Our team

Darren Gilling

Classic vehicle specialist  



My background


I have been involved in the classic car scene since the late 1970’s when my dad bought me my first car, a 1962 Hillman Minx for the sum of £35. From then on there was no stopping me and to be honest, I have lost count of how many classics I’ve owned over a 35-year period. 


Regarding my professional background, I first started working on weekends in a local bodyshop when I was 14.  After leaving school in 1982 I started a 4-year apprentiship with Datsun in Bristol, learning all aspects of body repair and painting.  This was when panel beater sprayers carried out the repair process from start to finish, including mechanical.  Throughout the 80’s I continued to work as a body man for both main agents and independent body repair centres.  During the 90’s I progressed into the management of a large Vauxhall accident repair centre in Weston Super Mare, overseeing the quality control of all completed repairs.  In 1994 I moved to the Northwest to manage the Vauxhall Motors Ellesmere Port accident repair centre, providing support to the factory and their fleet management.  In 1996, I achieved the 200th approved repair centre status, closely followed by securing the Merseyside Police repair contract.  Although my main role was to run the busy repair centre, I was still very much involved in the quality control.


By 1998, I had moved onto fleet management, which then progressed into legal services, and the management of a national chain of accident repair centres. This involved vetting new repairer partners, securing repair business and overseeing the quality control process of contracted suppliers.  From 2010, I have pretty much-continued working with the industry but as a consultant and still today work with over 60 body repair centres across the UK.  My core busy is however vehicle appraising and is a role that I thoroughly enjoy.  Not only can I spend most of my time inspecting great classic cars but I can also meet fabulous people who share the same passion for cars from yesterday, just the same as I do.



Car history


In over 35 years, I’ve pretty much owned or repaired most British models from the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.  From BMC, Ford, Vauxhall & Rootes, through to Jaguar, Daimler, and Rover.  I consider myself to have a good catalogue of knowledge and experience, combined with a real passion and love for classic cars, not withstanding a very good eye for detail.


Book an appraisal

Call or email with your requirements and we will be more than happy to help you 



Mobile: 07895 636045 

Email: darrengilling@bawns.co.uk



Ford Road




CH49 0TG 


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