Bertie Bertie

2/2/1908 - 0/10/1989

Record updated

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Bernard Ernest Bradnack was born in Walsall, Staffordshire and founded Walsall Pressings in 1946.

He drove a Cooper Mk VII Norton through 1953 and '54, he managed some respectable results in spite of his 18 stones, a sixth in the final at Castle Combe in April, '53 and the same in the Easter 20 final at Brands and sixth again in his heat at Ibsley on 18th April. In August he took a fourth in the prestigious Commander Yorke Trophy at Silverstone but failed to finish after a shunt and gearbox problems at Agen, in France in September.

At Brands, Easter '54, Bertie took fifth in the Junior final then seventh at Snetterton on 24th April. After this he moved into sports car categories and occasional rallies.

The wishbone mounting lugs on a Cooper chassis are known as 'Bradnack Lugs'. Coopers had struggled to cut them out of scrap until Bertie and Walsall Pressings stepped in.

He started to construct an Formula 2 car, the Woden, built around an HAR chassis with the intention of fitting a Bristol engine.

He briefly became Team Manager of BRM, appointed by fellow West Midlands industrialist Alfred Owen. However he resigned during their first race meeting with him 'in charge' due mainly because Raymond Mays and Peter Berthon completely ignored him.

Walsall Pressings was originally sited in Cecil Street to the east of Walsall in the Butts area and moved to the existing site in 1956. In the early sixties the company began designing and making proprietary goods such as sports mirrors, sun roof packages and prestige steering wheels. The famous Walpres Racing mirrors remain highly collectable and are still to this day fitted to modern classics.