Warehouse Cache: Huge Barn Find in North London

Imagine for a moment that you are rather well-off; so well-off, in fact, that you have access to an enormous warehouse in London. What does one do with such a property? Why, stuff it to the gills with cars of every description, of course! In a year in which we have seen enormous collections come to the attention of the worldwide automotive community, this may be the one that takes the cake. This collection of 174 cars is located in the Orbital Business Park on Argon Road in Tottenham, in north London, and is advertised here on Instagram. If you manage to land one of these beauties, take note: there’s a car wash just down the way next to the Tesco. You’ll need it

The collection was opened for viewing on August 30, between the times of 11 am and 4 pm, and, boy, is there a lot to view! Looking at the walk-through, we can see well over a half-dozen MGBs of various years, two or more MG GTs, a MG TF, a Fiat 500, a very nice looking Rover P6, some Land Rovers (including a couple of Nineties models, a Lightweight, and a Defender), several Morris Minors, a parade of Minis, a 2CV, and I haven’t even started on the Germans. There is a 1973 Porsche 911 that looks like it may have had some work done, more VW Buses than you can shake a stick at, and examples of Mercedes from the 50’s on. Among the BMWs, there is a first generation M5 and a 2002 tii– a rare car, with only 422 ever having been produced. This list only scratches the surface: there may have been a partially disassembled Fifties Jag in there somewhere.

Almost all of these are filthy, lying under a thick layer of dust and bird droppings. The sellers state that the collection was started only eight years ago; it’s difficult to imagine how they’ve arrived in this state in such a short time, unless they were simply rolled in and left to rot. In the words of the sellers, “the dust is of course part of their current charm and will be the new owners pleasure to remove…” Yet not all were left exposed to the ravages of dirt and pigeons. One car among all these classics was granted a cover– and the sellers have left it covered in the photos. Which absolutely begs the question, if the previous owner felt it was worth covering, what is it, and why didn’t the sellers feel was worth uncovering?

While the sellers accepted sealed bids following the viewing, overall this seems to be a strange way to dispose of a large, neglected collection. The comprehensive list of all the cars that are for sale is conspicuous in its absence, and the instructions to neither touch nor sit in the cars are unreasonable. There’s just too much about a car that you can’t see without getting in. Those who showed up for the viewing were given a total of 15 minutes to make their assessments. That’s not per car, that’s the whole 174 of them. Needless to say, that’s nowhere near enough time to really judge what these vehicles might be worth. True, there are a few buyers out there that might be able to throw money at these with no concern for the outcome, but, with a couple of exceptions, these aren’t terribly rare cars and would mostly be of interest to the average enthusiast.

The advertisement states that it’s the sellers’ intention to list the cars that aren’t disposed of by sealed bid on eBay, but a cursory search doesn’t turn up listings by London Barn Finds on either the main eBay site or the UK site. Some posts on Instagram indicate that the eBay listings were active while the sellers were taking sealed bids; presumably, either these were in error and the sellers have yet to list the cars, or the listings were removed as bids were accepted. From the composition of the advertisement to the hurried viewing to the strange combination of sealed bid and eBay, something smells a little off about this one– and I’m not sure that’s just the nearby river. Still, who’s to say? If the goal is simply to empty this valuable commercial property as quickly as possible, and if the sealed bids were not satisfactory, then perhaps there are still some deals to be had.

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Comments

  1. Hoss

    That 1st picture looks like a bunch of dusty matchbox’s.

    Did anyone else think that ?

    Maybe I need to get new glasses. lol

    Like 42
    • Al

      I agree.
      I have a collection of matchbox toys just like these. My collection consists of 39 cars from Traction Avant to a Standard to a Volkswagen with oval window, 2 shorter lorries, a long lorry, car carrier, 7 dump trucks, a Euclid mining dump, horse van, crane, steam roller, cement mixer, Land Rover and others I don’t remember. The box just looks like the top photo.

      Like 4
    • Peter K

      I initially thought the same thing.

