Jump to content


Photo

Research into the History of Batten's Special


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 Biggles

Biggles
  • New Member

  • 28 posts
  • Joined: January 09

Posted 11 February 2014 - 20:51

Gentlemen,

 

I seek your assistance in refining the history of old "Boz", Batten's Special, which came into my care forty years ago come 21st July - thanks to Dan Margulies and my bank manager.

After his ("Boz" is definately male) pre-war competition successes at Brooklands, Donington Park, Lewes, etc., and before he was entrusted to Dan, he passed through four owners who had fun with him, but only the first two in any real competition sense. The first was Ted Reynolds, a Ford agent in Barnsley in Yorkshire, and the second was John Netherwood of Huddersfield. Sadly, they are no longer with us. My search is for any information about those two racers, particularly the teams in which each played a part.

Firstly, it is said that Ted Reynolds and Batten's Special formed part of a racing team with Tony Brooks and Jack Wharton, around South Yorkshire in the late 1940s and early 1950s. It is also said that they team raced at Croft aerodrome with Tony Brooks possibly in a Healey.

Secondly, there is photographic evidence of John Netherwood competing in Batten's Special, in the mid 1950s, at Brunton hill climb as part of a team trio led by Edgar Wadsworth in a Healey Elliott. There is also a photograph of John on the front row of a grid at Mallory.

I have been unable to trace these men at these events. If anyone here has a memory of such events or access to programmes, race reports, results or photographs, I would greatly appreciate hearing from them so that I may better describe the history of the racing Batten Special in a slim volume which will be self published.

Neil.

 

p.s. some of you may have seen this on another forum, in which case please forgive the repetition. npb.



Advertisement

#2 D-Type

D-Type
  • Member

  • 8,993 posts
  • Joined: February 03

Posted 11 February 2014 - 21:36

The autobiography of Tony Brooks, Poetry in Motion  was published recently.  He did race a Healey Silverstone, but there is no mention of Ted Reynolds or Jack Wharton.  As the greater part of the book covers his international career this doesn't necessarily mean it didn't happen.

 

You may be able to contact him via the publisher, Motor Racing Press or via the BRDC.



#3 raceannouncer2003

raceannouncer2003
  • Member

  • 2,673 posts
  • Joined: March 05

Posted 12 February 2014 - 01:38

The following results show Jack Walton (Frazer Nash) and Edgar Wadsworth (Healey Saloon) competing at Croft in 1951:

 

http://www.racingspo...09-08-8002.html

 

Would Jack Walton be the correct name for the Jack Wharton you are trying to trace?

 

Also, the following shows "W. Netherwood" in the Batten Mercury at Silverstone in 1956.

 

http://www.racingspo...herwood-GB.html

 

Would W. Netherwood and John Netherwood be one and the same?

 

Vince H.



#4 Stephen W

Stephen W
  • Member

  • 13,510 posts
  • Joined: December 04

Posted 12 February 2014 - 13:19

Just tried to post an image of a scan from Autosport and for some reason I am not getting to load the image.

 

It is from the 25th June 1957 issue and shows a short report plus the results from a hillclimb event at Catterick on the 9th June organised by Darlington & District Motor club. W.J. Netherwood won the Over 3000cc Sports Car class in the Batten Special. There is no mention of the car/driver in the short report plus there are no times given.


Edited by Stephen W, 12 February 2014 - 13:20.


#5 bradbury west

bradbury west
  • Member

  • 5,585 posts
  • Joined: June 02

Posted 12 February 2014 - 14:51

Steve, is the Jack Walton the same one whom I recall, possibly, with some V8 engined spl at Harewood in the early 1960s?. 

Roger Lund



#6 Biggles

Biggles
  • New Member

  • 28 posts
  • Joined: January 09

Posted 12 February 2014 - 16:21

Many thanks for your replies chaps.

I hhve written to MRP and will write to BRDC chasing Tony Brooks info.

It seems likely that I misheard Mrs Reynolds all those years ago when she told me of her late husband's connection with the car. So Jack Walton is almost certainly the man, particularly since he is in the company of Edgar Wadsworth at Croft in 1951.

