THEY’VE trundled along our roads since 1948 and have became an iconic part of British motoring history, typifying English eccentricity with their polished ash wood frames.

So when car dealer Bill Cook took possession of a Morris Minor Traveller in part exchange for a new Hyundai I10, he could not bear to see it meet the same fate as other cars heading for the end of the line under the Government’s used car scrappage scheme.

This is where people can get £2,000 off the price of a new car by selling their old vehicle.

Mr Cook, a 52-year-old father-of -two of Southchurch Boulevard, Southend, decided to mount a rescue mission to save the pristine 1967 Morris from the crusher’s jaws.

Mr Cook put up £1,000 of the £2,000 the customer would have got under the scheme, and Hyndai made up the difference. Now the car, which, for many, evokes memories of a gentler, unhurried age, will instead be auctioned for charity.

He said: “We saved it from going to scrap because we thought it would be nice to give it up for auction for Children in Need. I’ve seen all sorts brought in for the scrappage scheme, but when I saw the Morris I couldn’t send it off to be crushed.

“It’s in very good condition so should get a good price. We decided on Children in Need because it’s a very good cause. We are just trying to work out with Hyundai the details of the auction.”

The car is currently at the dealership’s Chelmsford branch, but the Southend Hyundai, on the A127 near the Bell will shortly announce details of the auction.