STAR CARS FROM TV DRAMAS UP FOR SALE
Downton Abbey and Poirot cars among wedding firm’s classic offerings
Cars that starred in top TV dramas Downton Abbey and Poirot are being included in a wedding car firm’s sale of more than 20 pre-war classics.
Proprietor of Somerset-based Vintage Wheels, Gerry Wheeler, has decided to sell the business and his classic fleet at the age of 85.
Among them is the 1924 Cadillac V-63 Sedan, which has appeared in Downton Abbey.
A 1935 Daimler DE 27 limousine once believed to have been the personal transport of exiled ex-King Edward VII and Wallis Simpson, but best-known as the car used by Hercule Poirot (David Suchet) in several episodes of the TV series
Poirot is also part of the deal. Other cars listed in the sale include a 1915 Reo, 1916 La France, 1917 Hudson, 1928 Packard, 1928 Lincoln, 1930 Sunbeam, 1931 Cadillac, 1934 Pierce Arrow and a 1936 Rolls-Royce Wraith.
Gerry says that marital pressure persuaded him to start the business in 1989. He explains: ‘I had been racing motorbikes for many years and my wife said that I was getting too old for that. I didn’t know what she was talking about. I was only in my 50s!’
Gerry’s cars have appeared at some 3000 weddings. He says: ‘I have had a great deal of fun restoring these cars and putting them to use as they should be.
‘ When you reach my age you could fall off your perch fairly quickly and I’d like to sort out the sale of these cars myself rather than lumber my family with this difficult task.’
Managing Director of Hilton Smythe, the agents appointed for the sale, Gareth Smyth says: ‘It’s a very rare sale and for a new owner it brings a ready-made business.’
The business, which generates a £76,700 annual turnover and a gross profit of around 54 per cent, is currently on the market for £679,500 plus Stock at Valuation. Gerry says he may consider selling part of the collection, but buyers would have to sign an undertaking agreeing to honour any bookings already made for 2017. Nick Larkin