Clas­sic fans rally to help vic­tim of fire that wrecked wed­ding car fleet and de­stroyed fam­ily home

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - News -

A wed­ding car busi­ness owner whose fleet of cars was de­stroyed in a fire has been left over­whelmed by the gen­eros­ity of CCW read­ers of­fer­ing sup­port.

Melvin Dolby had his en­tire col­lec­tion of wed­ding cars wiped out af­ter a fire broke out at his home in Cam­bridgeshire on 8 Fe­bru­ary. Hav­ing lost 12 cars in the fire, in­clud­ing a 1937 Stude­baker Pres­i­dent and sev­eral Rolls-Royces and Bent­leys worth a to­tal of close to £500,000, Melvin was look­ing to get his busi­ness back on its feet, but strug­gled to find good wed­ding cars.

But af­ter an ap­peal was put out to CCW and clas­s­ic­cars­for­ read­ers, Melvin has been in­un­dated with re­sponses, and has even re­ceived a cheque for £100.

Melvin says: ‘I’m over­whelmed by the gen­eros­ity of ev­ery­one – it’s been un­be­liev­able how many peo­ple want to help me get back on my feet. I’ve fi­nally man­aged to buy some­thing – a 1929 Pierce Ar­row. That’s re­ally go­ing to set me apart from the com­ple­tion.

‘I even had a gen­tle­man phone me up from Ire­land and of­fer me his Stude­baker Dic­ta­tor. He didn’t want to get rid of it, but af­ter he’d seen the state of mine from pic­tures in CCW he of­fered to sell me his, which is in­cred­i­bly kind. I’m still on the look out for Bent­leys though!’

Thanks to the ap­peal, Melvin has also been of­fered a fully re­stored 1937 Ford Se­ries 78 Flat­head, three mid-1980s Daim­ler DS420s, one Austin Sheer­line, and one Wolse­ley 25 limou­sine.

Roger Hor­nett has of­fered Melvin a 1984 Mercedes-Benz 123 Limou­sine with an in­ter­est­ing his­tory. He says: ‘It’s thought to be the Lon­don car of the Sul­tan of Oman and has cov­ered just 62,000 miles in its 32 year his­tory. I orig­i­nally bought it to ferry around the equine glit­terati where my restau­rant is based, in New­mar­ket, but it turns out there’s no real need for it! So it’s got to go. It drives beau­ti­fully and I think Melvin would like it.’

Melvin Dolby next to his beloved Stude­baker Pres­i­dent. Since the fire, he has been of­fered a Stude­baker Dic­ta­tor by a reader in Ire­land.

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