    • stu

      Hoss,

      Ya think…

  2. Will Fox

    Considering the restraints in place for bidders, with on 15 minutes to look over the entire collection, and no touching or sitting in the cars, I wouldn’t waste my time. You CANNOT assess a car’s condition under those conditions! The ‘looky but no touchy’ rule will steer many away from this. Besides; the viewing was 8/31—2 days ago now so all this is basically a non-issue.

    Like 18
    • Old Vehicle Nut

      Misterlou, I wrote him a helpful message. I doubt he’ll even read it.
      “Hey Fred, just a friendly FYI, if you want top dollar you should bring out one vehicle at a time and clean it to a sparkling shine. Drive it so you can properly describe every little flaw. Those are the very least. If you were in the market for an old vehicle, what would you want to know about it? You wouldn’t buy something, anything without knowing as much about it as possible. That is, if you’re a normal human being. Do all that and watch the bids build! Good luck.”

      Like 4
      • Old Vehicle Nut

        He DID answer back.

        “Thanks for your tips!

        I have a feeling that the dust adds to the romance
        but perhaps you’re right. I think recommissioning the engines so they start
        is important.

        Happy bidding buddy.

        -fredfromlondon”

        Like 2
  3. Ike Onick

    I hope those are parking tickets on the “windscreens”

  4. Rodney - GSM

    “Four Bangers and Mash”

    Like 2
  5. Martin

    I wonder if it is a car dealer’s stock of trade ins they never got around to moving on. Not many of them are particularly collectible, or at least they are odd choices.

    Like 7
  6. Frank Sumatra

    Mad Dogs and Englishmen

    Like 4
  7. Matt Watson

    There’s a walk-around video of some of this collection:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_KJwtCcPIo

    Like 5
  8. Mark

    If somebody was truly “collecting” these cars they must’ve had more money than they knew what to do with because of the condition they were left in. Windows missing and left open, convertible tops retracted etc. are certainly not ways that cars would be left for somebody that was collecting them. As stated in the article there is something very “fishy” about this group of automobiles!

    Like 5
  9. Lance

    This looks like an impound yard. Nothing really special here.

    Like 6
  10. Jack Quantrill

    Barn find heaven!

    Like 2
  11. Neil

    From reading elsewhere, it’s mostly junk. And it isn’t a real M5 😪

    Like 2
  12. Frank

    Looks like Wheeler Dealer will have plenty of vehicles this season to chose from.

    Like 2
  13. mark Member

    Of course it is screwed up. The seller let the EU bureaucrats handle the sell.

  14. Gerard Frederick

    A junk yard sale. Move on, nothing to see here.

    Like 1
  15. PeterfromOz

    I would think that the only person who would accept 15 minutes to inspect 174 cars would be a scrap metal merchant. A pity.

    Like 3
  16. Richard Martin

    Becky Evans who some may be aware of as a car fancier – a pretty one too, has a video of an inspection she made where she was interested in an M5 BMW – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2qp9_3mSK0&t=921s
    She lost interest when her friend discovered more than a little rust.

  17. Bill McCoskey

    Top 10 ways NOT to sell your car collection:

    1. Limit customers to under 6 seconds per vehicle [15 min divided by 174].
    2. Leave a thick layer of dirt on your vehicles.
    3. Misspell names of vehicles.
    4. Park cars so close together the doors cannot be opened.
    5. Tell buyers not to touch or enter vehicles.
    6. Tell all the buyers not to show up at once, & a 15 min viewing time limit.
    7. Provide absurdly high asking prices.
    8. Don’t provide ownership paperwork info.
    9. Be “very busy” when you post the ad, so you can’t answer questions.
    10. And finally, only accept cash payment on pickup of vehicle.

    Like 2
  18. Bill McCoskey

    An interesting YouTube video of this collection was posted on 9/4/21, by “The Bearded Explorer”, and it features rare vehicles like a lightweight Landrover.

    Like 1
  19. CJinSD

    The E28 M5 with registration number E868KOW was actually a 1987 520i automatic.

  20. jonny

    mmm,,, redcorns motors ?
    he didnt want to crush, which came through during scrappage
    i wonder ?

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