Post by Franklin1 on Sept 25, 2008 21:26:21 GMT 10
Paramount Caravan history: to be compiled
Manufactured by Paramount Caravans, (O. [Osborne] Cooper, Prop.), 297 Hawthorn Road, Caulfield (near Town Hall), Victoria. [...info from 1956]
------------------------------------------------------- Our current understanding is that there were two independent manufacturers in two different states who produced caravans under the 'Paramount' brandname:
* South Australia - click here * Victoria (this thread)
If anyone has information which shows a connection between the two manufacturers, we will combine the threads. (Posted by MarkT, 26 Sept 2008)... From Judy Cooper:
Dear Mark, My husband Joe Cooper used to build caravans with his father Osborne Cooper in the late 1940’s early 1950’s located in Hawthorn Road, Caulfield. They manufactured their caravans under the name Paramount. My husband has stated that he was immensely proud of designing the first wrap around window and this was soon copied by other manufacturers. He used to do all the cabinetry for his father as he was a qualified joiner. I have been on the vintage caravan site to see if one of his caravans still exists but have had no luck so far. However I thought it may have been of interest to have given you these latest details. I have really enjoyed looking over this site and think its great so many people are visiting it also. Keep up the good work. Kind regards Judy Cooper.
Post by Franklin1 on Sept 25, 2008 21:37:23 GMT 10
1937 Paramount caravan: In the March 2001 issue of Caravan World, there is a monthly feature titled "From My Perspective", and the article for that month is called, "They Don't Make Them Like They Used To...". The article goes on to talk about how vans were much simpler items a couple of decades ago, and the writer, Tom Olthoff, tells of his 1976 York caravan. More importantly, he goes on to write...
"Alongside the York sits a 1937 four-berth Paramount. It is one of those classic old vans that have a curved front and back. It is probably more aerodynamic than many built today. The Paramount has a cafe-style dinette across the back that converts into a large double bed and two bunks at the front. The kitchen offers a two-burner spirit stove and ice box. A centrally located full height wardrobe has bi-fold doors that can be used to split the van into two rooms and provide some privacy for the occupants. The van also has 12 volt power and stained glass windows. What more does one need?"
Unfortunately, the article does not include any photos of the Paramount van.
Post by Franklin1 on Sept 25, 2008 21:54:48 GMT 10
Sydney Morning Herald archives results for Paramount caravans:
Saturday, 10 August, 1957: (Classified advert) Caravan 2-bth., Paramount, Best offer near £200...
Saturday, 8 October, 1960: Today's Special. 14ft Rescote Paramount. £100 under new price. 2 singles and 1 double. Reg. Very clean. CARAPARK PTY LTD...
Saturday, 20 May, 1961: 14ft Paramount De Luxe advertised with other 1961 models of Zestlines and Ambassadors, on display now at BEVERLY HILLS CARAVANS, 551 King George's Rd., Beverly Hills. LU6527 [NSW]
Saturday, 9 June, 1962: CARAVANS: Paramount, 13ft, alum., 4-b., £585; 12ft x 6ft 6in., ply, £335. others. New van sales. 551 King George's Rd., Beverly Hills. LU6527
Saturday, 4 April, 1964: (Classified advert.) CARAVAN, Paramount Belair, pract. new. £575. [private phone number given]
Saturday, 26 November, 1966: (Classified advert.) PARAMOUNT 18ft. double and 2 single. frig., gas stove, clock. 8ft annexe. JONES DOLLEY WHEEL. Immaculate. Cost...
No results showing after 1966, however an advertisement in the edition, Saturday 6 December 1969 shows up but the print is far too small to see whether Paramount gets a mention or not.
Last Edit: Sept 25, 2008 22:53:59 GMT 10 by Franklin1
Was there a Paramount Caravans in Adelaide as well? The archives tell me that in March 1960, Carapark bought Paramount Caravans Ltd., Adelaide. That meant that Carapark now had production facilities in three States. The first was obviously in Sydney, the second was somewhere but I haven't found out where yet, and the third was in the Paramount factory in Adelaide.
Maybe the newspaper report has got the State wrong?
My Dad definitely bought the vans from Ossie Cooper in Caufield Melb. in fact he ordered them and had them built. I do remember vaguely going to the workshop as a kid to see the van being built. Dad lived and still does in South Oakleigh.
Post by Don Ricardo on Oct 17, 2010 18:02:01 GMT 10
Below are some pics and info I have gathered together about Paramount caravans. The info is organised in what I think is the correct chronological order.
First up, is a larger version of the photo of Malrv1's dad's first Paramount caravan posted in Reply #4 above. According to Malrv1 this van was 14 foot:
I think this is the earliest van in this series of photos because it has the Bosse & Eunson style wooden framed windows which are shown in the 1956 Winser (see Reply#3 above). The placement of the windows (side windows higher than the front windows) and the livery also broadly match those shown in Winser.
Next up is a Paramount van advertised on Ebay in October 2010:
This van has a similar shape to the first, and also has a Paramount name plate consisting of red plastic letters on a backboard similar to the first Malrv1 van. However, this Ebay van has aluminium framed windows.
The next van is Malrv1's father's second Paramount which was a 16 footer (larger versions of photos in Reply #4 above):
This van appears to match the caravans shown in the Paramount promotion in the 1961 Winser:
(Source: Keith Winser, Australian Caravan and Touring Manual 1961, p 148)
Note also that this advert gives the Paramount address as 2 Wren's Road, Moorabbin (as opposed to the earlier Caulfield address). Editorial note: Photos of the following Paramount caravan, advertised on Ebuy in July 2010, were originally posted here. However, as we have learnt more about the Paramount caravans that were produced by independent companies in Victoria and South Australia, it has become clear that this van is almost certainly a 1960's South Australian Paramount:
Further photos of this van can be found on the South Australian Paramount thread here.
Hi all, i happen to own the Paramount listed here that was advertised on ebay in 2010. Need some please if any one can help me.......... Was really concerned that it was not a paramount van and maybe some one had just found some old paramount signs and put on it!!! After searching abit over the van i found, under the sink written Paramount Caravan, and inside one of the cupboards under the table seats stamped on the ply is MELB. Really have two questions. 1. Year model, was told 1954 but not so sure now.....? 2. What would the stove have been, would it have been a spirt stove like the one above in the 1961 van? Any body with any information regarding these things or any thing to do with Paramount Bondwood vans please let me know. Thanks Steve