The Gables Garage, Rawreth, Wickford

A photograph from c. 1954.

Photograph provided by the owner of The Gables Garage.

The Gables Garage was on the opposite side of the road to The Carpenter’s Arms public house. Although no longer a garage, the buildings are still there as part of a used car sales business. The Carpenter’s Arms is now ‘Carpenters’, a restaurant.

Do you have memories of the garage? When did it stop being a garage?


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  • My father bought 3 cars there in the 1970s. His first purchase was an Austin 1100, which was a big improvement on his old Ford Popular 100E. I recall sitting on a rather worn out leather sofa in the front office of the garage while my father sorted out the paperwork.
    The main business at that time was used-car sales, but they still sold petrol from those old Esso pumps.
    They also had several vintage and classic cars in a covered shed behind the main car sales area. Some of the older vehicles were basket cases but a few were immaculate, and as a boy I was very excited to see a pristine Jaguar E-Type.
    Quite by accident, I visited the area in July 2005 and found the entire forecourt filled with old cars. Everything was being auctioned by Christie’s. It turned out those cars I saw back in the 1970s were part of a huge collection amassed by the garage owners, the Sharpe family, and they had kept most of the cars at their own Motor Museum in Ramsgate.

    By Stephen Oates (02/02/2023)

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