All, data & relative historic pics from a wide range of sources were helped into place by my long suffering wife Janet Isaac!. Many of the Pictures within are by kind Courtesy of Peter E. John whose father K. E. John took the splendid Pic of J H Carr at Pendine in 1932, Pictures sent in here, plus from our stored ARCHIVAL DATA Disc stock are used here for you to view, Julie Riera & John D Haines have just lost their father F W Haines in his 90's & have returned to Swansea & have very kindly permitted us to share some of the superb historic moments he recorded, these will be introduced slowly & even will acccompany FW's friend Jack Daniels achievements..ALL are invited to help us add & provide data/info or images for other researchers from ARCHIVAL DATA........ as the 250 Rudge exponent & winner of many Tropies J. L. Mills & his daughter Ann Williams have kindly done, you may provide us with copies which we scan in or even develop negatives here & add to this site or other ones being planned. Enthusiasts & Restorers of Veteran & Vintage Cars & Motorcycles trying to find scarce correct original accessories or restored parts can try http://www.taffthehorns.com
THIS IS LINKED to:- http://www.cefn-yr-erw.co.uk/ the "Chimp Sanctuary" in Brecon Beacons fringe is initially what it started as, now Goats, Cattle, Shire Horses, to little ones plus Foxes, Wolves all being rescued from all around the World, ill treated Physically & emotionally damaged animals which cannot plead their case are cared for, Sheepdogs that had accidents or became too old as always a resident boss Cat! usually a Mother cat finds a home at a Sanctuary & never leaves & the cat always checks visitors! it is a lot more than than a caring gentle or humane human can imagine & merits more than just a look, Even a line of assorted Ducks walking safely around the Sanctuary, or swimming in the pond, take a look and you'll see they had been shot or trapped & had an eye missing part of a leg or wing blasted away, they live safely in unison with other animals, 'even Baboons rescued from being kept in tiny cages in Lebanon,If you enjoy our site there are others which could benefit by receiving even your tiniest assistance. LINKED TOO WITH:- http://www.theanimalsanctuary.co.uk Ty-Agored 'Welsh translation for OPEN HOUSE where no creature needing help gets turned away & no creature gets 'put down' unless suffering, when owners die leaving pets needing a home, strays are found, breakups of marriages can leave pets with problems too, just as leaving creatures un-neutered can end up with a desparate animal with dependants. Neutering, 'Chipping' spaying & treatment all costs money, Vets have been brilliant with all, Ty-AGORED Animal Sanctuary was founded by Mrs. Barbara Packham in the early 70's & when Farmers left calves in Telephone Kiosks this is where they had to find help, REHOMING plus fostering is a main aim and this is where rogue or untrained Sheepdogs get trained to start or continue working in UK plus abroad. AT LEAST VISIT THESE SITES TO SEE WHAT IS HAPPENING & WHERE THE ANIMALS GET HELP. where do they find care? HERE where help can be appreciated, where children can be shown how to care for animals. People to help at or even help support these Charities are scarce. Ty-Agored is open Daily to visitors from 11am to 3pm, never buys or sells animals, but always has many cats & dogs desperately needing GOOD HOMES through no faults of their own. Tel:-01570 470589, on the Lampeter Aberaeron A482 Road the turnoff B4337 to Cribyn takes you 3/4 mile to Ty-Agored itself. Both are on the old ISDT Routes. It need not go unsaid either that trapped injured victims of neglect plus cruelty somehow find their ways to the above Sanctuaries.
