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Issue 35

November 2016

NEWSL ETTER O F THE BRITISH MO TORCYCLE CHARITABLE TRUST


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The newest addition to the BMCT’s collection of rare and unusual British motorcycles is this 250cc dohc Jones racing machine. Dennis Jones, a Derby-based engineer and amateur racer, became frustrated at the inability of the British motorcycle

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Having set up our display with Ken Chandler (the Baughan book author) alongside, we left the starting of the Baughan - which every year previously has always started second kick with no trouble - until the crowd arrived, as the Museum asked me to do some maintenance jobs on the bike to show people a bit of detail. So, when everyone was gathered I switched the petrol on and immediately the carburettor float chamber and both taps leaked copious amounts of petrol. The upshot was to remove the petrol tank and carburettor, strip it down, lap the float needle to its seat and replace - meanwhile corks in the petrol taps being now in contact with petrol had swollen and the leak reduced to just a slight seepage. Luckily I had taken a pretty comprehensive tool box, mainly to look the part rather than to use much. Anyhow the old girl started up second kick as usual and all was well! On my first test run I was having a struggle to turn it round and then discovered the sidecar wheel drive was engaged, which because of the lack of a differential resists going around corners. Anyhow thereafter a lot of rides were enjoyed with various people in the chair, and both Charles Hayward, the grandson of Bill, the original pilot, who had come to help me and Tommy Barker, a very well-known local scrambler from long ago had a drive and

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industry to produce a competitive 250 racer in the late 1940s, so he decided to build his own. The example that the BMCT have acquired from a private collector is one of a handful of specials that Dennis (inset, with a 500 four of his own design) made in the period, and sports Armstrong forks with Jones’s own fiendishly complex front brake arrangement. Our plans for this exciting new addition are that it should be preserved for the benefit and education of the public and displayed in the local area where it was manufactured. Accordingly, we are pleased to announce that Derby Museum have offered to take and exhibit the machine on a long term loan arrangement when their current refurbishment has been completed. In the meantime the bike will undergo a programme of recommissioning to enable it to be run for the first time in over 40 years. Dennis Jones went as a young man to work at Rolls-Royce and spent the war years developing and testing many secret weapons, including effective sound-seeking torpedoes. He built his Specials in a back garden workshop, no doubt with a little help from his employers along the way, and died in 2008 at the age of 92.

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The Museum in the Park at Stroud recently held a celebration of motor sporting personalities and machinery with connections to their local area. BMCT trustee and Stroud resident John Kidson, himself a former FIM World Formula 3 World Champion, sends this report from the event, where he demonstrated the BMCT’s Baughan 2 wheel drive trials sidecar outfit:

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thoroughly enjoyed it. (Incidentally Tommy worked in Ernie Thomas's motorcycle business in Stroud in the 1950's. Ernie Thomas was a very good TT competitor who was employed by Velocette and had works rides for them and DKW in the ‘thirties). We had on display with the Baughan, the newly acquired Jones 250 DOHC Twin, my 350 Moto Guzzi, a pre-war 250 Cotton, and a 500 Gold Star plus a 1933 Morgan with MAG engine, all in sunshine with blue skies. Altogether a successful day, which the Museum are thinking of building on for next year, and the Baughan was then tucked away in its usual display space in the Museum.

John Kidson on one of his demonstration rides around Stroud’s Stratford Park

Front cover picture: As in previous years we were privileged to be invited to take part in the extremely prestigious Salon Privé Concours d’Elegance event, held at Blenheim Palace, near Woodstock, in September. This year BMCT trustees John Kidson and Nick Jeffery were on hand to demonstrate our 1917 Matchless Vickers WW1 machine gun outfit to the judges, who were so impressed they gave the bike a Special Award. In our picture Nick (in the chair) makes threatening moves towards the brave photographer while John wrestles with the controls.


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F E S T I V A L O F B L A C K C O U N T R Y V E H I C L E S 2 0 1 6

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In July each year the Black Country Living Museum hosts the Festival of Black Country Vehicles, which sees owners of locally-made cars, motorcycles, lorries and buses parading their vehicles through the streets of the Museum Village. This is a really good event , giving museum-goers the chance to recapture the sounds and smells of machinery working just feet away from them.

