Riley Archives News

RAP Communication Newsletter August 2019  Introduction:

For this as an illustrated pdf  click on Martin below and it will be emailed to you on request

This is the second communication newsletter about the current status of the Riley Archive Project (RAP). The first was published in November 2014. A series of newsletters will follow in the future that will update members of Riley based car clubs in the UK and around the world on the progress of the project.
Riley Cars Heritage Trust (RCHT):
In 2013 the Association of Riley Clubs (ARC) transferred the assets of the original Haviland and Morris Museum Trust that was established in 1973 into the newly formed Riley Cars Heritage Trust (RCHT) with the idea to promote the Riley name and heritage. The RCHT focussed its efforts on a specific project to recreate Percy Riley's original 1898 car. This has been very successful and it is now a static display with on-going work to build and install a running engine and transmission.
The Riley Archive Project (RAP):
The RAP was set up in 2014 with a Steering Group of enthusiasts from across the Riley world to preserve artefacts and ephemera of all Riley cars fromTri-Cars to Elves. The patron is Victor Riley who has been a driving force behind the project. A web site has been created and is still under development -http://www.rileyarchives.com ( It will be under permanent'construction . . .  webmaster)
The relationship between the RCHT and RAP can best be illustrated by the chart shown below. The arrows signify the archive material flow from the three main Riley clubs in the UK but of course, involvement and archive material from any other club would be most welcome.

Vision of the Project:
The project vision statement has been agreed by the original Steering Group of the RAP as follows:
A permanent establishment for the preservation and projection of the Riley heritage in Coventry from weaving to motor cars and for all successor Riley products in the wider world, and to be a centre for education and research for all who have an interest in the place of Riley within the history of UK manufacturing.
Where we are so far:
There was an initial project launch lunch held in March 2018 in the Lord Mayor’s Hospitality Suite in Coventry. In 2018 the project was presented at Riley Coventry Rally, the NEC (on the Riley Motor Club stand), VSCC Prescott (on Riley Register stand) and at the Riley
Register AGM in September. Several items of print have been designed to highlight the project’s progress together with two “pop-up” RAP displays, which were displayed at NEC in March 2019 for the first time along with the 1903 Riley bike. On 28th June 2019 a second inaugural lunch was held at the medieval Guildhall in Coventry to highlight the progress so far and provide some much needed funds for the project. A draft Business Plan has been developed and this will provide a model for moving forward with the project.
On 19th June 2019 the Riley Archive Project formally took over the keys to Unit 8, Coventry Canal Basin, CV1 4BY on a 5-year lease basis with RCHT as the leaseholders; thus providing a permanent base to move the project forward. The unit is now in the process of being painted and equipped with tables and chairs, etc.
Our immediate next steps:
With the lease secured until 2024 the decision was made to formally constitute a Management Group formed of members from all three clubs - Riley Motor Club, Riley Register and Riley RM Club; thus ensuring there is good representation from all Riley enthusiasts irrespective of the club/s they belong to. This is an “across the board” project, not run by any specific club.
The inaugural meeting of the Riley Archive Management Group (RAPMG) was held on 16th July 2019 with representation from RAPMG members, RCHT Trustees, Riley Register Coventry & Warks members and City of Coventry Culture. The meeting focussed on achieving an improved level of understanding amongst the attendees, allocated people to key roles and agreed some action points. The next meeting of the RAPMG is being held on 15th August where we will be focussing on identifying key action points for the short to medium term as well as determining the type and extent of the archival storage and database requirements.
In addition to the “in-house” work, a visit is being planned to the Bristol Owners Heritage Trust archives to see how this organisation went about their own archival and storage arrangements.
City of Coventry 2021:
Coventry is the City of Culture for 2021 and there is a lot of activity and excitement within Coventry City Council regarding this prestigious year of events.
Author: Martin Collisson. RAP Comms/Publicity. 25/07/2019

July 2019




July 2019 The Archives in physical format is happening. They now have the keys to 8 Canal Basin in Coventry off the Foleshill Road provided at a peppercorn rent by Coventry City Council. This is a tiny building to hold Percy's replica car, engines and exhibits and allow the rest to be collated, digitised and sorted ie baby steps due to financial constraints. It is intended to be open by Autumn for certain days and will be announced properly with a press release etc. Anyone with items rather than paper as exhibits please contact Adrian.



July 2019 The poster of all Riley models is now printed and £24.00 posted in the UK or £20 collected at rally's or from Adrian or via the button below (this will connect to my personal shop as I already have a Paypal account so can  repay Adrian whilst the Archives are sorting business/charity bank accounts) . It is A2 and tubed so over size for normal economic posting but can come with a courier or parcel force. For overseas do enquire and best to order multiple copies as cheaper


April 2019 Another fundraising lunch at the Guildhall 28th  June 2019... contact Adrian

Riley Rallies 2019:- Non members and prospective buyers are welcome as most models will be on display some offer test drives and questions can be asked. Regalia will be on sale and often some used spares but new spares involve you being a member due to product liability laws

The Riley Register 62nd Coventry Rally  at Wroxall Abbey Estate 29th – 30th June 2019

The Riley RM Club 50th  Rally  at Warwick School 19th – 21st July 2019 (CV34 6PP)

The Riley Motor Club  6th – 8th September East Anglia Centre, Ufford Park Woodbridge Hotel, Melton

January 2019: Offers from Coventry council now need funding, spreadsheets and an official 'bean counter'. Plus another Archives funding lunch in Coventry is pencilled in for  Friday June 28th  at the Guildhall, Coventry open to all clubs and interested parties. (Memo  to attendees park and ride is less stressful as many city centre car parks are 'Mini' sized and larger cars do not fit the barriers)

2018; Many many discussions with Coventry council who are very intereteted and backing the ideas of the Archives as an asset to Coventry's historic past linking the weaving industry, cyles and early motoring

March 2018: The project started with an inaugural dinner in Coventry to raise funds (about £1000) and to check the feasibility of the project. The website was flung together hurriedly to exist as something'concrete' happening and will be a permanently updating feature as more is dicovered and later information re archives contents is added .