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Dodge Kew on magazine cover

Dodge Kew Owners

I am hoping to build a simple but useful register of Dodge owners in the UK, this page for owners of the Dodge Kew in particular. Finding parts for all Dodge trucks, particularly for the more obscure civilian or military variants, is less than easy especially in the UK.

Hopefully if people sign up to this simple Kew register (click here to join the Dodge register) it'll help people get in touch with fellow owners of Kew Dodges, restored or rusty.
[NEW! Dodge Kew Page 2!]

1957 Dodge Kew
Built 1957 Kew (England)
Dodge Kew
Known History (courtesy Griffin Trust) : Mr Holmes bought the Dodge Tipper in 1957 from an auction to carry bulk coal to the power stations. In 1967 after working day and night for ten hard years, the tipper body was removed and the chassis extended by four foot to take a flatdeck body to deliver bagged coal. In 1976 it took it's last work breath after throwing a con-rod through the side of the engine block. It was towed back to the coal yard and used for parts to keep the other Dodge's on the road. A Mr Clegg from Yorkshire purchased the Dodge in 1982 for restoration, but sadly died before the project was finished. Christine Thomas purchased it in November 2002 from Leeds where it had stood for some time. It has now been fully restored, and has a sister Kew which is being readied for restoration. This type of truck was featured in the 1956 film "Hell Driver's" starring Stanley Baker and Patrick McGoohan, and a young Sean Connery. It has recently been shown on Carlton Movie channel. Spare parts are a particular problem as few of these models still exist today. However it is hoped that we can use these pages to bring together like-minded individuals who have an interest in the Kew Dodge Trucks of the 1950's.
Dodge Kew
The grey Kew Dodge (6 ton) is powered by a Chrysler six cylinder sidevalve engine, purchased new in 1957 by a Mr Hall of Connahs Quay, North Wales. He was the local coal merchant, and owned a fleet of Dodges.
The Dodge was found in 2002 as chassis cab in a very poor state with vegetation taking a very firm hold, the rear body had disintegrated, the near side window screen and bonnet was missing, and after standing outside for more than 30 years the weather has attacked the tinwork of the cab, and all the gauges on the dash panel are smashed.
In order to restore this truck another cab would be needed, the hope of finding one in this country will be near impossible, so maybe a cab could be found in Australia or New Zealand - if you could assist in any way in this search we would be most grateful - Kew Dodges in Australia were named Desoto, or Fargo.
Dodge Kew
This Dodge (above) was the first truck to be purchased by the Ritches family in Haddington near Edinburgh. Their business was market gardens, and the truck was used to take their produce to market twice a week. As the years followed, more trucks were added to the business. They were asked if they could transport other people's produce, and a new arm of their business started in 1954 as a haulage company. More money was being made from haulage than market garden, so the area was made into warehousing and a large haulage yard. Today Ritches tranport runs a large fleet of trucks.
Christine advertised for Kew Dodge spares in all the transport mags, and the advert was read by one of Ritches drivers who knew the Ritches family still had their first Dodge parked in a shed. Although worse for wear, one of the Ritches brothers rang Christine and offered their Dodge FOC, so the next week it was transported by them to Ellesmere Port.
On inspection the Kew Dodge is a 1952, 6 ton model with a Perkins P6 engine. The cab is in a very poor state and the rear body is rotten, but at leased another Dodge has been saved!
1962 Dodge Tipper
Joe Cornford
Built in Britian & restored from a derelict state.
1958 Dodge ?? Tipper
Joe Cornford
Model unknown, photos to follow.
1960s Kew-built Dodge
George Taylor
One of many Dodge trucks books on sale
One of many Dodge trucks books on sale
Click here for these and other Old Dodge Trucks books for sale!
Hell Drivers out on DVD, probably the most famous appearances ever of Kew Dodges being worked to the limit back in 1957
Click here to buy the DVD
1941 Job Rated Dodge advert
Kew Dodge advert
Military WW2 Dodge ambulance
Civilian US Dodge pickup