The Confidence of " C.P. and Co."
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London's Biggest Parcel-delivery and Luggage-in-advance House will Add 100 Niotorvans during 1913.
The letters " C.P. and Co." are known throughout the Metropolis and the Home Counties, as well as in other parts of the country. It is hardly necessary for us to recall to the minds of readers that they signify the enterprising house of The outer enclosed areas are those termed the " Home Counties Motor Express."
Carter, Paterson and Co., Ltd. The motor developments of that pioneer parcel-collecting and delivery company have been chronicled in the pages of TEE COMMERCIAL MOTOR, on various occasions during the past eight yeare. The growth of the motorvan branch has been highly satisfactory, from the standpoint of anybody who is a believer in mechanical transport, and the results, we are able to state, have fully justified the initial enthusiasm that was displayed by some members of the Paterson family in the undertaking.
First Motor in 1898.
The first purchase of a motorvan was made in 1898, but about that vehicle we do not purpose to write. The yam caught fire, and burnt down a big sorting station. II was a premature essay in motor haulage. The year 1902-1903 witnessed the purchase of six Straker steam wagons, which vehicles did excellent and sustained service for their owners, and were only sold out of service when petrol-driven vehicles had developed to the point that they were proved to be more suitable than steam-propelled types in the ela.sv of traffic under notice. Each year since 1903 has witnessed an extension of the motor department, and the total motor plant by the end of 1913 will be not very far short of 300 vehicles in all. All will be of internal-combustion types—Leyland, Dennis Napier, Straker-Squire and Thornycroft makes.
Extending Radius of Delivery.
Depot-to-depot haulage was almost the sole use until about the year 1908. By February, 1911, however, a very considerable proportion of the total motor work was also in respect of direct deliveries to the addresses of consignees. We reproduce a map which shows on it inner complete boundary the limits of the London and suburban delivery, practically all wh:ch have three deliveries a day: it is largely since Februaey, 191% that the extensions into the other enclosed areas have been accomplished, and we may remark that considerable further extensions are in hand or contemplated It will he observed that points between 20 and 25 miles from London are common in this map, and the whole of these enjoy a delivery at least once daily. The month to which we have referred, February, 1911, witnessed the establishment of the "Home Counties Services," under C.P. and Co. management, and the equipment of its first all-motor depot.
Comparisons with Horses.
In chatting one day recently with two of the directors of Carter, Paterson and Co., Ltd., on the occasion of a visit to the chief office in Goswell Road, E.C., we learnt that the company's present fleet of motors, which may be taken to he at the moment in the vicinity of 200, does the work which is equivalent to at least 1200 horses. It is thus evident that this highly-experienced company confirms a minimum ratio of 6 to 1 for horse v. motor. Of course, where the smaller vans are coreerned, the ratio probably falls to 3 to 1, whilst it rises in respect of the heavy depot.to-depot work upon which three-tonnere are chiefly employed. It is the three-tanner which proves to fill the bill for that class of work, whilst the 15-cwt. or one-ton van is handiest for express town and suburban work.
The Classes of Service.
An interesting development is the separation of the motor fleets into three broad divisions. The first of these, of the heavier load capacities, are used from depot to depot, and on other long-distance rune. These are timed services, and they are performed with the regularity of the best railway trains. Next we have the motorvans on regular district work, whilst the other section may be termed the "non-timed " vans, which are of the smaller sizes, and are provided to supplement the larger sections, or timed services, to cut out delays, and to deal with urgent orders precisely as they offer. These smaller vans, the total of which is being quickly increased, will take loads from any of the company's booking offices direct to the destination, or from the sender's premises to the consignee's house. They are painted bright blue, and they are already becoming a feature: they deal with unexpected developments, and "rush" orders.
The Home Counties Vans.
The work done by the vans on the " Home Counties Services," and by those vans which run on point-to-point services to and from many towns within 80 miles of London, is such that it would be almost impossible to say how valuable they are, both to their owners and to those who give them work. Their work i5 not strictly comparable with that which was or is at any time done by horses, but is of the horsecorn-rail variety, but it may be stated that, without exception, these vans are much quicker than any alternative methods of transport. They are particularly useful in connection with advance luggage to seaside resorts such 04 Margate, Brighton, Eastbourne, etc.
On Saturday morning last, on the occasion of a visit of inspection to the company's depot at Manor Gate Road, Norbiton. near Kingston-on-Thames, we found 11 machines employed—six 30 hp. Dennis two-tonners, and five 35-40 h.p. Leyland three-tonners. These machines give a daily delivery into Weybridge, Walton, 13yfleet, Chertsey, etc., etc., and the sorting and other organized arrangements are ideal. The whole of the South-Western suburbs and " hinterland " are covered from a group of six depots (Norbiton, Brentford, Sutton, Kingston, Richmond, and Woking). We gather that approximately 4000 parcels per day are received and despatched, at Norbiton alone, and here 120 men and boys are employed. We reproduce some of the company's typical scales of rates. These must be intelligently read.
Ac to the future, we learn that the company will maintain its old policy of providing for its patrons the best, speediest and most reliable service for the delivery of parcels and goods of all kinds in London and the district surrounding it. Whilst motors are likely to predominate, especially in the extensions, the company will avail itself of its acquired experience, and will combine all the best points of both horse and motor conveyance. The horse delivery, we gather, is utilized when speed is not a factor, which is often. It is not likely that even the present total of horses will be maintained, and numerous all-motor depots will be the rule in 1913. The substitution of horses by motors will be undertaken, in all cases, as speedily as possible, wherever it is found to he necessary.
On the strictly-business side, contracting firms who require to send large quantities of traffic, can make special terms with Carter, Paterson and Co. We commend such a proposal to the serious consideration of those of our readers who are interested, because they can rely upon the best attention and service.
On the question of economy, the directors of Carter, Paterson and Co., Ltd., will not go farther than to agree with us that costs of running chow an improvement of fully 30 per cent, in respect of up-to-date models, compared with the best. that was obtainable five years awo.