Jaguar Heritage News – April 2014

This month’s top story is the launch of the all new Jaguar Heritage website – – which has lots of extra information and an enhanced look and feel.  With Spring really getting into its stride, the team has also been out and about at a number of early season events.  Read on for more…..


New Jaguar Heritage Website:

This month sees the culmination of a six month project to develop a completely refreshed website for Jaguar Heritage’s range of products and services.  The new site ‘went live’ over the weekend of April 12-13 and a mass mailing was sent to all the existing registered customers (nearly 10,000) to invite them to take a look.

The new site has adopted a much more contemporary design with some of the iconic cars from the Jaguar Heritage collection taking centre stage on the home page in a revolving carousel.  The navigation is all new and follows a similar approach to the latest Jaguar website.  The main content enhancements are:

·         Jaguar Heritage Vehicle Collection – new high quality pictures and information pages for more than 75 cars from the collection.

·         An expanded range of Archive Services – Heritage Certificates, use of the reading room for research, chassis numbers, tax and MOT exemption information.

·         A brand new Shop which has details of our extensive merchandise range – gifts, books, posters and clothing – our image library, where prints can be ordered, and our range of technical publictions.

·         A completely rewritten Jaguar History section, illustrated with a new selection of archive images.

·         An easier to navigate section that covers our News and Events with details of forthcoming events later this year.

The good news for anyone who has bookmarked links to the old site is that they will all redirect automatically to the new site.

As a special incentive to launch the new site, there is currently a special offer of a free Jaguar Heritage pen (normal price £15) on all orders for £30 or more.  This pen comes in a presentation box and is automatically added to customers’ shopping carts during the check-out process.

Please take a look at the new Jaguar Heritage website – all feedback will be welcome.


Recent Events:

A special Mille Miglia preview event took place at the famous Goodwood circuit on  3rd/4th April.  The main purpose of this was to give some of the drivers who will be taking part in this event in May an opportunity to drive the car they will be using – or at least one very similar.

Jaguar has entered an impressive line-up of ten cars for this demanding rally, eight of them part of the Jaguar Heritage Racing team and two privateers.  The driver line-up has now been finalised and it will include a number of celebrities from the worlds of motorsport, music and media – look out for confirmation from Jaguar in the near future.

For this preview event, 6 cars were lined up on the Goodwood circuit – three XK120s, an XK140, a C-type and a D-type.  Three of these were Jaguar Heritage cars – the 1952 XK120 FHC LWK 707 (the famous Montlhéry 7 days and nights record breaking car), 1953 XK120 OTS OOF 748 and 1954 short nose D-type prototype OVC 501.  The two XKs will both be taking part in the Mille Miglia but the D-type honours will actually fall to Jaguar Heritage’s other car, the 1956 long nose D-type which is currently undergoing preparation.

The 6 Mille Miglia ‘driver training cars’ line up behind an F-type Coupe pace car


The sharp eyed may have noticed that the XK140 on the grid is Trevor Groom’s car, TAC 743, that was the subject of a feature in last month’s newsletter.  Trevor has now added his car to the Jaguar entry for the Mille Miglia and kindly brought it along for the preview session.  One correction from last month’s newsletter; this car actually has a normal manual gearbox and not a recreation of the Hobbs Mechamatic that it had originally – although Trevor would like to find one or build one if he could!

Jaguar Heritage technician Dave Withers and volunteer Gary Jones were on hand to offer advice and instruction on the best driving techniques for the precious classic vehicles as the celebrity drivers made their way tentatively round the Goodwood circuit.

Brian Johnson, AC/DC Lead Singer, with Journalist Mike Dixon, in JD Classics C-type

Scottish Singer/Songwriter, Amy Macdonald and the Jaguar Heritage short-nose D-type


The weekend of 12th/13th April was a busy one for the Heritage team, with two events taking place.  The first of these was the Daimler and Lanchester Owners’ Club AGM and Spring Conference at Shelsley Walsh on the Saturday.

This historic hill climb, set in the Worcestershire countryside, is the oldest motor sport venue in continuous use in the world. Founded by the Midland Automobile Club in 1905, it is older than Indianapolis, Le Mans or Monza and featured the first electrical motor sport timekeeping and the first motor sport outside broadcast.  Raymond Mays perfected his ERA racing cars at Shelsley in the 1930’s and his later BRM’s made many appearances.