W. J. Netherwood was John's full name, so yes, that is him at Silverstone on 11th August 1956, not at Mallory as I had thought:

 

Silverstone11Aug1956_zps980e765d.jpg

 

Silverstone11Aug1956entry_zpsbd6963b9.jp



#7 bradbury west

bradbury west
  • Member

  • 5,585 posts
  • Joined: June 02

Posted 12 February 2014 - 18:43

It may be useful to contact the Yorkshire Sports Car Club, along with the links on the Harewood hillclimb site. Perhaps someone there can throw light on it all. A1970 programme for Harewood shows Walton in a 3.8 Jaguar slated as from Bingley, which was quite local to Edgar Wadsworth country, and not too far from Brooks' area. At that time there were several US V8 powered spls around the north. Edgar chapman with his Chapman Mercury as well as Mervyn Bartrum and someone with a Cadillac eng. machine, plus IIRC Ted Fargus at one stage, memory test here, could be another CRAFT moment....
The historians etc at Oulton Park may also have access to long memories. Also try the Croft website for the same reasons, long straws, I grant you, but that is the nature of the beast. Best of luck
Roger Lund
Btw our own TNFer sharman is likely to be useful for that era and area as he was part of the racing sets then and there. He is away on holiday at present, I believe, but poss a pm might help on his return.

Edited by bradbury west, 29 November 2018 - 10:40.


#8 Biggles

Biggles
  • New Member

  • 28 posts
  • Joined: January 09

Posted 10 March 2014 - 14:55

Darlington and District Motor Club has turned up programmes from May and September 1950 at Croft, listing Ted Reynolds in the Batten Special along with Ian Appleyard and Phil Scragg in Jaguars and Phil Chapman in his first special, Chapman Mercury One. Also shown are Wadsworth and Walton.

Interesting to see that the Batten had an enlarged Mercury engine of 4.3 litres in the May meeting, but the standard 3.9 litre Mercury in the September meeting. At this time the car should still have had the two piece bronze heads and eight Amals that Jim Batten fitted before the war, but I haven't been able to confirm that.

A few more pieces in the jigsaw.

 

There has been no reply yet from MRP or BRDC concerning Tony Brooks.

 

Enquiry has been made of MotorSport Vision concerning Netherwood enties at Oulton Park.


Edited by Biggles, 10 March 2014 - 21:30.


#9 Sharman

Sharman
  • Member

  • 5,284 posts
  • Joined: September 05

Posted 12 March 2014 - 07:23

o

It may be useful to contact the Yorkshire Sports Car Club, along with the links on the hardwood hillclimb site. Perhaps someone there can throw light on it all. A1970 programme for Harewood shows Walton in a 3.8 Jaguar slated as from Bingley, which was quite local to Edgar Wadsworth country, and not too far from Brooks' area. At that time there were several US V8 powered spls around the north. Edgar chapman with his Chapman Mercury as well as Mervyn Bartrum and someone with a Cadillac eng. machine, plus IIRC Ted Fargus at one stage, memory test here, could be another CRAFT moment....
The historians etc at Oulton Park may also have access to long memories. Also try the Croft website for the same reasons, long straws, I grant you, but that is the nature of the beast. Best of luck
Roger Lund
Btw our own TNFer sharman is likely to be useful for that ear and area as he was part of the racing sets then and there. He is away on holiday at present, I believe, but poss a pm might help on his return.

I was away and missed this thread, that hill climb at Catterick I competed in, in a 750 special belonging to a fellow Signalman , John Something or other, 57 years ago I'm afraid. Frank Harrison had the FHN Special there and gave us help and encouragement but found our lack of speed amusing. He said he could go faster on his bicycle and told us to bring the car to his garage the following week but I was posted and never knew if his offer was taken up..

With regard to the people around, John Mitchell from Huddersfield raced an Ace-Bristol extensively, Edgar Wadsworth probably had his Denzel at that time. It is just a bit early I think for Barrie W but Lanfers was around and maybe his brother Peter might remember more.


Edited by Sharman, 12 March 2014 - 07:24.


#10 bradbury west

bradbury west
  • Member

  • 5,585 posts
  • Joined: June 02

Posted 13 March 2014 - 09:17

Crikey, John, John Mitchell from Honley and Jonspeed. Takes you back.... his E type vs  that of Brian Waddilove.

I was wondering whether Ted Worswick might be able to cast any light, but poss a bit early for the likes of Brian Classic. I suspect there must be someone in BRSCC (NW) who could help, and I still reckon the old motor clubs are  worth a try.

TNF's delboy59, Derek Lawson, seemed to know everyone and their grandmother when it came to sourcing photos for his 2 Oulton books, so there may be  links via him with a pm of via the TNF North West members' thread. Just a long shot might be Derek Walker from Cheshire who has raced  for 50plus years, often with the same Terrier mk4.

