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18th August 2010


Bill Little's Open Day 2010
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The annual Open Day at Bill Little Motorcycles was ushered in by its usual fanfare of rain, more rain and a bit more rain. Richard Jones braved the deluge aboard his Bonnie...

I travelled down to Bill Little's Open Day at Braydon in Wiltshire with Trevor Collier, my IAM observer but probably better known as the chairman of the BSA Owners' Club. We set off in the rain from Brackley in Northants, passed through some light showers into rain with some heavy rain to add interest and variety - yes, it was wet. That being said when we arrived at Braydon the rain had miraculously stopped and we were greeted by delightful cloudy skies - does it get any better than this in August?

Mmmmm, cake...

After fortifying ourselves with hot drinks and rather marvellous cake from the kitchen at Oak Farm (plus a Silk Cut for me - I'm never too happy riding in the rain) we set off to view what was an impressive collection of bikes given the weather. Classic bike riders must be a tough lot to bring their machines out in this weather - I don't think I would trust myself with brakes like some on that were on show at Braydon.

Carrot cake, perhaps...

The Rickman Metisse caught my eye together with a rather marvellous BMW R80 combination and the Greeves Field bike which someone - who shall remain nameless - described as a 'bitsa' but I thought was really rather gorgeous.

What a horrible colour; salmon pink?...

Further fortification was then required in the form of beefburgers, onions and another Silk Cut (me, not Trevor) before entering Mr Little's barn of bikes. I have to say it was like going back to that feeling you remember from childhood when you went into a particularly good toy or sweet shop - wonder and desire all wrapped into one.

Can we get back to the cakes?..

Everywhere you looked there were classic bikes, bits of classic bikes, memorabilia and other things that defied characterisation - I could happily have spend the day in there taking photos and still not captured the wonder of it all.

Sidecars on Right Now......

That being said we went around twice and luckily for my credit card and the reception I would have received on returning to Jones Towers the BMW R26 which caught my eye was already 'On Hold'. Life can be very cruel.

Nice bit of Lemon Drizzle, maybe...

After one more Silk Cut and failing to convince Trevor that a long ride through the Cotswolds was a good idea, we set off back, passing out of the sunlit uplands of Braydon into the damp and wet of Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire. There was an impressive display of lightning over the dreaming spires of Oxford but we managed to miss the worst of it. Tessie, my Hinckley Bonneville and P&J, was somewhat disgruntled at being taken out in the wet and getting her chrome dirty but a wash down today has restored her to all her glory

Or some Coffee and Walnut...

Despite the weather this was a very enjoyable day out - one which I wouldn't have known about unless I had seen the event mentioned in RC's Outward Bound!

Now *there's* a man in need of cake...

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Check our events page for details of Bill Little's Open Day next year, or see www.classicbikesuk.com for details of what classic Bill has in stock at the moment, and where to find them


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