Retro Trailer Rescue

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A fridge trailer in a field, (put your M&S advert voice on!) but it’s not just any fridge trailer in a field, it’s a 1982, Gray & Adams, tandem spread axle fridge trailer in a field! On top of that if the farmers memory serves him correctly he says he acquired the trailer (for fresh poultry storage) in 1990, which means that it served Christian Salveson for just 8 years before being parked up, which would explain it’s surprisingly good condition. Anyway, this trailer has been parked on the road between Hadleigh and Sudbury in Suffolk for as long as I can remember. So me being me, curiosity won and I went to find it a year or so ago. I drove in the farm yard and right through it and found the trailer. I had a call around to try and find someone with no luck, so I took a couple of photos and left. I do like to know where these trailers are lurking incase anyone wants one. At Truckstar Festival this year a certain young man with a known collection of classic trucks, mentioned during a beery conversation that he had started hunting for a 2nd fridge trailer to turn into another caravan trailer. Luckily I hadn’t had too many so I piped up and showed a photo of said trailer. A positive response. So I volunteered to go and talk to the farmer.

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Again a positive response. It turns out that it was the perfect time to enquire as the decision had already been made to rid the farm of the trailer. I took a few newer photos of the trailer and it’s general condition and found the manufacturers plate and photoed that too. I spoke money with the farmer and that was that. I forwarded all info onto the interested party, he said yes to me straight away, so I put him in touch with the farmer and a deal was done.

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Today was collection day. I managed to get over to see the highly skilled farmer pushing the fridge up the ramps with a chain and a dolly, straight as a die and up she went. Luckily the fridge had a folding rear bumper which helped with clearance both going up the ramps and also to clear the neck of the stepframe. Once on board it was all strapped and chained down and to beat the school traffic through the little Suffolk village high street, a quick exit was made. I ran ahead in my car and just asked a few locals to stay still which the whole outfit gently weaved through the high street. That was that and off to its new owners home.

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The plan is to restore the trailer to its former glory and keep the famous blue and white livery then convert the inside into living accommodation.
As you can see this is a great find and a great trailer that has gone to a man who wants to preserve it just as it started life. If you know of any old trailers that need rescuing please please let me know. In my book trailers are in as much need to be saved as the trucks that pull them. Most trailers have long rusted away or been chopped down so any that are still in one piece should be saved. Now I’m not suggesting that every trailer can be bought and restored but at least if we know about them then perhaps we can help a few which will make the likes of The Retro Truck Show at Gaydon all the more enjoyable for us. Hopefully by Truckfest Peterborough next year this little restoration project will be complete. Fingers crossed.

Finally if anyone knows where their is a Petter fridge unit, please get in touch.

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