Some meanderings and pontifications around cars belonging to the Masters....
Just a note also on teachers cars......I have`nt seen any reference to Mr "Fred" Knight, who I think taught biology, with Gus Leftwitch, in my time, 1959-60. He drove a very smart BRG Jaguar Mk1 which always looked the dogs whatsits! Also, I remember Jake Dunning in a Sunbeam Rapier 2 door coupe, and my favourite English teacher, RJ "Ebby" Shaw, who had a light green Hillman Husky van. In my last year there, 1964, I had a BSA 250cc C11, which I used to ride in from the outpost at Bozeat where I lived, and following Ebby up the Walks (London Road) one frosty morning, intent on overtaking him before we got to school, the bike laid me down on the crossroads (now with traffic lights) as I "laid it over" to follow him upto the Doddington Road crossroads. Bruised pride, but luckily, nothing else. Keith Brealey.
What about Brett Tussler taught geography and drove a Fiat 126 – Rod Fairey also taught fencing - didn't Mr Wilson teach English with his lump of wood known as the "Great Entertainer" which he'd chuck on your desk if he thought you were asleep! - Mr Vann was known as "Vera Vann" - Who was it who used to drone on about British Thornton Slide Rules? - Wasn't Buzz Temple so called because he used to be a fighter pilot in WW2? - Mark Titcomb
Johnny Hyde had a turquoise Mini – number plate YRP 76, Bill Walker had a beautiful old grey Rover with a number something like WJW …, Bob Taylor had an Austin 1100 which he could hardly get into … Cloddy Barker had a new grey Rover which he drove as sedately as Royalty. Sad, isn’t it what one remembers 30 years later …. I also remember the first 11 lines of Paradise Lost Book 1 that Puggy taught us, a Wilfred Owen and an Edward Thomas poem from Geoff Dean, and one of Buzz Temple’s awful spoonerisms which he used to nasally inflict upon us …' flocks of bats instead of blocks of flats': it used to amaze me how he could work it into every lesson…. Dave Wilson I remember for throwing bibles & bits of wood at pupils in RE classes - Pete Smith
The Rover was 805 WLW and I bought it off Sandy MacDonald for 90 quid -
Thinking about Masters and their strange cars, does anyone know what that strange red 'Noddy' car was that Mick Wright used to drive.........if I remember correctly it had a motorbike type engine with kickstart. Does anyone remember the blue 3 wheeler that he had..........was it a Morgan? - I don't remember Brett Tussler driving a Fiat, but I do remember him having a strange little green DAF Variomatic, with even stranger sounding automatic transmission - Martin Percy
Reading Martin Percy's memories of Mick Wrights little red car reminds me of when it made a guest appearance on stage during the final curtain call after one of the end of term House plays. I recall the gathered assembly was suitably impressed. I cannot remember what make the car was, I thought it was a kit car. I also remember Mick Wright hunting high and low for it at the end of a term only to find that it had been carried up the sports field and hidden behind the cricket pavilion. -Malcom Scarborough
Regarding Mick (I knew him as Mike) Wright's little vintage sports car, I am pretty certain that it was a Messerschmidt. The company made enemy fighter planes during the war, but in the '40s and '50s it started to produce little three-wheeled sports cars with, instead of a steering wheel, an aeroplane-style joystick to steer with. - Tim Locke
In my time, Mr Wright (RIP) was always called "Noddy" not Mick. And it was certainly a Morgan he drove. I think he would turn in his grave if he knew that people were suggesting it was a Messerschmidt !! For me, the funniest car/teacher combination had to be "Tank" Gilbert and his Fiat 126 : the tallest teacher at the school driving the smallest car on the road ! Hilarious ! For the record, I was at WGS from 1971 to 1974 (so only technically two years of WGS I suppose). I now live in Los Angeles, California. - Steve Mallard
Mick Wright's car was neither a Messerscmidt nor a Morgan (too expensive for a schoolmaster). It may have been a kit car and I'm convinced it was a Berkley, although I've never heard of them before or since....I also remember Brett Tussler used to have a Mark One Escort (dark blue, G reg) in 1970-71.
Gerry Cobb is correct – Noddy Wright’s car was a Barclay (not Berkley) and it was red. I remember this clearly from the time we carried it onto the school field: or was it downstairs to towards the metalwork room? I don’t recall exactly but I do remember Noddy found it in the end… - Pete Smith
Don't know what Mike Wright's car was ( I remember it as a Bond but I am sure I am wrong Cox definately had a Bond) As for Berkeley cars (that is the correct spelling) the early ones had 325 or 350cc British Anzani or Excellsior mototcycle engines and were good for about 60mph if you were brave (daft) enough. then some bright sod at the factory sugggested fittin 750cc Royal Enfield intercepter engines. The mind boggles. 100mph+ and enough vibration to keep your dentist busy for life. strangly there is still an enthusiasts club and several examples still running, even saw one in California two years ago. regards Rob Moffitt. 1959-1964
This may be my one and only contribution to society, but I can offer the definitive answer to The Great Mick Wright Car Debate. It was a kit car. And it was a Morgan. He built it himself. And I think it was green. I know this because he and I were neighbours in Burns Road. His workshop was a council garage off Burns Road between Ruskin Avenue and Shakespeare Road. If I was tired of playing cricket and football during the summer holidays (which was pretty rare, I admit) I might pop over and help him out for five minutes, hold a thingumajig here or a whatsit there while he proceeded to cover himself in ever more oil and grime. My reward was an occasional trip in the thing - certainly no extra marks because he never taught me...sadly, I was one of the unlucky ones lumped with Dean. However, I did learn much about English, too, on those fun afternoons. Occasionally an unforgiving nut would set off an expletive from between pipe-clenched teeth. And, memorably, from this came an impromptu tutorial on the derivation of our most colourful language. As a professional writer this is something I have made great use of over the years and am sorry not to be able to thank Mick for those priceless lectures. I can tell you, though, that on learning the Dane or Saxon meaning and pronunciation of a certain section of our vocabulary I have never been able to look at the sheath of a sword quite the same way since. Curiously another English teacher of that era, "Pugwash" Buchanan, gave up education to restore classic cars: he is today located in Finedon just off the A6. And one, final, vaguely linking snippet of entirely useless information: the house in Burns Road in which Mick Wright lived was the former domicile of Sandy MacDonald. Someone else who never taught me but I very much wished had. Jim Murray
A quick check on the Morgan Car company history shows that the three wheelers, in various guises, were produced from November 1910 to 1946, and finally dropped from the catalogue in February 1952, with a break during the war of course. As well as making the Oerlikon anti aircraft gun the woodwork shop (all the frames were wood) was leased to Sir Alan Cobham who modified a Hereford bomber for in-flight refueling. This brings up three points 1 They were all MADE, no kit cars were ever shipped out by Morgan! 2 No three wheelers were sold after 1947 3 All model had (and still have) ash frames on a steel chassis. If Mick restored/rebuilt a Morgan three wheeler Jim should remember lots of woodworking, did it have an exposed Vee twin engine (JAP or Matchless), or was it a post 1933 model F with a water cooled Ford 10HP engine behind a flat radiator? Pictures of both attatched. Regards, Rob Moffitt 1959 1964