PAGE 70. London to Wales on a Cyclemaster

London to Wales on a Cyclemaster


Mike Hosken’s Classic 1955 Expedition

I lived and worked in Asia when I discovered the internet. In 1997 a girlfriend introduced me to hotmail and I found it a useful way to communicate with folks I met while travelling (though none of my friends back home in England used email yet). It’s hard to believe how much our daily routines have changed this century. I now spend almost as much time on the computer as I spend sleeping.

In contrast to the 1990s, I now lead a rather more sedentary existence, and the internet is my primary means of travel. Ebay has revolutionized the vintage vehicle hobby. It was as a result of typing the name ‘cyclemaster’ casually into ebay, as I do every now and then, that I first came across Mike Hosken’s story reproduced here. However, the story has a very nice twist to it.

Someone was selling on ebay a cut-out page of a magazine that comprised this article. I could not make out much of it as the picture was small, and the seller didn’t say what magazine it was or the date beyond the year 1956. I went to Kempton Park autojumble a few days after. I’d seen another cut-out article on ebay – a Teagle road test – and instead of buying it on ebay I bought the whole magazine as a present for my friend in France with a Teagle. But I didn’t spot the Cyclemaster article.

But two days later, out of the blue, by an incredible coincidence, I received this email:



Amazing!!!  In an idle moment I thought I’d see if there was anything about Cyclemaster, of blessed memory, on the web.  Lo and behold!  Your magnificent

Reason for writing –
Do you perchance have access to The Motor Cycle of 5 January 1956 (price eightpence)?
If so, turn to page 25 where you will find an account of my journey from a south-London suburb to Aberystwyth, together with pictures of the participants – me and SPD53.
If not, would you like me to try and use what reprographic skills I have to email you a copy?
I don’t seem to have recorded the mileage, otherwise I might possibly claim a world record for the longest journey within 24 hours per cc of engine power!

Kind regards


I phoned Mike immediately. Unfortunately, he lives at the opposite end of Britain to me – Northumberland, or I would have nipped round on my Cyclemaster for a cuppa. No. Don’t even think about it. Celebrating Mike’s 1955 odyssey with a Brighton to Northumberland trip on a Cyclemaster is not an option. I wouldn’t even do it in the car with a Cyclemaster on the roofrack 🙂

But we did have a nice chat, and he sent me the scans that you can see here. I arranged to phone him again soon and interview him about the journey.


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