There's a photo of a fleet of brandnew (panda) Imps outside Little Park Street: the Coventry City Police proudly presented their Imps.
Alan Colman of the West Midlands Police is researching vehicles used by his force from 1900 onwards.
Dunbartonshire Police used Imps, too.
"Specially equipped Hillman Imps have been supplied by Rootes (Scotland) Ltd. to Dunbartonshire police for patrolling congested holiday traffic roads along Loch Lomond, Loch Long and the Gareloch. The cars, which have seating for only the driver and carry extensive special equipment, will operate in pairs linked by radio telephone. A special blue and white colour scheme makes the cars very conspicious."
News and views : Loch Lomond Imps. - Autocar 1967, June 15
In the sixties the police motorcycles previously utilised by Dunbartonshire Police Force for escort duty were replaced by two standard Hillman Imp Police Cars, one was blue and the other was white in colour. The chief mechanic then decided to swap the respective doors, boot lids and engine covers of both cars to form a 'panda effect'. Both cars were used along the scenic A82 Loch Lomondshire road as basic escorts, using a leap frogging system of one imp going ahead of the other and stopping oncoming traffic where the roads were sufficiently narrowed. Their high profile appearance soon made them a tourist attraction at every rest stop with the subsequent nickname of Pinky and Perky attributed by police and public alike.
Mike Scott, Grampian & Highland ACO and owner of the well-known Dunbartonshire Police Imp replica, send me this text (shortly after Imp 98):
Dunbartonshire Hillman Imp Police Cars
One of the areas covered by the then Dunbartonshire Police Force (Present Strathclyde Force) was the scenic A82 Loch Lomondside road which ran from Dumbarton to Fort William. In the sixties it was a narrow twisty road which followed the contours of the lochside with road traffic enduring the consequences of meeting oncoming vehicles at every corner whilst trying to take in the scenic splendour.
At that time the police motorcycles previously utilised for escort duty were replaced by two standard Hillman Imp Police Cars, one was blue and the other was white in colour. The Chief Mechanic decided to swap the respective doors, boot lids and engine covers of both cars to form a 'panda effect' without the need of paint resprays.
External equipment comprised the fitting of a bonnet mounted siren, roof mounted hazard orange indicators, Marschal roof beacon, rally spotlight with internal handle and P.A. loudspeaker.
The equipment carried was as follows:-
Both cars were used together in 'wide load' scenarios which comprised of basic escorting until the roadways narrowed sufficiently to utilise a system of 'leap-frogging' the vehicle between the lay-bys available. This involved one Imp going ahead and stopping oncoming traffic at a predetermined point and radioing the other Imp that the road ahead was clear. In many locations the radios were inoperative and the first public car stopped would be allowed to carry this message to the awaiting convoy at the last lay-by.
When not involved in their specialist wide load duties both cars were utilised in normal one man patrol duties attending at many road traffic and marine accidents on the Lochside. Their high profile appearance soon made them a tourist attraction at every rest stop with the subsequent nickname of "Pinky and Perky" being attributed to them by both police and public.
The cars tour of duty lasted four years until motor-cycles reclaimed their previous status. A serving Strathclyde Superintendent who drove the Imps latterly has stated that in nearly 30 years service he has never witnessed anything that was more effective in this scenario -a fitting tribute to the Loch Lomond Imps.
Strathclyde Police magazine, Oct. 1983 shows a photo of 'Pinky and Perky', the two Imps used by the Dunbartonshire Constabularly in 1967: GSN 840E and GSN 860E. The force bought a blue and a white Imp and swopped panels.
June 11, 2000 the North-east of Scotland Road Run was held. Scores of vintage trucks and haulage-associated vehicles first did the stage between Kendal and Lockerbie. Then came the old Carnation milk run from Dunfries, heading North to Aberdeen.
A restored Hillman Imp police car (that once escorted wide-load goods vehicles in Strathclyde) lead the rally's third stage, travelling from Stonehaven to Hunt, via Deeside and Donside.
The rally was first run in 1999.
Photo of MKN 106F taken by the Kent Police Photographic Department.
Maidstone, High Street.
Knott-End Coastguard history
When Fleetwood CoastGuard was issued with a Landrover their Hillman Imp (WLD 469G) was given to Knott-End CoastGuard.
see: Vanguard diecast model
The Imp makes an ideal car to learn to drive in:
small, nippy, nice clutch, light steering, good visibility, undeceptive lines, ...
|Police panda Sunbeam Imp by Corgi and Vanguard
The Imp Site