http://www..walesonline.com/ plus http://www.ahrma.org the American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association. INTERNATIONAL SIX DAYS TRIALS events from 1937 in Britain can be reached by simply clicking on the following address, http://www.speedtracktales.co.uk you may click on another address to visit & Historian Author Ed Youngblood's http://motohistory.net which is an absolute delight, constantly updated with 'treasures'. Another fresh online is Stuart Forbes's www.bikerwales.com well controlled & prepared for active modern bikers, another site of great interest, try North Cornwall Motor Racing Club Website http://www.bangerracing.com 'great active site. & down below is a 'plug' for a ex Racer now dealer WAYNE BOWEN who never ever asked for it! Wayne however has carefully stored any photos relating to Wales's Motorcycle Competition & made such available to be included in this plus the sites we have covering Eppynt, Pendine uncomplainingly, plus he never even asking for his own hairy exploits at Aberdare & elsewhere or his business to be featured. I know he will be surprised to see his identity associated. (time to say thanks)
ALSO CLICK TO VISIT *** http://www.silverdragons.co.uk ***to see the ARCHIVE of Eppynt TT RACES, the Largest TT Circuit on Mainland Britain over 50 yrs ago run jointly by Carmarthen & Builth Wells Motor Clubs. You may contact us on it's Guest Book or the one here. (alter your email address by adding zzzz before or after address to avoid spammers using the listing) ONE FRESH NEW Delightful site webmaster has just contacted us to advise Roland Pike's involvement on Pike-BSA machines, Gold Stars were sorted very much on the line of Roland's Pike Rudge machines raced in the Mainland TT at Eppynt, click on www.pike-bsa.com to see delightful IoM pics fm Bill Snelling too. (A very nice site from Ton van der Rijt of Holland)
W Edwards (Edwards Towy Garage!) whose name you see re Trophies plus prominent involvement with Carmarthen Club activities won the Cardigan Club's 2 1920's Pentre Cwrt nr Lampeter Hill Climb events, plus took a Gold Medal in the ACU Six Days Trial in 1920, (believed the International Six Days Trial) plus a Silver Medal in the Scottish Six Days Trial. Plus took part in events at Pendine in 1920, His Great Grandson Stephen has kept the picture & medals safe & returns them to Wales after over 20 years in Australia, thanks to Stephen for permission to use the following images, (we wd also like to identify the machine shown here).
Dr. Alex Lindsey Snr., on second machine from the left, Handel Davies second from right, & on the right is Albert Lewis of Henllan, all on Sunbeam machinery
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Handel Davies refuels
Here is Handel Davies's Oakland Stores at Glannant, which later became the Dodds family Tyre depot. Handel Davies, a superb racer of his day later opened a large Motorcycle Emporium at Oxford St. Swansea, later bought by Glanfield Lawrence. (Handel is buried near his Daughter's grave at the local Chapel).
This same wooden front is still in situ to this day, however the Shell & Colmans Blue & Robin Starch signs decorated building to its left was removed & in Bob & Nan Dodds's Motor Tyre Depot time it became a driveway to allow large vehicles reach the building's rear. The Dodd family saw Bob become Welsh 350cc Grass Track Solo Champ in the final round at Coldra Farm, Newport, whilst John Mills & I watched Bob then around the 40 yrs. of age mark & despite a fall take the Championship, his son Colin also became a top Grass track racer.
Handel Davies, his daughter, & mechanic Jack. On the Brough Superior SS.80 De Luxe!, one of very first 90 bore Broughs bought new by him from the works & sent by by LNER Rail, 30/5/1927 & later sold to a Mr. Bush on 12/5/1930!. Engine no 81994 KTCY, frame No 591 Gearbox No 115066, above data thanks to Dave Clarke of the Brough Superior Club.
That Cup shown below we believe well after 1936! Eddie Stephens with 'specs. to his right Elwyn Rees and behind him Noel Knight Snr. Carmarthen's great organizer of so many events.
Jack Davies of Carmarthen Motor Club obtaining Freddie Frith's Autograph by chance when Freddie broke down in practice we belive near Kate's Cottage, to Jack for display to the lads, on a par with the Holy Grail
Carmarthen (& Builth's Gallery) of Dragons awarded for Eppynt TT & elsewhere, Wilmot Evans won the very first for the 1948 Lightweight 250! at Eppynt against a very fast Moto Guzzi ridden by Maurice Cann (the number of shields you can see on the plinth/bases upper chamfer tells us that this pic was at least post 1951. The shields continued clockwise on that level, Wilmot won again in 1950.
Wilmot's 1948 TT Silver Dragon Trophy which he won again in 1950, I had the pleasure of having this here for 6 months or so.
These small replica Tropies on wooden plinth bases are seen in the pics above. Awarded for when a Main Trophy was returned, those smaller Silver Dragons originate from Tom Norton's Automobile Palace at Llandrindod Wells where from 1922 where they sold as Motor Decor Emblems & see who else carried one on his vehicle!. 2 of these as Wilmott Evans's Eppynt TT Tropies Replicas were recently sold in Auction at Carmarthen for a total reputedly to amass to over £2000, hopefully they will be on display?, here is where they stemmed from.
