Demolition of Wheelers Motors


It seems a while ago that the planning application was submitted, but work has started on, more ‘dismantling’ than demolition, of Wheelers Motors in Goods Station Road. The work revealed the sign writing for T Ashby Wood, Ironmonger, found in an 1881 census.

The Weald


5 thoughts on “Demolition of Wheelers Motors

  1. I walked past this the other day and wondered about the history of that wall/sign. How wonderful. I like the wall on 2 Western Road too – is it C.Cox?

  2. I used to work at Wheeler’s Motors as a mechanic in the mid-1980s.

    Even back then, the rear elevation of the property was bowing badly and the structure was generally decrepit. It had seen no investment for years and saw none whilst I was there.

    The gable end with the painted signage was obscured by another building, which was basically a loft over the main entrance to the garage. It was used only by pigeons. The window bottom left was the owner’s office, the ones above it storage. A second vehicular access to the garage can just be seen behind the yellow sign. The window immediately above that was to a small room where we ate our lunch.

    Working conditions were grim. There was no hot water and we used to wash our hands under a cold, brass tap. That was assuming that it wasn’t so cold that the tap had frozen. Then we used a bucket of water, sometimes having to break the ice on it first. The only time my fingers became properly clean was when I took a week’s holiday.

    The garage was unheated, except for a section to the rear with a single post vehicle lift, which had an oil burning stove. It used old engine oil as fuel, but seemed to generate more mess than heat.

    Working in conditions that would not have been unfamiliar to Victorian mill workers, I spent several cold, miserable years repairing the cars that other garages wouldn’t touch. It gave me the opportunity to ponder that maybe I should have worked just a little bit harder at school.

    The rest of my thoughts were occupied by plans of escape.

    The only smiles I remember were courtesy of Steve Wright on Radio 1 and Christmas music. One tune in particular, Christmas Wrapping by the Waitresses, still transports me back to those chilly days with grubby fingers.

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