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Thread: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

  1. #1

    Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    I just stumbled across this.

    If the council raises the required money this archive will become publicly available (although possibly for a fee).

    To quote from the website...

    "The Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive has been offered to Warwickshire County Record Office for purchase."
    Steve K.
    '55 BN1/225574

  2. #2

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Is this the place we get our BMIHT certs?

  3. #3

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    No that isn't the place.

    I'm wondering who is selling the archive. Is it a member of the Healey family?

  4. #4

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    A substantial number of records were sold by Geoffrey Healey to American collector Bill Wood . They weren't cataloged or organized in any fashion. I collected the boxes at the airport and got a chance to browse through them. They contained numerous items very similar to what they describe in the Warwick archive. That collection is now in the Healey Museum in the Netherlands. Be interesting to see what this group contains and who the seller is.


  5. #5
    Jedi Warrior pan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Ipswich, Australia

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    I have been in contact with a lady in Warwick who is researching the County Records Office for me. She recently sent me information regarding this sale. It is indicated that the papers & archives are held by members of the Healey family.
    An organisation called the 'Friends of the Warwickshire County Records Office' is hoping to raise enough funds to obtain the archive so that they stay in Warwick.
    Last edited by pan; 07-27-2015 at 09:17 AM. Reason: Additional information
    Forty nine years in one 100, still going strong!

  6. #6

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    It seems to me the Healey world at large would be best served to have all this information available together at the Healey Museum, although I can understand Warwickshire wanting to preserve its own history.


  7. #7

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    I've had an opportunity to browse some of the records at the Healey Museum, and the quantity of original correspondence there is amazing. For example, letters between Geoff and Austin about development of various components for Austin-Healeys are quite fascinating. And there's a ton of such stuff.

    My feeling is also that it would be better for all if consolidated with the records at the Museum, but I also understand the desire keep it near its point of origin.

    That said, why in the world would it require 120,000 UKP (nearly $200,000) to acquire it? Sounds to me like someone is very, very greedy. To me, it's surprising that anyone would seriously consider such a price and actually make an effort to collect such an exorbitant sum to acquire it. (A case of OPM - Other People's Money - I guess.)
    Reid Trummel
    Editor, HEALEY MARQUE magazine

  8. #8

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Hopefully this might cast some light on the issue.''''
    Living close to Warwick I was able to have a short helpful meeting with one of the staff in the Warwickshire Records Office.
    I understand the archive contains a number of boxes of company information, personal correspondence, old brochures, anecdotes etc. Other boxes contain many black and white photographs, mostly of the streamliners and competition cars in various states of build and on the track. There are also a number of rolled engineering and technical drawings, covering the dates of Healey and Austin Healey production 1946-76. (DHMC to Jensen Healey)
    The collection has been valued by a reputable professional firm of valuers. The amount of the deal with the Healey Family is confidential. The cost of 120k includes an appraisal of archival services, conservation, cataloging to enable public access to it. etc. The first priority is to acquire the collection, then achieve the other aspects depending upon the amount of grants and donations received.
    Besides the automotive industry, the value to the locality also refers to the Healey Brothers as inventors and engineers, so the collection also contains other aspects of engineering and production.
    As a public authority, Warwickshire has a statutory duty to make the contents available for research and personal inspection by any member of the public.
    I understand, in due course, they will be keen to do this, including sharing it with other organisations for exchange of information, display etc.

    More information may be available at the Warwick Classic Car Show on 9th August 2015. ''''.

    I hope the National and International Healey, Austin Healey, Sprite and Midget Clubs, forums, etc. will give this appeal some favourable consideration and make this project known to their members. Of course much will be answered when a full disclosure of the contents can be made by one of the parties to the transaction.

    Other than pure interest, I have no connection with Warwickshire County Council or any relevant motor clubs so do not represent or wish to misrepresent their views. E&OE.
    Last edited by davidscothorn; 07-29-2015 at 08:49 AM. Reason: correction

  9. #9

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Further information can now be seen on '' Newsletter August.
    Last edited by davidscothorn; 08-01-2015 at 02:36 PM. Reason: additional information

  10. #10

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    This was covered by our local TV news yesterday. Not sure if you will be able to see it outside the UK as it is a BBC posting...
    Steve K.
    '55 BN1/225574

  11. #11

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    It plays here in the USA, a really nice piece, thanks very much for posting.

  12. #12
    Jedi Warrior pan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Ipswich, Australia

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Steve, thanks for posting!
    Forty nine years in one 100, still going strong!

