The Wallis's ~ The Complete Story
camping holidays, during the winter it was laid up and Stan asked me to get it running and ready for the road as a holiday to Spain was coming up
During the coming summer I enjoyed the chance of the work and earn some pocket money and soon found the Ford V-8 engine really easy and straight forward to work on. Once a fully charged battery had been installed the ignition points & plugs cleaned up and electric leads wiped dry. Half a gallon of petrol in the tank and the engine bust into life on the first try! Stan had collected a number of suitable tyres for the bus and from them I took 6 good and a couple of spares. I changed the tyres to ensure we had the best for the holiday. Stan was prepared for me to earn my place on the coming holiday.
I soon learnt this Annual holiday was organised by two brothers Joe and Andrew Matthew’s they had recently qualified as doctors who lived in Berkhamsted they had a sister Sunny and the family had known Stan since childhood. Stan had this crew bus and
As soon as the war ended holidays to Europe were suggested and were very popular.
The doctors had many other friends some doctors and nurses usually connected to their profession all who were keen to use Stan’s crew bus for a camping holiday. A holiday to Spain was the plan. The plan was to take about 14 who would all share the costs of the travel. Stan was only invited not only because he owned the Bus but also was the engineer needed to look after any mechanical problems. I asked if it might be possible for me to attend too and Stan saw to it that I joined the group if only to ease his work. Stan and I came to an agreement that I would work at the garage to earn my share of the costs.
Stan’s Crew Bus had been fitted with a number of large petrol tanks underneath in addition to the normal operating running tanks. This was 1950/51 and fuel rationing was still in operation over the U.K. yet there was little or no restriction in Europe so while on our holiday it was only sensible to fill up all the tanks before we returned and so supplement his ration.
Stan gave me a job to install an old car bench seat over the cab roof with seat belts for two passengers to sit out in the sun with a really wonderful view of the route as we grove along. This seat was in high demand in the hot sun driving through France and usually had three occupants squeezing in the tight space. The two Mathew’s brought their own small Ford convertibles on these trips and they always had their share of girls driving with them. So with three sitting in the Bus driving seat there were only a couple
Places required in the bus passenger area. Only two bench seats were fitted the rest of the floor was loaded up with sleeping bags and camping equipment. At the start of the holiday all this equipment was loaded reasonably neatly but soon got thrown all over the place sometimes with the bumpy roads but more often those on the holiday did not bother to keep things tidied up. On my first holiday with the group there was a very wealthy girl, I believe her father was a director with Canadian Pacific and she had met the Mathew brothers in the hospital where they worked. She had brought a beautiful set of six suit cases, all matching and all of the highest quality they were packed with clothes quite unsuitable to a camping holiday, Such clothes were more for a high class “Cruise”.
Within the first week most of the cases had been fattened or damaged in some
Copyright 2001-2006 by BIGenealogy.com. All rights reserved.