Whilst on holiday this month a trip to the Lakeland Motor Museum caused my Dearest to relive an unfortunate event in his misspent youth.
This is a Norton Commando 850cc, used by Lancashire Police in the 1970’s. My Dearest told me a tale in which he “rescued” a 50cc Honda moped from a stream near his home. He and his friend neither more than 14 at the time got it working, it had no kick start so they had to push it along the road, running till the engine fired,and they managed to fit a working head light taken from an old car. One night they set off on an adventure, riding through the streets of Preston on this death trap motorcycle, My Dearest in control, his friend riding pillion.
Inevitably they were spotted by a Motorcycle Cop and flagged down, but in a panic to escape their fate the friend shouted “Burn him off Steve, burn him off!” and My Beloved, being a stupid 14 year old boy, attempted to outrun a Norton Commando 850cc, on a Placcy 50cc. Needless to say they were stopped and arrested; the Cop must have been bursting to laugh.
He was left to cool his heels in clink all night; his Mum thought the experience would teach him a lesson, his first time in a Police cell. But the greater lesson was that the bike was confiscated and there ended his passport to the freedom of the open road, for the time being at least. It was about this time that he was teaching himself to drive in his father’s Allegro 1750 Supersport, not that his father was aware of it at the time, but that’s another story.