangements were made to see it the next day. Not content with that temptation he then went on to tell me about a Southern Cross Speed Model Tourer, registration RV5287, of 1934 vintage languishing in a hedge in Biggin Hill. Phone calls were made, pictures exchanged, haggling concluded and arrangements made to collect it the following weekend.
Following original registration in Portsmouth nothing is known of the vehicle until 1973 when it was spotted by RegGibbons from his shop, G.B.Tools Plant Hire, being towed into “Curly” Day’s scrapyard in Forsdyke’s Yard, Wallingtonhaving been cleared from under a collapsed garage where it had apparently been sitting since just after WWII. Picking his way past the yards “guard bear” Reg paid Curly £35 for the triumph and had it delivered to his drive for his son Dave’sBirthday.
Other than getting it running the restoration never got underway as Dave’s passion was, and is, building dragsters so it followed the family around the southeast until it was sold a number of times and eventually found its way into my hands.
In the last year the chassis has been stripped and painted, new brakes all round, handbrake cables, wheel bearings, new floors made and installed, dashboard made, wiring almost complete, new fuel tank fabricated and installed, new ash frame made for 1 door, engine currently having new white metal etc, etc.
With a fair wind we should get to a trial or two later this year!
Thanks to everyone for their help so far and on the off chance any readers can shed any more light on the vehicles’ history I will be delighted to hear. Please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org