My First Car: Rover 10 case of work in progress

John Dulieu's 1934 Rover 10 and Jean Rose who became his wife.

John Dulieu's 1934 Rover 10 and Jean Rose who became his wife. - Credit: supplied

John Dulieu recalls how his second car, a 1934 Rover 10, also came with issues and a number plate that led to some leg-pulling.

Returning from doing National Service in the Royal Air Force, I found myself with a job and somewhere to live but with very little money. And, so, my second car became a 1934 Rover 10.

My first car, featured in this series five years ago, was an Austin Seven, with a broken shaft and an offside back wheel leaning outwards at about a 20-degree angle, bought for £5 as a non-runner. Stationed at the time at RAF Locking, near Weston-super-Mare, I had visited the local scrapyard with colleagues where, for 15 shillings (75p), a back axle and numerous spares were obtained.

Like the Austin Seven, the Rover came with issues.

The steering was less than precise, the laminated windscreen had yellowed from the edges, the all crash gearbox had to be mastered and the clutch was either in or out with no half measures.

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A visit to Whites in Mile Cross Road, Norwich, produced a good steering column and box – oh, the joy of reasonable directional steering now.

And a new windscreen courtesy of Robinsons, then in Riverside Road, improved things no end.

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This car was no 'babe puller' but one young lady did condescend to ride with me in CAR 73. The young lady posing on the running board still rides with me 53 years later and has done in many cars in-between.

A thirst for petrol and oil meant that we parted company with the Rover after a few months but, oh, the leather seats were very comfortable.

Everyone has memories of their first car and we want to hear about your original set of wheels. Email your story with a picture of the car to or post it to Andy Russell, motoring editor, Archant, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE.

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