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Flying Circus English Cars


Austin-Healey Land Rover Lotus MG British Motor Trade Association Triumph Rover Jaguar Rolls Royce

Flying Circus English Cars Limited - Durham, North Carolina, USA • Email: fcecltd@aol.com • Telephone: 919/596-4250

Home About Flying Circus | Service and Repair | Restoration | New Parts

About Flying Circus

     
Flying Circus English Cars showroom
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Since 1988 when English expatriot Toby Briggs and his father Alan turned a hobby of restoring cars into a fast-growing business, Flying Circus Engish Cars has become a regional leader in the care of English cars and their owners. If you have an English car or are considering buying one, we can help you enjoy owning and driving it.
Situated in Durham, North Carolina at Exit 10 on the Durham Freeway (Route 147), we are easy to reach from any direction. We are open from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Thursday and from 9:00am to 3:00pm on Friday. Our shop is always full of a wonderful collection of customer cars from Minis to Bentleys, Jaguar E Types to Austin-Healeys, and Land Rovers to XK8s. Flying Circus English Cars showroom
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Our History

     
Flying Circus English Cars showroom
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Flying Circus grew out of Toby and his brother Simon's longtime interest in restoring English cars. After years of the family driveway being filled with various English cars, Toby, Simon, and Alan moved the fledgling company into its first premises on Brewer Lane in Carrboro, NC - a 4 car lockup industrial building that they rented from their good friend Max Scroggs at A Better Wrench. They had few tools, few manuals, no lift, but a wealth of knowledge and passion for English cars - and for helping their customers enjoy owning and driving their cars.
The rapid and tremendous growth of the company over the next few years required more staff and sister Sarah joined to keep up with the needs of Flying Circus's growing base of customers. In September 1994, Flying Circus English Cars moved to its present location on East Pettigrew Street in Durham. Flying Circus English Cars showroom
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The People at Flying Circus

 

Generations of English car expertise
Siblings Toby and Sarah Briggs own and operate Flying Circus English Cars. Their involvement with English cars continues a long family tradition. As a young man, father Alan Briggs was apprenticed as a draughtsman to Morris Motors Engines Branch in Coventry. The Engines Branch made engines and transmissions for Morris cars and trucks back when Coventry was the English equivalent of Detroit. Alan moved up to production efficiency management at the Engines Branch and later consulted for TRW and Jaguar. Mother Patricia Briggs grew up near Coventry, daughter of a Rover car dealer. Great Grandfather John Hill and his brother built horse-drawn carriages and, later, did custom coachwork at their Hill Brothers Coach Builders in Warwick from the early 1900s to just after World War II. Grandfather Alan Huckvale operated H and H Transport (later H and H Motors) selling and servicing Rovers and other English cars in Kenilworth from the 1930s to the 60s. And Uncle Gerald Huckvale recently retired from his own garage in Bredon, Gloucestershire.
 
Toby Briggs
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Toby Briggs, Owner, Shop Manager
Toby was repairing and restoring cars long before he could legally drive them. He started Flying Circus in the late 1980s after years of the family driveway being filled with partly restored cars. Within a few years the business had grown enormously and had moved twice to larger and larger premises. In late 1994, Flying Circus moved to its present location on East Pettigrew Street in Durham. As Shop Manager, Toby relies on decades of hands-on experience and an encyclopedic knowledge of English car engineering to ensure that each customer's car is cared for to the highest standards. Toby drives a Land Rover Discovery, a Jaguar XJS, and a 1964 Land Rover 109.
Sarah Briggs, Owner, Operations Manager
Sarah joined Flying Circus to help her father and older brother run the growing business. As Operations Manager, Sarah now pretty much keeps the place running single-handedly. While not a technician, Sarah's accumulated wisdom and knowledge of the intricacies of English cars is remarkable. Sarah's big pickup truck isn't actually English, but she is, so we don't hold it against her.
Sarah Briggs Paulson
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Max Fulton
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Max Fulton, Technician
While a Chemistry major at Cornell, Max bought his first MGB and soon realized he could repair and maintain it more easily than he could pay someone else to. Under the tutelage of Bob Ford, now the man behind Brit-tek, Ltd, Max quickly became expert with MGBs. He opened and ran M & T MGs, his own MG specialty shop in Boston, Massachusetts for many years in the mid-1990s. Since then, Max has broadened his expertise to Triumphs, Austin-Healeys, and anything else that is English and has a carburettor. He is our "old car guy" (Max likes to emphasize that he is the 'old car' guy, not the old car guy). Max has never owned any car but an MGB. He is an avid Formula 1 fan and is Crew Chief for the B-Stingers, a group that vintage races an MGB. Max drives an MGB.