“Beach buggies were very much the ‘in thing” in London around 1970. The idea originated in America, where they’re known as ‘Dune Buggies’. They were invented in the 1960s by a Californian boat builder named Bruce Meyers, who had pioneered the use of fibreglass for vessels. Meyers then had the idea of using the material to build a lightweight off-road car based on a Volkswagen, and the Dune Buggy was born. I read about this at the time, and I was intrigued.
I found a company in East London that produced buggies in kit form and powered by a Volkswagen Beetle engine. I bought four and sold three, and all three buyers kept the Orange logo on the bonnet. The one I had was loaned out to people such as rock stars Peter Green and Danny Kirwan of Fleetwood Mac and the English eccentric, Screaming Lord Sutch [pictured below in the Orange Buggy]. I was a good friend of Screaming Lord Sutch and was more than happy to let him drive my buggy about town when he was campaigning to become a member of parliament. I also loaned the buggy to music papers such as NME and Record Mirror, who used them on their sales promotions. The Orange beach buggy did a lot to boost our brand awareness.” Cliff Cooper