I love this place. Wynnes of Burbage, Leicestershire, is garage business based at two sites. One site is still busy, the other, also an old Murco filling station, is fenced off and seemingly awaiting the developers digger of doom. I don’t want to see more housing here, I want to see this old car dealership preserved. It’s a mausoleum of motor companies that failed to make it in the UK.

Lada left our shores in 1997. Proton went in 2016. You can still buy new Peroduas, apparently, but when did you last see one? I miss these marques. I miss that the Lada 1600 was a lovely old Fiat. I regret that Lada never sold their SUV here simply because Tarzan is the best car name ever. Proton did touring cars. Perodua did a thing called the Myvi which brings back memories of childhood lollies. And can you imagine sitting at that slightly grubby desk as a salesman?  Getting mainstream motorists to buy these cars new must have been a nigh-on impossible task. But I love them, and I guess you do too.

 

Viewed from the road (I am not encouraging trespass here) I can see a row of unloved stock around the back. There’s a brace of Perodua Kenaris, a three-pot little car that is “unfairly ridiculed” say the AA. There’s some LDV vans that look like suspiciously like the Sherpas vans the Post Office used to punish their drivers with. On the front the place is framed by Buddleia and Leylandii, the standard flora and fauna of the forgotten garage. How quickly nature starts to reclaim things. I am also drawn to the Murco ‘cats bum’ logo which, tradition dictates, must be ‘meowed’ at when passing. Filling stations like this are closing at an incredible rate. I’m on a bit of a mission to photograph the interesting ones before they’re all turned into cheek-by-jowl housing. There’s a Proton something saloon for sale and a phone number in the window, which I called. But no-one answered. I am not sure what I would have said. “I’m a grown man and have an inexplicable urge to buy all your old cars and live in your Lada showroom, please“. Maybe it’s good that they didn’t answer.

This place, and over a hundred more like it, feature in the Midlands and North of England edition of my new book, SUPER, which is available on Amazon here. Other regions of the UK are covered in other editions. Have a look on Amazon. Good luck to Wynnes. I appreciate you’re busy, chaps, and these are hard times – but I will buy that Samara if you get a mo’. And maybe even the whole damned place.

About The Author

Rich Duisberg

Rich's drivel regularly appears in Practical Performance Car and GT Porsche magazines. He has also written for Classic & Sportscar, MogMag, Classic Performance and Retro, Banzai, Evo, and Modern Mini. He also did a book no-one bought. His hungover fizzog also often appears on CBS’s Carfection channel enthusing about historic motoring. Le Mans winner Derek Bell once refused to get in Rich's Morgan Three Wheeler with him at the wheel. Currently amongst the detritus in his garage is a 1972 Fiat 500 Abarth, a fat BMW and a Lotus Elise. Previous machinery includes a Porsche 968, an Alfa GTV V6 and a dreadful Sinclair C5. He also owns a vintage Royal Enfield pushbike.

2 Responses

  1. Paul

    Rich, you old dog! Still draming of Ruskie rubbish? No mention of the Niva – best thing they ever made. want one of those…..

    Reply
  2. Rich Duisberg
    Rich Duisberg

    I’d bloody love a Niva. I think some chap in Yorkshire still imports the pickup version.

    Reply

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