The Daimler name has been associated with Shelsley from the very start – with works Daimlers being prominent competitors in the early years.  The General Manager of the Daimler Car Company, Ernest Instone, recorded the fastest time at the inaugural meeting in 1905, taking his mighty Daimler TP35 up the half mile hill in a time of 77.6s.  By comparison, the current hill record is 22.58s, set by Martin Groves driving a V8 Gould in 2008!

The JH Daimler TP35 at Shelsley Walsh, where this model set a record time in 1905


Jaguar Heritage owns a very similar car to the one used by Ernest Instone in 1905, which is a 1907 TP35 Open Tourer fitted with the 8.5 litre four cylinder engine.  This was the subject of a feature in the February newsletter which looked back on the history of this amazing car.  As mentioned in this article, the car was being prepared in the Jaguar Heritage workshop to be taken to Shelsley for the DLOC Conference with the hope that it could make another historic run up the hill.

The day dawned and fortunately the weather was fine.  Proceedings began at 10:30am with the formalities of the AGM which was followed by the Conference, at which Jonathan Partridge updated the assembled DLOC members on the latest developments at Jaguar Heritage.  These included the new Museum Collection Centre building planned at the Gaydon site next year which will enable visitors to see all the Daimlers and Lanchesters in Jaguar Heritage’s collection, many of which have not been on public display before.

The meeting then broke up for lunch, following which the 105 year old Daimler was coaxed into life and proceeded to make six runs up the hill.  A good crowd of DLOC members stayed on to watch and a few of them were fortunate enough to be taken up the hill as passengers.  No speed records were broken, but the trusty Daimler made its way up and down the hill under its own steam – its refurbished brakes proving up to the job of the steep descent!

This is the third time that DU 541 has run up the hill in the last 60 years, its previous two outings being in 1955 for Shelsley’s half centenary, when it was driven up by Rupert Instone (Ernest’s son), and then again for the centenary in 2005 when it was driven up by Jaguar Heritage volunteer Gary Jones.

The long Daimler association with Shelsley is commemorated by a plaque on the clubhouse building that was presented by the JDHT in 2009 – which features a rendition of the 1907 Daimler DU541.


The following day on 13th April, another team from Jaguar Heritage headed down to Surrey for the special Jaguar Mark 1 Day 2014 at Nigel Webb’s Mike Hawthorn Museum.  They took with them the 1958 left hand drive 3.4 litre ‘Mark 1’ registration TOX 1 from the Heritage collection, which was originally owned by Maurice Frère of Brussels, Belgium, father of the late Paul Frère, F1 Driver, Le Mans Winner, journalist and writer

Once again, the event was blessed with fantastic weather and the gathering of around 45 Mark 1s made a great spectacle. Mark 1 Day Event Report

Amongst the many guests were a number of Jaguar ‘celebrities’ including Norman Dewis, former Jaguar senior test engineer, long time Jaguar racing driver Win Percy and Jaguar’s current Design Director, Ian Callum.

Nigel and Wendy had put on a wonderful spread for the many guests and the proud Mark 1 owners who had come from all over Europe.  In addition to having the chance to look round the unique Mike Hawthorn museum with its amazing display of cars and other memorabilia, the guests were also entertained by a speech from Norman Dewis, a saxophone player, and were well fed and watered with a hog roast and some specially decorated cakes!


Museum Displays:

Work is progressing on the special D-type 60th Anniversary celebration display that will go on show in the Jaguar gallery at the Heritage Motor Centre museum from the start of May.  As mentioned in last month’s newsletter, this will feature some large boards telling the history of the D-type and illustrating this with sixty interesting facts about the car and its motorsport successes.

These will be complemented by some displays of archive material including some very special items kindly being provided by Malcolm Sayer’s family and also by Nigel Webb from the collection of artefacts he has at his Mike Hawthorn museum.  These will include some scale models that Malcolm Sayer kept after his time at Jaguar and one of his original notebooks.

A special commemorative pack is also being put together which will contain a number of reproductions of original archive documents, prints of archive images and a celebration brochure.  Further details of this will be included in next month’s newsletter.

