Washington 2014

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50 Years a New Town..

The Clan Crusader was produced between 1971 and 1973 by the Clan

Motor Company at their factory on the Crowther Industrial Estate, Washington, County Durham, now Tyne & Wear.

Washington is very proud of its heritage and the fact that the Clan Crusader was the first Car to be produced there, now everyone tends only to think of Nissan and Clan Owners Club members have provided cars for a number of Heritage Events in the area over recent years.  The Club held the 40th Anniversary of the Crusader in Washington in 2011 which culminated with a 46 car display at the Galleries Shopping Centre.

Around three months ago the Club received a request from Jennifer Beavis, Marketing Coordinator, for a Clan Crusader to form the centre piece of a display that the Galleries Shopping Centre were proposing to celebrate their 40th Anniversary and the 50th Anniversary of Washington New Town.  After some discussion it was decide that a Car would be required for 14 days from 13th to 27th July and I was delighted to oblige by providing my Yellow Clan Car to sit alongside a Nissan Leaf electric car, thereby showing how car production in the area has changed over the last 40 years.  A Heritage trail has been created in the Shopping Centre depicting important points in Washington’s History and this Includes the Clan Motor Company.

The display opened on 14th July and ran until 27th July 2014 with a full day of Celebration taking place on 23rd July, 50 years after the “Washington New Town (Designated) Order 1964” was made.  In the first few hours of the 14th many visitors to the Galleries were relating tales of how as children they could remember the Crusader being produced, how they or a relative worked at the factory and remembering the visit of the Duke of Edinburgh to the factory in 1972.

The Clan Owners Club is still in regular contact with the founder and Managing Director of the Clan Motor Company, Paul Haussauer and the factory building where the car was produced still exists, although today it is part of a company manufacturing floral products.