Film ID:
YFA 1739



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This is a film made by Derrick Walton of various motoring events in 1953.  It includes the Silsden social run, YSCC Trials at Ilkley, Ilkley Grand National motor cycle races, the Stump Cross Trial, 4/44 trial, a car mystery run around the Skipton area, and a visit by rally champion Ian Alppleyard.

Title - Silsden social Rally Feb, 1st 1953
Photography by D P Walton

The film begins with people gathered with their cars and motorcycles for a rally in Silsden.  They then set off one at a time.  Two cars are shown going through stopping and reversing manoeuvres.  One driver examines his engine, at the rear of the car, as they are parked at the side of a road, whilst another visits a public toilet.  They head off again.  Several motorcyclists are filmed coming along a road on the moors, one doing some wheelies, followed by several cars.  They all meet up again somewhere in the Dales, possibly around the Malham area, and then set off, one at a time, down a hill going towards a village.  This first part is filmed from the front of a car.

Intertitle - Car Trial 1953

Lots of cars, many vintage, and some motorcycles, have assembled in a town square.  They set off on a cross country route lined with spectators, possibly at Gargrave.  Many of them get stuck in the same spot, despite much bumping up and down by the passengers.  One car is stranded with its owner on a very steep slope.  The struggling contestants, one with a flat tyre, are filmed at various locations around the course.

Intertitle -  Ilkley Grand National  1953

A crowd of spectators line a grassy bank  watching as motorcycle riders attempt to get around the rough cross country course, one getting stuck in deep water, another goes up in smoke.  Several get stuck in very deep water, although one woman rider, on a BSA, manages it OK.  Some get completely submerged, and one bike has to be held vertical to get the water out.  They go through a wooded area, across a stream and then along besides a high wall separating fields.

Intertitle -  Stump Cross Trial March 1953

Some people have gathered at Stump Cross Caverns, of which there is a brief view in the darkness.  Outside in the bright sunshine many motorcycles are parked, with some riders doing last minute maintenance.  Spectators walk off around the course to take their place, with a steward giving instructions.  The riders are handed numbered bibs.  Many of them struggle as they go up and down the steep terrain.  One rider goes over after hitting a rock.  Two women lie down and dip their hands into a mountain stream.  Several riders come off their bikes.  Some spectators have a picnic, whilst others seem to be clearing some mud from a deep pool of water.  One rider gets help in rescuing his bike from deep mud.

Intertitle -  Car Trial

Participants and spectators arrive at the event, possibly the 4/44 trials.  Again the film shows the cars gamely trying to negotiate the very rough terrain, with the passengers doing their utmost to help by bouncing up and down.  One passenger rides on the front bumper of a car to help it reverse out of thick mud.

The film switches to a car rally, assembling in a town square, possibly for the DHW Mystery Run.  Some cars are shown being put through their paces as they are tested for braking.  A small section of the course is filmed from the front of a car with a break when the cars are again assembled in a town square.  Cars, and a motorcyclist and pillion, are stopped by a steward who marks them off on a clipboard.

The film switches to show a group of people stood outside a house, including a Lord Mayor.  The famous Jaguar XK120 white sports car (reg. NUB 120) pulls up and rally champion, Ian Alppleyard, gets out with his wife Mary and shakes hands with those waiting.  They both sign autographs for some boys.  The Jaguar is then filmed form the front of a following car as it drives through town and parks in Skipton town centre for some event.

The End