Pendine Races around that period became hugely supported to around the same extent Gower & Oxwich Bay Broughton Bay Aberavon Beach & Pembrey (Cefn Sidan) events, this shows the Race banner actually on the Beach.
A 1950's view of a marked out Pendine Race Circuit taken from a point on the headland protruding from right to left in the preceding pic. above.
Carmarthen Council Cup presently safe shows it was stamped with winners names from1936, Donated by County Councillor Will Edwards whom all locals shall recognize as Edwards Towy Garage, did this follow on to similar silverware presented by 1931 officials of the Carmarthen Sports & Attractions Enterprises Association?. 1936 winner was F Whitehouse, 1937 J D Daniels (Jack Daniels, see his section on this website) 1938 Eddie Stephens whom you see with it above, 1939 M G Taylor, WW2 war years gap, 1946 T H Edwards, 1947 N Treseder, 1948 Wilmott Evans, 1949 N Treseder Snr., 1950 Nobby Treseder, 1950 Sam Seston who rode the Jap engined specials of Ernie Earles in 350 form at Pendine plus the 500 engined version at Lydstep Hill Climb that year, 1952 Len Nicholas, 1953 Gerhard Heinz, 1954 Len Nicholas. since all were into Hill Climb plus Sand Races we await further info from visitors on whether it was a Hillclimb or Sand Races award or a combination of such events.
Stalling Down not Stormy Down, second RIDER from right appears as one of the Welsh ISDT Team.
The Welsh team which competed in 1937 International Six Days Trial, P C Sivell on left with his New Imperial, centre is I believe, Archie (Arthur?) Colcombe, & dad of an old friend, Austin Colcombe of Builth Wells, then at right is Sand racer E G (Gordon) Bennett of Gorseinon & Swansea Motor Club you will see more of Gordon in the OXWICH section of this website. Austin rode in Grass Track races into the 1960's & at Llanbadarn Park nr Aberystwyth I rode a 250 BSA he made at his Builth Wells shop, to compare it against the TRIBSA I had taken there. P C Sivell also rode a 250 BSA in the 1938 event, sadly retiring on the second day, Pete Harding now has that very 250 BSA!. (Photo from the Mike Evans Collection)
Carmarthen Club out on a run pause with Eddie Stephens seated on the white Sidecar nose, at the ANGEL INN, but where is it???, can anyone identify others?.
Daniel Morgan Thomas, of Llangrannog, Vincent HRD Works tester and rider at the same time as John Surtees was an apprentice there & Phil Heath George Brown & George Rose too Dan raced at venues all over Wales & England, Winning at Pendine in 1951, latterly he retired to be a Milkman at Llangrannog, His son Dai presently compiling a scrapbook on his career so if anyone has data please contact us.
Here we see a top sandracer, Jimmy Lanyon of Jersey, Mrs Lanyon remains bright as a button & Jimmy raced Bill Green's AJS plus his 350 Triumph single spectacularly on road race plus Sand tracks & in 1952 he rode a 499 Norton #016 at Eppynt TT Circuit on his way to compete in Isle of Man, Bill Salmons & Channel Islands restorers traced this pic for us. His next door neighbour Ian advised us that Jimmy was one of a bakery operating family & one of the family was caught by the occupying German Force during WW2 for copying & distributing the BBC Broadcasts to the Channel Island, which of course was verboten listening.
