Steam Fair

There was an excellent turn-out of exhibits at this year’s Steam Fair. It’s probably the best I’ve seen and maybe a response to the relaxation of the Covid restrictions.

The care and attention that is lavished onto the historic steam engines is amazing, and we all owe a debt of gratitude to these remarkable people for valuing and maintaining our cultural history. And what’s even more astonishing is that some of the engines have been hand-built in sheds and workshops.

Seeing the classic cars and motor cycles takes me back to when I was a young lad, lusting after the latest models of the 1960’s and 70’s. The Ariel Arrow motorcycle reminds me of my Suzuki T10, which at the time was a ground breaker with an electric start and hydraulic rear brake. I also had two James motor cycles, a 125cc and a 98cc two-speed hand-change with girder forks and solid rear end. Also at the show was a Singer Gazelle, which reminded me of my Hillman Minx convertible, I really thought I was king of the road in that car. Later, when working as an apprentice draughtman in Bognor Regis I yearned for a Ford Corsair 2000E, which was driven by one of the company directors. A few years later I managed to buy one and fitted it with wheel spacers, wider Pirelli tyres and a stage II tuned head. My ultimate car became the Triumph Stage, but I never managed to own one, but I did manage to have a Rover SD1 as a company car.

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