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Homepage. This page: A vintage photograph of a family with their pre-WW1 Crossley tourer taken in Herts, 1913.

Crossley 15hp motor-car.

Considering the age of this photograph, it is remarkably clear and well composed. A family and their pet hound are seen on a trip out to "Ashridge" in Hertfordshire according to a note on the rear of this original image. The car is a Manchester-built Crossley, an Edwardian-era motor-car dating to 1911 or 1912. Note the child standing up on the driver's seat, presumably the usual occupant of that position was behind the camera at that precise moment.
With the car established as a Crossley, thanks to its very distinctive radiator design, it was time to pin down the model. It could either be a 12/14 or a 15hp Crossley. The 12/14 was introduced in 1909. In 1910 the size of the engine was increased and it became the 15hp. A faint note on the rear of the photo advises that it was taken on 16th August 1913. The first two letters of the Crossley's registration are also just visible through the spokes of the offside front wheel - "LE". This was a London-area series, used from July 1911 through to December 1912 only, thus placing its registration comfortably after the introduction of the 15hp in 1910.
If any Crossley aficionado can add to, or correct, this reasoning, please drop me a line as I'm only too happy to be corrected!
(Please click the thumbnail to view full-size image.)
A Crossley 15hp car
Also on the reverse is confirmation of this photo's location - "Ashridge, Herts, This is a country mansion (not a church)." The Ashridge Estate is now a National Trust property, and is situated between Aylesbury and Hemel Hempstead, thus linking in nicely with what appears to be the Crossley's London registration. In 1921 the house and gardens were split from the main estate and sold off separately, the NT purchasing the latter and the magnificent building visible in the photo above becoming what is now Ashridge Business School.
Other items of Crossley interest on the site include a page of original Crossley char-a-banc photographs, and a later shot of a Crossley 25/30 tourer.
Return to Page 11 in the vintage car motoring gallery.

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