August 23, 2022: Dorking, England. We were just leaving Dorking when we met Julie, the Minor, as she was leaving for France. And fine old gal she was!
“Oh look! A half-timbered car in a half-timbered town.“
― Edna Everage
Morris Minor 1000
The Morris Minor 1000 was the first car to break 1,000,000 in sales in Britain after WWII. Known as the “small car that lives big”, it was inexpensive, handsome, rugged, and handled very well. It was not fast, but given Britain’s roads at the time, that really wasn’t an issue!
Julie the Minor
As we departed Dorking, a final treat sitting behind the historic White Horse Hotel.
There was a beautiful, fully restored 1953 Morris 1000 Traveler parked next to us in the lot behind White Horse Hotel. The car gleamed black, with shiny wood paneling. This car was obviously loved. James, the owner, was nearby and we complimented his fine car.
James had started restoration of the car nearly 40 years ago, and found himself £10,000 short. He was a landscaper, and this much money was hard to come by. Then a long-time friend and client passed, and bequeathed him exactly £10,000. He named the car Julie, in her honor, and has driven it for over 30 years.
Today the car was enroute to France, as a gift to James’s young niece, her first car. We laughed about how it was a dual gift – both of transportation and (as it is an old car and so in constant need to maintenance) of experience. James found clear joy in telling Julie’s story one last time.