My apologies for the late news that Facel 11 chassis number A158 is being sold in Rouen this coming weekend, September 19. It is a right hand drive car and might possibly the last ‘barn find’ Facel 11 to come up for sale – except there is another in France, but currently not for sale. And it’s also right hand drive.
The car that is for sale was originally owned by the comedian Charlie Drake, actually registered in his real name of Charles Springall. It was an automatic with wire wheels and side exhausts. Originally it was torch red with a black roof and black interior. It is now blue although the red is peeking through behind the blue. It has been registered CD455 and then 4629PE.
The seat was raised two inches so that 5ft 1in tall Drake could see out of the windscreen. It was also said that he had blocks fitted to the pedals. He lived in the New Forest and was always hitting things like posts at the side of the road and he rolled it. He also put it through the end of his garage. He locked himself out of the car at least four times.
The car was then sold to the Hon. Richard Wrottesley via a dealer called Ken Shepard, bought for him by his grandmother, Mrs Wingfield-Stratford, as a present for him getting his licence back! Wrottesley raced at Le Mans, had several nice cars, and was killed in an E-type in 1970 aged 28. It has also been owned by John Barton and most recently by Christian Duriez from near Le Mans, whose estate is selling both this car and a left hand drive Facel 3, neither car in a particularly good state.
The auction is on September 19 at the Salon Auto-Moto Retro at Rouen in the Parc Expo, organised by Sarthe Encheres. There would appear to be only nine lots in the auction, including the two Facels. I don’t seem to be able to download any current pics, so I can only suggest any interested buyer clicks on this link: