Post by Don Ricardo on Aug 23, 2014 20:08:21 GMT 10
P E DAVIES' CARAVAN
Built by P E Davies Body Builder 31 Burwood Road, Burwood NSW Photos of an aluminium caravan built by P E Davies and listed on Ebay, July 2012
From time to time we see a caravan which seems to have been a one-off, or a prototype which never went any further. In this case, at least we know who built it, and the fact that Mr Davies recorded that he was a bodybuilder (which I take to be a coachbuilder, rather than the modern meaning of a muscle man who goes to the gym a lot ), may indicate that the van was something that he hoped might go into production (but I am only guessing).
A few facts and figures from the seller:
The van is skinned in aluminium both inside and out.
The top cupboards, sink, kitchen cupboard and wardrobe all aluminium.
Length, 3.8 m (13 ft) and width, 2.1 m wide (7 ft).
Note the fins which suggest a build date of late 50's, early 60's. The shape of both the external and internal panels is so smooth and rounded that at first sight you would guess it was clad in fibreglass. In fact, the front of the van is not unlike the front of some of the fibreglass Guildford Roadcruisers to look at.
I don't know whether 'Burwood Road, Burwood' where the van was built refers to Burwood in NSW or in Victoria, however I am leaning towards NSW without having any real reason for doing so. Maybe somebody else can throw some light on the van or P E Davies?
Post by Don Ricardo on Aug 24, 2014 19:47:48 GMT 10
Thanks for the information regarding the telephone prefix UJ being for Burwood, NSW. Anybody would think that you worked for the PMG's department back in the day!
I think that answers the question of which Burwood we are talking about! (I double checked the telephone prefix for Burwood, Victoria in the 50's via Trove just in case UJ was the prefix for Victoria as well, but came up with 'BW', which is unexpectedly logical - BW = Burwood!) I've amended the first post on this thread accordingly.
It has occurred to me that P E Davies' van is not unlike this caravan which is also clad (externally at least) in aluminium and has been dated as being built in 1948, and therefore would be earlier than the Davies van:
This van is now owned by Vernon, and further photos can be found here
Maybe Vernon can check their van out and see if they can find a reference to P E Davies inscribed on it somewhere? Re-examining the photos of the Davies van it seems as if Mr Davies' details are inscribed on a little plate on the inside of the lower door which can be seen in the first photo. The plate is not all that obvious at first sight, but it seems to match the shape of the nameplate in the last photo.