Its funny how when you get talking to people you end up finding out more than you bargained for. I take regular deliveries of JCB’s that are destined for Russia, but come to me for checking and prepping before heading off to the docks. This means I have a lot of dealings with Brit European as I recieve 10 of there trucks every day. As you do you get chatting to the drives for a few minutes, one day i got chatting to a good old boy by the name of Mick Darlington, a true gent of the road. We got talking and as I said I ended up finding out more than bargained for. It turns out Mick has had a full career on the road as an employed driver and also as an Owner Driver. Mick’s career started at the well remembered Beresfords Transport from Stoke on Trent and 3 days after getting his license was at the helm of this old girl and about to set off for Italy with a load of whiskey!
It turns out that Mick has spent a good chunk of his career as a continental driver. Going from Beresfords, to Morcap, to Fret Francais, to Brit European as well as running his own trucks across the water as well.
I love the fact that back in the good old days there were so many British built trucks heading off to all foreign climbs. We all know the Guys, Scammells, Seddons, Leylands and ERF’s that used to even get as far as the Middle East, but then again that was a time when having something built in Britain was some thing to be proud of! Mr Darlington has plenty of experience of driving some of Cheshire’s finest on the wrong side of the road. This set of pics of a B series ERF on the snowy roads of Austria. You just cant beat photo’s like this and you won’t ever be able to recreate them, they are just classics. I almost got romantic there didn’t I!!
Any ideas who this driver is with Mick in Austria?
Beresfords were at the time well in at JCB and were one of the main hauliers doing the continental JCB work before Brit European took over and, from what I read, took the fun out of the job and made it not so lucrative as perhaps it once was. Beresford ran 2 x Seddon Atkinsons painted up in JCB colours to show there loyalty to the Staffordshire digger makers. Mick seen here some where across the water, but can you tell me where? It looks warm where ever it is.
There is more to come from Mick’s photo’s but I dont want to use them up all at once!! You’ll just have to keep checking the blog to see when I do the next installment. I need to do some more research about Fret Francais, so if you can tell me any thing send me an email; email@example.com