General, News, Treasures

Liquidation of Bristol Cars and the Results of the Online Auction.

Archive chests

Bristol Owners Heritage Trust are delighted to say that, with the help of some generous backers, we have managed to salvage a major amount of core items of heritage interest which were  auctioned this week by the liquidators, Wyles Hardy. We have been saving up our funds against this very day for the last few years, since it became all too obvious that Bristol Cars Ltd was heading for Queer Street once again.

If the Heritage Trust has no other function it should be to do this, and we have committed our existing funds fully.

Our biggest priority was to save the Archives – 12  tall plan chests containing every blueprint of every model of Bristol car made, and a dozen or more filing cabinets. These go right back to the Car Division’s glory days, when funding was seemingly  unlimited, and the most advanced design and technology was employed to launch a string of radical new models. Correspondence between the Board and the likes of  Aldington and Arnolt, together with designs and calculations from Sevier and Hobbs are within among a treasure trove of new information about the marque.

The sale of these by Private Treaty is currently delayed due to some legal intricacies until “towards the end of this year”. And the liquidators have used the term “Can of worms”  to describe the tangle of BCL’s bankruptcy, though we couldn’t possibly comment. Rest assured that we are very well backed, our backers have deep pockets,  and are determined to acquire the last remains of this once great firm.

Here is a list of what we managed to acquire, and other material is also being kindly added to this by donors. Prices were high – in some cases very high- but this was our only chance to keep this material, much of it unique, together.

Once conserved and digitally indexed, the paperwork  will be available for inspection, education, and research in secure surroundings in the City of Bristol Archive.

To summarise, on the first day we kept together almost all the original, exquisite colour and black and white artwork, prototype wind tunnel models and some unique photography.

Sale Results -Day One:

Lot 25. Collection of Three Spares Handbooks for the Bristol Type 406, Type 407 and Type 408 Mk II, 409 and 410 Car.

Lot  59. Copy of Bristol (Version 2) Chronicling the History of Bristol Cars Ltd.

Lot 85. A Box containing Photographs, Negatives, Magazines and Correspondence between various Press Officers and Tony Crook/Bristol Cars Ltd relating to the Promotion of The Bristol Blenheim.
A Collection of Slides and Transparencies depicting a Bristol Beaufighter, Bristol Beaufort, Brigand and a Race Prepared ERA.

Lot 94. Copy of The Bristol 2-Litre Car Types 400, 401, 402 and 403 Workshop Manual New/Unused).

Lot 133. A Box Containing A Quantity of Various Promotional Black and White Colour Photographs of the Bristol 603 Saloon
A Promotional Black and White Photograph of The Dashboard and Fascia of The Bristol 405 Saloon mounted on card with descriptive text on the back.

Lot 136. A Box Containing Various Black and White Photographs from the Early History of Bristol Cars Limited.

Lot 136. Various photographs from early history

Lot 138. A Collection of Eight Various Promotional Black and White Photographs of The Bristol 409 Saloon.

Lot 139. A Black and White Negative Transparency of A Bristol Saloon Crash Test Car.

Lot 142. A Collection of Promotional Colour Photographs of The Bristol Blenheim Saloon.

Lot 145. A Copy of The Bristol 2-Litre Car Types 400, 401, 402 and 403 Workshop Manual.

Lot 153. Collection of Promotional Black and White Photographs of The Bristol Marine Gearbox with Descriptive Text.

Lot 157. Two Black and White Photographs taken at the Factory showing An Early V8 Engine and Damaged Pistons.

Lot 163. Four Various Promotional Black and White Photographs of The Bristol 409 Saloon.

Lot 165. Four Black and White Photographs showing The Bristol 2-Litre Powered AC-Bristol Ace in Coupe du Salon, Paris 06/10/1957 having come First in The 1300-2000cc Class Race.

Lot 167. A Black and White Photograph showing Engineers at The Bristol Cars Ltd Factory engaged in work on A Bristol 2-Litre Engine.

Lot 198. A Framed and Glazed Black and White Print of A Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Saloon.

Lot 203. A Black and White Print of Promotional Artwork for ‘The Bristol B.S.I. Mk 2 2-Litre Engine fitted to Arnolt Bristol’.

Lot 205. A Colour Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Saloon Annotated ‘Not Finished’, Mounted on Card.

Lot 206. A Colour Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Saloon Annotated ‘Not Finished’, Mounted on Card.

Lot 207. A Colour Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Saloon, Mounted on Card.

Lot 208. A Black and White Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Saloon, Mounted on Card.

Lot 209. A Colour Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Convertible, Printed onto Card.

Lot 210. Two Colour Design Artworks for A Bristol Drophead Hood Frame Mechanism Arrangement.

Lot 211. A Black and White Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Front Bumper Mounting Detail Printed onto Card.

Lot 213. A Black and White Design Artwork for The Bristol 400 Instrument Panel and Controls Printed onto Card.