The special display will run throughout the summer season so make sure you plan a visit sometime between May and August.


Vehicle Collection Update and other news:

There are many calls on cars from the Jaguar Heritage collection, not least for internal events or special occasions.  One such occurred in the last couple of weeks, where a request came in to provide a Jaguar manager with a special 65th birthday treat!

Dave Telling has been a Jaguar fan for as long as he can remember.  He joined Austin Morris (as it was then) as a commercial apprentice in Sept 1966 and worked in Purchasing at Longbridge until they closed the gates in April 2005.

In July 2005 he started in Purchasing at Gaydon as a contractor and has been there ever since – currently working as BIW Project manager. His contract has recently been renewed until March 2015 as he expressed a wish to carry on working after 65.

To help him celebrate his 65th birthday on 8th April, Jaguar Heritage gave him the chance to fulfil a long held ambition to drive an E-type.  The 1963 Series 1 coupé YKE 374A was duly prepared and Dave enjoyed touring the back roads around Coventry – celebrating his senior citizenship in style!


As members of the JEC will be aware, there was an XJS Forum at the Coventry Transport Museum on 12th April.  This was supported by Jaguar Heritage volunteer, Christian Sharland, who is the proud owner of a 1989 XJS V12 convertible (centre car in photo above).

Christian retired from his role as Principle Engineer in Powertrain at Castle Bromwich at the end of 2011 but he bought his XJS just prior to this.  It was in excellent condition when he got it and has only required routine maintenance since – the mileage from new is just 37,500!  The XJS owners were joined for the morning by Ron Burr, former Jaguar Powertrain Chief Engineer.  Now in his eighties, Ron is still going strong and kept Christian and the others entertained with tales from his past career at Coventry Climax and Jaguar.


Last month there was a report on a photo shoot for Classic Cars magazine that took place down at Goodwood.   This was to support a feature being written by well-known motoring journalist John Simister on grand tourers,which compares eight examples of these classic two door vehicles.  It will be published in the June issue of Classic Cars, which will be on sale from 30th April.   Amongst the line-up was Jaguar Heritage’s 1977 Series 2 XJ12 coupé.

Look out for this car again on Sunday 27th April when it is being driven by Jaguar World editor, Paul Walton, on the annual JEC and Jaguar World London to Brighton run.


Forthcoming Events:

Just a reminder that the major events over the next couple of months that will see cars from the collection out and about are:

·         Supercars Sunday on May 11 in Kenilworth; Jaguar Heritage will be bringing along an E-type and S-type to offer passenger rides (proceeds go to Macmillan Nurses).  There will also be an F-TYPE Coupé alongside the other supercars!

·         The Mille Miglia in Italy from May 15-18 which will include four Jaguar Heritage cars in the ten car Jaguar entry – the 1952 XK120 FHC LWK 707, 1953 XK120 OTS, 1953 C-type and 1956 long nose D-type.

·        The Daimler and Lanchester Owners’ Club 50th Anniversary International Rally at the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon on June 1; the vehicle line-up is still being finalised but will span 100 years and include Jaguar Heritage’s oldest car, the 1897 Daimler Grafton Phaeton, as well as the stunning 1996 Daimler Corsica Convertible concept car.

·         The Jaguar Enthusiasts’ Club National Day at Thoresby Hall in Notts on June 22.  This will be celebrating the 30th anniversary of the JEC and Jaguar Heritage will be bringing along five cars from its collection that the JEC have helped to restore over the years.  These will include: 1958 3.4 litre ‘Mark 1’ TOX 1, 1969 S1 XJ6 4.2 PHP 42G and1973 S2 Daimler Double Six VDP (both former cars of Sir William Lyons), 1971 S3 E-type V12 2+2 WHP 205J, and the unique 1996 Daimler Corsica convertible.

·         The Goodwood Festival of Speed from June 26-29; Jaguar Heritage will once again have a selection of racing cars from its collection in the Cathedral Paddock making runs up the famous hill each day.  The provisional line-up is: 1953 C-type, 1954 D-type prototype, 1974 Group 44 E-type V12, 1983 TWR XJS and the 1988 Le Mans winning XJR-9.


Jaguar Heritage

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All information correct at time of publishing.