This is the story of “WOODYS” a MINI in a class of its own.


A mini that started its life in the high society upper

Class. 3 decades later almost died before it was



I first heard roumers about the Wood & Pickett mini owned by famous Danish designer MARGIT BRANDT many years ago from other car enthusiasts. How she was driven around by her chauffeur in an impeccable white uniform to all celebrity events. In 1997 while drinking coffee at a fellow mini collector’s home we talked about exclusive minis and if any ended up in Denmark? He confirmed the existence of this car. He also informed me that it was not just a W&P built mini, but that it also had a genuine JANSPEED turbo conversion. He saw the car on one occasion while it was in for service at a local garage soon after it was built at JS. The original bill from JS was in the car and he remembered it was big (app £8000). A couple of exploded engines later the turbo was eventually removed from the car by the next owner, and as he knew the builder of the replacement engine the turbo parts ended up in his collection of mini performance parts.

I saw the car first time in 1999 when it was for sale. It was running and with fresh M.O.T but in a sad state. One of the special tinted W & P windows was smashed the day before, bubbles and rust showing its ugly face all over. The car was too expensive for me so it ended up being sold to another buyer. Some days later seller called and asked if it was ok to give my telephone no. to him so I could maintain it for him, I said ok (one of my better decisions) He called 4 weeks later and asked what was wrong when the car had stopped with “front wheels locked” and “black stuff was poring out of a big hole in engine”?  I said “new engine/gearbox” was the answer. I heard nothing for 10 months then he called and asked about getting it running again? I told him if its been standing outside so long the brakes needed fixing, that was not an option so instead he asked if I wanted to buy it ? I said no (I remembered what he paid 11 months earlier?) The next day he called again and offered me the car to a fair price. I went to see it, it was now in a very bad state after a whole winter outside on grass with flat tyres (water was dripping from all windows on the inside) the floor mats soaked, and all 4 wheels rusted solid, and the body even worse now rusted through .we agreed on a good price. I had it transported home the same day. The first job was to connect it with jump cables and open the windows a little so it could breathe, and take the thick W&P carpets out to dry them. Next day I took the registration off and that was pretty much it for the next 7 years. Later I sold the head-carburettor and exhaust as they were not a part of the original car.

A couple of years later I took my nephew and niece to the circus. There I saw Margit and her husband Erik Brandt I went over and introduced my self and said I had something that use to belong to them, oh and what might that be he asked? Its small has smoked windows and tan coloured leather inside I replied -Ah that sounds like my wifes W&P mini, they thought it was long gone (hadn’t seen it for more than 25 years) I could inform him that it was now in my garage and even though` it was in a bad state I planned to restore it. He told me that it was a very expensive car when he had it built in 1973 for his wife and gave me his card if I needed further info.

One night at work a guy asked what I was doing in my garage. I told him and to my surprise he said I sat in that car on its third day back from W&P. He also told me about its life and the accidents it had. All this information matched with the repairs I found when it was stripped for painting.  

After I got the car I tried to buy the original JS turbo parts back and after he once showed me the parts there was no return, they had to go back on the car. But there was no way he would part with them so the car staid in its corner. Many people asked why I didn’t restore it but I wanted it to be right.                                                                           


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October 2006. I had a phone call and was asked if I wanted to play as a DJ at IMM 2007 I asked who was hosting it? He said Denmark was. Now I had a dead line so I called the owner of the JS parts again and made plans to see him, I called another mini collector who had a genuine SPEEDWELL alloy head up for sale and arranged to buy it to swap for the JS parts as I knew the other guy was missing that in his collection, I also went to the bank and took out a big amount before going to see him. But after 6 hours of talk there was no deal he just didn’t want to sell as he knew how rare it was. I even pointed out to him that he didn’t have all the parts as there were many JS parts left on the car with numbers matching to the JS parts in his possession. He was sorry as he could see it from my point of view as I had the original car from where it was removed, but he did say if I could find another set he would swap part for part as matching numbers is what all classic car owners want.

So I went home to make ads and as I knew it were rare parts I wanted I had to put out gold for swap as most people don’t want to sell for cash. I made ads to buy/swap my HALDA twinmaster and speedpilot for JS turbo parts.

February 2007. My UK friend Richard was in the garage with me and the phone rang. It was the owner of the JS parts he asked if I was gonna do the car and if I had any plans to sell when it was finished.  I told him no, he said ok I am not going to be the one to stop you from making it right.

I was so happy to hear it and asked for his price? He then started about how rare it was. I said yes it’s very rare just tell me what’s your price? He told me and I said ok. We agreed that I could come on Sunday to collect it because he needed time to locate the JS boost gauge.

Sunday 11 of February. When I arrived he had laid out all parts on the floor. I was pleased to see a genuine JS valve cover as this was not a part of the standard metro set up. We put all the parts in my car and went to see his friend who had the micro ignition box for the set to fix. When there I made a template to locate its original position in the engine bay. On the way back I asked about the boost gauge?  He told me it was lost long time ago when he loaned it out? I was sad to hear that, said ok I have to find another. He told me that it would be impossible. I then said ok I put another make in. Then he started about how nice the JS gauge was. He was really teasing me. Back at his place he asked if I remembered we had a talk about Alzheimer’s. I said yes he then gave me a plastic bag and inside was the JS boost gauge from my car. I was very happy and paid him.

Monday 12 of February, Richard came over from Sweden and we had a test fit on the car. Pleased to see all fitted perfect (I also found out that the little bracket on the firewall was for the clutch hose) we then just had one thing left? that was to find the original place for the brake servo and ignition box? But after searching extensively we gave up.

