Friday, 6 December 2013
The handover to the Malcolm Campbell Heritage Trust took place at an event at The National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, where the nose panel will join four iconic World Land Speed Record cars, including the Bluebird CN7 and Sir Malcolm Campbell’s Blue Bird 350hp, for a brand new Land Speed Record Breakers display.
Following the failed land speed attempt at the Bonneville Salt Flats in 1960, the damaged Bluebird was shipped back to the site in the Midlands. While the design updates were made, including the addition of the tail fin to stabilise the vehicle at speed, Motor Panels, now Stadco, set to work repairing the Bluebird. The nose panel had been creased in the crash at Bonneville and was removed and replaced.
The old hood panel displaying the Union Jack and US flags was set aside and spent the next 50 years at the Coventry site. Following the discovery of other artefacts, including detailed original records and correspondence between the Campbells and the Stadco project team, and 26 reels of unique 16mm film footage from 1960-1963, Stadco decided that a new home should be sought for the nose panel to properly reflect its historic significance.
Stadco’s Product Development Director, Paul Jaggers, said: “We are very proud of our historic link to Bluebird and these artefacts were a very exciting find for us. We were keen to ensure they found the right home and are very pleased to donate them to the family trust.”
Bluebird CN7 - The inside story of Donald Campbell’s last Land Speed Record car
By Donald Stevens
Records the development, construction and operation of the last wheel-driven land speed record breaking car that the UK produced, and tells how the tragic demise of Donald Campbell prevented it from reaching its full potential. A unique account of a legendary feat of engineering. More info.