Watsonian sidecars

Following on from last issue’s potted history of Watsonian Squire sidecars, Mick Payne describes the current range of the Cotswolds’ greatest manufacturer of motorcycle outfits.

“I bought Peter’s share of the business in 2006 and Mike’s last year,” explained Ben Mathews, a man with the sidecar industry at heart.

The Peter and Mike in question are Peter Rivers-Fletcher and Mike Williams, who founded Squire Sidecars back in 1974 and eventually absorbed Watsonian’s business.

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Mike has retired now but is still available on an advisory basis, and is still involved in another side of the company, manufacturing small caravans.

A GP700 attached to Triumph’s big and brutal Rocket III.

Watsonian employs 11 people and has dealers in Germany, Holland, Belgium and Sweden as well as a branch in the US.

Glass-fibre moulding and upholstery is contracted to other companies: “We have two that laminate bodies for us, one in Reddich, and the other in Cheltenham. We own all our own moulds and build them as required.” The biggest seller is the evergreen Grand Prix range.

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“We sell the Grand Prix, the Manx and the GP700 in roughly equal quantities,” Ben said.

Read more and view more images in the April 2019 issue of OBM – on sale now!

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