Motorbike Show Sunday 9 September 2018 – Will the Tolson Panther Steal the Show?

Motorcycle enthusiasts are gearing up for the hugely popular annual Tolson Museum Motorbike Show on Sunday 9 September. Whilst there is excited anticipation about the variety of makes, models and vintages of motorbikes that will be on display outside museum, the star of the show may well come from inside the museum itself.

For the museum in Huddersfield has recently taken delivery of a special and rare motorbike – a very early Panther made by the Cleckheaton firm of Phelon & Moore.

The Phelon & Moore 3.5 H.P. motorcycle was previously part of the Spen Valley Stories exhibition at the now closed Red House Museum in Gomersal. It now takes pride of place in Tolson Museum’s transport gallery.

Cllr Graham Turner (Kirklees Cabinet member for Corporate Strategy, Cultural Policy and Asset Strategy) said: “We are delighted to have this beautiful example of an early Panther on display in time for the Motorbike Show. I’m sure it will be admired and appreciated by the many motorbike enthusiasts we are expecting that day. I welcome this wonderful addition to its new home, the excellent transport gallery in the museum, and I am sure that it will be admired by the many visitors to Tolson Museum in the coming years.”

More than three thousand 3.5 H.P. motorcycles were made at the Phelon & Moore factory between 1914 and 1920, with forty a week being made at the height of production. They were used by the Royal Air Force for their dispatch riders. The machine on display in the museum was saved from a Sussex scrapyard in 1947 and was acquired for Kirklees Museums’ collections in 1991.

Exhibited alongside the motorcycle is a sectioned Panther M100 motorcycle engine. It is a showroom example of the famous “Redwing 100” model manufactured by the Cleckheaton firm between 1950 and 1960.

These two permanent exhibits are added attractions to the Motorbike Show event which will have a wide range of makes and models, from classic to modern, on show. The motorcycles will be lined up in front of the museum in Ravensknowle Park, Wakefield Road, Huddersfield from 11am to 4pm.

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The Motorbike Show, which has been organised by the Friends of Tolson and Ravensknowle in conjunction with Mollsprings Motorcycles, Honley, is part of Heritage Open Weekend events in Kirklees.

Tea & Cake Meetings 2018 (Provisional)

2pm – 3.30pm 2nd Wednesday every month. Free events.
Tolson Museum, Wakefield Road HD5 8DJ

2018 Programme (Provisional)

10th January. The Villas of Edgerton. David Griffiths will talk about his latest book.

14th February. St Valentine’s Day Have you a favourite poem about love? On this auspicious day bring it along and share with us.

14th March. Felix the Station Cat. Is he like Macavity the mystery cat?

11th April. Famous ladies with local connections. Catherine Hall talks about Sarah M Beaumont, Violet Bagshaw and Charlotte Bronte.

9th May. Flower arranging demonstration.

13th June Summer outing

11th July Huddersfield Incorporation 1868

8th August Joint meeting with the Croquet Club (If wet games in the Museum.!)

13th September Riding motorbikes is not an all boys club any more. The two wheeled adventure of bikerbird.

10th October Hospice work in the community.

14th November The end of the War.

12th December Christmas Party.

A letter from John Beaumont written in January 1889

John Beaumont, Dalton entrepreneur, was the man who bought the Ravensknowle Estate and had Ravensknowle Hall built in 1859. The letter was given to the Friends by Chris Heaven. This made the fifth Annual General Meeting of the Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle into a very special occasion. The Deputy Mayor, Cllr Christine Iredale, received this letter on behalf of the ‘Friends’ and Tolson Museum.

At the meeting Chris Heaven read out the letter, which could have been written in the room we were sitting, tells about buying shares of North British Railway Stock. Some of it is a bit technical but we did learn that John Beaumont had been a share holder for 45 years and a director for 26 years. Chris Heaven also told us how he came by it. He is a collector of Railway Memorabilia and it was in a ‘job lot’ of letters about the purchase of shares by the family who owned the Rowley Estates in Cumbria.

The AGM meeting was followed by a wine and cheese party at which a power point presentation was given showing the work of the Friends over the last five years.

Tea & Cake meeting 11th January 2017. Tolson Museum

Paul Stevens gave a fascinating illustrated talk about the weather in Huddersfield, explaining why we have so much of it! He also went into the scale of equipment that is used today to predict the weather. He took many questions and offered to come back again, an offer we will take up. He said that we would have snow the day after the talk, and he was spot on.

The next Tea & Cake meeting is at 2pm Wednesday 8th February when Ian Fillan will give an illustrated talk about the history of the Huddersfield Army Veterans.