My mum came to visit us in Indiana from the U.K. and she’s finally found some old photos of my grandpa’s motorcycle trip through Europe from 1956! I was so made up that I had to share them with you guys! So my grandpa was born in 1935 in Wath Upon Dearne, Yorkshire. His dad was a miner and they lived in pretty much poverty, his Mum died in his teens, he and his dad were then looked after by his Auntie until he left home at 21. He went to work in the mines after he left school fixing the machines with his dad. But he really had a knack for engineering, so the coal board paid for him to do his engineering degree ( think he did that part time while working full time down’t ‘pit’. ) He also saved up and bought himself a BSA motorcycle sometime around 1954-55. ( Mum and I were trying to remember if it was a shooting star or not) He had a couple of good friends from the mine, one of them also had a motorcycle (maybe a BSA). There weren’t really such things as vacations in England in the 1950s, I think people used to take off a couple of weeks in the summer to go to the seaside if they could afford it! Only the really wealthy could afford to travel abroad, to Europe for example. However my grandpa (just turned 21) and 3 of his friends from the pit had hatched a plan. They wanted to ride their motorcycles, 2 on each bike, around Europe. 4000 miles. None of them had left England before, they would all have to ask permission from their employer to leave for a few weeks (without pay) and hope they would be employed when they returned. No one in Europe at this time spoke English as fluently as they do today of course, and my grandpa and his friends had very thick Yorkshire accents and no foreign language skills! Riding 2 BSA’s heavy laden, 2 up, 4,000 miles taking in beautiful cities, mountain passes and probably plenty of hijinks along the way! (See my grandpa’s handmade map of their route) They were adventure riding way before adventure riding was a thing! He told me about the topless beach they found, and the roadside repairs they had to do. Unfortunately my grandpa passed away in 2006, I was heartbroken when he died. He helped me so much with everything and shaped who I am. I ended up being just like him, hands on, a mechanical engineer and a motorcyclist. I loved listening to his numerous stories of motorcycle riding as a youth, and he still rode (BMWs) when he tuned 70. The first photos are the Map, and them loading the bikes onto a plane just after or before a Morris Minor and a Ford Zephyr.