Even though Bill has been on the Morgan scene for nearly 30 years now, his name doesn't pop up everywhere, as is the case with other Morgan people. That doesn't mean he is less enthusiastic or knows less than others, rather the contrary! He is now restoring his current Morgan to the minutest detail, as if a Morgan were a precious watch. He has gathered a mount of knowledge over the years. Let Bill tell his own story:
My Morgan history began in 1982 when I collected a 1981 Morgan 4/4 ( TNX190W ) from Packer Duncan's for a family friend when I was just 18. I got to drive the car regularly, including trips to Prescott, Shelsley Walsh and Wiscombe hillclimbs, and racing circuits to see other Morgans in competition. During University, I was a frequent attendee of TaffMog meetings although at that time without a car of my own.
I bought ATT 330 Y (a 1982 Morgan 4/4 2str) as a burnt out wreck from Melvyn Rutter in 1985, which took 4 years to rebuild with help from the Morgan Motor Company. It was a lucky choice, as, with the exception of the ignition amplifier module, everything else is just simple technology, repairable at home, as per the older models.
Upon completion the car endured a Land's End to John O'Groats (from the southern most point of England, to the northern most point of Scotland, for the uninititated) camping trip without windscreen or weather equipment, just aeroscreens and a tonneau, due to lack of funds. I remember having to pull in to Carlisle services to buy dustbin bags to put over my torso and arms to keep dry as it rained all the way south, all my clothing being wet by then and the wind chill was taking effect.
I also took part in some production car trials, my personal high point being only the second vehicle to the top of a particularly difficult stage, being told by the marshal that only Charles Morgan had so far cleared the hill, but, let's be honest, it was probably drying out and getting easier...
Once I had the money for new bonnets, a windscreen and weather equipment, decided to do the LE-JOG (Land's End to John O'Groats) again to celebrate, but still camping.
Bill Hughes' Experiences
I purchased EKE 267 (a 1937 4/4 2-seater) through eBay in 2001 as a barn-fresh restoration project. I have now dedicated 10 years to parts purchasing and research into the original specification of 4/4s from 1936 to 1939. An early meeting with Peter Carter (the owner of a 99.5% original 1938 4/4 Le Mans Special) showed me how wonderfully well built and detailed they were when original, which has given me a target to aim for.
Researching 1930s automotive catalogues, roadtests, gathering contemporary photos of original vehicles, and travelling countrywide to see other similar vehicles has been fruitful. Patent information regarding the component parts of the vehicle has proven an invaluable source of data. I can now call upon thousands of photographs (both contemporary to the vehicle and modern) when doing my studies.
What I would like to see in future is originality information available either in book or website form for others to use and refer to.