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Vintage is the height of fashion

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Plenty of interest is expected for a rare group of British vintage motorcycles going under the Charterhouse hammer in their 1st June auction of vintage and classic motorcycles at The Vintage Nostalgia Show at Stockton Park, Wiltshire.

“There is something charming and yet challenging with this vintage motorbikes as they come from an era where manufacturers pioneered their own designs which they thought were the way motorcycles should be constructed.” Commented Matthew Whitney. “All with their own quirky little features it is perhaps the 1928 James which stands out as it is the only motorbike not to be painted black!”

The earliest of the motorbikes currently entered into this specialist auction is a 1919 Calthorpe. Calthorpe Motorcycles can trace their heritage back to 1909 and production continued until 1938.

The 1919 Calthorpe being sold by Charterhouse comes to auction from a deceased estate. Beautifully restored, this vintage motorcycle is estimated at £4,000-6,000.

Also from the same estate is a 1920 ABC. Another rare and early British motorcycle manufacturer, with its distinctive 400cc flat-twin engine mounted with its cylinders across the frame, several years before BMW adapted the design, it is estimated at £7,000-9,000.

With several decades of ownership from the same estate, and restored to a high standard as are all the motorcycles in this collection, perhaps the most powerful motorbike is a 1927 AJS Vee-twin combination. AJS were founded in 1909, the same year as Calthorpe Motorcycles. Fitted with an 800cc Vee-twin engine and sidecar it will be just perfect for going out in on a Sunday ride and is estimated at £15,000-18,000.

However, if black is not your colour and you like your vintage motorcycles, then a 1928 James Model 12 might tick the box.

Bought by the owner as a box of bits for £14 many years ago, it has undergone a meticulous restoration which took the owner a lot longer than was planned for. With its olive green petrol tank and wicker pic-nic basket fitted on the back, this is estimated at £10,500-11,500.

Charterhouse are now accepting further entries for this June 1st specialist auction of classic & vintage motorcycles being held at The Vintage Nostalgia Show, Stockton Park, Wiltshire and classic and for their classic & vintage car auction on 23rd June  at The Bristol Classic Car Show, Shepton Mallet.

For advice, valuations and further information, contact Matthew Whitney and the team of experts at Charterhouse, The Long Street Salerooms, Sherborne, Dorset DT9 3BS 01935 812277 or email


1919 Calthorpe £4,000-6,000

1920 ABC £7,000-9,000

1927 AJS V twin with combination £15,000-18,000

1928 James Model 12 £15,000-11,500