  13. #13

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Hello Martin,
    On behalf of the Healey Museum, I like to comment on your news item about the Healey archive that has been offered to the Warwick County Records Office by the Healey family.
    Although a lot of material has been lost in the course of time, thanks to Geoffrey Healey a great deal of the Healey factory archive has survived. This archive however has disintegrated into many parts. In his contacts all over the world, Geoffrey Healey has sold or given away single items or parts of this archive to different Healey collectors/authorities. Around 1980 an important part was sold by Geoffrey to US collector Bill Wood. In May 2012 this part was acquired by the initiator of the Healey Museum Hans van de Kerkhof and this is now at the Healey Museum in the Netherlands. The museum archive contains many original correspondence, photos, drawings, reports and various items about (amongst others) the development of the Healey 100 and Sprite, record attempts and the race program. The museum is very fortunate to have this part of the archive, that is generally considered to be of very high interest to Healey enthusiasts. For visitors of the museum this archive can be viewed without costs.
    We like to point out that the part of the archive that is now at the museum has never been part of the remaining archive that stayed in the hands of Healey family, after Geoffrey Healey’s death in 1994. Of the archive that remained in the family, a very substantial part was sold by the Healey family to the initiators of the Healey Museum in the US, around 2011. According to our information, the remaining part of the family archive was also intended to be sold to the US museum, in two batches, but this part of the deal never took place. After the failure of the museum initiative in the US, the part of the archive that was already sold and shipped was resold and is now in private hands. This part is not at the Museum in the Netherlands.
    The Healey Museum has been in contact with the Healey family about a possible purchase of the remaining archive that has now been offered to the Warwick County Records Office, but unfortunately without result.
    Please feel free to add this comment to your excellent website. Many thanks for your efforts!
    Best regards, Albert Voogd, Archivist Healey Museum, THE NETHERLANDS.


  14. #14

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive


    The Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive appeal goes global

    December 11, 2015
    The Warwickshire County Record Office bid to save the Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive, making it publicly available for future generations, has gathered speed with the support of the Austin Healey Club USA (AHCUS).

    The AHCUS produced Austin-Healey Magazine delivers international exposure to Healey enthusiasts invested in the heritage of the brand. A full page article will feature in the upcoming January-February 2016 magazine. Boasting members from 29 countries and almost every US state, the AHCUS’s promotion of the bid highlights the global significance of both the Warwickshire birthplace of this iconic car manufacturer synonymous with celebrities and speed, and the interest in securing public access to the archive.

    The company archive, known as the Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive, has been offered for purchase to Warwickshire County Record Office for permanent preservation. This would mean that the collection would remain in the county town, available for public research with the potential to be used by Heritage Education and local schools to develop the next generation of engineers. If sufficient funding is secured, digitisation from the archive would deepen the opportunities for international exposure.

    Founder Donald Healey’s granddaughter, Kate Healey, said “It was a big decision for us to find the best home for this collection which our father saved. We are sure this is the best place for it as it can be viewed by everyone equally for free in perpetuity. It goes without saying that it was also the birthplace of the cars.”

    So far, Warwickshire County Record Office have raised 17,750 thanks to the Friends of the National Libraries, King Henry VIII Trust, Warwick and other sources and have planned bids for 72,500 to PRISM and the Heritage Lottery Fund. However a further 30,000 is needed from public donations to secure the future of the collection. The Friends of Warwickshire County Record Office are leading this campaign and have raised 4000 so far. Funding will be used to purchase the collection, preventing its dispersal into private hands at auction and will also enable access meeting the considerable costs of cataloguing, conservation and promotion.

    Cllr Jeff Clarke, Warwickshire County Council’s Portfolio Holder for the Environment, said: “Warwickshire’s industrial heritage is something to shout about. The Healey brand is known throughout the world and deserves celebration here too. This project has already attracted international attention. We need to build on that to secure Warwickshire’s reputation as a great place for business.”

    Cllr Philip Johnson, Chair of Warwickshire County Council’s Communities Overview & Scrutiny Committee, said: “The Healey Motor Company is rooted deep within the heritage of this county and is something that should be celebrated proudly. The world renowned brand is a symbol for Warwickshire industrial innovation, and we must capitalise on this recent recognition to secure its future.”

    If you would like to help ensure the Healey Archive is saved for posterity and made available for public research and use by Warwickshire schools, please donate today. Make your cheque payable to ‘Friends of Warwickshire County Record Office’ and send it c/o WCRO, Priory Park, Cape Road, Warwick CV34 4JS.

  15. #15

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Here is an update of the current situation, posted at the request of the Warwickshire County Records Office.


    Many of you may be aware of the project to purchase the remaining part of the Healey archive and keep it in Warwick. We have been asked to set out the details in a series of bullet points to clarify what is happening. We hope that this note helps and that you are able to support this project.

    Warwickshire County Record Office has been offered for purchase the archive remaining in the possession of the Healey family. The record office is the local government funded archive for the county of Warwickshire and holds records covering 900 years of the county’s history, including business records from the 20th century such as engineering firms Willans and Robinson and Automotive Products and also the pre DVLA vehicle license registers for Warwickshire (c1905-1974)

    The family have made clear their interest in keeping the remaining archive in Warwick, where the first Healey motor cars were built and where the material can be freely accessed by visitors to the record office. Neither the Healey Museum in the Netherlands nor the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon are being considered as venues for this material, which is why Warwickshire County Record Office have accepted the challenge.