Lot 214. A Black and White Design Artwork for a Bristol Cars Instrument Panel and Controls Printed onto Card with Typed Key.

Lot 215. A Black and White Design Artwork for a Bristol Cars Instrument Panel and Controls Printed onto Card.

Lot 229. A Black and White Design Artwork of The Beutler Bristol 401 Cabriolet.

Lot 230. A Black and White Design Artwork of The Beutler Bristol 401 Cabriolet

Lot 231. Two Black and White Design Artwork Reproductions annotated ‘VITA 80’ of A Fixed Head Design and ‘SPORT 80’ of a Cabriolet Design, both Signed by the Designer in 1945

Lot 232. Two Black and White Design Artwork Reproductions annotated ‘VITA 80’ of A Fixed Head Design and ‘SPORT 80’ of a Cabriolet Design, both Signed by the Designer in 1945.

Lot 233. Two Black and White Design Artwork Reproductions annotated ‘VITA 80’ of A Fixed Head Design and ‘SPORT 80’ of a Cabriolet Design, both Signed by the Designer in 1945.

Lot 234. A Black and White Design Artwork Annotated ‘Cabriolet – Carrosserie, 2-Turig, 2-Fenstrig, Auf Frazer Nash – Chassis’ and Dated 17/10/46.

Lot 236. A Colour Design Artwork of The Bristol ‘Woody’ 1948 Shooting Brake showing Side and Rear Views, Printed onto Cartridge Paper.

Lot 326. Bristol ‘Woody’

Lot 237. A Black and White Design Artwork of The Bristol 400 Saloon Printed onto Card.

Lot 238. A Black and White Design Artwork of The Bristol 400 Saloon Printed onto Card.

Lot 239. A Colour Design Artwork of A Bristol 400 Printed onto Card.

Lot 240. A Framed Colour Design Artwork of A Bristol 400 Saloon (BAC 568), Annotated H.R.B. 12.3.47.

Lot 241. A Framed and Glazed Colour Design Artwork of The Touring of Milan Bristol 401 Superleggera.

Lot 242. Artwork of Bristol 402

Lot 243. A Framed and Glazed Colour Design Artwork of A Bristol 401/403 Saloon.

Lot 244. A Framed and Glazed Colour Design Artwork of A Bristol 400 Cabriolet.

Lot 307. A Hand Painted Hardboard Sign commemorating the Competition Successes won by Bristol Engined Cars prepared by Anthony Crook Motors and driven by Anthony Crook as seen in a Photo Illustration on Page 181 of Lot No. 12 displayed over Mr. Crook’s Trophy Cabinet.

Lot 310. A Printed Card commemorating Awards won by Bristol 2-Litre 4-Passenger Sports Car 1953 at The World Motor Sports Show, Madison Square Gardens, New York City and Institute of British Carriage and Automobile Manufacturers for Private Coachwork between 1948 and 1955.

Lot 314. A Bristol Type 400 Scale Frame Model in Steel (Note: Broken, Requires Repair).

Lot 315. A Painted Wooden Design Model.

Lot 316. A Painted Wooden Design Model with Three Photographs.

Lot 317. A Black Painted Wooden Bristol Design Model with Two Photographs.

Lots 315, 316 & 317. Design Models.

Lot 319. A Silver, Red and Black Painted Solid Wooden Scale Design Model for The Bristol 406 Saloon with A Photograph and Design Study Sheet.

Lot 319. 406 design model

Lot 320. A Silver, Red and Black Painted Solid Wooden Scale Design Model for The Bristol 406 Saloon with Four Photographs and Two Design Study Sheet.

Lot 324. A Blue Painted Solid Wooden Scale Design Model of A Bristol Perspex Dome Topped Concept Vehicle with Five Photographs (Note – Broken and Incomplete Dome).

Lot 331. A Fibreglass Mould in Five Sections used in the moulding of Scale Design Models of The Bristol Fighter Sports Car.

Sale results – Day 2

On the second day we purchased the following bucks:
Type 401/3,
Type 404/5 (front and rear, plus a rear quarter piece),
Type 406,
Type 411 and 412 (Front and rear),
Making 5 ¼ in total.

Lot 661. 406 Buck

They will all be moved to temporary storage in the Brabazon hangar. We intend to arrange for them to be displayed in National-level museums, in line with our charitable brief for making available research and educational material about the marque. The bucks would also be suitable material for working exhibits. Negotiations are underway and already we can confirm that one will be placed in the Bristol Industrial Museum.  We very much hope that the 401/3 buck can be displayed in its birthplace at Filton, in Aerospace Bristol at the foot of the Brabazon runway where its prototype was tested 71 years ago.

Thank you once again to all our  individual supporters.

 Warning!  We may well call on you again when assistance is needed with the Archive purchase.

Stefan Cembrowicz

Chair, Bristol Owners Heritage Trust

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