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Homepage. This page: A pre-war photograph of a classic Morris motorcar, in Westmorland (Cumbria).

Morris car.

The car shown in this photograph is a Morris of the early 1930s. It is either a circa 1931/1932 Morris Isis Six, or else an Oxford Six. The styling reminds me of the 2,468cc Isis, but the presence of suicide rear doors, which seems to be an Oxford feature, make me think that it could be the latter. The JM registration series came into being in December 1931, a Westmorland series used until 1950. I'm sure someone will confirm the exact model of car shown here.
(Please click the thumbnail to view full-size image.)
1930s Morris saloon car photo
The Westmorland registration made identifying the building in the background fairly straightforward. It is Lowther Castle, in what is now referred to as Cumbria, close to the town of Penrith.
The building was open to visitors in 1938 - probably the date of this photograph - but in 1941 the site was requisitioned by the War Office and turned over to weapons research, after which the incumbents dismantled the majority of the castle, moved out, and the place was left to go to ruin. The testing of prototype tanks in the grounds around the castle didn't do much for the preservation of the building and the surroundings either. Development of the Canal Light Defence (CLD) system was undertaken at Lowther Castle. Turrets on tanks were modified to shine an intense flickering light at the enemy during night battles, and this led to 2,000 tanks being retro-fitted with the CLD equipment.
The shell of the castle and its grounds were inaccessible to the public for over seventy years, until limited opening re-occurred in 2011. There are plans afoot to improve the buildings and once-ornate gardens, although preservation rather than over-restoration of the site is the underlying objective. At least it survives though, probably not something that can be said for pre-war Morris JM 528.
Return to Page 14 in the classic & vintage vehicle photo gallery.
Two photographs of a slightly later, 1934, Morris Oxford Six saloon, may be found on this page.

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