    The collection consists of 20 bankers boxes of archival material and additional plans
    Original drawings and designs of iconic models, prototypes and projects never completed.
    Items from the collection to highlight its worth including Gerry Coker’s original design for the Healey winged badge, correspondence from Stirling Moss, Raymond Baxter etc, original Jon cartoon from Daily Mail.
    Approx. 800 photos - multiple sports car events, races, celebrities and Cape Works
    Correspondence and photos relating to wind generation project
    Files relating to partnership with Jensen, developmental projects, consultancy, legal matters etc
    Specific vehicle research, technical specifications
    Information relating to the Healey’s involvement with motorsport/speed records
    Printed brochure, publicity material, magazine articles etc
    Files relating to Healey Marine
    Business records
    Video and Cinefilm from Healey family archive, rare and unseen footage from home movie, major motorsport activity – Sebring, Mille Miglia, Le Mans, Bonneville Salt Flats, 1950s.

    The record office needs a sum of 120,000 to realise this project fully; that is to purchase it and then to catalogue and conserve it so that it can be made available. There will also an oral history project, and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) based workshops with local schools using the collection for inspiration and an extensive digitisation programme. These additional elements are crucial when it comes to attracting funders.

    The collection was independently valued by specialist – Bernard Quaritch Ltd

    The record office has funding commitments and cash contributions totalling more than 42,000 at present.
    We require 51,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund to realise this project, we are expecting to hear the outcome of this bid by the end of February
    We set ourselves a target of 30,000 in private donations; we aim to continue to raise funds this way until October 2016. We intend to run fundraising events in the spring to support this effort.
    The deadline for purchasing the collection from the family is the end of March 2016
    The project to catalogue, conserve and promote the collection will start in May 2016 and will end in May 2017. A professional archivist and conservator will be employed on a part time basis to carry out this work.
    On completion of the project the catalogue will be uploaded onto the record office online catalogue called Warwickshire’s Past Unlocked. The vast majority of the collection (allowing for any Data Protection issues) will be freely accessible to visitors to the record office where it can be viewed in the public searchroom.

    If successful the collection will be owned by the local authority in perpetuity. We hope that this will inspire others to donate other Healey material to the office in the future. We have already been given further exciting material as a result of this project and will make an announcement about this once we know the result of our lottery bid.

    We really need your help to realise this project fully and to allow this important collection to be made accessible in the home town of the Healey motor car.Information on how to make donations to the project can be found on the record office website: If donations are made through the Friends of the Warwickshire County Record Office, a registered charity, they can be gift aided. You can also phone the record office on +44(0)1926 738959 to make credit card donations in excess of 10

    Timetable in full

    March 2016 Decision by HLF to support or reject purchase of Warwick Healey Motor Company to be made public
    April 2016 Purchase of collection from family to be completed subject to above
    April 30th WCRO fundraising event to support development activities
    May 2016 Archivist and cataloguer appointed on 6 month contract to extend to 12 months if fundraising target of 15K reached
    June 2016 Recruit volunteers for oral history project
    October 15th WCRO event to provide project update
    October 31st Fundraising target of 30K deadline
    October 2016 Contracts extended to May 2017
    November 2016 Engineering workshops with schools
    December 2016 Digitisation project commences subject to 30K target achieved
    May 2017 Catalogue and conservation work completed . Project completion event, collection available to view at WCRO
    Last edited by davidscothorn; 01-28-2016 at 04:03 AM. Reason: layout

  16. #16

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Thank you for the update, David!
    John, BN4

  17. #17
    Great Pumpkin Keoke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    LosAngeles Calif.

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    That said, why in the world would it require 120,000 UKP (nearly $200,000) to acquire it? Sounds to me like someone is very, very greedy.

    More like Someone wants UKP----
    1966 Daimler V8 Saloon; Safely Fast, Built to Last & and; Smooth as Glass.
    1966 BJ8 [ 2 ] Lil Red & Miss bLU
    1985 XJ6 Saloon
    1948 & 70 Lincoln continentals
    1973 Volvo P1800ES

  18. #18

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    My reading is the 120K isn't just the purchase price, its the cost to buy, catalogue and make available to the public. Looks like they may be looking for volunteers to help. Might look into that as I'm only 20 minutes away from the archive.
    Steve K.
    '55 BN1/225574

  19. #19

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive

    Quote Originally Posted by catfood View Post
    My reading is the 120K isn't just the purchase price, its the cost to buy, catalogue and make available to the public. Looks like they may be looking for volunteers to help. Might look into that as I'm only 20 minutes away from the archive.
    Correct, as I understand it. Obviously the makeup of the 120K is confidential from us all, but will be buried somewhere deep inside the County Council's records.

  20. #20

    Re: Warwick Healey Motor Company Archive



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