Why use such a faded pic to show the first post WW2 Kidston Scramble? fifth machine from the right has the man in white helmet responsible for competition machines now all carrying ball end levers....Douglas D Jones of Dutlas Nr. Knighton after seeing accidents here plus when he was using 'Don R' machinery during WW2 raised the matter with ACU's Harry Baughan, only to be rebuffed with a response describing the sharp orig levers to be part of the equipment on which brave men competed. Douglas had been using on his own post WW2 machines simple nut welded to the end of each lever & ground it circular & he had shown his machine & levers to Harry Baughan, another couple of accidents at events around Britain saw Douglas press further to HB & after a month or two later across the board ACU regulations specified BALL END LEVERS to be fitted to competition machines, all sadly attributed by the ACU to Harry Baughan's foresight! & not the man who had persuaded him they were needed. Douglas recalls he is on a 350 BSA & then he was of the Old Post Office, Felindre Knighton, the Birthplace of Central Wales Auto Club when it had Presteigne, Ithon Valley, Ludlow Castle, Newtown, Rhayader. Hardly visible on the right on a 350 Royal Enfield is his brother Glyn Jones, founder member of Knighton Auto Club who held offices in ISDT events, Welsh 2 Days Trials, plus local events & the spectator imm. to Glyn's left in a 'flat 'at is another brother, Bill Jones a lad who had been involved in all mentioned plus more. Russ Evans transmitted a page of that Saturday Nov 2nd 1946 Programme showing Regulations allowed one lap practice between 1.30 & 2.30 that day. Entry for individuals & 3 man teams was 5 shillings. A blue flag would 'warn' competitors & a red flag would stop a race, entry had to be made to W A Davies of Popular Builth Wells by 27 October & the event would take place on land at Llanelwedd owned by Miss A Gwynne Howell & Mr J Powell. Hot & cold water would be available to competitors at the nearby school but those using it had to bring their own soap & Towels!. 'the 12 lap race would be of roughly 20 miles distance. (so much can be gleaned from a small page)
Phelon & Moore (Panther's 1913 ISDT Team)
Sign from the 1936 ISDT Event!
& here are some of the British Team that passed that sign by in 1936, with BSA stalwart Freddie Rist centre.
Fred Rist on the BSA & Alec Jeffries or ? on the Triumph & is that one of the Brittain bros. on the Royal Enfield a rare Pic. at Llandrindod Wells of a 2 days team selection for the 1948 ISDT event to be held in Italy, Petrol shortages 'somehow' overcome & 'Mercury' first to press carrying the selection news!.
This still unused book of petrol coupons could have been part of what enabled that 1948 ISDT 2 days selection trial to 'run so smoothly'!.
Llandrindod Wells Start point of the 1937 ISDT 1948 Trial,1949, 1950 & 1954 ISDT.
American rider & writer Ed Youngblood provided us with the story of how a determined a New Yorker, Tom McDermott just 18 years old was hardly noticed or given the accolade his Gold in the 1949 event deserved in his article 24 Karat Memories. Tom McDermott is now a prominent Harley Davidson dealer at Fort Ann. Thanks to Ed who is behind many of the finest books on Motorcycles & people & who is behind http://www.motohistory.net I was advised that Tom did not appear as a Brit. since the BSA Team helped him to process his ACU Int. Licence.
The bustle at Llandovery Town Centre preparing for the day's stage, this place was used in all the 1948, 1949 Plus shown here here in 1950 & also the 1954 Trials events.
Des James, still of Talybont. A top scrambler too Des took Gold in the 1949 ISDT on a rare 250 Class Royal Enfield Clipper, we can tell this pic is of the 1950 event, since Des has a Triumph Single with it's dynamo in place, 1950 had some nighttime sections requiring lights!, Des IS STILL a great Character too. Des became the man to get a 'works' Trials HJH, from Harry J Hulsman at Windsor Rd. Neath factory. What to his surprise he actually received was a pile of components, part of which was a fairly exhausted scrambles trim power plant for him to build plus register. Again, Des sorted it plus used it to great effect.
1950 ISDT number 187, D D Jones we believe it to be Douglas, a staunch protestor, for human & animal rights, plus other decent causes & yes he was the chap who brought ball end levers to be stipulated by the ACU to be used on competition machinery.?
Upper pic shows Fred Rist in 1949 ISDT final Day rounding Dixie's Corner at Eppynt. The centre pic shows the layout /encampment of the organizers viewed from the so named Burma road region looking at Dixie's Corner & down Llewellyn's Way.....That Lower picture though is more than simply a little bike, it is the little bike which won the Six days trials finest award for its makers in the Eastern Europe 'bloc' & actually showed they led the world in two stroke development. The Czech team E Marha, F Blaha, & J Kremar mounted on CZ's of 98cc to 125cc in spite of Marhar's stop for a spark plug change romped away with the ISDT TROPHY Britain's team of P Alves 500 Triumph, C M Ray 500 Ariel, F Rist 500 BSA & Hugh Viney 500 AJS unable to reach the far far higher than possible speeds required by the final day & whilst the oil, tyres, sparking plugs & chains representatives from their mobile supply bases provided lavish support on the Course planned by ACU's Harry Baughan it was the Czech team who won easily even wearing the required crash Helmets provided FoC by Feridax who had supplied the British teams. Llandrindod Wells had seen Foreign flags of 93 foreign riders out of a 237 rider entry to end with presentations at The Pavilion Hotel where Lord Lieut. of Radnorshire & Piet Nortier, Pres. of Commission Sportive Internationale (F.I.C.M.) By September 29 1949 INTERNATIONAL "GOLDS" appeared at the foot of a page in Motor Cycling showing George Brown on the 1000cc 'Gunga Din' Vincent beating the outright Motor Car Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb Record whilst craftily launching the Grey Flash Vincent 500 racer, all it stated was that following amendments the recent ISDT Gold Awards were to also be received by C. Clegg, (125 BSA) & K. Rykr, (248 Jawa).
