Registration number 365 HFJ
Chassis number 99732
Engine number 92445
MOT expires September 2021 (although exempt)
Black over grey with a leather interior
Walnut dash and door cappings
With some old MOT’s and a few bills
From the owner:
My Daimler Majestic 3.8 Saloon. Model DF318 3794cc. First registered 01/09/1961 Black and grey.
Straight six cylinder. Dunlop disc brakes and Borg-Warner automatic transmission. Possibly also power assisted steering as it’s very light. Original registration number 781 CXU Changed to 365 HFJ in about 1964. Vehicle identification number: 99732. Engine number: 92445 Historic Vehicle
The car’s history:
My father bought it second hand in 1964 or 1965 (and, rather eccentrically, swapped the original registration number with that of his Morris 1000 Traveller). The car, first delivered on 1st September 1961, had originally been supplied by Hughes of Beaconsfield to a London businessman living in the town, who had bought it at his wife’s request. But she had then died so he sold the car with only 6,000 miles on the clock. Shortly after my father bought it he had to put in a new speedometer so the present reading of 60,558 miles is about 6,000 miles too low.
I remember him driving me back to boarding school along the old A4 when I was about 17, and the car running more and more slowly until it finally stopped near Silbury Hill. Father had forgotten to top up the oil, but no important damage appeared to have been done. When I learned to drive in the late 1960s, he would very occasionally let me use it and I remember trying to impress various girlfriends with varying degrees of success. I went to my wedding in it, Labrador in the back, and it was in attendance at my parents’ funerals and our children’s christenings.
Between November 1980 and April 1981 I left the car with Fred Seaward of Buckland Newton Garage, Buckland Newton, Dorset. Fred thoroughly checked and repaired or renewed a number of mechanical and electrical parts, repaired or rebuilt some bodywork and doors, and welded front splash panels, sill plates, etc. He re-sprayed the car with four litres of black and five litres of silver paint.
In July 1995, on the 50th anniversary of Labour’s 1945 election victory, Downing Street gave me permission to drive to Chequers, the prime minister’s country residence, and have an evening picnic in the grounds. Our party consisted of my wife’s mother – Clement Attlee’s daughter – my wife (Clem’s granddaughter) our two young sons and me. We drove in the Daimler. I was asked to send our and the car’s details ahead, but for Granny the trip was a surprise. When we arrived at security at the Chequers entrance gates, one of the police officers asked, “Can you tell me why in 1964 your father changed this car’s registration number?” I couldn’t, but Chequers’ security background- checking was impressive. As we were finishing our picnic, a minion appeared and asked if, we’d like to go up to the house for a drink with Mrs Major (John Major’s wife Norma). We did .She was charming, and delighted to show our two boys, among other things, the secret door in the library and Cromwell’s death mask.
In July 2004 I had a (gentle) collision with a Land Rover in a lane near where we live. The damage required the removal and replacement (with second-hand parts) of the radiator grill surround and flutes, front bumper, o/s front over-rider and o/s headlamp and bowl and rim and fixings. The necessary work was completed and second-hand parts supplied by John Nash of the Daimler Enthusiasts Club, Christchurch, Dorset. (T: 01202 481251).
John Nash added “I see you didn’t mention all the major welding repairs I did to front body supports on front chassis outriggers, to the inner sills & door pillars etc and rear chassis outrigger to boot floor. I remember that job as it was very bad that the doors had dropped so much that they would not shut properly. Maybe we should not mention that but most of these suffer the same it but at least its all been done.” I don’t remember all this but I have Fred Seaward’s and John Nash’s bills.
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