I could now finally start the restoration. We then took the whole car apart and put all nuts - bolts and fittings in small boxes before they went to zink plating so all could go back on its original place. The original heat shield was carefully removed to be used as template. It was not my plan to take out the complex W&P dashboard but after the doors came off it was clear that there was no turning back, both inner wings, a posts, and door pillars were gone. From the outside this was not visible because all was covered with a stainless plate glued on with fibre glass and sealer. I found the same type of repair under the boot floor. Behind the dash I found the original W&P body no.

Thursday 15 of February. The engine had just come out of the car. The phone rang.

It was the first and only reply on all my ads. His name was Robert Feen and he had tried all his contacts all over UK to find JS turbo parts but there was not a nut or bolt to be found anywhere. I could then inform him about my luck and that I had all I needed (I thought). The only thing he did find was a guy who use to work at JANSPEED and asked if I wanted his number? I said yes as I knew anyone who had worked there would remember a Danish left hand drive W&P mini. I called the number and asked for Simon? He said speaking; I then asked if he had worked for JANSPEED?                         

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He said yes for 17 years. I then told him that I called from Denmark and that I had a car with a JS turbo conversion – yes he said “its a mini  its got 2 fuel tanks with 16mm fuel outlet, engine is moved two and a half inch forward and tilted 5 degrees and I built it”. Happy to finally speak with one of the original guys who built my car I asked him all kinds of questions.

He told me about special parts they had to make for it and asked about certain hand made parts were there? I said yes, he also asked about the emblems? I said they were missing- he then told me that he might have some new ones somewhere in his garage?  After talking for 20 min there was just one thing left, I can see from pictures that many things have been especially made to fit my car, and I know the conversion was made for the metro so my question is how many minis were built with the JS turbo conversion? He then gave me a breath taking answer “YOURS sir -----yours is the ONLY one we ever made” it was too complicated and far too expensive a build so there was newer going to be another. The next time I spoke to him he gave me the story behind it?

Early 80ies the second owner was in UK for the Birmingham or Earls Court Motor Show? There he saw the JANSPEED METRO turbo engine on display and thought that would be nice in the mini back home.

He wanted to order one but they told him it was not something he could have wrapped up in a box to go. It was a complete conversion where brakes-suspension-fuelsystem-and gearbox was upgraded. He said ok signed a contract and called home to Denmark to have the car sent over to JS in Salisbury. When it turned up at the workshop they said oh no it’s a mini. We cant do that, the turbo setup is for a metro. He then persuaded them to do it on a “build to order” spec, JS agreed as it was a clubman with its bigger engine compartment. The car had a special setup build with same spec as Nigel Mansell had in his JS metro. I also asked about the ID tag plate? (I had seen one on the Internet). He told me that he designed those for JS and that he might have a new one for me. He also told me about the second owner. He was a rich Danish doctor and investor. Nothing was too good for his mini. He drove his Aston Martin when he came to visit JS to see the progress on the mini. We agreed I should send pictures and a list on all JS numbered parts to verify it was the right car. He would then try and find what I needed.

March 6. Rust was now removed in big quantities, and replaced with lots of fresh metal. Doors-bootlid-bonnet-floorpans-innerwings-frontend-rearvalence-hingepanel-bootfloor-schuttlepanel- and loads of handmade repair bits. We then stripped the whole body for paint, then the holes for the brake pipes and servo hose turned up. JS had put the servo out in the inner wing. We also found the org position for the ignition box.

April 18th the body was transported to the painter on a rolling frame. He was not happy to see bare metal all over. He told me he needed more time to do a good job as black is a difficult colour. While the body was away Richard came and helped with the gearbox and rear sub frame. In the meantime I had tried to track down some of the old owners. That got me in touch with the mechanic that use to maintain the car when it was still running with the JS turbo setup. He told me it was awesome and that he once took it on the motor way were he had a race with a Mercedes SL. The Merc driver was very surprised when the mini left him in its rear view mirrors. Some of the old paper work also  put me in touch with owner number 3. He told me that the original JS head was sold off to another part of Denmark. After some time it was traced. I could now see what colour JS painted the engine. It also had a JS number stamped into it as the rest of the JS turbo setup. I could now build the engine. When I took the turbo to have it rebuilt the guy looked at me if I was crazy when I told him to keep the old ID plate, and not to polish the outside of it. I wanted to keep all the JS parts with org colour and patina as found. I now had the side window and headlining to fix. In Sweden I found a company that could fix the missing window. Only problem was they needed a sample to match the colour perfect. There was no way I would risk any of the org W&P windows in the post.



In the bottom of the door I found pieces of the original W&P window. I send them with a paper mall. A few weeks later I was delivered the new window personally by boat from Sweden. New headlining was made by K&N upholstery. They had exactly the same type felt and colour as W&P used. The old headlining smelled so bad; they put it in a sealed plastic bag when I gave it to them to copy. Now it was the front subframe – heater etc, all were cleaned for rust and repainted.

June 30th finally the body was “back in black”. I now had 3 and a half week to get it all back together before IMM. That meant a lot of long nights/weekends.

July 25th . Finally the car was ready for IMM after many days with almost no sleep. Whilst at imm I met up with Kevin Card that brought me the box from Robert Feen/Simon Lee inside was NOS JS turbo emblems, ID tag plate and org keyring . I don’t think it gets much better than this as far as restoring old cars?.   ( NO ITS NOT FOR SALE )                              




A Big thanks to all the guys who made it possible.