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Friday 16 November 2018

Rare Allard car group visits Ross

Owners of rare Allard cars from across the UK stopped off at the Brandon House Hotel recently
Owners of rare Allard cars from across the UK stopped off at the Brandon House Hotel recently

David Looby

Owners of rare Allard cars from across the UK stopped in the Brandon House Hotel as part of national tour.

The Allard Car Company was founded by Sydney Allard in 1937 in Streatham, South London, and it produced 'specials' to order, local car enthusiast Tim Ryan said. Output was interrupted by World War 2 when the company became a military vehicle servicing outfit, but after the war Allard was able to access large amounts of surplus four litre V8 engines which he proceeded to incorporate in a properly designed sports car which was dubbed 'The poor man's Bentley'.

'With this car he had success in many rallies and races culminating in his winning the Monte Carlo Rally in 1952 as the only marque owner ever to win in his own car. Fortunes declined after that as cheaper, less powerful types of car that were as fast and had better handling came onto the market. Production ceased in 1953, had a brief revival '54-'56 and then stopped completely.'

The motoring enthusiasts tested their Allards on the hill up to the hotel and enjoyed lunch afterwards.

Mr Ryan said: 'Records are poor but many thousands were shipped abroad (approximately 5,000 - mainly to the USA) and of the 1,821 that were sold in the UK, some 105 are recorded by the Allard Owner's Club as still being usable, with 35 known in Europe (including 3 on Malta!).

Allards are still being found and restored and the 'club is very active and it runs its own magazine and tours such as this one to our shores'.

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