N.B. Epynt in Welsh & Eppynt in English, plus Epona was the old term for the Pagan Goddess of Horses & Epynt it is said was the origin of the Welsh Cobs Ponies, plus a farmer stopped me me in my tracks one day when he told me " 'well where do you think the word PONY actually comes from boy?".) I had not really thought!.
Italian team & machines smartly almost in formation going thru Dixie's Corner which is still there at Epynt.
1949 ISDT Italian team exit Dixies, 500 SV Sertum machines at Epynt TT Circuit on the last Day, 6th Day Speed Trials, Murray Walker rode to 'Gold Medal & breaking his only specs. 'second day on a Norton 500.
Clynderwen Grass Track 1953? from the Left Sand Racing expert Llwyd James 500 BSA then of Maenclochog with Len Bastian, 350 BSA Gold Star, Jack Phillips of Swansea who competed at anything to do with Motorbikes & on the far right is Swansea's 'Hoppy' Hopkins on his JAP based special.
1931 Carmarthen Sports & Attractions Enterprises Association held races at Pendine on 3rd August with the following officials, Judge J Jones, Chief Steward Trevor Hopkins, Starter J Jenkins, Honorary Secretary W H C Tew. Events & Results follow:
Now Back in Time! to view what was repeatedly & superbly recorded for posterity by the photographic skills of J.F.Lloyd, Carmarthen Park & the town itself was a regional Centre for Athletics, Fairs, Military Displays, Cycles & Motorcycle Racing & even Hot Air ballooning as well as its Rugby & Football. With the kind efforts & assistance of Pat Davy plus VMCC Library & staff we can identify at far left a 1903 Humber, next a 1903 Matchless or Excelsior, on to a 1903 BAT & on the right a 1903 Riley 2 3/4 hp. What has seemed to have been overlooked previously is that since Professional foot racers & professional cycle racers were always star attractions, & that CARMARTHEN PARK was amongst if not as many claim to have been the very first venue at which a motor cycle was used as a Pacer! ie ridden in front of a high speed setting attempt by a cyclist who rode very close behind it. Pacing is claimed to have been frequently used. So very much more can be discovered when visits can be made to what is after all the National Cycle Museum at Llandrindod Wells (base of several ISDT Events) in the care of David Higman & his colleagues, available data plus displayed contents are breathtakingly comprehensive from the earliest bicycles to latter day racing machines & unique materials & construction methods used, it is the largest Cycle Museum in UK whilst a great many claim it to be the largest in Europe, a visit to their excellent website can be made from here by clicking on www.cyclemuseum.org.uk
This shows the earliest Prog portion we have located whilst from a 1901 Carmarthen Park Sports Programme we can grasp 1901 was the 7th Event. Mansel Athletic Grounds Progs preceded Carmarthen Park Events. Lord Cawdor Presided at the 1901 event, an assembly of Councillors Mayors plus VIP's would all be listed. PROFESSIONAL FOOT RACES, were advertised at an Event Graced by Cwmmawr Brass Band conducted by T. Harris. (also available for dances!) High wire act Pereni can be seen in some following pics, plus the Balloon Ascent, followed by 2 Parachute decents made by Miss Winnie Mansfield & Mr Henry Spencer. Veldenos was a Gymnastic Marvel team. Horizontal Bar Gymnastic entertainers were easily noted to have the same letters as Denvelos. Silver prizes plus money rewards flowed in Foot Racing events & the secretive nobbling & betting concerning favourites is said to have been prevalent then too, nothing unearthed in that respect re pedal Cycle Races. 6 Old Pennies for admission, or 2/6p 'half a crown' allowed the affluent to reserve a Grandstand Seat. I had raced pedal Cycles here Played Rugby, Raced solo Motorcycles plus Methanol fuelled Grass Track Sidecar racing machines here <> AND I never knew what had gone on all those years ago. For more bread maker review go to http://www.bestbreadmakeronline.com/.
