Aardman Animations are auctioning Wallace & Gromit creator Nick Park’s Austin A35 van, which inspired the anti-pesto van in The Curse of the Were – Rabbit.
The car is being auctioned on eBay, with the auction ending 27th October 2007.
All proceeds will be donated to The Wallace and Gromit Children’s Foundation.
“I’ve always been a fan of Austins and this particular vehicle inspired me to come up with the Anti-Pesto van that was central to the plot and rehabilitation of the vegetable eating ‘pests’ in Curse of the Were-Rabbit,” comments Nick. “The van needed to be big enough to transport Wallace’s invention the Bunvac 2000 while at the same time slick enough to go on high speed chases after the formidable Were-Rabbit, and the Austin was a perfect match.
“Good luck to everyone who bids and all proceeds will be donated to the Wallace and Gromit Children’s Foundation”.
The van was built in 1958 and was originally black, but there are no records about the history of the car prior to 1983 other than the factory record certificate which was obtained in 2005 (which will be given away with the van).
Aardman point out the van does not have an MOT and has been garaged since restoration in 2005. Restoration of the van included a full re-spray and reconditioning of the original engine. Although most parts are original, lights have been replaced and sills have been repaired during this restoration. The van has pop out indicators.
Aardman also say the van will have to be collected: they don’t think it will fit in the post…
• UPDATE: Tristan Loraine, from Horsham, bought the van for £8000, saying he bought the van on the “spur of the moment” to keep it in the UK.
“I thought there would be lots of bids for the van and thought it was important to keep it in the country.”
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.