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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
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Pocketmags Digital Magazines

No stopping Ivy Stocks

Explore the serious, sublime and the ridiculous facets of family history in this genealogical miscellany. This issue, Tom Wood uncovers a young female motorcyclist’s misadventures and some family history mysteries

Dear Tom

First of all, a very happy new year to all of our readers. As we enter 2018, I thought I would start with something to bring a smile to your faces, the likes of which, as far as I can recall, hasn’t appeared in these columns before. For this wonderful tale I am grateful to Joyce Billings, from Leicester, who wonders whether her auntie, Ivy Stocks, was the first female motorcyclist in Cleethorpes back in 1920. Joyce takes up her story: ‘The photograph of her daring sister was handed down to me by my mother, who informed me that on the day she purchased her motorcycle, Ivy (born in 1898) rode proudly home, to show it off to all the family. Her mother, brother and two sisters were waiting in front of the house and were surprised when Ivy rode past, with a wave of her arm, and disappeared round the corner. They were even more surprised when she repeated the circuit of the house again and again, waving to them each time.

‘After 10 circuits, the excitement was wearing thin, so they shouted to her, “that’s enough, we have all seen it now”. But her reply to them on the next circuit was, “I don’t know how to stop it. I shall have to carry on until the petrol runs out”!’

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About Family Tree

Make the most of hibernation indoors this winter with our January 2018 issue. It’s full of family history tips and stories, plus a masterclass guide to essential church records. In addition, there are this issue’s Family Tree Academy challenges for our genealogy learn-along. If you have a new smart phone or device, you’ll love our new series with technology tips for family historians (don’t miss a trick that the web or your mobile can help you out with!). There is so much to enjoy, there’s no time to waste! Wishing you a very Happy New Year of family history to come.