John Clayton
1934 - 2016

Photo by MJWheeler at the start of the EVR run.from Poltimore Arms.

John and his 1933 Rudge-Whitworth 500cc TT Replica.
....awaiting the full story on this lovely pre-war motorcycle, which is always a regular on many of ours and Rudge-Whitworth club runs. Note the lack of a kick-start... yes John still starts this motorcycle in true racing fashion, with a bump-start! If you are in luck - I have also seen him start it with just a spin of the rear wheel.

Some very interesting local pics from John

Sidmouth, Marine Garage, Esplanade [East End] Late 1930's
The motorcycle is the 350cc Excelsior ridden in the 1930 Junior T.T.
Photo shows it fitted with a 1925 D.O.H.C. J.A.P engine designed by Val Page & developed by Bert LeVack.

Toms, Exeter about 1950 oldest riding motorcyclist

Miss Whitehead, one of the sisters who kept The Black Horse, Longbrook Street, Exeter
photo, in uniform R.F.C.? Nursing? Riding P&M [Panther] about 1918/19. Edinburgh registration.
[Note: P&M sidecar outfits were used by R.F.C]
Very small photo found in second hand shop in Heavitree about 1965 and un-identified for many years.
Photo later recognised without hesitation by Stan Shepherd whose father built the first motor car in Exeter in Longbrook Terrace.
[thank's John]

Notes from the past ~ 2003' REC with EBMCC guests ride out to a
Hydro-Electric Generating Station @ Mary Tavy

Rudge Enthusiasts Club South West Area Run, Sunday July 20th 2003.

Members of Exeter British Motorcycle Club were invited to join us on our run to visit a Hydro-Electric Generating Station on the edge of dartmoor. Around fifteen were at exeter Services for the 10.30 am start and, following the old A30, once the main road to Cornwall we soon cleared the city and found the old road almost deserted. Seven miles out, Stewart and Kevyn were waiting and at Tedburn St. mary were Francis and Tom with dick Bloomfield all the way from somerset.
A loverly ride followed on quiet roads at around 55mph-ish., theough Okehampton to stop briefly at sourton transport cafe, then, on to our destination.
searching to turn left "opposite" the war memorial in Mary Tavy, "Opposite" Alistair had said, there's me looking to the right and completely missed it
but at the post office I realised we had gone too far, turning arround and now it is on our right. Down in the valley, totally hidden from view is this
facinating hydro power station with Alister waiting and we were only about ten minsutes late. Alistair introduced use to the engineer on duty who did a
superb job of describing the place, its history and technicalities. Builr in 1932 and extended in 1934 it still has the original equipment and can produce
enough electricity to power the whole of Tavistock.
The water comes from the river Tavy and the old mine leats 600ft higher on the moor, the tail race, now aerated benefitting the fish farm down-stream
as well as the Tavy so it is very environmentally friendly and extremely efficient. The original Pelton wheels in cast iron are still in perfect condition
after 70 years but bureaucracy dictates that they must be replaced with stainless steel. We have no foundry in the UK to do this now so they are cast in
France though they will be hand-finished by the British company which supplies the original wheels.
We had just finished our guided tour when andy Hopkins with ulster and friend and B.S.A. Bandit arrived, they had difficulty finding the place, even a
policeman in the village had no idea that a generating station existed. Alistair left us now to get back to Mandy who has just had serious surgery, thanks Alistair for organising this visit and Mandy for letting him and get
well soon.
After a lovely morningit is now 1.30 and the sky is darkening and after some discussion it was agreed to ride to The Elephant's Nest at Horndon, a lovely old inn where we arrived just as it began to rain heavily but cleared an hour or so latter and though showery it improved as we made our way home. Dick and I stopped at Francis' for a welcome cup of tea, thanks Valerie. A realy good day out, most interesting and a good ride despite the rain.
I think without exeption the British M/C Club members all said how much they had enjoyed it.

(story by John Clayton, thank's John)

Click on 'hairy'
or picture to return to selection