10th Annual Major Nichols Memorial and Centenary Ride

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As we arrived at Bobbington Airport at 10am, the car park already held cars parked and bikes ready to roll. By the time we started there were far more, with about 25 of Major’s Machines, a Trevor Jarvis Flying Gate a couple of Jack Holland’s and even a Joe Cooke Imperial Petrel tandem completing the peleton.

It was the largest gathering of his bikes I have ever seen. A very diverse and interesting set from a lovely and possibly only Mixte tourer to the apex of his craft, one of his machines built for and ridden by Ant Taylor in 1969 in his All Rounder winning year.

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A short ride out and back to lunch at the Red Lion in Bobbington as The Royal Oak has now closed. Bikes lined the play area fence, conversation got into full swing along with looking at bikes and getting to know a lot of new faces. Unexpected and unannounced Ant Taylor arrived and was drawn in to the band. He was delightful to talk to and made the day rather special. Then lunch and chatter before the quite testing hilly and technical afternoon ride, a 16 mile circuit on a mixture of lanes from good tarmac to grass centred and well potholed trackways and gravelled sections with water to test riding skills. Then back to the better hedged and tree lined lanes typical of the area.

Afterwards some of us adjourned to the cafe on Bobbington Airfield for drinks and more chat before going our separate ways about 4.30pm. An outstanding gathering, discoveries and shared knowledge, great chat and a very enjoyable day out. Sincere thanks to all who came and sorry not to see you, the enthusiasts we know who couldn’t make it.

It was so good in fact that we are going to try and organize another in late August or early September at a venue in or close to Lichfield on the eastern side of the Birmingham conurbation. Keep your eye on our updates perhaps. Enjoy the photos from the day below. There are many more to be added to existing and new listings on the site over the next few weeks.

Alan

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