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Roy Larkin

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About Roy Larkin

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    Staff Sergeant

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    Great War motor transport and civilian road transport history in general
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  1. I'm doubtful that it was requisitioned by the military. I've not come across any requisitioned cars and the War Office seem to have purchased cars outright from the start. It is possible that it belonged to an officer as, as Tony says, officers took their own cars just as the cavalry officers took their own horses. It may then have been 'taken over' by the military in France for maintenance and running costs. It may of course only been used in the UK as the military had huge numbers of lorries, cars etc for the home front. My feeling is that if (and its a very big if) that it ever went to France that it was with the original BEF. 'New' officers of companies formed as the BEF expanded would have used the car issued to whichever company they were with. In that case, its very unlikely to have been used as cars were being bought new and the Armstrong-Whitworth was 'non-standard', so would have been kept for the UK, unless somebody had taken it with the BEF as his own property. Having said all that, it is WW1 and that has a habit of throwing up bits of information that totally contradict anything and everything known so far. There was an Armstrong-Whitworth ambulance at Kempton Park disposal site in February 1919, but that has registration number AB 1401, (not WD number) so that only served on the home front. Fascinating project though and I look forward to seeing how progress goes.
  2. I've only come across Thresh sterilisers on Foden chassis. They travelled to villages/towns etc and stayed a few days while all the clothing was sterilised and moved on to the next village when done. They were also used at hospitals. All clothing was sterilised as often as possible, irrespective of whether for officers or rank and file.
  3. A friend in Italy is looking for a set of 10.50x16 tyres for an Austin K2. Any ideas or laughter appreciated. Thanks.
  4. Robert, Too big a topic for here really. Destination Western Front has sold out, although the RLC Museum still have a couple in their shop (http://www.rlcmuseum.co.uk) although you might need to email them as I'm not sure it's listed in their on-line shop. Second edition of Destination Western Front should be coming out later this year, so probably best to wait. First buses into France/Belgium were some single deck B-types though there is no record of what happened to them. I suspect they went to the Belgians. The RND took a company of buses with the Marines to Antwerp which appear to be the first used to carry British troops. These were later absorbed into the ASC in August 1915. Four ASC companies (90, 91, 92, 93 Coys ASC) were formed in October 1914 using London buses, though only 2 of these (90, 91 Coy) remained as bus companies in France, the other two being converted to lorries on arrival. Several more bus companies were formed and were administered by individual armies until the reorganisation in 1916/17 when they came under the administration of the Auxiliary Bus Park. By 1918, 339, 405, 563 & 588 Coys ASC had also been formed. They had a variety of roles, from large troop movements, mainly around Flanders and for returning fit troops from hospital to the front and auxiliary roles in back areas. I would need to dig deeper, but given the areas they worked, I feel sure that Australians would have been carried at some point.
  5. Lorries never had glass, except for a few modified by companies on in France, usually by stealing windows from buildings. Cars and ambulances kept the glass intact and replaced broken windscreens when they went into workshops. Buses had side windows boarded up by lost more glass through soldiers backpacks than from shelling.
  6. I'm way too old to even think about it without needing a long sit down, so how Ben has managed to turn every day into 48 hours long will always be a mystery to me.
  7. Yes, 'bus' was a general slang for motor vehicles, but 'motor-bus' is far more precise. I think the buses referred to in the book are LGOC B-types, but they had already been converted to lorries when the company were issued with them.
  8. I have an original copy and it is a strangely titled book. The ASC company is recorded as being the 1st Indian Cavalry Division Supply Column which was 89 Coy ASC. I also have their records and they tie in with the dates and ships used to move from Avonmouth to Rouen and also the Establishment. The problem is that they never had a bus! Quite why A.M. Beatson called it The Motor-Bus in War is anybodies guess.
  9. Probably the same as the British, so a mix of whatever was available at any one time and each mix different.
  10. Edward Box & Co Ltd used to buy the old hoses from the Liverpool Fire Brigade to cut them up and fit them between wheel and tyre to stop the wheels spinning in the tyres on the Scammell 100-tonner.
  11. This might go some way to establishing that trying to pin down a particular colour for WW1 vehicles is impossible. 319 Coy ASC (1 Heavy repair Shop), Paris recorded in mid-January 1918 that the painting of lorries after overhaul was very poor due to the paint supplied being 'of poor colour and very gritty. Matter taken up with OC Gas Works to see how to improve the colour.' The Gas Works was at Gennvilliers and was the parking for wrecks coming into workshops at St Denis, and the completed vehicles that were waiting to be allocated.
  12. Sod's Law at work Tom, I will be meeting up with the bus at Ypres for the last post on the 20th. It will be in Poperinghe on the 19th to open an exhibition, but unfortunately I didn't fancy going over on the 18th to return in the evening of the 19th to pick the Mrs up to go back again on the 20th, so had to turn down the invitation to the exhibition opening and hastily rearrange holiday to be at Ypres for the first night. Fortunately that will leave 2 weeks to get the Mrs back on side as we'll be out of the Western Front area for most of it.
  13. I'm with you Tim, does not look 'British' and all the references I have seen have American vehicles shipped without bodies to save space.
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