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Reload this Page ARCHIVE: Leyland Motors Test Track, Leyland, 13-07-2010
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ARCHIVE: Leyland Motors Test Track, Leyland, 13-07-2010
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Arrow ARCHIVE: Leyland Motors Test Track, Leyland, 13-07-2010 - 13-07-2010, 16:06

With most places, there is an easy way in and a difficult way in. After half an hour walking round trying to find a diffcult way in (how to scale a 15 foot high concrete wall that's on an embankment?), I stumbled across the easy way in, which was about 30 feet away from the walk in access, and only 50 feet away from where I'd started in the first place.

Anyway, the explore. I don't know much history about this place, other than it was built in the late 70's at great expense for testing prototypes from the nearby Leyland Trucks empire. It was last used by Pilgrim, a Leyland Trucks subsidiary. Like the rest of the Leyland sites, the future for this place is yet another huge housing development.

Not a bad mooch as it's a huge place, although frankly most of it is either grass or road, and that starts to get boring quickly.

This was a fork in the road, not sure if the track could be used in two different directions?


You can see here the two man made hills for testing grip, hill starts and other fun stuff.

Some sort of tall garage unit with inspection pit. Notice the height - this was of course a truck testing track.

No idea when the track was last used but given the quality of the road surface, quite some time ago I'd suspect.

Not entirely sure what this once was, or even if it was something off a truck, but it was too good to miss.
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Default 13-07-2010, 18:45

Bloody hell - that's a blast from the past! I served my apprenticeship at Leyland motors in the early 80's and to a 16 year old this test track had the same effect as bees around the proverbial honey pot...

The track is basically is set out like a giant scalextric figure of 8 with negative cambers, bumps n cobbles to test out the trucks. We used to have competitions to see who could stay on the track all the way round whilst keeping the red light on (56mph) on the tacho.
The 'roadrunners' were easily the best at doing this, you could keep the tacho light on all the way if you kept the accelerator pedal flat down and held your nerve, the things stuck to the track like shit to a blanket!
As with all teenagers you tend to get a little 'cocky' and think you are better than you really are - we tried to do the same with a 16 speed left hand drive tractor unit, BIG mistake!!! The thing set off like a formula one car all was going good until we came to the bridge where the fig 8 crosses over itself, reaching the apex of the bridge had the effect of making us weightless and for a split second i was pinned to the cab roof, seconds later when i came back down i found myself in the passenger seat sat next to my mate!!!!!
There wasn't even enough time to scream before this out of control beast hurtled off the track at over 50mph with no one at the wheel. This thing ploughed a furrow about 3 foot deep for about 100yds before it finally dug itself into the ground upto it's axles.

Thanks for the memories Andy

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Default 14-07-2010, 09:42

Great report Andy, and info from Stew.

An old workmate of mine was a big fan of Pug 205s and when he'd rebuilt his 1.9 GTi took it here to try it out. But this was some years ago.

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