MOT until 26/7/22
New drive shaft in 2022
New turbo in 2021
Engine size:2299 cc
I have been inspired by and fascinated with Victorian showman’s wagons for a long time now and knew that one day I would convert a van to showcase the style and opulence of these wonderful living vans- and here he is ‘Phineas, ‘the greatest showman!
So begins the tour of this spectacular van…
You enter from the gorgeous deep red, wooden stable door with a stunning cast iron, stained glass crittal window, believed to be from the 1930’s and is fully opening- you would not believe how often we have used this window.
I have collected various vintage pieces to use in the build. Most of the build is in mahogany, by upcycling 5 mahogany wardrobes as well as a huge mahogany linen press. The linen press was used to make the water closet door, the fridge/larder unit door, an end panel for the fireplace. The list goes on.
I fully restored an original 1940’s Kitchen Pride larder unit, which comes with the original information sheets for the young homemaker. Next to the larder is the copper sink and mahogany kitchen worktop, with a splash back of original handmade vintage tiles. Under the kitchen worktop are the large drawers from the mahogany linen press, offering so much storage space, there is an early 90’s burgundy full cooker, with 4 hobs, oven, and grill- we cooked a splendid full lamb Christmas dinner next to Whitby Abbey
As well as the diesel heater, the most prominent feature is the glorious fireplace, with a full mantelpiece. The mantelpiece, with a fiddle rail surround, was upcycled from a dresser which used to be in a public house and very nicely sets of the regal vintage ‘Queenie’ woodburning stove, an absolute joy to behold on a cold winters evening, supplying just the right amount of heat for the size of the van.
I have also put in a vintage writing bureau, perfect if you ever need to work from home ,with a useful glass fronted cabinet above. Under the bureau is a log store.
The dometic 65 litre compressor fridge freezer is only a few months old and is built into a larger space with a so much storage for food stuff, etc.
Phineas has a separate WC with a Thetford electric flush toilet and also a bidet wash (having travelled India we couldn’t be without one of these!)
The van has 4 Cladwells hopper-style windows, reclaimed from a 1980’s barge, all with removable top glass and are traditionally adorned with net curtains as was traditional in a showman’s wagon. Each window also has a mahogany surround, copper curtain poles and mahogany pelmets.
The walls are not covered in flock wallpaper, as people think at first glance, but in fact the van is covered from top to bottom in the same lavish burgundy and cream tapestry material as the curtains, which have tie backs made from the left-over material used to upholster the U-shaped lounge.
The plush deep burgundy U-shaped lounge can be re-figured into an L shaped lounge when the side door is fully open, this is a great option if you want a full view of your surroundings and if the weather is a bit iffy, the huge pull-out awning will keep you nice & dry.
Phineas’ flooring is exquisite, made with reclaimed mahogany floor tiles from a 1920s church hall which I then reworked into the herring bone pattern.
The van is a 2 berth- the be pulls out to a good size double with a massive amount of storage above. In fact, this van has storage everywhere! -: 10 top lockers, 6 mirrored, a mahogany 4 drawer chest, draws in the bureau, the storage choices are endless.
Other information: the van has 2 solar panels on the roof 520 watt, feeding a 220-amp battery which runs, no problem, 6 usb ports, 2 tv points,1 voltmeter and 14 LED lights. There is a diesel heater to keep you toasty if you don’t fancy lighting the vintage Queenie stove. He is insulated with 25mm Kingspan insulation under floor, above the ceiling and behind all walls- we have been able to camp in the van every month of the year. There is a LPG gas bottle refillable from the outside, 240 electric hook up socket and a 100 litre water tank.
The van has been uprated to 3950 kgs (which needs a C1 licence) as me and the wife are rather chunky plus we always carried a maxi scooter in the van, strapped down to D rings inside. Took it to the weigh bridge and the certificate comes in at 3320 with full 11kg gas bottle and half a tank of fuel.
This van needs to be seen to be fully appreciated but if you love being surrounded by history or hanker for a unique vintage feel to a van, Phineas will be perfect for you.
If the new owner were to take Phineas to Glastonbury and park him next to a brand new Winnebago, I can guarantee ‘the greatest showman’ will outshine them all!
This van is genuinely a one-off, bespoke never to be seen again conversion so if you have any questions, please call John on 07846627274
'We like the style' means that Quirky Campers would approve it for hiring but you must still check that the gas, electrics and weight were done properly. For some tips on what to look out for read this. If the listing has no Gas Safe certificate, no unladen weight and no electrical sign-off please proceed with caution!
Please note: Quirky Campers do not inspect the listings for accuracy or check campervans in person. We have asked sellers to provide evidence of certificates and paperwork however you MUST check yourself that the information provided is present and correct. You will need to exercise the normal due diligence when buying any vehicle.