Newsletter – September 2008

September 29th, 2008 by JCope

Joan Ryder opened the Society’s meeting on 2nd September by thanking Pat Dunn for leading the Mushroom Green walk and detailing the 12th October walk around Haden Hill House and Park, led by Irene Oliver.

The evening’s speaker was Ray Sturdy, on ‘The Spirit of Triumph’.  In quite a departure from the Society’s recent presentations, Ray took us through the history of Triumph Motorcycles, which started making bicycles in 1886, first in London and then in Coventry.  In 1902 Triumph managed to fit an internal combustion engine to a bicycle and thus their first motorcycle was born.  Due to the wartime bombing of Coventry the Company moved to Meriden from where its success story continued unabated.  During the 1950s Triumph were market leaders and we saw Hollywood stars on the Company’s motorcycles and the specially adapted machine that broke the World Speed Record in 1956.

Ray took us through the period of ‘Mods and Rockers’ before explaining how the Company lost out to Italian scooters and Japanese imports.  By the 1970s it looked as though the end was nigh but a move to Hinckley and a re-launch in the 1990s has ensured that Triumph is still with us.

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