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August Bank Holiday was a busy weekend for Sammy Miller and his staff down at their museum near New Milton. First off was an Autojumble on the Saturday, followed by the annual Sammy Miller Run the following day. Fortunately this year Sammy himself wasn’t committed to attending the Manx Grand Prix, so he was able to judge and present the awards, which were sponsored once again by the BMCT.

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S T A F F OI RN DS I CD LE A SS TS O I CR YM EH CE H C SE A A D N L I N

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Voted Best British Bike in Show was this 1957 DMW Leda (above). On the right, BMCT member Pete Burrows poses with his Royal Ruby, one of the star attractions of the VMCC stand.

Dick Shepherd brought along his beautifully restored 1946 Triumph Grand Prix prototype - the actual machine that Ernie Lyons rode to win the rain soaked 1946 Manx Grand Prix. Dick has 5 other GP Triumphs in his collection of 300 bikes!

Coventry built, this Anzani engined Croft Cameron survivor brought over ÂŁ200,000 at Bonhams Stafford auction sale. (Bonhams)

Numbers of private entries were a little down on previous years, and dominated by post-1960 Japanese makes.


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Robert White (1953-2015) was one of the earliest enthusiasts to join the BMCT membership scheme, becoming our 120th member. He was the founder of one of the country’s leading photographic retailers, having started with a small camera shop in Poole, the town where he was born. Over the years Robert’s success in business enabled him to collect things that interested him: art, cameras, watches, cars, motorcycles and memorabilia. He had a wonderful collection of Brough Superiors, and occasionally kindly supplied beautiful images of some of them for us to use in our newsletters. When he was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2012, Robert made a generous donation to BMCT funds as he knew he wasn’t going to be around to pay his annual subscriptions for much longer. Robert sold his collection of Broughs to his friend, American collector and broadcaster Jay Leno, for £3 million before his death, donating the money to help fund a new cancer wing at Poole Hospital. In September, Bonhams held a special sale of items from the Robert White Collection with all proceeds going to help cancer treatment in Dorset hospitals. The sale raised another £3 million. It was Robert’s last wish to leave a lasting legacy to benefit the community for years to come.

Part of the Robert White Collection assembled for the auction (Bonhams)

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The late Robert White’s Mk1 Brough Superior

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The Chairman and Board of Trustees of the BMCT are pleased to announce that, following the resignation of Steve Bagley, Micheal Penn has been elected to join the board in his place. After a 21 year career in the Fleet Air Arm, Mike left in 1984 and went to work for John Haynes OBE, setting up the renowned Haynes International Motor Museum at Sparkford in Somerset where he remained until his retirement from the post of Curatorial Director this year. A confirmed motorcycle enthusiast, Mike has completed the Pioneer Run on a Triumph 500 and is currently rebuilding a 1914-ish Readhead a 1933 Velocette GTP and a 1920’s Sunbeam racing bitza. We are delighted that Mike has agreed to join the board, where his accumulated experience, skills and knowledge will be of great benefit.

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The two striking new audio visual displays you see below are the latest enhancements to the visitor experience at the Sammy Miller Museum. They were funded by the BMCT and installed ready for the 2016 visitor season. The two 65-inch screens are designed to switch on when a visitor enters the gallery, and play a 20 minute programme of informative news and archive film clips. Bill Gibson from the Museum tells us the displays have gone down very well with visitors so far.


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In this edition, your BMCT man in France, concentrate on the British exhibits in these Mike Ricketts, is back looking at the reports but this is a fabulous collection of French Museum scene. In this case machines, with some rare examples from other European manufacturers. Of particular note - and justification for a visit in its own right - is the top floor collection of rare bikes built by the famous French Nougier Brothers. The other remarkable thing about this Museum is that it is owned and operated by the City of Marseille and hence the entry fee at the time of my visit was just under 3 Euros. From a practical point of The AJS K28 is amongst other British bikes view, the Museum is easily reached by public transport but has rather limited specifically the superb "Musée de la Moto parking. de Marseille". The Museum is located in a restored mill, opened in 1989 and houses The Museum is at: 250 machines, with 1200 sqare metres of 18 Traverse Saint-Paul, 13013 Marseille, display area spread across 4 floors in a France. Tel: +33 (0)4 91 02 29 55 chronological sequence. The Museum displays bikes from all over The website has a long winded address the world and offers a lot of British but can also be found by typing: interest. Their Inventory includes tinyurl.com/gtffkp3 examples from AJS, Triumph, BSA, Norton into your web browser’s address bar. and Scott. For obvious reasons I always

