Archive for ‘10’s’

January 5, 2018


Back Seat – buoyant BSA rider takes a pew on the pillion seat of her ride whilst perusing a love note. There is a comfortable air to this image from a hundred years ago.

November 19, 2017

An Muinín

1916 – The Easter Rising. A time when the people of Ireland wanted to take their country back from The domination of Britain. It was also the year at his Triumph Model H was built. Seen at the National Museum of Ireland: Decorative Arts & History. In pristine condition it included a 2017 Tax Disc so is roadworthy too!

November 13, 2017

Blighty Bloke Berlin Bound

BeeBeeBeeBeeBee – after the remembrance weekend here’s a fun card promoting a victory over Germany. On His Majesty’s Service

November 11, 2017


11-11 we’re up to ninety nine years since the armistice of 1918. The end of The Great War… as well as the horror of the trenches, heavy bombardment of the guns, the first aerial bombardment, some units used early motorcycles, such as this BSA, for despatch duty.

August 4, 2017

Fat bottomed girls they’ll be riding today

I want to ride my bicycle- This 1903 Triumph safety bike has such an elegant shape. With a sinuous open frame to allow women to pedal in their skirts. These old human powered machines just look so perfect in their functional purpose. The advert to the left is a mid-Century model promoting the bike as a form of exercise; though the dropped cross bar seems a tad dated.

May 9, 2017

100 Years Ago

Red Cross – A serious young medical sargent on his 1917 Triumph. Agile enough to zip along behind the lines ensuring critical supplies get to where they were critically needed. 

April 9, 2017

War is Past

Century – A private of the Royal Engineers on his motorcycle. The chevrons on his lower right sleeve show he is in his third year of overseas service… One Hundred years ago today saw the start of a British offensive at Arras which, by its end a little over a month later saw close to 400,000 losses and casualties on both sides. The motorcycle is a wartime stalwart Triumph Model H.

Edward Thomas a notable wartime poet was killed in action this day. His work extolled the virtues of the English countryside and its invigorating open airs. One of my bosses twenty years ago was the godson of Thomas’ nephew, born in May 1918 he was named after his uncle. 

“And I rose up, and knew that I was tired, and continued my journey”

January 19, 2017

Noble Gassing

Neon – 102 years ago today French inventor Georges Claude patented the gas discharge tube, more commonly known as a Neon Tube. Formed into pictographs and writing they herald a company’s identity or message. 

January 16, 2017

Spiritual Speed

Gallipoli Galloper – beautiful period photograph from a century ago of the Reverend Cecil Howard Edwards who served as the army chaplain for the ANZAC troops. I’m sure he experienced the worst of humanity in the Dardanelles. His model of transport is a Triumph Model H 500cc to get around Southern Queensland. 

June 28, 2016

Bandits at 3 o’clock

Fun on Three Wheels – as I was wandering the motorcycle show this vehicle trundled up. A couple with big grins where sat as pilot and navigator. Gleaming v-twin engine afront, grey fuselage, and amaranth wire wheels with knock-off hubs. As British as tea & scones with a whiff of a WW1 ace heading into the French skies to see off Hun. “Smoke me a kipper I’ll be back for breakfast!”

January 30, 2016


I’m giving up my period looking Dunlops and plumping for a pair a sleek new Michelins. Pilots to be precise. Mounted to new alloy rims laced with shiny stainless steel spokes. These are gonna stick to the roads like clarts on my Doc Martens…

One of the oldest trademarks is the Michelin Man also known as Bibendum (from Horace’s Odes “Nunc est Bibendum!” – Now is the time to drink! Originally with cigar in mouth wearing pince-nez, he reminds me a bit like The cartoonist Giles’ grandma…

November 1, 2015

C’mon old lad! Gi’ us a smile!

Classic pose for some rural cove sitting on the superbike of its day.

“You won’t find me galloping along the country lanes on this ruddy thing!”

May 13, 2015

100 years ago…


After yesterday’s beautiful example of a century-old survivor here is an old image of the Trusty Triumph when it was the cutting edge two-wheeled speedster. This is a 1915 view of an owner and his ride in New Zealand. Even commemorated on a stamp…


Tin sign of some flat capped chap haring along on his H across a rural landscape. Hints & Tips? Watch your trousers don’t get caught in that ruddy leather belt drive chain!


May 12, 2015

on Ilkley Moor baht ‘at

Noel Whittall, 77, a writer and motorcyclist from Rawdon, England, on his 1918 Triumph Model H near the Cow & Calf at Ilkley. His period tweeds: jacket plus-fours and flat cap, are a perfect Yorkshire outfit for a ramble on’t moor. His nearly century old machine would transport you lazily from Leeds along the A65 through Otley and on to Skipton wi’ Wart on t’Wharfe peering down from across dale.  

Yorkshire is a most beautiful country (locals do consider it an independent State). 

March 13, 2013

Where there’s Smoke

A century ago many small-time bicycle manufacturers tried their hand at motorizing their contraptions. One such ‘shop was Pope from Westfield MA who ran with the best of ’em: Indian, Flying Merkel, Cyclone. Here’s a smashing looking board racer ready for a rider with plenty of derring do to hare around one of the infamous wood tracks of the day; come a cropper on that circuit and you’ll be pulling splinters for weeks…. If at all you make it! Harris Tweed isn’t too great a protective clothing for speed work.


A cardinal name on the tank too…


… And at speeds approaching The Ton on steeply banked tracks a higher power was needed if the competitors ‘came a cropper’. Ouch!