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Barn Find 2024

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Andrew Watson – 1949 Standard Vanguard

Andrew Watson – 1949 Standard Vanguard

These solid and practical family cars made their debut in 1947, and the Phase 1 model that we have here remained in production until 1953. Power came from a 2088c engine paired with a 3-speed gearbox.

Andrew’s lovely example has a fascinating family history, once belonging to his great grandfather who was a military officer. Bought from a local firm and having once been a taxi, it remained in his ownership until he finished driving in 1979.

“It already had head gasket trouble and having been unused for a year it ended up in my grandfather’s workshop. Repair work was started but was never completed and it has been in his workshop ever since. I found the cylinder head wrapped in a newspaper that was dated 1982.”

When it came to acquiring the car Andrew says he had nowhere to store it, so ended up buying his grandfather’s house and workshop with the Vanguard still in it. He goes on to say that despite having some rust underneath and evidence of previous paintwork repairs it’s in quite solid condition.

“It’s a great piece of my family’s history, and when I looked inside I even found old car park tickets from the horse races that my great-grandfather loved to attend.” The owner has since refitted the cylinder head and the car now runs, and the plan is to preserve as much of the originality as possible.

This British classic will be made roadworthy but not fully restored, and the dents and scrapes that are all part of its story will stay just as they are. We love the idea of retaining all of that character, and look forward to seeing it turned from a barn find into a car that is very much enjoyed.

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