South of England RealClassic Motorcycle Show Preview

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We have no idea what a Heldun Harlequin might look like, so we’ll be going to the Ardingly Show on October 26th to find out…

Entries have now closed for the end-of-season South of England Show which is on Sunday 26th October 2008. We understand that if the weather is in the least bit kind* then both halls should be packed to bursting, with plenty of unusual and interesting machines on display. The event is always well supported by local clubs, so you can expect to see plenty of Beezers, Indians, and AJS and Matchless machines mixing with all manner of other marques.

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We’re particularly keen to clap eyes on the 1965 Heldun Harlequin… because we’re not entirely sure what it is. Heldun, apparently, were based in Shropshire and started production of 50cc machines in 1965, offering a wide range of complete machines and kits. The name was a concatenation (great word! We didn’t think of it, sadly) of the founders, Helen and Duncan, who ceased trading in 1968. If all goes well we’ll be able to post a photo of one after the event…

It could be a 1955 Maico Taifun. It could be anything, the original photo was so small

1955 Maico Taifun. Possibly.

Another unusual machine which has been entered for the concours competition is a 1955 Maico Taifun, a 400cc model which was at the top of Maico’s range. Only 40 or so of them were sold in the UK and the current owner of this particular one doesn’t know of any other left remaining in the country. So you probably haven’t seen half a dozen of them parked up at the chippie!

BSAs on

Having jumped all the puddles, Goffy set off in pursuit of the nymphs....

1962 Triumph Tiger Cub ‘Puddlejumper’

A range of more familiar classic bikes will also be on display, including quite a few which have been featured on this site and in the monthly RC magazine. Alan Goff has promised to bring his 1962 Tiger Cub, aka ‘Puddlejumper’, which has been with him since 1968 and was recently treated to a full restoration. Neil Pattemore has entered his prize-winning Triumph T120R (no more prizes for you, Neil; you’re hogging the limelight!), while Dave Hawes never lets a little thing like bad weather stand in his way, so we look forward to seeing his Laverda Jota once again.

There should also be a 1977 Kawasaki Z900 A4 on display, recently restored from the ground up using as many reconditioned and refurbished original parts as possible. It’s been painted in Z1B colours – so don’t go telling the owner that they didn’t do that paint scheme in 1977…

Frank Westworth - seen here crouching out of sight behind the Triton - will be doing the judging...

All these bikes and more will be inspected by the concours judges (RC’s editor, Frank Westworth, taking the helm for judging duties) and stand a chance of winning a handsome trophy in eight categories including Best Competition/Special, Best Lightweight, and Best Overseas. The club which produces the most magnificent display will take home the award for Best Club Stand, and one bike in particular will be chosen as the Best RealClassic. The prize-giving is usually at around 3pm; the Show itself opens to the public at 10am.

Little known fact: Graham Ham is only three feet tall. Please buy his book so that he can afford platform soled shoes.

As well as the old bikes, local Royal Enfield dealer will bring along a range of modern Bullets for your inspection, and the Show will also include various trade stands, autojumblers, a free-to-sell your classic bikemart plus refreshments and a free car park. The main event takes place inside the heated, weather-proof hall, which is where you’ll also find the RC Roadshow, offering a range of RealClassic regalia plus magazines, subscriptions and the odd JaffaNob or ten. Don’t forget to show your RC Club card at the gate if you are a magazine subscribers, because that entitles you to pay the discounted rate.

See you there!


The South of England RealClassic Bike Show

  • On: Sunday October 26th 2008
  • Opens: 10am
  • At: South of England Showground, Ardingly, near Gatwick, RH17 6TL
  • Admission: £5 adults, £4 OAPs and RC subscribers, kids under 16 FREE
  • Discounts: £1 off standard price for RC subscribers who show their card at the gate
  • Contact: 01797 344277 or


    All photos are of classic motorcycles which have been displayed at recent South of England RealClassic Bike Shows, or which are expected to attend this event, many courtesy of Keith Fryer (


    *No, no, not more snow. Surely we deserve a dry day. Just this once? Pretty please?

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