A restored early Aston Martin DB4 will return to the NEC Restoration Show in just a few weeks time March 22-24 2019.
Not the most usual of findings in Wales, but an early Aston Martin DB4, in severe need of TLC, was located in a corrugated cow-shed.
After some investigation, long-term marque specialist and restorer Roger Bennington thought the same and set himself a mission – to restore it. And that’s where, in 2006, this particular DB4 began its restoration journey.
Aston Martin DB4
The classic had previously been a daily driver for the owner, Nevill Albert Rees, until it dropped a valve and developed a misfire in 1982. Around 25 years later, Bennington discovered its 70s style vinyl roof and a tow bar – it had been used to pull a caravan.
Being one of the few pre-production cars built in 1958, the DB4 had definitely seen better days and Bennington was determined for it to see them again. Especially after finding out that this could very much be the earliest surviving DB4 in the world.
After some persuasion, Rees sold his car to Bennington with the promise it’d be restored. It took five years of pondering before work commenced. It’s now finished but not without its hidden horrors. Rotten Superleggera tubing and golf balls falling out from holes in the boot floor are just a couple of issues.
Despite this, rats’ nests and having to pay over the odds for a new grille – only to cut it up – Bennington most certainly looks on the bright side; they had everything there to work from, after all.
A drive was promised to Rees, but he sadly passed away just before it was completed. Now Bennington is honouring his promises – to cherish this classic and never to sell it.
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Rolls-Royce (chassis number 37LC)
After a lengthy career from being an apprentice at Rolls-Royce, joining the RAF and lecturing Mechanical Engineering, the late Michael Forrest decided there was a 1925 Rolls-Royce Phantom 1 shaped hole in his life.
With his engineering background, Michael had been working on this car for the past 20 years, but despite the time and the meticulous efforts that he had put in, the near century-old classic isn’t quite finished.
After Michael’s passing, in 2018, the Rolls-Royce (chassis number 37LC), which was once owned by King Mohamed V of Morocco in 1932, arrived at the headquarters of The Sir Henry Royce Memorial Foundation in Paulerspury, near Towcester on Thursday, 24th January 2019.
It is, of course aesthetically pleasing but there’s still plenty to be done under the bonnet. Luckily the engine is installed and seat frames are in place, but there is no trim; the hood frame is not complete, the pistons and conrods need to be fitted and the whole thing securely bolted together.
Thankfully, not only did the current restorers, receive an extremely rare piece of motoring history, they also obtained a large number of components including, a full set of instrumentation, lights and spare mechanical components, all carefully labelled.
When the work has been completed, of course to Michael’s standards, the car will be displayed at the Hunt House until the summer where it will be sold.
To witness the work being continued, visit the International Club for Rolls-Royce and Bentley Enthusiasts stand (3-175).