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1910 Matchless Pictures

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“My c1910 Matchless (engine No 6274) has a known history going back to 1914 when it was owned by Thomas Wilkinson Green (1877-1953) who was the secretary of the Sydney Cycle & Motor Club. He raced it at the first Goulburn TT held in 1914. Thomas was a business man and owned a Tannery & Wool Store in Sydney and that was the basis of the family fortune from then on. He bought the Matchless directly from one of the Colliers brothers whilst on a buying trip to England.

Ownership of the Matchless passed to his son George Green after the death of TW…..George became famous in his own right as a collector of veteran cars and opened Greens Motor Museum at Leppington Sydney in 1974, the Matchless was on display in the museum.

At some stage in the proceedings the Matchless sustained some damage and was farmed out to have the repairs carried out (I think it was frame & fork damage, may be an accident?) by a motorcycle repair shop in Sydney. After the repairs had been carried out the bike stood there for a period of time before payment was asked for….payment was not forthcoming so it stayed there longer, eventually the repairer sold the bike to recoup payment. There is probably more to this side of the story than is now known.

The next owner was Laurie Mitchell…..a keen member of the Vintage Motor cycle Club of Australia (NSW)….he took it along to the next weekend rally only to find out from various members that it belonged to George Green and that George would not be happy to find out that the bike had been sold in such a way. Laurie decided to have a talk to George to see what could be done about the situation. George was very good about it and told Laurie that he had bought it in good faith and that he would bequeath the bike to him after he died…….I have a letter to that effect from George, but until then it would be on display in George’s museum.

The bike came out of the museum once to be raced at Amaroo Park by Rob (The Rudge) Hart….upon hearing of this Laurie was not happy and straight away went into the museum and took the carburettor off…..that is why the photo of the bike in the “James Flood Book of Motorcycling” is minus its carburettor!

The bike would appear to have had some modifications carried out to it….the forks look to be slightly later and also the steering head now sports a sidecar lug…..I think that was the work carried out by the repairer! Not sure when the racy exhaust was added. Laurie rallied the bike extensively in the 1960’s and 1970’s and I have a photo of him on it around that time. I purchased it from Laurie together with a 1930 OHC Humber and a 1919 Indian Powerplus in 1998. Laurie died shortly afterwards.

The bike is earmarked for a total restoration…….if anyone has any accessories or original parts or even literature for it I would appreciate an email “.

  • Manufacturer:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
  • Year: 1910
  • Decade: 1910s
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One Response to “1910 Matchless”

  1. Hi Howard I would be very interested obtaining the letter from George green, I think it is important to the bikes history, and a good thing to keep with it,regards SteveH

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