Lakeland Motor Museum to unveil NHS hero’s beloved car during BBC lockdown event

an image of the cawley car

A 90 year old car formerly owned by a consultant surgeon from Birch Hill Hospital and Rochdale Infirmary will be among our exhibits to be put forward for inclusion in an online museums quarantine event this week.

Rolling off the production line at Morris’ car manufacturing site in Cowley, Oxfordshire in 1930 (now operated by BMW Mini), the Morris Cowley was owned by three different people before coming into the possession of the late Ivor Schraibman and his wife Jan in the 1980s.

The Museums Association has invited museums across the UK to participate in the BBC Arts' Culture quarantine event, #MuseumFromHome this Thursday (30 April), when the Lakeland Motor Museum hopes the Morris will be featured during the nationwide social media initiative.

Originally supplied brand-new by the Burridges Motor Works in Chippenham, “Doris”, as the couple affectionately named the vehicle, is a two seater tourer complete with a dickie seat at the rear, which could be unfolded to allow the car to carry an extra two passengers.

The car’s radiator also still displays the original quirky Morris badge: An emblem showing an Ox crossing a shallow river or ford, to represent the city of Oxford.

Doris 1

Jan Schraibman, says, “Ivor and I had some great times in the old girl and he’d be thrilled to know the car is in good hands. He passed away in 2017 aged 86 and I know he’d be delighted to see his beloved car at the Lakeland Motor Museum, as we have always both loved the Lake District. ‘Doris’ was registered in 1930 – the year of Ivor’s birth, and we also used it as our wedding car, so of all the cars Ivor owned, this one was particularly special to us. Ivor even built a garage at our home, especially to keep Doris in!”

Chairman of Winander Leisure, the museum’s parent company, Bill Bewley, says, “We’re really pleased to have this beautiful vehicle as part of our collection and we send a huge, heartfelt thanks to Jan for thinking of us. A lot of hard work has gone in to make sure the car looks great in the museum and we’re looking forward to welcoming Jan here in the future so she can see it proudly displayed in situ. The location we chose certainly posed a challenge, taking us around 60 working hours to manoeuvre it into position”.

Being moved into position

While the vehicle is now in situ, visitors are not permitted due to the Coronavirus restrictions. However, a video of the vehicle will be released online on 30 April, accompanied by the #MuseumFromHome hashtag.

A BBC spokesperson says, “The event will be a whole day of content on social media, TV and radio focusing on the UK’s museums. The BBC – working in partnership with the MA, Art Fund and National Museum Directors' Council – will host and highlight social media content from museums, galleries and archives via the BBC Arts website and across other BBC programmes and accounts, by using the hashtag #MuseumFromHome on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms.

“There is huge public appetite for engagement with museums on social media at present, and this event will build on many of the other social media initiatives that have been so successful in recent weeks. It will be a day of sharing – the idea is to get everyone talking about museums, be they curators or members of the public – so we're encouraging you to share your stories, your work and your ideas using #MuseumFromHome.”

Ivor and Doris 1

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