So Back in Time again at a new looking Carmarthen Park.
Back again, another of J. F Lloyd's appreciated pictures. the very balloon from which in 1901 those parachute descents were made, Carmarthen Museum seems to have a little place in an outlaying district from where little of a great Carmarthen past seems seldom made evident.
Look at the crowd! at the park.
This is an old circa 1908 postcard view of Carmarthen Park with the Old Town Coat of Arms & motto we have seen offscreen to be RHYDDID (freedom), HEDD (peace), LLWYDDIANT (success). National Cycle Museum has one posted in 1908
Motorcycle Racing at Carmarthen Park! the banked Velodrome Track & Stand remains there in use. On left we see a c1903 Riley 2 3/4 hp, & centre a machine using a Perry Victor frame & Forks set, a 3 hp Humber is set to start from the right of this pic. Huge thanks are deserved by Pat Davy & staff of the VMCC Library without whom we could not have traced what seems to stem from a century ago.
Carmarthen Town Quay, viewed towards where Tesco is today. The Castle can be seen in the top right of pic. this was 1912 with the vessel Merthyr alongside of the same era as that ill fated Fry's Cocoa ad.
1931, Later at Carmarthen Park, Carmarthen Sports & Attractions Enterprises Association on the evening of Monday August 3rd held races in that very same park we see the Speedway Races in 1963. Officials:- W Edwards Chief Steward, P J Kelly Clerk of the Course, Judges Alderman D J Davies, Alderman J O Morgan & Mayor W Jones & Mr H N Evans, Starter Tom Evans.
Events were1:The County Race!, Open to Riders in Carmarthenshire, we note the winner was listed to be not! 1/D Hathaway Bridgend & 2/W L Hughes of Llanelly. 2:One Mile Open, result 1/R W A Zeal of Newport 2/Y Davies of Bridgend....3:Two Miles Open, result 1/R W A Zeal 2/George Gregor of Mumbles. (George on his Douglas machine can be seen on the Oxwich 1931 Races page) 4:Grand finale Mile R W A Zeal. He rode at Cardiff's Speedway in 1928 along with George Gregor & Nick Carter. Can anyone find other info re races there, pictorial or results please?
In following years at virtually all the locations listed on this page inc Pendine & Carmarthen Park appeared a spectacular rider crowds were drawn to see, Windy Rees of Llwynhendy Nr Llanelli, not related to the Elwyn & Roddy Rees of Windy Corner Garage Pencader. Ex Aberavon Sands racer John West-Jones recalls at Christchurch New Zealand avoiding a 'ticket' from a Traffic Warden!> Mrs Windy Rees! who accepted a plea from a Welshman 11000 miles from home
This is the folklore linked Merlin's Oak, Welsh Wizard & Magician stated "when this Oak is fallen down, then shall fall Carmarthen Town!. It's remains still stand in the largely unnoticed Glangwili Museum.
Back towards 1900/1910, Merlin's Oak stood firm & less affected by traffic's movements or emissions.
