Vintage Delivery: Morrison-Electricar

Within the transport collection at Hampshire Cultural Trust resides a remarkable vehicle: the Morrison-Electricar electric float. The vehicle was used by Mr. William Franklin of Fratton, Portsmouth, for vegetable deliveries the 1940s. It bears the registration number EBK 179.

Interior of the Morrison-Electricar driven by Mr. William Franklin of Fratton, Portsmouth

Originally manufactured by Morrison-Electricar, a prominent British producer of battery electric road vehicles (BERVs), this electric float is an example of a vehicle that was once popularly used to deliver goods to homes throughout the country. Its robust construction and reliable performance made it a common site in post-war Britain, with the vehicles used to deliver milk and other doorstep deliveries.

Vehicle EBK 179 is believed to have been supplied new to the Portsea Island Co-operative Society (POICOS). PICOS was founded by dockyard workers in 1873 and played a vital role in supporting local workers and their families. PICOS tokens, distributed to Portsmouth-area workers in place of wages, helped local workers, (dependent on dockside work and sea trade), to afford to feed their families.

Traces of its operational history can still be seen on the vehicle, with some of the original baskets and boxes, once used to hold fruit and vegetables during deliveries still on the vehicle.

The baskets used to display the fruit and vegetables can be seen on the side of the Morrison-Electricar

Now, as part of a new project supported by the Engert Watford Motor Museum, this vehicle is poised for a revival, with plans to conserve it and make it available for public display. Access to the vehicle is currently limited and action is underway to enable it to be taken from the store to the workshop for assessment.

The significance of the vehicle collection extends beyond the Morrison-Electricar. The transport collection contains more than 60 vehicles and steam engines, as well as the tools and equipment used to make them. We also keep an extensive archive of business and technical records, models, catalogues and photographs that principally relate to the two local Basingstoke based manufacturers, Taskers and Thornycroft.

To find out more about this project, click here.

Historically significant vehicles to undergo restoration thanks to £200,000 grant | Hampshire Cultural Trust

This article was written by:
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Emma Banks

Collections Programme Manager
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