WAY WE WERE

Classic Bike (UK) - - CONTENTS -

Your bril­liant pic­tures and two-wheeled mem­o­ries. Send yours and get in­volved

I am writ­ing on be­half of my wife’s Un­cle, Robin Cle­ment. He has fea­tured in your mag­a­zine once be­fore – in the Oc­to­ber 1984 is­sue, his red Vin­cent Rapide ap­peared on the front cover and as a full-colour cen­tre­fold. He has lived in the USA for a long time now, and is a true en­thu­si­ast. If you pub­lish some of these old pho­to­graphs of him and his friends in the 1960s, he would be thrilled. Here’s his de­scrip­tion of a trip to the Isle of Man TT in those days:

‘From South Lon­don, the jour­ney to the Is­land would start by tak­ing the mo­men­tous step of “go­ing north of the Thames”. Once safely on the other side, one would pick up the Great North Road (A1), then ride on three-lane roads past Birm­ing­ham and into the wilds of north­ern Eng­land. Once at Liverpool docks, the bikes would be sur­ren­dered to the ten­der mer­cies of the in­fa­mous Isle of Man Steam Packet Com­pany (IOMSPC). There they would be chained to­gether and lifted by crane into the hold of the ferry. Upon ar­rival in Dou­glas, they would be un­loaded in the same fash­ion, be in­spected for the in­evitable dam­age (IOMSPC ac­cepted no li­a­bil­ity), have car­bu­ret­tors ad­justed as the si­lencers had been re­moved, salute the Fairy Bridge for luck and tear off round the moun­tain. No lim­its, no rules and very few po­lice.’ Giles Bow­er­man

128 Still feels like yes­ter­day

ABOVE: Ge­orge, Robin and Mic in Monte Carlo

BE­LOW: The boys in Big’s back yard in 1959

Robin giv­ing it some beans round the Isle of Man TT cir­cuit

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