Pat Conroy - Castle Oliver, Limerick, Ireland

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Faulkner
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Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2004 6:59 pm
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Pat Conroy - Castle Oliver, Limerick, Ireland

Post by Faulkner »

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Where to begin. Where to begin!

Pat Conroy is the proud owner of three 1959 Plymouths, two of which are road-worthy, all originally assembled as Canadian exports in the F.M. Summerfield Ltd. plant in Dublin, Ireland. The stories behind these cars will unfold in this Showcase entry, but suffice it to say for now that one of the three ended up being a donor car for the first; the end result, that Pat now has a drivable two-door Belvedere sedan and four-door limousine (stretched in Belgium, before its arrival in Dublin). As full time Restorationist-in-Residence at Castle Oliver in Limerick, Ireland (and more about that later), many of Pat's pictures of his cars are taken on the Castle grounds. Here's a wonderful sampling of the two vehicles together, before we jump into the stories.

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Quite the Address!
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Note the red leather interior on the limo!
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Some more pix of the pair, out and about
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"If it's new, Plymouth's got it!"
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Faulkner
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Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2004 6:59 pm
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Re: Pat Conroy - Castle Oliver, Limerick, Ireland

Post by Faulkner »

In 1959, 12 four-door sedans (saloons, in Irish and British parlance) and 24 seven-seater limousines were produced in the Summerfield plant, all marketed as Belvederes, all right-hand drive. (All of the limousines were first stretched in Belgium before shipment to Ireland as "Completely Knocked Down" (CKD) units for assembly at the plant.) In 1960, a dozen left-hand drive limousines were also assembled at Summerfield, the Canadian manufacturing plant that sourced them having switched over to LHD; still, using the 1959 body shell. These were the last Plymouths produced at Summerfield.

Some time in the 1970's, an enterprising funeral director converted a 1959 four-door sedan into a hearse, and in the process had the rear doors welded shut to make a two-door:

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The hearse even made Dean Reader's pictoral history!


The vehicle passed hands and came to Pat's attention in 1990, and he decided he had to have it; with the full intention of returning it to a car. He removed the hearse addition, and disassembled down to the frame to commence restoration activity - all the while on the lookout for a donor car, to contribute the rear roof section, rear window, trunk and trunk surround which had all been lost in the hearse conversion.

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"If it's new, Plymouth's got it!"
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Faulkner
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Re: Pat Conroy - Castle Oliver, Limerick, Ireland

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As luck would have it, one of the '59 LHD limousines (assembled in 1960) became available! For years in the eighties it had sat outside "Crazy Joe's" nightclub in Dublin, painted a lovely shade of pink.

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Pat Conroy wrote:Shortly after buying my hearse/saloon in 1990 my search began for a donor. The LHD pink limo came up for sale in Dublin. Yes I had only one intention and that was to chop off a section of roof, rear screen and trunk rim. At the time the limo was driving perfect, original straight 6 motor, beautiful cream leather interior and the body was in very good condition. It would have been a terrible mistake to destroy this car so I decided to put it up for sale as I really didn’t want a limousine anyway.
"If it's new, Plymouth's got it!"
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