In our latest feature, we take a look back to one of last years Gemini Events classic motor show winners.
Martin Worman with his 1956 Morris Minor was the winner of the ClassicLine sponsored 2019 Gemini Events Pride of Ownership awards at the Knebworth Park Classic Motor Show back in August 2019. We caught up with Martin to find out more about his rare split screen Morris Minor.
Martin has been into cars from a very early age, sharing a love of motorsport with his Dad. “Once I realised that my dreams of being an F1 driver probably wouldn’t become reality I really got into classic cars”, Martin tells us.
His Morris Minor, nicknamed ‘Lottie’, is believed to be one of the last split screen models to have been made. The car was purchased from the Cheltenham area in 2003 by Martin and his dad Keith. On the drive home, with Lottie being towed behind, Keith decided to become the custodian of the Morris Minor, registering the car in his name and keeping her at his house. From this point onwards, Keith took on the task of restoring Lottie and Martin eventually went on to buy a 1967 VW Beetle to join dad Keith at local classic car meets. The Beetle was the first car Martin and his wife bought together and it has been restored to a good standard. The best man at the couples wedding runs Majestic Motors in Kenilworth and helps keep the family’s cars on the road.
Sadly, in 2010, Keith passed away. “I could never part with Lottie, so she is back with me and I keep her going and in the exact condition that my dad left her in. She is far from concourse but is irreplaceable to me and my five-year-old son who is taking a keen interested in both Lottie and the VW Beetle which are both in the garage”, Martin recalls.
The Morris Minor has had several owners in its lifetime until eventually reaching the Worman family. First registered in 1956, in Dulwich, to a Lady Alison Cameroon who kept the vehicle until 1968, the Morris Minor was then sold to its second owner from South Norwood who kept the car a further seven years until 1975. The vehicle then made its way to Plymouth where it was owned by three different owners in three years. In 1979, it was sold to a lady in North Yorkshire who kept the vehicle for 23 years until 2002. From North Yorkshire, it was sold to an owner in Derby and eventually to Cheltenham.
Martin’s late father took on much of the restoration work himself. The main tasks included replacing all four doors, boot lid, the bonnet and two of the wings. Some of the chrome needed replacing, although, the black paintwork was in a good condition. Several lights were also fixed, and the original semaphores replaced. The car is still powered by the original 803cc overhead valve engine and remarkably despite the number of owners, all the interior is original. “The smell is magnificent! There are a couple of tears, so you do have to be careful when entering or exiting the car. I may restore this at some point in the future however I am trying to keep it “as is” for as long as possible”, Martin tells us.
Since the original restoration, Martin has overhauled the brake system. Other than this, Martin says that Lottie is a pleasure to own!
Keith did leave a legacy on the Morris Minor for Martin and his young son to enjoy. Martin says, “my Mum and Dad were active members in the Caravan Club & Sprite Owners clubs whose emblem badges are on the car. There is also a badge from the classic car club my dad help set. Unfortunately, they no longer meet so this badge is quite precious”.
So, with a great condition and much-loved car, Martin tries to get out for a drive as much as possible. “There is nothing better than finishing work (I often work in London) and coming home for a blast around the lanes in a classic car with no modern technology. Just going for a drive and enjoying the vehicle”, Martin tells us. CL: We couldn’t agree more!
For Martin, this car isn’t about trophies or awards. For him, it’s about memories and creating memorable days out with his mum, his wife and son who love going along to the shows. But it was still a pleasant surprise to win the Pride of Ownership award at the 2019 Knebworth Classic Motor Show!
The Worman family are looking forward to a great season ahead with Lottie the Morris Minor and the couples 1967 VW Beetle which was used on Martin’s wedding day. There are plans to attend this year shows at Knebworth Park, as well as the monthly meets at the Lordship Arms in Bennington which runs from April to September in the 3rd Tuesday of the month from 6pm.
Who will be the 2020 Pride of Ownership champion?
The Pride of Ownership awards will be taking place at selected Gemini Events classic motor this year. As the headline sponsor, ClassicLine Insurance are excited see who will be crowned the 2020 winners and to hear the fascinating stories behind the vehicles. The end of the 2020 show season will culminate in the Pride of Ownership showcase, with the overall winner as voted for by our followers and readers being award a year’s free insurance with ClassicLine Insurance.
For further details on Gemini Events 2020 classic motor shows, visit https://www.classicmotorshows.co.uk/.
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