Life at Standard Triumph
by Martin Longmore
Reproduced via ‘oldclassiccar’
It was 3rd, August 1969 and I was starting my first day’s work at Standard-Triumph Motor Company in Coventry. Full of anticipation I parked my old 1951 Riley and made my way to ‘Ivy Cottage’, the reception area, and asked for Harold Knibbs, who was to become my manager. My interview with Mr. Knibbs had gone far better than expected and I was duly given the job. He was an affable gentleman of the old school, well dressed and very polite.
My father had worked at the company during WW2, and was a friend of long-standing with John Bevington who, at that time, was Personnel Manager, or so I believe. They both enjoyed trout fishing together and it was John Bevington who introduced Sir John Black to the sport. I remember my father telling me that one day he had a telephone call from John Bevington, telling him to be outside of the reception area at 11.00am where a car and driver would be waiting to take him to Billy Lane’s fishing tackle shop, in Coventry. Once there he was to choose some good quality trout fishing gear, creel, rods and flies etc, and the driver would pay for these items by cheque. The fishing gear was for Sir John, as he was going to try his hand at the sport. John Bevington had suggested my father choose the gear as he was an experienced fly fisherman. How Mr. Black got on with his sport is unknown to me, but my father and I spent many happy hours together fishing with John Bevington before, and for some time after, his retirement, until he decided in the early seventies to migrate to New Zealand with his long time friend Ken Green and family. Ken had just secured a position overseeing the distributorship in NZ. I continued corresponding with JB by letter as he had known me since my birth, until his death in the late seventies.