This is as short summary of the Branches history. A longer document published some years ago is currently being revised to bring it up to date and will be re-published then.
Early History of the Berkshire Branch
Have you ever wondered how our Branch got started? The TOMCC itself was founded by a group of enthusiastic Triumph owners in South London in 1949. As the club grew, new Branches were set up in different parts of the country, with the original Branch still today referred to as Mighty South London.
The first TOMCC Branch in Berkshire was the Reading Branch, founded 12 years later in 1961, and ran for 13 years before closing in 1974 with many of its members forming a new club, the Thameside Motorcycle Club, which no longer exists.
The current Berkshire Branch was started in 1979 by three members of the South London Branch who lived in Berkshire making enquires of other TOMCC members living in the Reading area. Following the TOMCC process for starting new Branches, they canvassed support from potential members and soon had enough expressions of interest to form a new Branch. The first meeting of the Berkshire Branch was held at the Queen Victoria pub on the A4 between Knowl Hill and Hare Hatch.
The Queen Victoria pub where the 1st Branch Meeting was held in 1979
As the membership quickly grew, further meetings were held during the early summer of 1979 at the Castle pub in Hurst and a month or so later in June 1979, a move was made to the Jack O‘Newbury pub in Binfield where the Branch met on alternate Thursdays during 1980 and 1981. Membership remained constant around the 50 mark, with individuals travelling to Binfield from Maidenhead, Reading, Bracknell, Wokingham and as far away as Herriard near Alton.
Berkshire Branch meeting at the Jack O’Newbury pub circa 1980
Over the years our regular Thursday night Branch meetings have been held at a number of different pubs before moving to our current home at the Burghfield Community Sports Association (BCSA) in 2003.
Attending bike shows has always been a popular activity for members and after a few years, the Branch decided to organise its own show. The Branch’s first Classic and Custom Summer show was held at the New Inn in Stratfield Saye in 1987.
Berkshire TOMCC Summer Show at Stratfield Saye in 1991
The show has become a regular annual fixture and has been held nearly every year since then at a number of different venues, meeting at the Reading Abbey Rugby Club for many years. In 2016 the summer show moved to the BCSA, where for some years we had also been holding our smaller show for historic bikes, “The Old Motorcycle Gathering”, and our weekly Thursday night meetings. The 33rd Classic and Custom Motorcycle show was held in 2019.
Throughout its long history, the Branch has organised a lot of different activities. We have met most Thursdays to chat over drinks, gone on rides together and for the last decade have held two summer shows each year. We have attended other shows, gone on tours, spent weekends away at rallies, organised trips abroad in Europe, held quiz nights, barbeques, bring and buy sales, invited outside speakers to talk to us and held Christmas parties.