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This BSA Sloper S27 dates from 1929

This BSA M20 sits with other WW2 exhibits

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The Brooklands Motorcycle Show on Sunday 3rd July was the first major, new motorcycle event at Brooklands for four years. The theme of the Show was, “Then and Now”, with pre-War racing machines lined up with 2016 road models on Test Hill.

For a first-time event, the Show was a success with 2,500 visitors and 674 bikes ridden in (and that did not include the exhibition machines). Nine dealers and motorcycle companies took stands and reported a lot of interest. If there was a downside to the Show, it was those manufacturers and dealers who committed and then did not follow through and turn up. Guest celebrity rider, Steve Parrish rode a variety of bikes on Test Hill, including the first public show appearance of the

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immaculate Earle Cotton JAP restored by members of the Brooklands Motorcycle Team (below right). Long- time Brooklands supporter, Sheelagh Neal made fullblooded ascents on her Triumph “Thunderbird” racing sidecar outfit and even persuaded Steve Parrish to occupy the “chair” for one run. Several members of the Motorcycle Team rode bikes from the Museum collection and many of our regular “outside” riders brought their racers to add to the happy noise. During the lunch break, Steve was interviewed by John Bottomley and joined in informal questions, answers and conversation with visitors. Among the wonderful array of Club bikes, there were the usual huge, glittering Harleys and, for a change, some 2016 Indians in stunning colour schemes. Surrey Triumph Owners and Surrey Norton Owners had large contingents. The Brough Superior Owners Club brought over a dozen machines and Eric Patterson maintained the “Then and Now” theme with his 2016 Brough. He also brought his two Bonneville Record breakers. Carl Wadkin-Snaith brought his own beautifully engineered re-creation of a Brooklands Outer Circuit racer which he had built from scratch, the only proprietary

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parts being the piston and crankshaft. It was due for its first ever engine run, but the Brooklands gremlins prevented that… another time, Carl! A historic bike it may not be, but it represents the same mechanical enthusiasm that motivated so many of the original Brooklands riders. A lot of interesting bikes, a lot of interested visitors, a lot of exciting noise and a sunny day… the ingredients all came together nicely and the Brooklands Motorcycle Show proved that it could become an annual event. - Michael Sands, Brooklands Volunteer


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BMCT member Steve Dowling has been competing in grasstrack racing and trials for many years. His current stable includes two 350 RTS grass trackers, powered by Weslake and GM engines, and there’s a Yamaha Majesty 175 for trials work.

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Bruce Carey from Worcester sent us this snap of his recently acquired 350 AJS. Bruce’s involvement with powered two-wheelers started with a BSA Dandy field bike and progressed through a Norton Jubilee 250 to a number of Japanese and Italian superbikes. Nice to see you back on a proper motorcycle, Bruce!

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We welcome the following new members and supporters of the Charity, including Motorcycle Hall of Fame members Don and Derek Rickman (below left) and their wives, Julie and Eileen:

Kenneth Amos DUDLEY Peter Lockhart LYMINGTON Heidi Andrews SALISBURY Anthony Andrews SALISBURY Phil Hick POOLE Roger Jackson NEW MILTON Katie Lewis FORDINGBRIDGE Anthony Lawler WEYBRIDGE Ronald Purbrick OSTERLEY Julian Lowndes NORTH TAWTON Anthony Tidy BOURNEMOUTH Maria Tidy BOURNEMOUTH I N S I D E Henry Verdon YEOVIL Geoff Metcalfe FAREHAM Charlie Smith BRIGHTON Michael Moore ALTON Stephen Blackshaw ALTON Derek Rickman CHRISTCHURCH Eileen Rickman CHRISTCHURCH Don Rickman NEW MILTON

