I have always had an interest in Aviation, Motorcycles, Motor-sport and Model-making. I slot raced on a very limited budget at the very end of the 1960's slot car boom on the big AMF board tracks that were once a feature in many amusement arcades and holiday camps and built countless Airfix kits of aircraft, cars and ships as well as several balsa and tissue gliders and rubber powered flying models.
In the 1960's my parents took me to local motocross meetings where I was fortunate enough to see all the stars from that great era such as the Lampkin brothers, Geoff Smith, Vic Eastwood, Bryan Goss, John Banks, Bryan Wade and my particular hero Dave Bickers
I later helped the fuel and oil man in the pits at Rayleigh Speedway and traveled to other tracks to see the greats like Barry Briggs, Ronnie Moore, Ivan Mauger and Peter Collins.
I also helped grass track rider Graham Wiltshire for about 3 seasons and traveled all over Kent, Essex and the South Midlands with him pushing and fuelling his 350 and 500 JAP engined Ian Towns Specials. After Graham moved away to Devon I spent a short time as helper for ex Eastern Centre Champion Tony Rhile.
I have also been an occasional competitor in motorcycle trials initially on a BSA Bantam followed by a 170cc Cotton Cavalier and a 250cc Montesa UKR and was an occasional spectator at road race meetings watching Barry Sheene, Peter Williams and others including Phil Read and Franco Bonera on the MV's. Who can ever forget the amazing sound of an MV on full song!
In the early 70's I was a volunteer at the Historic Aircraft Museum, Southend, the first purpose built commercial aircraft museum in the UK, helping with aircraft restoration and I worked there full time during school holidays. During the last 40 years I have also toured the UK and parts of Europe visiting airfields and air shows to photograph aircraft.
In 1982 I met motor-sport photographer and model builder Gordon Dawkins who recommended me for a job at Lambert Ley Street Models which, at that time, was one of the largest and best known model car specialists in the world.
I left Lamberts in 1988 and set up my own model shop initially in Southend and later at Brands Hatch Circuit but was forced to close in 1995 due to the effects of the recession.
During this time I was a regular visitor to Le Mans 24 Hour race and many UK circuits where I photographed most of the cars which competed in sportscar races during the Group C era as well as Formula 3, Touring Cars and Rallycross.
I moved on to work for Barry Playle who was relaunching Hawke Racing Cars with a new Formula Renault Sport design but the project foundered due to lack of funds after a major client pulled the plug on a lot of the work in Barry's main business.
From 1997 I was employed at Carr Collectables by Paul Carr, a specialist in Matchbox Toys, and together we expanded the business to include, diecast cars, motorcycles and aircraft plus slot cars, model railways and plastic kits but following the closure of Carr Collectables I decided to use Ebay to sell part of my collection and my remaining stock from my old business and chose Autoavia as my trading name as I felt it reflected the items that I sold.
This website is an extension of my Ebay trading and I will be stocking new and secondhand diecast model cars (with an emphasis on motor-sport related models), scale model motorcycles and scale model aircraft as well as other motoring, motor-sport, motorcycle and aviation collectables and memorabilia.