The Nineteen Fifties will be remembered as a time of renewed vitality, bringing with it prosperity, rebuilding and the promise of a vibrant and exciting future.

Before the outbreak of the Second World War and going into the Fifties, the centre of the car industry in the United Kingdom was focused in the Midlands of England.

In Western Europe car manufacturing was especially active in France, Italy and West Germany, although in Sweden a fledgling car industry was beginning to spring up, as industrial giants, Saab and SKF, foreseeing the opportunities available, established their own car manufacturing divisions.

In the United Kingdom and West Germany, the major car manufacturers had to start from scratch after the war with their production plants in ruins. Their French and Italian counterparts were in a better situation, with their production facilities largely left untouched.

The huge plants had to rise from the ravages of defeat in World War Two, taking them almost a decade before they were once again a viable force.

The first genuine post-war designed models did not begin to emerge until the early-Fifties in the UK, while in mainland Europe recovery took a lot longer.

Cars produced during the immediate post-war years still boasted a certain pre-war charm, thanks to the many independent manufacturers that survived the conflict, some of them still producing cars that were more or less hand made.

By the mid-Fifties, the car industries of the UK and Western Europe had undergone an almost complete design renaissance, influenced by the US market. Many of the US auto giants had begun to take a share of the market, through either establishing UK subsidiaries or acquiring existing companies.

Now more than sixty years after the last Fifties Classic car rolled off the production line of one of the UK's or Europe's car factories, the drive to save one of the few remaining survivors of these renaissance years continues.

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