I\’m now getting engrossed in research for my new, very different book, but thought I\’d post some of the pictures from the research for Speedwell, before moving on. These beauties were all photographed at Beaulieu Motor Museum – highly recommended for a visit. You get a ticket for two days, because there is so much to see.
For those of you who have read Speedwell, you will know that the inner workings of cars in the twenties are deeply involved in the plot twist that makes all the difference to Kate Phipps. She has a life-changing idea about cars, which is born of trying to help Douglas win some races on the Brooklands Racing Circuit.
I thought I\’d share some of the gems I discovered while researching all this mechanical history.
Early motorcars looked more like horse-drawn carriages, similar, but even older than the one Kate\’s customer drove in Chapter One of Speedwell.
Here\’s another Sunbeam but a very different one! Obviously a racing car, it gives a good idea of how quickly cars became streamlined, once their drivers had tasted the thrill of speed.
Two wheels can sometimes be more convenient than four. This is the Triumph motorbike that Kate salvaged in Peace Lily, until the Army caught her at it! But if they hadn\’t, The Katherine Wheel Garage might never have gone into business.