Friday, 2 June 2017

Corgi Toys @ 60: Bedford AA Van and Dropside Trailer

It's June 1957 and Corgi mark the arrival of warmer weather with a bright yellow Bedford CA van. This is their fourth release with the Bedford casting (five or six if you count the different M models too). It is the AA Road Service van. It will be more than two years before the Royal Automobile Club gets some publicity from the Corgi firm. You do wonder whether maybe one of the directors broke down and either the RAC fellow failed to assist satisfactorily or perhaps the AA chap spotted the fault but refused to fix unless the AA got on the side of the next issue.

The AA van has curious paintwork - a blob of black across the front that I always used to think was hand-painted by some child until I realised they all had it. Often there are no visible headlamps and it looks terribly amateur but I guess that was the way it had to be. It is the split screen type in 1957 - you'll have to wait for the single screen type which was much later. You will, however, see this with either a curved top edge to the grill or a straight edge. As far as I am aware, all these split screen Mk I models will have smooth wheels.

Anyway, in a rather less than exciting month for those boys anxiously watching their local toy shop window for the latest release, June sees 408, a van and 100, a trailer, and that's something you can actually do something with, assuming, that is, you got one of the lorries issued earlier.

None of the other vehicles so far have a tow bar and there's a little while to wait yet before the Land Rover comes to the rescue. If you're looking at your trailer and wondering if it is the June 1957 issue then it will need to have the simple wire tow bar. The metal fixed draw bar (a broken example shown below) is a much later addition.

I think all these Drop-side trailers were cream on a red chassis and will have had smooth wheels.

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