JNSN Lorry | Chassis Number 3133/289
Approximately 550 JLC (Jensen Light Commercial) lorries are thought to have been manufactured between 1947 and 1950. Today only about 1-2% are believed to have survived. In part this was due to the special alloy chassis, which meant these lorries had a high scrap value. JLC lorry, chassis number 3133 / 289, survived as a complete entity until 2017, but due to its poor state of preservation, it was decided to use the lorry as a parts source. The Museum explores the history of JNSN lorry 3133 / 289.
Given job number 3133, and chassis number 289, 3133 / 289 was built up as a flat platform body and cab, with head board and tail board. The completed lorry was first registered on 24th March 1949 and assigned the registration number ‘PA 9388’.
The buyer was the Midland Joinery Works Co. based in Burton-on-Trent. The cost of the completed lorry in primer was £2,719.8.6. with Purchase Tax. JLC lorries were not particularly cheap against the competition, however, they had many advanced features, and could generally carry greater loads than its competitors.
Painted blue for the Midland Joinery Works Co, the lorry was immediately put into service carrying timber loads. The Company kept 3133 / 289 in service through until 1960.
On 26th May 1960, the lorry was sold to Roger Bennion, of Haunton Manor Farm, Clifton Campville, Tamworth. Bennion kept 3133 / 289 until April 1987, by which time it changed hands again. The new owners were John Smith Ltd, based in Melbourne, Derby. The Company were solid fuel merchants, so the lorry was obviously going to have another hard life under their ownership.
Exactly how long John Smith Ltd kept 3133/289 in service isn’t currently known, however, Jensen historian, Richard Calver, believes this was one of four JNSN lorries left semi-derelict in a field, and was later purchased by Jensen lorry enthusiast, Ray Horton. He in turn sold the lorry on to lorry enthusiast, Derek Lowther. As with Horton, Lowther left the lorry in its complete state, but did not attempt a restoration.
During 2017, Kenny and Ray Walsh, well known restorers of lorries and commercial vehicles, went to view the JLC lorry with the possible idea of taking the vehicle on as a restoration project. Viewing the lorry, they found the special aluminium chassis was severely corroded.
Their conclusion was that 3133 / 289 was only justifiable as a spares source. The Walsh brothers had already sold a fully restored Jensen lorry (see our feature http://www.jensenmuseum.org/jensen-jnsn-freighter-prototype-restoration/). A quick telephone call to the new owner of their lorry, found a buyer for 3133 / 289 as a spares source. The cabin chassis and information plates, along with the original buff registration book from 3133 / 289, were donated to the Museum in 2017.
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: K & R Walsh Bros. Manchester | Jensen historian, Richard Calver
COPYRIGHTS: K & R Walsh Bros. Manchester | The Jensen Museum
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