Classic Bike Guide

Norton Jubilee brings back great memories


I found the Colin Leighfield letter was similar to my own experience. I also came from Birmingam and my school was next door to the BSA factory, where my dad worked. There was a bridge over the railway lines and we would often see the BSA testers getting Road Rocket front wheels off the ground, and they always gave us a wave.

I was also an impecuniou­s teenager when I arrived in Adelaide, South Australia, in 1963. The first bike I could afford was a second-hand Norton Jubilee, with a few racy bits like a fairing and clipon handlebars. At that time no road bike in the Adelaide area had a dolphin fairing. We were the first; even at Mallala race track, only one or two Manx Nortons had them. Tom, a great old bloke in an Adelaide motorbike parts shop, said: “What’s a fairing?” I said: “You know, Tom, streamlini­ng with a double curvature screen.” He said: “I’ll see what I can do” – and the next week, Modaks in Melbourne supplied two. My mate with a BSA c15 had the red one and I had the white on the Jubilee. After we fitted them, cruising up the Anzac Highway towards Adelaide, a police car pulled us over. The cops walked around the bikes. One said: “How do you ride this?” and threw his leg over the Norton. Then he said: “I’m going back to the station to get my bike (an A10 flash). Do you fancy a run up the Adelaide hills (the old road with the devil’s elbow)?”

We had a great ride on the way down; I took him on the inside at the elbow! The Jubilee was a lot of fun at that time of my life. Alas, it did eventually succumb to the crank letting go; one moment it sounded as smooth as a turbine, then clunk-clunkclutc­h. I did have other bikes, a great BSA A10 Gold Flash, a few years of trials riding a TY250, and I rode with the Great Mick Andrews. We all learned a lot that day in Canberra. I also had a Yamaha DT360 while I worked around NSW.

I loved the Johnny’s Triumph story and the

Brass Monkey Rally. What makes CBG so good is because motorcycle people are great people! Leslie Nutt

Thanks, Leslie, I could listen to tales from the past all day! – Matt

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