The interest raised was from an article I did on line for another magazine I wrote for at the time about the decline of the British motorcycle racing firms.
In the late 60's and early 70's names like BSA, Greeves, AJS and Metisse loomed large not only in the UK, but on the world circuit, but as the lighter Japanese machines came in the British bikes got forced out.
When I started to watch the racing, most of the riders rode British bikes unless you were a top rider, by the time I stopped after the oil strike of 1974, only new or local riders rode them.
John Banks-who is a squire-first rode for BSA, then for many years imported, dealt and rode the Czech Cz machines, before finishing his career at CCM.
Andy Roberton, Bryan Wade,Vic Allan and Dick Clayton all started on Greeves, Andy moved to Husqvarna before spending a few seasons with AJS and ending up on CCM. Bryan Wade moved to Husqvarna after the engine of his Greeves blew on a hill in Stroud-mind it was a step climb on a U-bend and many lesser rider had to push their machine up. Vic Allan moved first to Bultaco then back to CCM and Dick Clayton went on to finish his riding on Husqvarnas.
Brian Goss moved from Cotten to Maico and became an importer and dealer; Rob Taylor moved from AJS to Maico and had a shop not far from my parents in Clevedon. Malcolm Davis moved from AJS to Bultaco and spent the winters keeping in shape riding in trials, sadly during one in late 75, he had an accident and died.
Vic Eastwood went from BSA to AJS, then onto Honda and Husqvara before ending up with CCM.
Andy Nurden and Paul Squibbs were two of my favourite local AJS riders and Mick Jones was a local Husqvarna rider. Roger Harvey was one of the mid range AJS riders in the country and although good at local level, the AJS lacked the power to compete on the world scale.