Chauffeur comes to own late Lady Usher’s beloved 1965 Humber

2011-05-14 00:00

A FORMER chauffeur, Vincent Zuma, now owns the vintage 1965 Humber he used to drive as a chauffeur to Nottingham Road’s Lady Usher.

Wealthy English industrialist Sir George Usher and his wife, Nora, bought a dairy farm in Nottingham Road shortly after World War 2. Zuma (now 77) began his career as Lady Usher’s chauffeur in 1964, on their farm, Fordoun.

Lady Usher’s car of choice was the Humber, a car regarded as a hallmark of luxury. She was not alone as several members of the British royal family were also driven in Humbers.

Zuma remembers how he found it difficult to adjust to his new employers, and they were the ones who taught him to speak English. His family’s life was also shaped by Lady Usher and her Humber. Zuma’s son, Mandla, says he remembers the car from a young age. “It fascinated us. The hooter could be heard from far away, and it created excitement. My dad travelled all over, even to Swaziland, and we all wondered ‘what is Dad bringing this time?’” He also remembers how Zuma used to sometimes take them for rides in the large light grey car and how he allowed them to play in the back on the brown leather seats.

When the then widowed Lady Usher died in 1994, she left the farm to her nephew and the Humber to Zuma.

“They gave it to me because I worked for them, and was a good man for them.” Lady Usher’s nephew later gave up the dairy farm, and turned the farm into a hotel and spa, where Zuma was employed as a concierge.

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