The home of the campaign to preserve the Tyrrell F1 Shed
Nestling in the Surrey country side is a small and somewhat insignificance looking wooden shed. That shed however has a place in the history of Formula One. The area is soon to be redeveloped and a group of enthusiasts are hoping to move the shed to a new and permanent home with Brooklands Museum being a very suitable location. Here is some background to this quest:-
Ken Tyrrell was born on the 3rd of May 1924 at West Horsley, Surrey. During World War II he served in the RAF and became a flight engineer. In the late 1940s he started ‘Tyrrell Brothers Ltd’ with his brother Bert, a timber business based in Ockham, Surrey. In 1951 Ken visited Silverstone and became hooked on motor racing.
In 1952 he started his motor racing career at Snetterton in the 500cc Formula 3 class, driving a Norton-engined Cooper, but by 1959 he had decided to give up being a racing driver to concentrate on team management; he began using the Ockham premises and soon acquired a wooden ex-military building from the WRAC barracks in Stoughton, Guildford, and rebuilt it there as a new workshop for his Cooper Formula Junior Team. Constructed in six bays, the shed measures approximately 70ft long, 20 ft wide and 16ft high. It is divided in half internally by a full partition wall and has a large set of wooden double doors at one end and a set of standard double doors at the other end.
The Tyrrell Racing Organisation was formed in 1960 and it entered cars in motor races. Tyrrell also managed Mini Coopers and briefly deputized for the injured John Cooper in Formula 1. In 1963 he ‘discovered’ Jackie Stewart’s talents for motor racing after a trial for his Formula Junior Team – this was the start of a highly successful partnership. In 1968 Ken Tyrrell moved into Formula 1 as team principal for Matra International. The following year, Jackie Stewart became F1 World Champion for the first time, at the wheel of the Cosworth-powered MS80. In 1970, Matra merged with Simca, Stewart tested the Matra V12 but found it inferior to the Cosworth DFV. The partnership was dissolved and Matra and Tyrrell went their separate ways. As an interim measure, Tyrrell used the new March 701 chassis with which Stewart won the Spanish Grand Prix.
However, Tyrrell had decided that he should become a constructor. He appointed Derek Gardner as Chief Designer and the team began secretly building its own racing cars. Tyrrell’s debut as a Formula 1 team was at the 1970 Canadian GP. Stewart put the new Tyrrell 003 on pole position and was leading the race comfortably before retiring with stub-axle failure.
In 1971 003’s promise was fulfilled: Stewart became F1 World Champion for the second time, winning six of the races. The 003, which was Tyrrell’s most successful chassis, cost £22,000 at that time. The Tyrrell team also won the F1 Constructors’ title in its debut year. In 1973 Stewart became F1 World Champion for the third time.
1976 saw the introduction of the six-wheeled Tyrrell P34 – ‘the World’s first six-wheeled F.1 car and considered to be "the most radical car in F1 history". The P34 was designed by Gardner and driven by Jody Scheckter, Patrick Depailler and Ronnie Peterson. In Scheckter’s hands it won the 1976 Swedish GP and is the only six-wheeled car to have won a Grand Prix.
We are a loose association of enthusiasts whose aim is to preserve a little piece of Formula One history. It is our hope we can organize the transportation of Ken Tyrrell's famous first workshop to a specially prepared site at Brooklands Museum.
Brooklands Museum is of course the birthplace of motor racing in the United Kingdom and is only a short distance from The Tyrrell Racing team's base in Ockham, Surrey. The Shed would make a welcome addition the record of British motor racing held there.
So far we only have a small amount of sponsorship, but this will grow as people understand what we are doing and as the project gets closer to reality.