THE days are long gone when motor cars were manufactured in Bournemouth and the surrounding area.

But before the Second World War a number of cars were made locally and the Society of Automotive Historians is currently researching the subject. And they would like to hear from anyone who has any information about them.

Two cars, the Palm and the Palmerston, were built by three brothers, Harold, Howard and Herbert Bullock in Boscombe in the early 1920s. "The firm employed its own pattern maker and moulder, undertook its own casting work, but contracted its gearing work to Hunt & Co of Holdenhurst Road," said Michael Worthington-Williams who is on

The Palmerston was manufactured between 1920 and 1923 and the Palm from 1922-23 and cost £250. A national motoring magazine described the baby car as "simple and pleasing" and it did an impressive 55 miles to the gallon.

"The firm exhibited the smaller model at the 1920 Motor Show (at the White City overspill) and advertised in the motoring press for several years, although they never exhibited again.

"Harold Bullock later turned to building caravans; one of the others later built a miniature railway at Camberley, while a third became well-known to BBC listeners on the Brains Trust programmes."

Mr Worthington-Williams ascertained that a Palmerston car took part in a trial organised by the Bournemouth and District Motorcycle and Light Car Club in 1921.

"The course was extremely rough and although the Palmerston, driven by Mr Bullock, managed to reach the summit of the highest hill on the trial, it managed to break its steering arm which meant it had to withdraw from the event."

The other pre-Second World War cars the automotive historians are researching include: Urecar (1923 only) made in Bournemouth; the Christchurch-Campbell (1922 only) made by J Campbell Ltd.