Henry Body – Douglas Sprint Legend on BBC

Henry Body on Douglas Sprinter
That Blur is Henry Body …

‘Our Henry’ has been flying the flag for Douglas in the competitive world of sprinting for longer than most of us can remember. His DT-based specials have achieved astonishing performances over the ¼ mile for decades now, so it was great to see him interviewed on the BBC’s Morning Live programme on 26th March 2021. Catch the show on BBC iplayer – Henry’s interview is about 36 minutes into the programme.

Henry Body working on his Douglas Sprinter
Henry Body working on his Douglas Sprinter

Douglas Club at VMCC Founders Day 2021

We have been advised by the Taverners Section of the Leicestershire VMCC that they are planning to hold Founders Day at Stanford Hall this year on the 18th July. The theme for this year is 75 years of the VMCC and 100 years of Moto Guzzi. The LDMCC is planning to have a stand at the event and Steve Cox will be looking after all the arrangements. If you would like to attend, then please initially contact the secretary at secretary@douglasmcc.co.uk Camping will be available on the Saturday night and this will have to be booked with the Taverners Section – http://www.foundersday.co.uk/founders-day/ As with all arrangements for future events in the current coronavirus pandemic, the event may have to be cancelled at the last minute should the Government’s guidelines change. Please keep a check on the Founders Day website for any future updates.

Douglas Spares and a 1935 Endeavour at Auction

The 1930s transverse twin Endeavour must be one of the rarest of Douglas machines. If you’ve always wanted one,  Richard Edmonds Auctions on the 27th of February should be in your diary. Like all such events at present, the auction is conducted online and, apart from the Endeavour, includes a large number of lots of Douglas spares spanning flat tank models right up to the Dragonfly. What better way to spend a winter’s day in lockdown?

1935 Douglas Endeavour at Auction
1935 Douglas Endeavour at Auction

New for 1951!

Just leafing through a copy of The Motor Cycle from 16th November 1950 – well, we are in ‘Lockdown’! – I came across a piece entitled ‘Douglas Market Four Flat Twins’. The annual Motor Cycle Show was not held in 1950, and manufacturers announced their ranges for the coming season through the press. Apart from the intriguing strapline ‘Three out of every five post-war 350cc motor cycles in The Argentine are Douglas’, several other details caught my eye. Much is made of the 80 Plus and 90 Plus models, but the Mark 4 appears to have been written out of the script. ‘New to the range is the Mark 5, which replaces the earlier Mark 3 Deluxe and Sport models’ runs the text – although at this point the author seems to have run out of inspiration as he directs the readers’ admiration to the new ribbed front mudguard! Clearly not a lot new for 1951 …
One detail that was new to me, though, was that polychromatic blue machines could have their Feridax dual seat supplied in matching colour! I wonder how many owners opted for a blue seat cover … has anyone ever seen one?
The fourth twin in the line-up is the rigid-framed competition model, featuring the sort of mudguard clearance which I associate with 1980s Japanese trail bikes! I also like the position of the horn, under the seat beneath the rider’s greatcoat. An amusing party trick for post-war austerity times, I guess …

Douglas Mark Series Comp 1951
Douglas Mark Series Comp 1951

If anyone can shed light on the Argentinian connection with Douglas, do let us know!

A Four-Wheeled Douglas

Readers of this blog will be familiar with Douglas motorcycles – but Douglas cars?

Douglas’ first foray into four-wheeled transport was in 1913, with a light car with pressed steel chassis which sold for a hefty £160. WW1 brought an end to this project but production of a revised – and heavier – vehicle resumed in 1919 in Coventry. The new car was fitted with a liquid-cooled twin-cylinder engine of 1224cc and 10.5hp, and was available in three versions. It also came with a hefty price tag; at around £500 few were sold and production ended in 1922.

This beautiful 1921 Douglas Tourer is believed to be the sole remaining example of a Douglas car. It will be offered for sale at Bonham’s December auction, and will certainly be the crowning glory of any Douglas collection!

1921 Douglas 10.5hp Tourer
1921 Douglas 10.5hp Tourer