Memories of early motorcycling were requested.

Barbara Loose of 23 Dickinson Avenue, Croxley Green, wrote: WHAT fun we had! Our whole family (mum and us three girls) would follow my father around various circuits, ie: Brands Hatch, Silverstone, Crystal Palace to name but a few. Even our holidays to Scarborough and the Isle of Man were all related to the race track.

My father was James Bound and during the 1950's/1960's he owned EMB Motors at 32 Vicarage Road, Watford, and at one time, was the importer of the 125cc Montessa Motorcycle of Spain. (Although he was originally a butcher by trade, his real love was motorcycle racing).

When working for my father, I well remember the young and handsome Rex Avery (who lived in St James Road) visiting our workshop to see my father. Also Joe Erlick frequented the yard when, with all heads together, they would try to perfect the "perfect" machine. (My father "created" the EMB Motorcycle being my mother's initials).

In the early days I also remember a very young Barry Sheene riding around the paddock on a tiny motorcycle built for him, I believe, by his father.

During the late 1950's I also had the pleasure of joining other young women racing various circuits being: Beryl Swain, Pauline Dale, Helen Mitchell (I think Margo Pearson came on the scene a little later) donning our black leathers etc.

Among such famous young men dominating the racing scene at that time I well remember John Surtees, Mike Hailwood, Derek Minter and Bert Fruin (of the Fruin Dart machine) to name but a few the wonderful smell of "R" oil and the adrenalin buzzing through your veins while awaiting to push your machine into action as soon as the starter flag went down!

Other local competitors of our racing days, together with Rex Avery, were C R Denton, K W J Douglass, R S W Field, R Foster, R Millins, Don Guy and W H Wiltshire. Where are they all now I wonder?

We belonged to the Chiltern 50cc Racing Club and an average speed in those days (on a 50cc Itom manufactured in Italy) was 42.30mph which, on occasions, meant we were touching 70mph!

In the late 1950's Kirkiston Irish Championship Road Races in Kirbcubbin, Co. Down, Ireland was believed to be the first time in motorcycling history that a club had entered a team of no less than 16 riders to compete in an Irish event.

The transport used for the journey consisted of a three ton cattle truck for the 50cc machines and racing kit (leathers etc) and a Dormobile, Austin A.40 and Vauxhall Victor for the riders and mechanics.

The truck left Redbourn, Herts, at 12.15am on a Friday arriving at Liverpool at 6am the following morning; this early start being essential to ensure loading of the machines on to the Irish steamer (the M V Ulster Prince). The crossing from Liverpool to Belfast took ten hours, after a very gratefully smooth crossing.

I truly believe racing in those days was more friendly and fun you see, there was not the high financial rewards of today!