The Talbots were talented people - see the letter in the archive section for compliments of their work with a mis-behaving Morris Marina. Their talents were wide ranging - they made everything from sailing dinghies to wooden tills and from knitwear to radio controlled models as well as their commercial production of moped, bicycles and cycle trailers.
In clearing out the basements, we found some models and an unusual mobility aid for a dog which we believe had been made by Mr Geoff Talbot.
These models are shown as found in one of the basements - we have not printed the picture upside down!
We know that Mr Talbot was very keen on radio controlled models so assume that these were radio controlled.
The Talbots also built a full size sailing dinghy - photo to follow.
The family dog became less able to get about so Geoff made up a form of dog 'zimmer frame' for the much loved pet.
Geoff and his father also built a sailing dinghy. When it was finally unearthed from the yard it was found to contain well over 100 litres of water - so it is definitely watertight!
'Wayfarer' was spotted by a rep from a sign company who said he'd buy it. It was taken to Suffolk where it was to be restored and put back on the water. Unfortunately, the person who had it collected then changed his mind and declined to pay for the boat - I have no idea whether it was restored or simply left to rot. The gentleman concerned only contacted us to say that it was not the model he thought he was buying even though he had seen it twice and appeared to know far more about boats than us - not everyone can be trusted it appears! The boat left Upper Norwood early on 22nd April 2011 - a bit of a game to get it on the van as it was surprisingly heavy on its trailer! It anyone spots the boat, perhaps they could drop us a note.
The Talbots built the boat and also the trailer it was resting on.
They also looked after their things - this is the control panel for the alarm system they made - it is a bit different from its replacement system!
We have been told that Mr Talbot Senior built the smallest rideable bicycle in the world and that this was exhibited at the Queens Hotel and listed in the Guiness Book of Records. I have yet to find any written evidence of this - but am still looking.
The last photos do not exactly relate to the original shop - but it is in the spirit of engineering on site. When the front of the shop was re-roofed we had to cover over the skylight which leaked. Eventually, we had it replaced with a new skylight with rather unusual security bars - they are made from old wheels (and steel reinforcement!). Deiter, from Top-Refurb fabricated the metalwork on site - bringing welding back to the site for the first time since Geoff Talbot passed away.
Alistair Macfarlane,who has done much of the wor refurbishing the old shop, took an old spanner and mounted at the entrance to the new workshop. Given the size of the spanner we think it was probably used on commercial vehicles - certainly not bikes! We have put up a glazed partitian in the yard of the old bike shop. The glazing gives the impression that the spanner is coming through a time warp - quite appropriate really.
We are now starting bicycle frame building at Blue Door Bicycles under the name 'Talbot Frameworks'. One of the early frames is is shown below under construction in the Yard of 7 Central Hill. There also wheelbuilding in the basement of 7 Central Hill - 'Talbot Wheelworks'.
Talbot Frameworks Bike with Talbot Frameworks Wheels - made in Central Hill, photographed in Paris.
To find out more of what has happened to Central Cycle and Auto Stores see: http://www.bluedoorbicycles.com.