Found in a skip and now worth £1/4m

Michael Mann - Web Editor, Bike Social
By Michael Mann
MannOnABike Web editor of BikeSocial. Been riding bikes since he was four-years-old. Fast and smooth road rider, just about hangs on in a track day quick group.

What do they say, one man’s scrap is another mans treasure? This is a story about a motorcycle that was rescued from a skip and now has an estimated value of more than £1/4 million.

The fully restored Vincent HRD Series-A Rapide is exceptionally rare and one of only 65 examples remaining in the world today. This particular bike is set for auction at Bonhams Stafford Sale on 26th April 2015 with an estimate of between £220,000 - £260,000.

From the skip to being worth £250,000

It was the penultimate bike to roll out of the Stevenage factory before the outbreak of World War Two in 1939 and was bought twenty years later by an enthusiast, Harry Lloyd, who exchanged £10 and a carburettor for the bike. The 998cc V-Twin-engined British bike was restored and used until 1968 when the chain snapped.

The bike was dismantled and stored in a Liverpool lock-up but an admin error caused the ownership to be questioned and when Mr Lloyd went to collect his bike, he found it in a skip.

The penultimate bike out of the factory before WWII

He protested and had the bike returned to his home where it remained in storage until 2007. Ben Walker, International Director for Bonhams Motorcycle Department, picks up the story: “In 2007 restoration of the Vincent finally began, but sadly Mr. Lloyd passed away before seeing the finished rebuild. No doubt he would have been very proud of the finished machine.

Mr Walker added: “Seven years of restoration have resulted in a magnificent motorcycle completed to Concours standard.”

The Bonhams Stafford Sale takes place as part of The 35th Carole Nash International Classic Motorcycle Show over the weekend of 25th-26th April at the Staffordshire County Showground.

To register to bid call +44 (0)207 447 7448 or email

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