Riley at the Casino

Just along the road from Menton in the South of France (I have quite a few postcards from there – See Menton Crossing), heading east into Italy, you come to San Remo, the subject of today’s post. Here we have the magnificent Casino Municipale. I love the little shops built beneath its gardens on the approach road up to the casino. You can just imagine the high class goods for sale there. Handbags, leather goods, silk blouses, jewellry, perfume, watches. I wonder whether they sold more to those walking up the ramp or more to those coming down.

Anyway, what caught my eye in this postcard was the Riley RM parked down on the road. Like the Humber in the last post, a Brit along way from home. You can see the GB plate on the back.

RM rileys were built the old fashioned way with an ash frame on top of a steel chassis with metal body panels attached. The roof was also constructed with a wooden frame onto which was attached a perforated metal sheet. On top of this was wadding and then a hessian covering over which was stretched a synthetic fabric called Everflex. This looked like the later vinyl roofs, which became popular in the seventies.

The roof was strong enough, but I am still surprised to see a large roof rack atop this RM’s roof. There’s nothing on it in the photo, but I can just imagine the suitcases strapped to it as the car motored down through France from Calais.

So, LXB872, what happened to you? The XB indicates that you were first registered in London. I contacted the registrar of the Riley RM Owners’ Club but he has no record of you. He has an LXB 876, which surely sat in the same showroom, but not the car that made it down to San Remo.

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