Land Rover ends its 70th anniversary celebrations with a trip down memory lane for an employee who worked at ‘Rover’ at the start of Land Rover production.
The celebrations of Land Rover’s 70th year in 2018 have focused mainly on the Series cars and Defender, and although the final piece of its celebration goes back to the earliest year of Land Rover production, it’s a far more personal celebration.
A serendipitous meeting between a former Land Rover employee – now 87-year old Dorothy Peters – and Mike Bishop, Land Rover Classic’s Reborn Engineering Specialist and heritage expert, at Land Rover’s 70th celebration event in Solihull, set in motion a chain of events which close Land Rover’s 70th celebrations.
Dorothy took along photos of her time at Land Rover to the event, and by sheer coincidence a Land Rover she was posing with in a 70-year old photo – number 16 – is now owned by Mike Bishop. Mike said:
I was approached by a very charming lady with some pictures of her time at Solihull, I had no idea we would share a special connection to ‘number 16’. Her enthusiasm for the company and this vehicle in particular was wonderful as was her surprise when she discovered I now owned the car! I knew instantly we needed to reunite them.
So Land Rover set up a day of surprises for Dorothy, including a reunion with the car she posed with 70 years earlier and a blat round LR’s off-road track at Solihull. Dorothy said:
I couldn’t believe the reaction to my pictures at the Festival in Solihull. I had no idea this one conversation would take me on a journey down memory lane and on the wonderful off-road track at Solihull.
The opportunity to share this day with my daughter and granddaughters was a wonderful surprise and to see how different the factory is today was very special. It all felt like a dream and I won’t ever forget it.
It’s a very sweet, and personal, way to end Land Rover’s 70th celebrations, captured on video too (below).