Decorating the Autodrome

In September 2018 i was commissioned to decorate a childrens ride called the autodrome. This ride was built post war by a company called lang wheels based near uxbridge. It consisted of eight motor cars which follow each other over three hills and three valleys. The cars are particularly nicely built from tin with rolled wheel arches. The ride has a diameter of 30ft and was very popular at the time of it being built.

Currently, there are only two lang wheels autodromes travelling with the cars on, many have been rebuilt as reindeer rides. The ride i decorated was for Mitchell Taylor of Edinburgh, Scotland.

The parts that required decoration are listed below;

The eight cars

Eight round boards

One front panel

Twelve handrail panels with two circles on each


The most difficult part of any job like this is finding a general theme and designing the patterns associated with the different parts. I did a lot of research on how this type of ride was painted back in the day.

I had Malcolm Murphy to aid in the design and paint of the front board as he has a particular talent for picture work. As you will see on the pictures, the large car on the front board carries onto the rounding boards each side to make the front look bigger and more impressive.

The pattern is basically a winged wheel design, popular with car manufacturers of the era. I also used inspiration from searles brooklands speedway for the central car design.

The eight cars had extensive lining out and a number on each, these really set them off against the base colours!

I was really happy with how the finished job turned out, its very bright, inviting and by the sounds of it the public love it too! Photos credit - Brian McGinley.