Perils of those new-fangled motor machines

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ONE of Rouser’s rural mates, Sussex Jim, recalls a tale told by his grandfather in his later years.

It seems that Grandad, (also named Jim) visited a friend who was working in a village garage as a mechanic in about 1910. After a bit of banter, the mechanic said he had to take a customer’s car out on a short test run, and invited Jim to come too.

Shortly after they took off, Jim was invited to try his hand at driving (no nonsense about provisional licences in those days!) and they drove down a hill, gathering speed towards a crossroads near Hailsham which today is a major trunk road.

Jim said: ‘How do we stop?’ The mechanic replied: ‘Don’t worry, just go straight across. There won’t be anything else about.’

But coming along the main road at speed was a Rolls-Royce and - crash.

The impact caused their car to spin round three times- but fortunately no one was badly hurt.

The owner of the Rolls knew the village garage owner, and so the matter was settled amicably between gentlemen. But Sussex Jim still wonders if the mechanic kept his job?

It seems that Grandad, (also named Jim) visited a friend who was working in a village garage as a mechanic in about 1910. After a bit of banter, the mechanic said he had to take a customer’s car out on a short test run, and invited Jim to come too.

Shortly after they took off, Jim was invited to try his hand at driving (no nonsense about provisional licences in those days!) and they drove down a hill, gathering speed towards a crossroads near Hailsham which today is a major trunk road.

Jim said: ‘How do we stop?’ The mechanic replied: ‘Don’t worry, just go straight across. There won’t be anything else about.’

But coming along the main road at speed was a Rolls-Royce and - crash.

The impact caused their car to spin round three times- but fortunately no one was badly hurt.

The owner of the Rolls knew the village garage owner, and so the matter was settled amicably between gentlemen. But Sussex Jim still wonders if the mechanic kept his job?