It’s a bitter sweet feeling when we say our final goodbye’s to a classic that’s been with us for a full restoration. Our gorgeous 1960 MG A has been with us for over a year, so we’ve got pretty used to seeing this beautiful car every day.
We’ve completed many an MG restoration over the years, but none quite tugged on our heartstrings quite like this one. Not least because of how beautiful the car is itself, but the owner Mike too, who’s won us over with the love he holds for this very special piece of history.
Mike is clearly besotted with his MGA, and rightly so. We too couldn’t help but swoon over the pictures of the MGA from back in her prime in the 70’s. “I was driven in this MGA on my wedding day, by my best man” Mike told us, “so it holds a very special place in my heart”.
After years searching for his beloved MG A, Mike eventually tracked her down. She’d spent 26 years stored in a barn, and although we could all see her potential, a lot of work needed to be done.
Mike had met the Bridge Classic Cars team years before, so knew we were the ones he wanted to bring his precious MGA back to life. We started work on the MGA by stripping the car bare and removing the engine to complete a full engine rebuild.
With the engine parts restored, any parts that couldn’t be restored replaced and a fresh coat of paint on the engine block, the engine was then fully reassembled and looked a treat.
The car’s shell was treated to a good rub down and primed, ahead of going into our specialist paint shop here at Bridge Classic Cars. With so much nostalgia attached to this car, Mike decided to keep her in the original signal red he knew and loved.
The MGA had a lot of mechanical and electrical work to have done to get her into full working order. Restoration work was carried out by Bridge Classic Car’s specialists technicians on the dashboard, suspension, gearbox and brakes.
It was then time for the Bridge Classic Cars specialist trim shop to work their magic on the cars interior. For a full interior restoration the MG A was given newly upholstered chairs, flooring, door and boot panels.
Not forgetting the MGA’s iconic soft top, which was also treated to a custom made roof by Bridge’s specialist trim shop team. All in-keeping with the original design of the car, but with a black roof, as per Mikes request.
With the final finishing touches added to this stunning car, including chrome bumpers, wing badges, a new windscreen and a spare tyre cover, the 1960 MG A was really starting to look like herself again.
As the entire car was undergoing a full restoration, most members of the Bridge Classic Cars family play a part in putting this beauty back together again. We are so chuffed with the final result – as is Mike!
Mike came to collect his pride and joy and was overwhelmed with the special memories this classic car brings back to him.
Mike marked the occasion with a special poem, written especially for us at Bridge Classic Cars.
From a barn to a palace – Bridge Classics.
From a palace to a crown.
The crown fits an Austin Princess,
But who now wears the crown?
1960 to 2020 – the story goes,
The crown was replaced by an octagon (no less!)
In which the immortal letters MG are found,
And in 60 long years,
She faithfully conveyed seven proud owners-
With assorted histories of lives lived and journeys made.
And where is she now?
Why back with me my lads and lassies,
My very first car!
Oh, what a star.
Come back from afar.
Thank you all, at Bridge Classic Cars’
We all wish Mike many more joyous road trips in his beautiful 1960 MG A, it’s been an absolute pleasure for us to restore. Happy driving Mike!
With our 1960 MGA nearing completion on it’s restoration journey with us it was time for the final photo shoot.
We wanted a nautical theme for our shoot as the owner has a keen interest in boats and with so many beautiful spot in and around Woodbridge we needed no further reason to get down to the water.
George, the Harbour Master at Ramsholt kindly allowed us access to this wonderful spot just outside the iconic The Ramsholt Arms Pub. Thank you so much for your hospitality and we hope Mike loves his photos just as much as he’ll love his car.
With our restoration really complete, the MGA’s owner, Mike came to give his car a test drive. It’s safe to say we think Mike is rather pleased with his beautiful, restored MGA.
Paul has now fitted the seatbelts and will continue test driving the car to ensure she is running perfectly before it returns to Mike.
The MGA seats are now fitted. Paul has repaired the seat rails and fitted both seats. The rails were angled in slightly which caused issues sliding them back and forth. They are now perfectly aligned for our seats to move correctly.
The windscreen has also now been installed into the car with handles in place. Paul has installed the door seals and chrome end caps.
Great work Paul, our 1960 MGA is looking absolutely marvellous now.
We’re nearing the end of this beautiful car’s restoration, we cannot wait to see the finished article now.
Kath and Brian have been working on our 1960 MGA interior. They firstly fitted the metal hood frame to the car.
Then Kath has covered the front header rail in fabric and stapled and glued into place.
Once the header rail was in place, Kath and Brian fitted the main hood cover over. They inserted the metal bar into the rear section, ready to clip onto the car. They then pulled the cover over and attached to the header rail ensuring that the tension was perfect before fully securing.
Kath then made some flange covers to cover up the copper ‘O’ ring.
She then finished off the soft top roof with final trim sewing and securing the header rail.
Next up, Kath and Brian marked out where the fixings attach to the hood, then fitted the roof to the car from the rear.
They then adjusted the front corners of the soft top and completed the job by fitting the front end cover.
Superb work, Kath and Brian. The attention to detail and craftsmanship in this hood is absolutely superb!
Brian has added a few additional touches to our MGA interior. He’s fitted edge trim around the wheel hole and added strengthened metal bars to the door cards.
We’ve also now fitted the seat runners to the seat frame.
Brian and Kath have continued working on our gorgeous 1960 MGA interior restoration.
They’ve glued and fitted the rear wheel arch carpets and fitted the rear bulkhead carpet, making sure to perfectly cut around the gearbox tunnel.
They then fitted the armrest, cutting around the handbrake lever. The gearstick surround carpet and the gearbox fennel carpet were then fitted. The black is beautifully offset by red piping to match the MGA’s exterior colour. The interior is really starting to come together as this restoration approaches completion.
