Motorbiking memories

A picture of Tom Norman pictured on his ‘Panther’ motorbike in the Hartlepool Mail recently brought back memories for former Panther motorbike owner Keith Fisher who sent this picture to Memory Lane that shows himself and friend John Fairey (above).

Keith said: ‘The picture is from the 1958-59 season when my classmate John Fairey and I both rode Panthers to school at Easington.

“There were no limits on engine sizes in those days and I rode the 350 and John the 250 while still on L-Plates.

“John (who is still a very good biking mate of mine) is shown on the bike on the right with the handlebar fairing and me, the good looking lad, is sporting the very first “Jet Helmet” to be seen in this area.

“I actually bought the bike at Tom Cowies, at Millfield, in Sunderland, and “the lid” at his Stockton-on-Tees branch.

“When I say that to younger whipper snappers they always claim to know that Cowies ‘didn’t have a shop in Stockton’ well they are incorrect and I actually bought a brand new Royal Enfield Bullet there in 1960.”