Wooky Tippy' was Bryn Edwards's nickname, taken from the family home name. It was only when I finally spoke with Bryn's Schoolmaster son John after Bryn had passed away on May 29 2004 following a long illness that his nickname origin became clearer. In the 30's, Grandfather Edwards was on a tea Clipper type vessel foundering in the East Indies, he as the resourceful radio operator had made up a rough device to continue transmitting their distress calls for at least a further 24 hours, & that call was heard, responded to & eventually rescuers found them, picked up survivors & landed them at a Malaysian Port Wooky Tippy which translated to 'Sweet Home' & all were extremely glad to arrive at. That Port name name was applied to the family house & Bryn naturally picked up his unusual nickname. (A touching tale of unsung heroism & suffering plus determination). Wooky was an absolute stalwart of Carmarthen Motor Club, a firm motorcycling enthusiast & a friend of Eddie Stephens, you may note Eddie's E 323 telephone number on that Vincent 1000 registration, 'another of Eddie's niceties> to his friends. Eddie seemed to have a way of getting that number on quite a few vehicles. In those days when the Vehicle Tax & Registration Office was in Carmarthen!!!! & along with the legendary Merlin's Oak which if was ever was to fall down would see Carmarthen town submerge.......Wooky is seen here at Eppynt TT Races in 1949 when he became thereafter termed the Race Herald after as Travelling Marshall finally checking the track & when all else was silent Bryn toured down to the start of the long Gardiner's Way straight & could not resist opening his 1000cc unsilenced Vincent machine up fully & that unsilenced machine's roar reverberated, booming plus echoing around surrounding mountains bringing a wholly enthralled band of around 35000 spectators to their feet to catch a glimpse of his high speed solo lap. An absolutely tough strong character about whom volumes could be written & he was of a band of Carmarthen Motor Club Characters who made it possible for talentless wannabe riders such as muself to have motorcycle races well run & readily available.(With thanks to John Edwards for his kind & patient assistance, we shall be altering this plus the caption on www.silverdragons.co.uk accordingly)
Carmarthen Park Speedway Races, Organiser & a pretty good rider himself, John Powell is wearing a cap, to the right of Kenny Morris (who later competed himself using my Ariel SQ.4 powered sidecar outfit) stands behind the third machine from the right on which Racer Lloyd Tucker sits, Bill Bridgett is to his right & far right is George (gearbox) Bewley of Pershore on the 500 JAP which I later raced & copped a fair 'whack' at Stepaside when the frame parted when going down the straight there..(shortly after I started racing sidecar outfits!)..Carmarthen Town Dignitaries to the far left & standing to the right of the third from left machine & wearing No 3 number vest is yrs truly, to left of that machine stand Roddy & Elwyn Rees. ACU steward 'Big Eric' Williams an ex competitor from Llanelli is the tallest figure in the group.
We tend to forget what was probably the last Motorcycle made in Wales....this is the 'works' HJH being raced at CLAYFORD Nr Tenby......... Rider was Roddy Rees then of WINDY CORNER GARAGE Pencader who was a superb rider & still an absolutely great character too.... The Machines were built at Harry J Hulsman's factory at NEATH with square section frame tubing was a successful design but emerged when Sun, Cotton, Greeves, Ambassador, James Francis Barnett, DOT, DMW, Norman, Tandon & others basically made trading difficult. Sadly Harry stopped production & left to open a shop in Morriston which was positioned back to back with the premises now used by Kaymac Diving Ltd........... Some square section tubing was there when they acquired the premises!.
Few seem to recall Harry J Hulsman's efforts in Motorcycling, the DRAGON model machines & others using Villiers & JLO motors, plus his involvement with Cyril Kieft the 'Bubblecar Intended Producer' & various project of theirs such as Midlands produced scooters. Harry also had 4 firsts in 4 Events at Pendine alone on his BSA 125 Bantam!. This 197cc 3 speed 1955 Super Dragon for sale on eBay from Wells in Somerset late Nov 2005 is an example.
A better view of Roddy Rees & that Works HJH 250 Villiers powered machine at the Clayford Tenby Scrambles circuit in 1956. (pictures from Rees family collection)
This very same type Harry J Hulsman designed machine with 8H Villiers power unit was set up & raced at his home Dundrod Circuit by a determined Tommy Robb. Tommy even bought a large sheet of Alloy & with a bag of sand beat & formed a great full frontal fairing of the type used on the NSU Star Machinery. In 1956 at Dundrod Tommy lapped at 58.63 mph some 18 mph less than Sammy Miller in the Works NSU, but what a good performance out of a Villiers 8H?. . .Tommy Robb whom we all recall later racing superbly on Honda works machinery
Carmarthen Motor Club lived on circa 1967 & thanks to Terry James for this John Powell 2nd right right Norian Leach bearded Gethin Evans with Terry to the right of him in the pic.
Now for an old bike which started with a cautious £5 investment, gave great fun in many guises and still lurks in our garage!
