WOOSTERS FAMILY HISTORY

TEL/FAX 0113 273 3556

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Our Life History began here with Jessie and Danny.

We have been in business since Danny Cork senior set up a motorcycle spares shop in the centre of Leeds in 1960. He used his prior knowledge as a royal electrical, mechanical, engineer, to establish a footing in the motorcycle trade. He soon became well known for his skills and dexterity and quickly the trade took off.

Not only were spares sold but motorcycles were repaired and maintained. In that era, of ‘less hectic lifestyles’, it was well known, if a bike could not be mended that day – Danny would put his mind to it and find a way of doing it sooner or later.

Danny Cork senior was a trusted source of information about motorcycles and in those days of quiet roads and few motor cars. The shop was a magnet to any male who desired transport at a very reasonable price. It was a place where you could get away from the wives and find peace amongst the muck and oil, discuss things that really matter in life – motorcycle engines, tyres, exhausts, etc.

When the boys were born Danny junior and Phil, there was only one place they could be found from an early age, and that’s behind the scenes in the shop, tinkering and learning about the trade. They began to ride motorcycles both nee high to a grass hopper. Often practising for hours in a local field, from early morning to dusk. Finally returning home filthy but happy. Danny senior; engineered junior bikes for his boys, this was so succsesfull that it led to enquires from other dads. Requesting ‘an off road bike ‘ building for their sons. This was before school boy trials and scrambling began. School boys on motorbikes ??????? ………don’t tell the missus.

The West Leeds Motorcycle Club was one of the first clubs to begin Junior Trials, which was initiated by Alan Clarke, Neville Crowther, and Danny Cork Senior. They believed that trials was an ideal sport for the pre- teenager.

The competitive spirit had been born………… and both Danny and Phil were eager to begin competing in the trials. In-between competitions, The West Leeds Juniors displayed Riding talent at Jimcarners showing demonstrations of riding through loops of fire, see saw etc… Danny and Phil could be found at any local event and eventually further afield up in Scotland, Isle of Man infact anywhere the trials were held. It was a repeat of the early days in the field in truth, because they eventually came home filthy dirty but happy!. It was not the winning that mattered but the taking part. Though winning did put an extra smile on their faces, and a trophy on the mantle piece. It also created some amazing photos that only trials can produce. Friendships formed in these hedonistic days are for keeps. Some of the customers that come in the shop today – are friends of this period and will be for life.
1976 – 1977 was the year Danny junior attended Merton Technical College in London for 1 year and qualified with a certificate in Motorcycle Engineering (City and Guilds) Phil being younger followed on when he also reached 16. This although it seems like yesterday is actually 31 years ago.

OUR FIRST SHOP

The first shop was around the corner from a well know watering hole called “The Palace” this was near Leeds Parish church. What area could be better to have a business? in-between Gods house and the devils – Trade had to be good. Jessie who has not been mentioned before, was a corner stone in Danny’s life. If it had not been for her help encouragement and total understanding of the business, the shop would have not gone from strength to strength. Jessie knew the hardships, money had been tight for years. However together they worked and fought for what they knew could be – and it happened, the first shop, was very successful.
The next good fortune was moving to York Street, this was a continuation of hard work. A much bigger premises and it had a large workshop. Those who remember the shop will recall the rumblings of the trains overhead, they shook the viaduct walls.. The motorcycle spares shop was a large site opposite one of the largest developments for residential living called “Quarry Hill “flats.

In 1971 we were on the move again – this time, Kidsons motorcycle Spares had been purchased, at Hunslet Lane near Tetleys Brewery. This was a major breakthrough for Danny senior who had bought one of the oldest bike spares shops, in Yorkshire – Kidsons being established in 1927. Prosperous years, that can be remembered well by all and the business grew into a much larger concern developing the growth that led to new and second hand bike sales, and three wheelers. Which included our old friend the Reliant.

It was around the mid 1980’s Danny senior’s long time friend, and MZ dealer retired. Jack Hart and Son Motorcycles, located at Birtstall was bought – lock stock and barrel by Danny senior. Jack had been the main dealer for Ariel, Royal Enfield etc………… Although we never traded from these premises we did use the buildings for storage.

Years passed by and we moved briefly into an industrial estate whilst we developed the original site at York Road. We named the business here, taking Jessie‘s maiden name and had our new signs painted.

WOOSTERS MOTORCYCLE SPARES
With pride we moved into our new location. This was the site that we have known the longest, and have run the business from, for 19 years. Friends dealers and associates advised us against this move – mainly because it was outside of Leeds centre. In truth it was the best move we have ever done. Business boomed, plenty of parking, easy access, and mail order became an important part of the business. Here I should say “Always listen to your gut feeling “ and you will not go far wrong in life.

Danny senior continued to be involved in the trade but taking a back stage seat. Danny and Phil were managing the company and this now involved motorcycle recovery, bike sales, servicing, repairs, m.o.t.s petrol tank manufacturing and last but not least, spares and accessories.
Unfortunately the building has suffered over the years and it was decided in 2004 another move was on the cards. This time a much nearer venue, we have bought the garage next door and literally hopped over the fence. Sadly we no longer offer M.O.T. services, but our expertise continues and we pride ourselves in having over 47 years experience to offer our customers.
We are proud of our business and want you to come back time and time again. Trust is very important to us, this is a family company that has built an excellent reputation over the years.
If you cannot find what you are looking for discuss it with Phil or Danny we are here to help you.
See you soon ……..,

Call in and meet the team or tel/fax : 0113 2733556

E. Mail : woostersmotorcycle@hotmail.co.uk

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