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Julie Rickman NEW MILTON Mark Dockerill LONDON Alasdair Archibald SOUTHAMPTON Richard Garside SOUTHEND-ON-SEA David Fudge WEYMOUTH Stephen Webb LIGHTWATER Susan West LISKEARD Stephen Shaw STAFFORD Christine Shaw STAFFORD Barry Preston SOUTHAMPTON Christine Smith RAYLEIGH Terry Dolphin RAYLEIGH Gary Ladhams RUISLIP Susan Ladhams RUISLIP John Lord NUNEATON Joyce Lord NUNEATON Eileen Spalding COULSDON Michael Hankins SANDWICH Vernon Pell BOURNEMOUTH Jane McNeill WARWICK Martyn Paterson GLASGOW Nigel Trafford HIGH WYCOMBE Peter Whitwell HUNTINGDON HAYES RColin Y Marshall H E A D L I N E David Smith CHRISTCHURCH Rod Kinsey SALISBURY Ken Sink SALISBURY Barbara Sink SALISBURY Dave Collins SALISBURY Conradt Engelbrecht SALISBURY Andrew Bishop READING David Bishop READING

Lynne Bishop READING Fred Pidcock GREENFORD Joan Lewsey GREENFORD Helen Banfield WIMBORNE Mark Banfield WIMBORNE Kim Hicks GRAVESEND Peter Kapp GRAVESEND Laura Dyer HAVANT Burl Solomons BOURNEMOUTH Jackie Jeeves WOKING Terry Jeeves WOKING Stephanie Barrett BOURNEMOUTH Steve Barrett BOURNEMOUTH Roger Sheldon CHESTER Hilary Howell SALISBURY Ian Howell SALISBURY Sarah Holloway BOURNEMOUTH Gary Walker BOURNEMOUTH John Dix SOUTHAMPTON Paul Keen GOSPORT Mike Cowley WINDLESHAM Barry Gains CAMBERLEY Ian Donaldson ODIHAM Malcolm Hector-Robson PORTSMOUTH Amanda Hector-Robson PORTSMOUTH John Blackburn BICESTER Peter Thomas BECKENHAM Michael Boyle BIRMINGHAM Alistair Pinker WINDSOR Alan Renaut NEWBURY Gerry Lyon FAREHAM


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T H E B R I T I S H M OTO R C Y C L E C H A R I TA B L E T RU S T Registered in England No. 01445196 Registered Charity No. 509420 Registerered Office: Holly Cottage Main Street Bishampton Pershore WR10 2NH UK Trustees: I N Walden OBE (Chairman) P J Wellings T P V Barnes J F R Handley M Jackson J N Jeffery J E Kidson M Penn Secretary: Andy Bufton Tel: 01386 462524 Mob: 07754 880116 Email: info@bmct.org

The British Motorcycle Charitable Trust (BMCT) was originally formed in 1979 to facilitate the building of the National Motorcycle Museum at Bickenhill, near Solihull in the West Midlands, but since 1995 the BMCT has been an entirely separate organisation, a grant making Charity dedicated to the promotion of British motor cycle engineering heritage through a network of affiliated transport museums throughout the country. Membership is open to all, and allows free entry to all the museums in our affiliation scheme. Our funding comes from membership fees, bequests, donations and income from our investments. Please direct any enquiries to the secretary, Andy Bufton, at the Registered Office address on the left.

Our affiliated museums are: Black Country Living Museum, Dudley British Motor Museum, Gaydon Brooklands Museum, Weybridge Coventry Transport Museum Dover Transport Museum Gloucester Life Museum Haynes International Motor Museum Jet Age Museum, Gloucester London Motorcycle Museum Manx Museum, Isle of Man National Motor Museum, Beaulieu Sammy Miller Museum, New Milton Stroud Museum in the Park The Tank Museum, Bovington

www.bmct.org

Preserving the past...for the future N O R T H A N T S

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Thanks to Stuart McDowell for this shot of the Best in Show winner from this years Northants Vintage and Classic Bike Show Published by Matchless Management Services, Holly Cottage, Main Street, Bishampton, Pershore WR10 2NH

November 2016 (Issue 35)  

Featuring: Salon Privé, Sammy Miller Run, Robert White, Festival of Black Country Vehicles, Stafford Show, Brooklands Motorcycle Show, North...

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