Out of our depths at a Hillclimb at Maesteg using road race tyres on a grass track machine set up for Clockwise racing!, A pic we never expected, taken by top motorcycle action man Alan J Torry. those forks!!! were built overnight in a Bryn Terrace Llanelli shed after we had ruined a pair cartwheeling thru a chicane along with 5 other outfits at Much Marcle in a Saturday meeting on a Bank Hol. series of events. a BSA rear swinging arm fork was used & an old Greaves Invacar Invalid carriage forks became blended & strengthened in & all this was done still in racing leathers & we loaded & travelled back during the night as far as Strensham Services & exhaustion set in & we called for Dave Lynes of Great Barr & Pete Harding of Erdington who tore thru the night down M5 & took over Driving to the Midlands with muggins 'ere asleep in a car to Great Barr where I was pushed into a posh bed still in old dusty leathers, a sleep & a great breakfast from those Brummies & we were able to get to West Bromwich races just in time to practice & those make-do forks with 'negative trail' managed to get a 'few bob' towards our trip. Next day at Kidderminster Races a fully blown up motor fright (which left only bits of alloy crankcases bolted in the engine plates where the motor had been) followed a missed change down when heading towards a chicane. (such is life) NB> Peter Harding's solution of the common in those days front wheel understeer problem on Chairs was "fit a 400 x18 rear tyre on the front then!", he always stuck to Norton twins engines too in days I looked down my nose at them!. Those were days when I did not have money over to provide packed nosh & I was a virtual refugee at Ken Jones's food parcel in his Volkswagen, mooching fascinating combinations of sandwiches with ingredients ranging from cheese & pickles to Fussels condensed milk!, his wife Mair & family & my wife Janet & I passed in a "boot sale" at Singleton Swansea recently, it was only after we exchanged greetings in Welsh that Mair commented that she never knew I spoke Welsh!, 'times & folks change.
That 'fiver' machine No 10, rigged to race 'left' (anticlockwise) Tracks at Llannon Nr Aberaeron with Eifion Jones in hot pursuit.
Carmarthen Park again in 1967 Myself & the late sidecar wizard Ken Jones 36 & Alan Artus 33 with Lawson Crisp in the dark helmet.... 12 years ago the old bike frame was found with John Reeve at Blaenporth....John gave it back to us for nothing & I said nothing to Kenjo until I placed it on his lawn at Pontyates, with one of the pair of Cups we won in '65 at the Royal Welsh Show....Then I called him from a nearby telephone kiosk & asked him if he fancied a sit on our old bike again on his lawn?.... the old lad looked out then emerged with his share of silverware that day & we laughed & sat on the old thing once more...Childish in extreme.....Since the machine itself was bought as a crashed & bent frame for a fiver at Meyer Davies's Nevilles Dock Llanelli & Jacked straight with a 20Tons Tangye Jack & wooden Railway sleeper blocks. Smokey Dawson gave us an OK to use his acct. to fetch offcuts of tubing from Wolverhampton's Monmore green Tubing Co.....A visit to Rugby to measure Mick 'Wrecker' Adams's set up racing outfit & then back to Owen Greenwood's at Thurmaston where the incredible plan gelled!. Jeff Nunn dispensed with his Norton teles on his lightweight JAP Outfit so these had to do for us....A 3 piece 1949 Triumph motor was placed before Owen Greenwood & when he advised that it was far too old a type to live with top Grass racing tears welled & he quickly added how much have you got for US to get bits?.........Twentyseven pounds and ten shillings was my faltering reply & Owen said the top road racers motors had end of season race parts to dispose of & if we nursed them & used sparingly we could go and have a bash at good racing......with a single Carb we went into the fray & after a couple of lucky places & results in rained/wet meetings realized we needed the big twin carbs & swill pots too......
Many big big thanks to the late Smokey Dawson who was THE DMW's man & without his kind help we could not have afforded those bits of tubing for good old Owen Greenwood to build us that machine!
After 'the Cups win'..our first! at 1965 Royal Welsh Show, Roger Maughling towered over me in the paddock & quietly said "I can get you to go much faster!"..... Disbelief & how? followed & the offer of leading link forks designed & built by the weekend to be picked up en route to a weekend of 'Midlands Circus' races. it came about. (Top photo by John Powell) "If your dream is big enough, not even your enemies can stop you." & no it's not some great quote, I choked laughing when I saw it on a Harper Collins Publication Cover, 'As the crow flies' after all it was written by Jeffrey Archer, for whom a period in Belmarsh brought things to the buffers!. a little decency & thought for others is a far better outlook.