Lincolnshire Road Transport Museum – a visitation

AP1050900
1960 Morris JB-type Van. It’s red. It’s the sort of van you’d need to garage eveery night, with a dish of milk and a warm blanket. ‘Cute’ doesn’t do it justice.

While Cardinal Wolsey’s nether regions were being blacked these past few days, the bro and I took the opportunity to sodski off for a spot of sight-seeing and general trundle-aboutness. Lincoln was chosen as the base of our semi-covert operations, and Lincoln is home to the The Lincolnshire Road Transport Museum. The museum is one of the best sort – run by incredibly keen volunteers, and it has been open for business for fifty years, 2016 being its half-centenary year.

Lincolnshire Road Transport Museum, Whisby Road, North Hykeham, Lincoln, LN6 3QT.

 

The museum is also one of those that has seriously outgrown its lebensraum and, while stuffed from floor to ceiling, could now do with premises three or four times the size. The museum, rather generously, had the benefit of being forty-two point three seconds’ drive away from our hotel…

We visited on a warm, sunny day and the doors small and doors large of the museum had been thrown open – releasing that aroma of old vehicle and oil-based wotnots that a chap either loves or hates. I loves it. Enthusiastic is an understatement where the volunteers are concerned and it’s impossible to not feel as though you’re being shown a schoolboy’s collection of prized possessions – just as a road museum should be.

AP1050869

From ancient, to modern (well – very modern, considering that the brother AND the sister both owned variants of the Maestro at some stage, and I drove (and loved) its close cousin, the Austin Montego!

AP1050895
Austin Maestro

It is so depressing to find cars one has owned in museums! I feel as though I ought ot surrender myself too. Hello, my name is Ian Hutson, and I’m from the past…

Photographerisms in such a packed building are fraught with angle, cropping and unfortunate juxtaposition, so what you’ve got here is the best that I could do. They do also have a couple of “open” days a year – when the vehicles, the vast majority of which are fully roadworthy and road-legal, are taken out in vast convoys to sniff and snipe at the young upstarts that now think they own the roads.

AP1050880

 

AP1050875

Soon after the coming apocalypse, once the dust has settled, I will be venturing out to harvest the museum’s contents, and most of the exhibits will find new homes in my heavily-armed secret compound, just for fun.

AP1050874

The vehicles and volunteers have presences on:

Facebook

Twitter

and, confusingly, something called “Flickr“.

This is confusing because I always thought that Flickr was Roy Rogers’ horse…

Fortunately, they don’t let me out very often and when they do it’s usually with one of the more burly male nurses who is a Seventh Dan Taserist or a Black Belt Lassoist or something.

Anyone feeling tempted to write and tell me that Lasso is not a martial art but a do-gooding collie dog with a penchant for finding folk down abandoned wells, please don’t, because I can tell you now that you’re thinking of Skippy – Skippy the Butch Kangaroo.

AP1050961
1961 Austin Gypsy fire tender. Yes, yes, I know that it looks like a Land-Rover, but its not!

Anyway. Whatever.

The day ended as these fantastic days out usually do, with me on the floor throwing a tiredness tantrum and demanding lentil curry, chips and lager, and with the brother spotting a Bentley Mulsanne Turbo or some such in the wild, and then spending another happy couple of hours explaining to the owner that he (i.e., the Bro) designed that, and that, and those…

AP1050971
The Bro to the left, this particular Bentley’s owner to the right, me behind camera and the car is the lovely big green thing in the middle of frame.

When you want to know how your air-conditioning or memory seats and stuff works then who better to chat to about it all than the chap who designed it? This is also why I had few qualms about the bro ripping out the wiring on the Cardinal and replacing same with a much better version! Mine will – once complete – be, I suspect, the only narrowboat around with wiring, electrics and electronics designed and built and fitted to the proper, before they were sold off to BMW & Volkswagen, standards!

To wit, to elucidate and mayhap to explain; you just don’t get wiring this good on standard Isuzu engines, you generally only find it on Rolls-Royce and Bentley cars up to (but not since) the era of the one shown above.

AP1050804
Cardinal Wolsey’s tickled engine. Gobsmacking simplicity – seeming simplicity, at least. Miles and miles of befuddled wiring entirely removed and replace with a couple of yards of neat stuff – and the engine runs better than before AND now supports instruments in place of the old warning lights.

Entry to the museum at time of visit (May 2016) was on the order of a folded fiver each, and splendid value at that. There’s also a shop full of goodies and memorabilia to buy, and access IS allowed to a vast workshop behind the main building, where cars guts are being spilled and in-line snoggle-thrumbles being realigned and vehicles generally brought back to an active and happy life.

Wholly recommended.

Later on in the trip we visited the Air Museum at Newark, Sir Isaac Newton’s birthplace and home, and Chatsworth House (extremely briefly). More on those later.

10 Comments

  1. Fun reading. I’m not a car buff, but still it’s always a treat to look back. Well maintained collection. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The vehicles are really well restored and loved – most of them are roadworthy and road-legal too, which is nice to see; much better than exhibits stuck forever on pedestals. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I know that much about cars. Yes, it’s easy to tell they are well looked after. 🙂

        Like

  2. Reblogged this on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog and commented:
    Author Ian Hutson takes the day off from Narrowboat Repairs and Refurbishing 😀

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Welcome Ian – great photos and location 😀

        Like

  3. It all sounds like jolly good fun! I am not old enough to know what an Austin Maestro is, but I remember my parents having a green car with a soft roof when I was a child, and apparently it was a popular family car back in the 80s… I have a fondness for vintage trucks, so I would be interested to visit this museum at some point in the future.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The museum has a stonk-load of buses and a handful of lorries, all vert cute beasties!

      Like

  4. Pat McDonald says:

    Excellent piece as always. I dreamt about a double decker bus the other night and wondered if they still roam the streets? Answers on a post card but here are some preserved for prosperity. When I got to the Maestro I was thinking the same thing, perhaps there is a museum for old car owners!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some sort of glass case arrangement where we could stand (with a door at the side so that we can get out to the loo six times a day).

      Like

Comments are closed.