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Tom Kirby & Paddy Driver Pictures

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Another lovely period picture capturing the atmosphere of sixties racing.  Many thanks to Tony May for this picture. Thanks to Bob Tremain for pointing out that this is (he thinks) Tom Kirby tending to his bikes just before a race as he always did.  Bob worked for “Uncle” as everyone called him, started by Paddy Driver, from 1962-69 in his shop in Hornchurch Essex. He also helped out at race meetings. Bob is trying to compile some sort of history of Tom and his racing as he doesn’t think he gets enough credit for what he did for British Motorcycle racing.  If anyone has any pictures, information or stories, please get in touch as Bob would love to hear from you.

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  • Decade: 1960s
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12 Responses to “Tom Kirby & Paddy Driver”

  1. I believe the photo was taken at Brands Hatch on 27th June 1965. That is Tom Kirby in the photo with Paddy. The other bike on the extreme left is number 29 Bill Ivy who also rode for Tom on that day and won the Redex Trophy race for 500cc bikes. This may be before that race in the warming up enclosure in the paddock.

    • indeed, I have a few pics taken with an old brownie 127 at exactly the same spot, john cooper, kelvin carruthers, and bill ivy to name a few ..

  2. David Hawkins on May 15, 2012 @ 7:48 pm

    Hi Bob,

    My Uncle was Tom Kirby and my mum his sister has just made contact with Tom’s Wife and we ask if she has any history she does not mind parting with. I will keep you posted

    All the best

  3. had vivid memories of all the Kirby bikes and riders from brands and mallory, out local motorcycle shop nelson and ford in corringham road, Stanford le hope in Essex would feature a Kirby bke as a display unit in the shop window, great times, im sure I have some pics of some of his bikes from around 1964, many in the paddock at brands like this one as they waited to go down the tunnel

  4. I have just bought a Reg Kirby 500 dominator Manx frame wheels,manx box,immaculate condition.I am going to display the bike at Kempton park in a few weeks time.Come and have a look .cheers Barry

  5. Paul Selleck on January 5, 2015 @ 12:20 pm

    Nice one of Tom.
    I`m pretty sure that is Steve Lancefield, wearing a collar and tie and a `tank top`, standing behind the chap bending down in the green jacket.
    Is that Derek Minters Norton the chap bending is making adjustments to ?
    That could be a number 11 on the front of the machine and the rider is wearing a white crash helmet, It can just be seen behind Toms head.
    And is that Ray Petty standing, with the hat, on the right ? Who knows, I could be wrong.
    Steve Lancefield was a lovely chap,
    and yes, it is a shame Tom doesn’t get more credit for his presence within the motorcycle
    racing world in the fifties and sixties. Road racing and grass track.

    • David nankivell on December 17, 2015 @ 7:33 pm

      Hi Paul,

      It’s been a long time again.
      Just reminiscing looking at various photos on the web and came across your name.
      I shall be back in the UK late January, maybe give me a call. 07860 730 731…

      All the Best David Nankivell
      ps. I have been trying to find Robert Day who I believe is living in Vancouver, any ideas.

  6. Could the bike behind Tom be a 500cc Moto Guzzi with leading link forks.

  7. Robert Driver on October 15, 2016 @ 9:15 pm

    I was lucky enough to meet Tom and found him to be a fantastic amicable man. I was too young to remember anything during the racing years years ie I was 1 year old when Paddy and Tom landed a 3rd in the world championship
    My aunt took me to see Tom around 1988 or so
    He was a great team leader and many top riders slung a leg over one of his bikes
    long live Tom Kirby

  8. Clive Roberts on August 11, 2017 @ 3:46 am

    Good grief. That looks a lot like the nineteen year old me behind the barrier wearing the blue shirt. I had just finished high school at Hornchurch Grammar and my uncle’s firm did the books for Tom’s dealership at Roneo Corner (which I think was actually in Romford, not Hornchurch). I used to go down to Brands with the guys and was (and remain) a huge bike racing fan. Tom was a very imposing figure and I also remember Bill Ivey as a shy but enormously talented persona. I have been living in Vancouver for many years and one of the few things I miss about England is the racing at Brands

    • Yes Clive you are right there about the shop being in Romford and not Hornchurch.
      Uncle as we all knew him would service and mot our bikes, the Tritons Tribsas Goldies etc .
      There was about 10 or 12 of us Rockers as we were known back then .
      Mine was a BSA Shooting Star ss 500 twin. He lowered its suspension , skimmed the head and enlarged the valves for me . Just keeping it road legal.
      We spent many a Saturday in the workshop nattering about engine’s and how they work.
      Remember when he had the Kirby Matisse outfit on the track. What a great time we had then .
      Stay safe and well Dave

  9. Graham wood on August 20, 2018 @ 1:35 pm

    Ive got tom kirbys timing disk the one used by
    Mike hailwood how much could i get for it
    Regards graham wood engineer hews
    fallen on hard times

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