First bikes, take two


My first bike, in about 1957, an Ariel 350 (left).

At 17, any bike that was affordable was ardently wished for.

I was told that it had been Hartley-tuned; and living on the doorstep of, and a constant hanger-around at Brands Hatch, that name meant something to me, although I wasn’t sure in what context.

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I don’t know whether it was geared for trials or scrambles, but it had a solid rear end.

I was at sea in those days, but in my leaves, while all my mates were at work, I loved trials-style riding it around the many local places available for such pastimes.

A real ‘goer’.

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The picture shows my younger brother doing the Marlon Brando bit.

Les Carman, Formby, Liverpool

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