Tag Archives: Home Radio

1959 : Monte Car hits a boulder but finishes run

From the Mitcham News and Mercury
30th January 1959

Damaged steering failed to prevent three men from completing the dangerous mountain circuit of the Monte Carlo rally.

Mr Colin Sproxton, 39-year-old owner of Home Radio, London Road, Mitcham, said on Monday : “We are very pleased with the result. We finished the course 66th in the general classification and 19th in our own class. We did better than several champions.”

Mr Sproxton – it was the third time he had entered the rally – was co-driver of a Ford Zephyr belonging to Streatham garage owner Mr Gordon

Danger spot for the enthusiasts was in the mountains. They hit a boulder which had fallen into the road.

“The road was too narrow to avoid it and too icy for us to stop. We were very lucky – it could have had us out of the rally.”

SPINS

“As it was, it damaged the steering rod and steering was very difficult, but not impossible. We later had it straightened, but steering was not perfect.”

The Zephyr came through the course almost unscratched.

“Apart from lamps which were smashed by falling stones we had little trouble. We spun round once or twice, but somehow always ended up pointing in the right direction.

Conditions were pretty good, although we did experience a bit of everything including fog and ice,” said Mr Sproxton.

He returned home on Sunday. On Monday he was back behind the counter of his shop.

For photo, see Merton Memories.

Home Radio

Shop that was established at 187 London Road (opposite Eagle House), in 1946 by brothers Alan and Colin Sproxton, using their service gratuities. The name “Home Radio” was suggested by their father.

September 1947 – the shop at 187 London Road, and their van. From Murphy News.


In 1959 Colin Sproxton took part in the Monte Carlo Rally.

Colin Sproxton in 1959 at the Monte Carlo Rally. Clip from Merton Memories photo reference Mit_​People_​124-1, copyright London Borough of Merton.


Home Radio initially sold electrical appliances, as shown in these adverts from 1960.


The business grew with selling components by mail order. According to an article in The Radio Constructor magazine (pdf), Home Radio and Mitcham became known all over the world.

Colin Sproxton retired in 1964, the year of this catalogue cover:

1964 Home Radio catalogue

The back cover of this catalogue showed how to get to their shop by public transport. The map also showed their service shop in Locks Lane.

Their 1968 components catalogue, was advertised in Practical Wireless magazine, and said that it was:

Used and acclaimed by scientists, engineers, technicians, teachers & students

1968 Practical Wireless magazine ad

In 1969 they moved to larger premises to cope with the need to store large amounts of components for the mail order business. They went to the top floor of a new office block at 234 – 240 London Road, which gave them 2,400 square feet of space. The business was being run by Alan Sproxton and Ernest Layton at this time.

The Radio Constructor magazine described the dinner that was held at The Grange on 23rd April 1969 to celebrate the expansion of the business. A guest at the dinner was an old friend of the Sproxton family, Mr B. Mund Hopen from Bergen in Norway, who was in charge of the Norwegian Shipping Mission during World War 2. Mr Sproxton, in his after-lunch speech said that it was his opinion that three things saved Britain from defeat: radar, the tenacity and courage of the RAF, and the Norwegian tanker fleet which came over to Britain.


The company was wound up in 1982, as recorded in the London Gazette:

HOME RADIO (COMPONENTS) LIMITED

“That it has been proved to the satisfaction of the Company that this Company cannot, by reason of its liabilities, continue its business and that it is advisable that the same should be wound up; and that the Company be wound up and that Keith John Chapman of 1-2 Pudding Lane, London EC3R 8AB, be and is hereby appointed as Liquidator of the Company for the purpose of such voluntary winding-up.”

A. Sproxton, Chairman