Last week I visited the Oxford Bus Museum & The Morris Motor Museum in Long Hanborough.
First thing to say is this blog will not do the museum justice. I would whole heartedly recommend a visit. It's only £5 entry to two museums and you will get to see some amazing vehicles. Obviously, as the name suggests, it's home to a number of classic buses from around Oxfordshire, but it also contained a few two wheeled surprises.
First up a 1923 Raleigh Motorcycle, it was a little worse for ware, but then at 94 what would you expect. But it was exactly the kind of thing i'm interested in. Raleigh made their name as bicycle manufacture, certainly thats what I know them as. But to see one of their motorbikes was just fantastic.
Also amongst the wonderful vintage buses, was a BSA Bantam. Unfortunately I didn't get the year of manufacture but based on the rust i'm going to say old! I know from the “old man programmes” that I watch that BSA are considered one of the best british bike manufacturers out there. And whilst this one too has seen better days it's still a thing of beauty.
One of the reasons I wanted to visit this museum was i'd heard a whisper that inside the Morris Motor side of the museum there is a selection of vintage bicycles. And boy, it didn't disappoint.
To be honest, its not the largest of collection at around 40 or so bikes. But what they do have are amazing. Most of them are around 100 years old, including some thing from 1869 called the “English Boneshaker”! I discover a couple of bicycle made by Rover and BSA. There is also a companion cycle, which is a little bit like a tandem but it allows you and a fellow rider to sit side by side, both of you can control the steering but only one of you can control the brake. I wonder why these aren't in production any more.
One really interesting area I discover is a display all about Morris Motor Cycles, but there is so much to the story I think i'll come back to this at a later date.
All in all, a really great place to visit. Pubic transportation isn't really my bag but I still found it interesting seeing all of the vintage buses, signs and ephemera, definitely worth the entry fee.