 

I had a very pertinent reply about one of my  researchees from 1961, ( background and non-racing stuff, about an entrant, so important for my project) via a letter to one of the Manchester newspapers, so always worth a punt. I have found the local evening papers are more widely read by those who might know.

That's what research is all about. Similarly, it worked for me with tracing a chap in Lancaster in period, early 60s.

 

Roger Lund



#11 Sharman

Sharman
  • Member

  • 5,284 posts
  • Joined: September 05

Posted 13 March 2014 - 09:47

Crikey, John, John Mitchell from Honley and Jonspeed. Takes you back.... his E type vs  that of Brian Waddilove.

I was wondering whether Ted Worswick might be able to cast any light, but poss a bit early for the likes of Brian Classic. I suspect there must be someone in BRSCC (NW) who could help, and I still reckon the old motor clubs are  worth a try.

TNF's delboy59, Derek Lawson, seemed to know everyone and their grandmother when it came to sourcing photos for his 2 Oulton books, so there may be  links via him with a pm of via the TNF North West members' thread. Just a long shot might be Derek Walker from Cheshire who has raced  for 50plus years, often with the same Terrier mk4.

 

I had a very pertinent reply about one of my  researchees from 1961, ( background and non-racing stuff, about an entrant, so important for my project) via a letter to one of the Manchester newspapers, so always worth a punt. I have found the local evening papers are more widely read by those who might know.

That's what research is all about. Similarly, it worked for me with tracing a chap in Lancaster in period, early 60s.

 

Roger Lund

Is Peter Kaye still with us? His son James raced in BTCC, (of which I am happily ignorant) and may be able to provide a contact.


Edited by Sharman, 13 March 2014 - 09:48.


#12 Biggles

Biggles
  • New Member

  • 28 posts
  • Joined: January 09

Posted 13 March 2014 - 22:52

I'm grateful for your continued interest in this topic.

 

The YSCC has been contacted and enquiry will be made of the BARC chaps at Harewood.

 

Coincidentlally, I had been invited to the Allard Owners' Club annual "do" this weekend, but am unable to attend so Barrie W is standing in for me, as it were (wink). A request for BW to exercise his memory has been sent since he was pally with John Netherwood and will remember the Batten (although I never heard him say a good word about it!)..



#13 Biggles

Biggles
  • New Member

  • 28 posts
  • Joined: January 09

Posted 28 November 2018 - 23:30

After many years of research, many dead ends, and many delightful surprises, the work has come to fruition in the form of a slim volume of 120-odd pages in A5 hardback format, in full colour, which has been self-published.

I hope this doesn't cross boundaries, but here it is:

http://www.battenspecial.com



#14 PCC

PCC
  • Member

  • 791 posts
  • Joined: August 06

Posted 29 November 2018 - 00:29

After many years of research, many dead ends, and many delightful surprises, the work has come to fruition in the form of a slim volume of 120-odd pages in A5 hardback format, in full colour, which has been self-published.

I hope this doesn't cross boundaries, but here it is:

http://www.battenspecial.com

Congratulations!



#15 FrankB

FrankB
  • Member

  • 2,792 posts
  • Joined: December 01

Posted 29 November 2018 - 03:30

I recall following this thread with interest when it started in 2014 and will be ordering a copy, even though I'm pretty certain that there is no close family connection.

FrankB...atten

#16 Steve L

Steve L
  • Member

  • 341 posts
  • Joined: October 02

Posted 29 November 2018 - 15:12

Looks great and will be ordering a copy at some point. It is a bummer to have so many hobbies yet so little money!

#17 Rupertlt1

Rupertlt1
  • Member

  • 1,106 posts
  • Joined: October 10

Posted 29 November 2018 - 15:19

For more Batten go here:

 

https://forums.autos...-2#entry6577593

 

RGDS RLT



#18 Biggles

Biggles
  • New Member

  • 28 posts
  • Joined: January 09

Posted 01 December 2018 - 22:42

I recall following this thread with interest when it started in 2014 and will be ordering a copy, even though I'm pretty certain that there is no close family connection.
FrankB...atten

Thank you Frank. It will be with you on Tuesday, to be signed for.

I hope you derive as much pleasure from reading it as I have have in compiling it.

Neil Bennett.



#19 FrankB

FrankB
  • Member

  • 2,792 posts
  • Joined: December 01

Posted 04 December 2018 - 21:23

The book arrived safely today, thank you.