Club History

The club was first formed in 1927, however there are no notes dating back that far. The club ran continuously until the beginning of World War 2 at which point activities cease. The club was re-formed on the 24th of August 1948 at the home of C.S. & W.J. (MP) Lawrence who assembled a meeting with the help of Mr A. Pulliner. Other attendees of this initial meeting were: L. Downey, C. Mills, K.J. Mills, W.A. Rose, I.J. Bennett, L.S. Furnedge, F. Trappit, W. Bennett, B. Thierson, G. Streether, R.E. Meeks, J.A. & B.A. Seal, D.A. Bennett, Miss H.D. Askew, L.J. Weston and L.R. Carpenter.

During the meeting it was decided to proceed with a plan to re-form Basingstoke Motorcycle Club primarily for amateur riders. The following objectives were set:

1. To provide club, social and sporting amenities for the sole benefit of the members of the club.

2. To especially encourage the amateur rider and home-tuner and to provide for this class of motorcyclist simple competitive events, where they will not be outclassed by trade or trade-assisted riders.

3. To organise and conduct simple road trials and competitions.

4. To organise and conduct sprint racing, straight speed trials and straight hill climbs.

5. To encourage the use of motorcycles generally and to assist the young rider.

It was also decided that all events would be closed to club as all other forms of motorcycling scrambles, freak hill climbs, mud plugging, trials and the like were already adequately catered for by many clubs on an open-event basis. Mr W.J. Lawrence was voted to be Chairman, and Mr L.R. Carpenter was voted to the role of Secretary and Treasurer. The formation of the club was to be announced in an advertisement in the Hants and Berks Gazette, and Mr H.J. Gifford was asked if a notice could be placed in the window of his motorcycle shop. It was also decided an application would be made to the ACU for club affiliation once members numbers warranted this.

A kind offer was made by Mr Meeks; the landlord of the Wortine Hotel, to host the next meeting on the 15th September 1948. Alternative names were suggested at the following club meeting: Basingstoke Amateur Motorcycle Club or Basingstoke Amateur Motor Club. Mr J Seal suggested that light car should be added. At this point Mr Ellis (who had been a member of the original club) produced the club badge of that time and stated that it would still be possible to strike more copies. It was thus proposed by Mr Slade and Mr Ellis (seconded by Mr Oldham) that the club should remain named Basingstoke Motorcycle and Light Car Club. Membership fees were set at 5 Shillings per year (25 pence now!) and the committee was appointed:

President: Mr H.J. Gifford

Secretary and Treasurer: Mr L.R. Carpenter

Committee: Mr Trappitt, Mr Pullingon, Mr Meeks, Mr Oldham, Mr Hall

Mr Ellis and Mr Slade were members of the old club, and had some money left over and along with the other members, they decided to give it to the new club. Mr Slade also produced two very handsome silver cups. The members of the old club would be made members of the new club. ACU Affiliation was decided on 15.9.48 and a notice to that effect was put into the Motorcycle and Motorcycling paper. Also that the Lloyds Bank would still be used as it had given good service to the old club.

The first event run by the new club was a road trial with observed sections would be held on the 5th December 1948, and the two prizes would be given. On the social side, film shows and darts matches were held. By 1950, the club was running open trials, conducted trials, pillion trials and also social runs to other parts of the area. Also, club dance nights were starting and they carried on for a number of years.

On the 11th of June 1950, the club joined forces with the Mortimor Club to run a scramble at Beenham Park. In August 1950 the club ran a motorcycle gymkhana at Worting Fete. Then in November 4th a short night trial and Tramps Supper event also started with club dinners. A little story from the committee dinner on 30th March 1951. Mr John Seal handed in his registration from the committee due to his forthcoming marriage but the committee refused it, giving him leave of absence. This was until he felt it was time he could leave his new wife.