The wheel arch panels have been fitted while the front door pockets were screwed into place.
The drivers footwell carpet required a 30mm hole for the front driver mat cap. Kath has sewn in a grommet to allow the carpet to be secured to the floor of the car. It’s in the little details that ensure the overall presentation of this car is excellent.
Moving down the rear of the car the boot is now complete. Kath and Brian made a bespoke great wheel cover and boot board.
Wonderful work, team!
Paul has handed the MGA over to Kath and Brian in the trim shop to begin the interior fit.
They’ve made light work getting all the panels fitted into the car. Even pre-cut kits still seem some adjustments to fit perfectly. We will update this blog when the interior fit is complete. Great start, Brian and Kath!
Mike Colyer has shared some wonderful photos of his MGA in it’s prime. We’re well underway restoring this wonderful classic. Soon it will be ready for many more photoshoots, looking just as good if not better than when it first rolled off the production line in 1960. We love seeing photos like this, do keep sending in images of your pride and joy.
More archived images sent through to us from Mike, owner of our 1960 MGA.
MDJ 783 MGA 1588CC MRK 1
HISTORY AND OWNERSHIP
I bought this beauty as my first car on 17th June 1970, from a friend who in 1975 bought it back from me.
In 1980, as my best man, he drove me to my wedding in it.
Subsequently, around 1985, he gave the car to his wife as part of their divorce settlement.
This lady happened to be a childhood friend (Les) from the age of 12 and in 2019 I tracked the car down to her new address in Shropshire, where it had lain in a barn for 28 years.
As a member of Porsche Club GB, in March 2019 I attended an Open Day at Bridge Classic Cars, Woodbridge, Suffolk. I was highly impressed with their operation and discussed the possibilities of restoring the MGA. Resulting from this, I contacted Les and bought it back from her at the agreed price.
The original intention was to re-commission the car to roadworthiness. HOWEVER, as the inspection and dismantlement progressed, the only option was to be a total restoration. As the owner of Bridge Classic put it, my car was: “A perfect example of hidden secrets”!
At the time of writing, the car is 80% finished to Concours condition.
First Registered to McLean & Appleton Ltd Motor Dealers. St Helens. Lancs. 01/07/1960
1st Owner: David Longshaw, Hale. Cheshire. 12/01/1961
2nd Owner: John Wainwright, Stalybridge. Cheshire. 16/01/1962
3rd Owner: M.E.J. Clements, Burton upon Trent. 30/12/1966
4th Owner: M.C. Colyer, Burton upon Trent. 17/06/1970
5th Owner: M.E.J. Clements, Burton upon Trent. 1975
6th Owner: Mrs. Leslie McLurg, Newport. Shropshire. 1985
7th Owner: M.C. Colyer, Barford. Norfolk. 12/07/2019
Michael C. Colyer 06/04/2020
Paul has recently fitted the wing badges and engine fan into the car.
Our MGA restoration continues as the soft-top is being stripped down. The metal components will be sandblasted and painted, while the fabric components will be re-upholstered in our trim shop.
Paul, Bob and Kath have all been making great progress on our beautiful 1960 MGA. Kath has now completed re-trimming the seats and dash surrounds. Bob has wired up the dash and instruments and Paul has fitted splash guards, full stainless steel exhaust and a new radiator fan and wiring. We’ve also got most parts assembled for the new heater unit.
The next stages will be to assemble and fit the heater unit and fit the new windscreen, complete with fresh chromework.
Our 1960 MGA is really taking shape now. Having recently had new chrome bumpers fitted by Paul, our MG edges nearer to completion.
Chris has now painted the MGA’s wheel arch lining ready for Paul to fit up to the car now.
Bob, Bridge Classic Cars’ wiring wizard has been working on wiring up the dash and instrumentation of our 1960 MGA. He’s connected the wiring loom from the engine bay, through the bulkhead and back into the vehicles cockpit.
Great work, Bob!
Is your classic vehicle in need of auto electrical assistance? Get in touch with our workshop today on 01473 742038.
Kath has been working on our lovely MGA restoration. She’s prepared the seats to be sandblasted and painted. Once this is done the seats can then be re-upholstered to the original specification.
Paul has been busy installing new components into our 1960 MG A’s engine bay. Paul has fitted the brake master cylinder, windscreen wiper motor, windscreen wiper reservoir, front wiring loom and the bulkhead chrome.
Chris has done a wonderful job on this MGA full respray. We’ve used a colour match to replicate the MGA’s original factory colour. This stunning red really is lovely. Now the body is back in our workshop, Paul can continue work on the mechanical restoration of this lovely 60s Classic. Great work, Team!
Chris is now so close to completing the paintwork on our 1960 MGA. All of the panels and main body have now been painted and cured. Chris will fit up the panels onto the car before giving her a good polish. Stay tuned to see the fully assembled rolling chassis back in the workshop soon for it’s restoration to continue.
Great work, Chris!
Chris is making great progress on our lovely 1960 MG MGA. He’s now primed all panels in white primer with a guide coat over the top. Chris has also applied colour-matched raptor paint to the underside panels to prevent future rust and corrosion.
The MGA will be entering the final stages of paint very soon and emerging reborn with stunning red paintwork. Great work, Chris!
Our MGA restoration has been progressing nicely. The body has been down in our in-house trim shop with Chris. Chris has been checking body panel fitment and making any nessasary adjustments for perfect panel gapping.
From this stage, the panels have been thoroughly prepared. Chris has sanded and filled in the panels multiple times to make sure the surface is perfect before it goes into paint.
Great work, Chris! We can’t wait to see how this MGA looks after painting!