Veteran car with local connection still on the road

The Reepham Life 2018 Calendar for February shows recovering wounded soldiers from the First World War outside Reepham Town Hall, then known as Hackford Parish Hall.

Although we cannot identify any of the soldiers, we have found out some interesting information about the car in the foreground, AH222.

Due to the persistence of Reepham Archive volunteer Ann Middlemas we know that this car is still in existence and is well looked after.

It has competed in the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run on at least 50 occasions since 1936, the most recent run being in 2017.

This race was first organised in 1896 to celebrate the Red Flag Repeal. In that year the speed limit was increased from 4 mph on open roads and from 2 mph in towns to 14 mph.

To qualify for entry in the modern run, cars need to be have been built no later than 1905. On the calendar photograph you can see the pannier baskets, still in evidence in the modern picture.

AH222 is a Peugeot Type 49 which left the Peugeot works in 1902. The current owner tells us that it still has its original engine, wooden chassis and body – amazing for a car of its age. It was capable of speeds up to 25 mph.

There is a tenuous reference to it being registered to a Norwich doctor around 1904 and, although there is no evidence, we would like to think that AH222 belonged to Dr Perry, the local doctor who lived at Eynesford House on Dereham Road and was the leading medical officer for Reepham’s Red Cross Hospital during the First World War.

Janet Archer

  • The Reepham Archive is open to the public on the first Wednesday and Saturday of the month from 10 am – 12 noon (or by appointment), upstairs in the Bircham Centre, Market Place, Reepham. Send an EMAIL
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