In 1955 the club tried to run a scramble at Heckfield but there were too many problems to overcome so it did not happen. Everything has been the same as before but new cricket matches are being arranged between clubs. Also, quiz nights had started as well as club magazines. In 1956 the club ran a grass track for Basingstoke carnival, and club yearbooks were being done. Club nights had moved to the Cricketers Inn. The guest of honour at the dinner in 1957 was John Surtees, but in the end he did not attend.

In 1958 we had two Grass Track races, one at the carnival and another on 14th September at Houndsmills Field, Kingsclere Road, Basingstoke, and had an entry of 67 solos and 14 sidecars and had 26 races. On March 19th 1958 at a club night we finally had John Surtees along with Eric Oliver answering various questions.

On the 16th August 1959 the club ran the Southern Centre grass track championship. At Houndsmills field with 48 solos, 17 sidecars. The winners were:

251-350cc championship J V Gouhs (Blackmore Vans MCC)

176-250cc Championship RW Adlam (Basingstoke MCC)

Up to 1000cc Novice Solos P Munday (Totton MCC)

Up to 1200cc Sidecar star D John (Blackmore Vans MCC)

251 – 1000cc Experts Barred G Bungay (Southampton Vikings MCC)

351 to 1000cc Star Race JV Gours

Up to 1200cc Sidecar Open D John

Sidecar Handicap J Browne (Blackmore Vans MCC)

351 to 1000cc Solo Experts Only JV Gours

And in total 28 races.

In 1960 the club started Moto Ball Matches, and it was against North Hants MCC. It was held at Basingstoke Carnival. Dennis Jenkinson (club member) was a journalist for F1 car racing and also the Millie Millie car rally with Stirling Moss, and was going to build a moto ball bike, which the club could use in his absence. In 1961 the club lost the Houndsmill Field due to the building of the fire station and moved to Rendells Field in Kingsclere road.

On 7th November 1962 the club had Jeff Smith (scrambler) from B.S.A motorcycles to do a talk. Another social event happened in 1962 and that was the Aldermaston Nomads MCC Puncture Trophy, a tyre fitting contest that ran for a number of years. The new club room from 10th April 1963 was going to be at the Hop Leaf hotel in Church Street for the 1963 dinner. The guest of honour was Alf Hagon, the grass track rider and know of Hagon Shocks.

1964 saw Skittles Matches becoming part of the social scene. Then in September and October, the club was involved with sprints at Blackbush Airport. On August 16th we ran our first scramble at Heckfield but we had a problem with a neighbour before the event, but the meeting still went ahead. Again, after the event we had more problems so in the end it was the only one and last at Heckfield. Also, a grass track was held at a different venue at Heckfield on July 19th. Another social event was started in the form of a Photographic Competition.

1965 saw our Grass Tracks run at North Waltham, and we also helped out at the Drag Festival at Blackbush.

In 1966 on grass track scene we were given a national date for 24th July but it didn’t go ahead, due to losing the field at North Waltham. But we did run a centre grass track along with Tadley MCC at Yew Tree Farm (Kingsclere) on the bank holiday in August.

In 1967 the normal events were held and again we joined forces with Tadley MCC to run two grass tracks. From the beginning of 1968 all club nights were going to be at British Legion club. On the 30th March 1970 the club was able to run another scramble at Ludgershall, near Andover. A new scramble course was found at Blacknest farm Brimpton. The first meeting was on the 23rd May 1971. From what I can see the new club badges came in during 1972 with the blue and gold and the light car had been taken off, leaving it as Basingstoke Motorcycle Club.

In 1973, we lost the scramble course at Ludgershall, due to the death of the landowner. In 1975 the club ran the Southern Centre Scramble Championships.

In 1976 the club asked Basingstoke Council if we would be able to buy Basingstoke Lime Pits, but it was not for sale at the present time but we could still use it. In 1977 we lost the use of Blacknest Farm due to the death of the farmer, and the land was taken back by the owners. But we did two Junior Scrambles at Blackbush Airport.

From 1977 to August 1981 trials, road trials, pushbike trial, dances, darts and skittles matches were run. There were no more grass tracks or scrambles due to lack of land.