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TONY'S TALE

Part 1

It was suggested at the Norwich Section meeting on 19th January 2005 that some notes about my 1959 Norton Dominator 99 which made its first appearance on the Museum Run on 31st October 2004 would be of interest on the Section's website. Having given this matter some thought I decided it may be of greater interest to give some information about myself and my background together with other projects with which I have been involved.XT455

My father was a keen motorcyclist and I have just three photographs of him with bikes. The earliest of these shows him as a lad of sixteen astride a Radco machine. This picture was taken in 1924 probably in April as there is a daffodil in the kerb under the engine! I was delighted to see one of these machines in the National Motorcycle Museum on our trip with Lionel on 27th February 2005.

 

The next photo would have been taken around 1930 aboard his Scott TT Replica. He always spoke very highly of this machine. I don't know whether it survived but I hope it did and that someone, somewhere is still enjoying it.

PF6964

During the war my father was a despatch rider. The photograph, taken in late 1942 shows him on a 16H Norton. The location is Llanidloes, Mid Wales, in the vicinity of the Twyphon Inn where he was billeted. Early in 1943 he was posted overseas and travelled across North Africa, he was presented to Montgomery at Tunis and mentioned in despatches. He passed through Sicily and went in at Salerno then spent a considerable time criss-crossing Italy between the 8th Army and the American 5th Army, even taking despatches to the Pope in the Vatican.

16H

After the war my father purchased an ex-WD BSA M20 with a Swallow sidecar. This would be in 1949, I can remember him painting it black and lining the tank in gold. In 1950 he won £11 on the football pools so he took us on our Easter holiday. I was packed into the sidecar with a tent and other luggage, mother sat on the pillion and off we went from the family home in Ruislip, Middlesex to Minehead then all the way down to Land’s End and back – all for £11! Eventually he sold the M20, I saw it around for several years and can still remember the registration number KLF 278.2912H

My father then had cars but did return to motorcycling in 1960 with a 1953 BSA A7 twin. By then I was riding and at that time had a 1951 BSA B33 with a Watsonian Avon sidecar, registration number MYX 600. Eventually my father let me have the A7 but insisted that I put the Watsonian sidecar on it. This was a smart outfit until I turned it over and wrecked the chair, so I then rode it solo. It was at this time that I got into engine tuning and I certainly made that BSA go. I have just one photograph of that bike which was taken in Switzerland in 1962.

 

Tony's Story Part 2

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