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C E C Martin


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#1 O Volante

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Posted 30 November 2002 - 16:06

In the last weeks I read with a lot of interest the various new and old threads at TNF on death dates, war/military service and war-related deathes of racing drivers. In that regard I have posted requests on details about Luis Fontes and David Purley.

Here's another: When Charlie Martin died a few years ago, C&SC mentioned in its very short obituary that he served in WWII as a commander of a patrol boat in the Channel. I also seem to remember he was the son of a general ... (an info from the biography of his friend Dick Shuttleworth, I think!) Who knows about his family background, the full name, the date and place of birth, and about his war service? Please help! Many thanks in advance!

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#2 Steve L

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Posted 30 November 2002 - 17:52

There is a great 7 page article on Charlie Martin in the August 1980 edition of "Motor Sport" magazine, where he is interviewed by Bill Boddy.

The following information is from this article: -

*Family were from Abergavenney in Wales.
*Family business was steel production.
*Educated at Eton school.
*Spent the war years in the North Sea and The Channel.

Hope this helps.

#3 Steve L

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Posted 30 November 2002 - 18:30

I have just found Charlie Martin's Obituary in the Brooklands Gazette Vol 23 No 1 1998. Here are some extracts.

"Charles Edward Capel Martin was born in 1913 into a Monmouthshire steel family.

By the time Eton beckoned, Charles was learning how to handle Royal Enfield, BSA and AJS machines, graduating into motor cars via a GN and a Brescia Bugatti. Whilst an apprentice at Longbridge, Charles purchased a blown Ulster Austin in which he made his compettion debut in 1932 on Southport Sands."

Many cars and drives followed, including Alfa, Aston Martin, Bugatti, and ERA.

"Charles always acknowledged he was boat-mad...firstly for pleasure and later in 1940 in the RNVR. In 1941 Charles moved from his home in Shere to the base at Felixstowe where the MGB flotilla were moored. The following year saw Lt C Martin operating from Dartmouth in command of MGB 318, ferrying agents, weapons and stores to the north and west coasts of France for SOE. For this he receieved a DSC. To this was added the US Legion of Merit for services off Omaha Beach during the D-Day landings."

#4 O Volante

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Posted 30 November 2002 - 18:48

My, oh my ...
I just wanted to finish work on the computer, but not without a short look on my latest request ... and now that!
Again, the wonders of TNF: Many, many thanks, Steve! :clap: :clap:

#5 Doug Nye

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Posted 30 November 2002 - 20:02

Originally posted by Steve L
The following year saw Lt C Martin operating from Dartmouth in command of MGB 318, ferrying agents, weapons and stores to the north and west coasts of France for SOE. For this he receieved a DSC...


There's another link with motor sport since Martin's 'MGB 318' was one of the Fairmile C-Type craft built under the direction of Noel Macklin, father of prominent postwar driver Lance Macklin, and former constructor of Silver Hawk, Invicta and Railton cars. His Fairmile Engineering company was housed behind his house 'The Cottage' at Fairmile, Cobham in Surrey, beside the old A3 main London-Portsmouth road. I think it's The Fairmile Hotel today.

When it became obvious that war was imminent Noel Macklin had browbeaten the Admiralty into backing his establishment of what eventually developed into a vast out-working/sub-contracting mass-production programme to manufacture coastal anti-submarine and patrol/torpedo boats. He kicked-off the whole thing as the Fairmile Marine Company - his Fairmile-designed craft peaked in the wonderful D-Type (nice resonance there), while 'MGB 318' was one of 24 C-Types - 110ft o/a, beam 17ft 6ins, and she would have displaced over 70 tons. Unlike Martin's ERA she had 2,700hp on tap from three Hall-Scott Defender supercharged petrol engines. The C-Types weren't particularly fast - 26 knots on paper, probably only 22 in service - which was pathetic compared to the German S-boats - the famous 'E-boats' - at some 20kts more... Crew comprised two officers, and 14 men, and the sting included two 2pdr quick-firing guns, evenually two 20mm Oerlikon cannon, a couple of .303 Vickers machine guns and four A/S depth charges.

The C-Types also carried a typically Brit daffy-duck weapon called a Holman projector, which was a compressed-air-actuated 4ft 6in tall tube from which a Mills bomb hand-grenade could be tossed 600 feet into the air into the path of an attacking aircraft (!). I know this is OTP but since I enjoy digressions the Holman projector was very popular for inter-flotilla battles when it was used to fire good hard spuds in particular. On one rare occasion when the projectors were used in anger during a night air-raid on Yarmouth the projectiles' only success was in cutting off the power supply to a wide area - they brought down the overhead electricity cables...

'318' survived hostilities, having been the only C-Type in a D-Type ('Dogboat') flotilla, dedicated to clandestine operations, agent dropping and collection, mainly on the Britanny peninsula, for which Martin won his DSC and at least two of his crew were also decorated. The boat was listed 'For Disposal' as late as October 1945.

Pre-war Le Mans Aston Martin driver Robert 'Hich' Hichens became the great Coastal Forces hero - much decorated before being killed in action - while Peter Garnier (to become 1960s Sports Editor of 'The Autocar' and also Secretary of the Grand Prix Drivers' Association) was another serving officer, and post-'Autocar' he became Secretary of the Coastal Forces Association.

DCN

#6 Bjorn Kjer

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 13:18

:wave: Would this Martin here be of Byfleet Motors Ltd.?

#7 Vitesse2

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 13:31

Same chap, Bjørn.

He was also a director of MG specialists Cresta:

http://forums.autosp...&threadid=88638

#8 Bjorn Kjer

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 13:57

Thanks Vitesse2 ! Found a story on him at "historicracing.com" ! Looking at your threads ,found the Scuderia Torino....and has a picture of Armand Hugs small truck , so the hunt is on here too !

#9 Vitesse2

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 14:16

Originally posted by Bjørn Kjer
....and has a picture of Armand Hugs small truck , so the hunt is on here too !

Pictured from the back at Cork in 1938 in Venables' Racing 1500s and described as a "dilapidated Fiat lorry". Registered VD 2214, with framed fabric top and "CH" painted freehand on the rear boards, which appear to have been cut down in the centre to accommodate the car, which must have been slightly too long!

#10 Bjorn Kjer

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 14:30

Have you been looking over my shoulder ? Then please tell me where to find more of this kind of pictures (paddocks) !

#11 Vitesse2

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Posted 12 May 2012 - 12:05

According to the WB interview referenced above, Charlie Martin lived in Shere, near Guildford, in the late 1930s. Anyone know exactly where?

#12 Bjorn Kjer

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 17:09

Can anyone tell me something about his connection to Byfleet Motors and how ?