Used car dealership to move to new home in Shropshire after 150-year-old body repair shop puts site up for sale

  • Used car dealership Smithfield Motors to move to new premises
  • Outfit has bought site owned by Tudor Motor Body Repairs, which has been there since 1870
  • Deal means Market Drayton site will remain in the motor trade

Time 7:39 am, June 1, 2022

A used car dealership in Shropshire is to move to a site that has been home to a body repair shop for more than 150 years.

Smithfield Motors has bought the historic home of Tudor Motor Body Repairs, which has been based on the premises in Market Drayton since 1870.

It was only recently put on the market, when current boss Kevin Vernon decided to retire, and Smithfield Motors leapt at the chance to buy it.

The outfit, owned by local dealer Sam Edwards, will be moving to the site from its current location on the nearby Smithfield Road.

The site includes commercial buildings and a residential two-bedroom cottage, the Shropshire Star reports.

Toby Shaw, who handled the sale for surveyors Towler Shaw Roberts, was quoted as saying: ‘We are pleased to have been able to arrange the sale of such an iconic building which will continue to be involved with the automotive industry.

‘The site has so much history with Tudor Motor Body Repairs having evolved from coach builders and wheelwrights to specialists in the maintenance and restoration of classic sports cars.

‘We wish Kevin a happy retirement while we also wish Sam Edwards and Smithfield Motors every success in their new premises.’

Vernon, who joined Tudor Motor Body Repairs in 1976, said: ‘The company had been under continual ownership since 1870. Mr Tudor started the company on the site in 1870 and his two sons worked alongside him.

‘There was obviously no cars then, so it was repairing and building horse-drawn vehicles, coach builders and wheelwrights.

‘My grandmother used to clean for Mr Tudor, and my dad got a job there in February 1942 as an apprentice.’

He added: ‘It has been very sentimental. There was a lot of interest in the site when it went on the market.

‘I accepted this offer as opposed to others as the new owner will continue to operate as a garage, and I wish Sam and his team every success.’

Edwards, who established Smithfield Motors in 2020, said: ‘I think Kevin liked the fact the place was going to be carrying on as an automotive business rather than just an investment.

Jack Williams's avatar

Jack joined the Car Dealer team in 2021 as a staff writer. He previously worked as a national newspaper journalist for BNPS Press Agency. He has provided news and motoring stories for a number of national publications including The Sun, The Times and The Daily Mirror.

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