Oxford Section Celebrates 50 Years by Geoff Clough



The records are not very precise about our “birthday”. What we do know is that an inaugural meeting was held at Easter in 1965 attended by Trevor Jones, Jack Gibbs, Pat Moxon, Tim Stevens, Peter Dear and Percy Curtis.

Meetings were held from 1965 to January 1986 in the club room of the George Inn, Littlemore by kind permission of the landlord, Jim Adams. Trevor Jones was elected National President in 1976. Jack Gibbs served as Secretary of the Oxford Section from 1965 to July 1978.

By the summer of 1966 membership had grown to 18 allowing the formation of the Oxford Section. At this point a cloak of uncertainty descended on our records. We have a photo album presented to the Oxford Section in memory of Pat Moxon by his parents on which is embossed “Founded in 1968”. The national club records are not able to confirm the date that the formation was approved. The earliest reference to the Oxford Section in the Club Newsletter (the predecessor to The Journal) is in February 1970.

The Section was obviously well established by 1967 so the committee decided to celebrate our 50th Anniversary in 2017.

A Side-car Club?

The photo album records some or our early year activities with great relish. Many of the founder members rode outfits rather than solos and their interest in BMWs was derived from meeting owners of BMW outfits on the Elephant Rallies. Trevor Jones had a Vincent outfit and Jack Gibbs a BSA Gold Flash outfit on their first Elephant Rally in January 1962. The early notes state they felt outclassed by BMWs and “a desire to own BMWs was aroused and soon realised”. A photo of outfits parked on snow covered roads in the January 1964 Elephant Rally has the notation that they “did not risk going further than the German Frontier, because of the appalling weather”.

Elephant Rally 1964, In the Snow

Four out of the six members at the inaugural meeting are credited with owning outfits.

A Social Club?

Another of the earliest recorded regular events was “Doc’s Day”. This was first held on 22 July 1973 with a dozen people shown in the photo.

Doc’s Day No 1

Doc Wynroe hosted these events at his home and the numbers attending steadily increased year by year. By 1977 at Doc’s day no 5 There was a “leisurely run” comprising 60 machines! I think that Doc’s Day was the forerunner of the “Section BBQ”.

Other people named in our early photos and remembered by current members are Richard Appleyard, Colin Bembridge, Robert Bensley, Roy and Pat Laithwaite, Sheila and Arthur Lewis, Bruce Preston, George Saunders, Fred Secker, Mike Warrilow and Geoff Wilson.

The photo albums show lots of happy people engaged in social activities as diverse as baking, boating, camping, canal walking, exploring Oxford Colleges, farming, flying, gliding and lest we forget – motorcycling!

Some examples shown below. We hope to put our photo archive on the website soon.


Author: bobmack70