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In pictures: Veteran vehicles recreate historic journey to Datchet

A convoy of pre-1905 vehicles descended on Datchet Village Green on Sunday as a motorists recreated the first ever recorded car journey in Great Britain.

On July 5, 1895, Evelyn Ellis drove 56 miles in his French built Panhard et Levassor from from Micheldever Station near Winchester to Datchet, at about 10mph as his fellow motoring pioneer Frederick Simms noted down every detail.

He broke the 4mph speed limit and regulations requiring a man waving a red flag to walk ahead of the car in protest against the Locomotive Act but was never arrested.

The debut event last year saw 21 vehicles entries, compared to 45 this year, although some broke down before or during the trip.

“These are very unreliable vehicles,” said Lawrie Smith, from Brockenhurst, New Forest, who co-organised the event with Nick Camfor from Winchester.

“It’s like climbing a mountain, you don’t know if you’re going to get there. Everybody breaths a sigh of relief if you do get there.

“Every car that leaves here will have to have something done to it when it gets back.”




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