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Interview with Thomas Arthur Corlett of Maughold

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Date(s): 20th century

Scope & Content: Thomas Arthur Corlett talks about the Aurora motorcycles and the first production of a 500 cc Aurora motorcycle, built in 1920, by Oates at 6 Mona Street, Douglas, shortly afterwards moved to Queen's Hall Ramsey; George Crellin who invested in Aurora motorcycles; Bill Buckley and Fred Wilson; Oates' brother Jack; Aurora motorcycles made; Oates taking deposits from buyers and George losing his investment money when the business failed; Kewley the cycle agent; Oates staying with the McCanns at Ash Hill. He continues with stories about the Peters motorcycle and the attempt to manufacture it in Ramsey or Laxey; Leonard Knowles who had a garage in West Street Ramsey.

He tells the story about Percy Brooke, farmer from Ballakelly, murdered by Thomas Kissack in October 1931.

Thomas talks about the Cains of Ballamoar; last person to be hung at Castle Rushen.

The first part of the interview ends and the interviewer says he will return another day.

25 min. 28 sec. interview restarts. Thomas talks about a story told to him by Cruickshank about a lifesaving rocket brigade in Ramsey and using the jetty as a target; how the rocket zigzagged through a crowd of people and hit the rocks at Ballure; stories about the rocket brigade's attempts to successfully fire the rocket including firing at a Russian ship; family connections to the rocket brigade whose records began in 1926; grandfather's schooner called the 'Hinder' which was wrecked at Ballawain; canon Mark Harrison's story about the volunteer rescue crew; inadvisability of removing local rescue crews and replacing them with service from Liverpool; joining the Lifeboat Service in 1941 and his time in the service; John Comish and Freddie Ball the coxswains and other crew members including the Cottiers and Ernie Starkey; late night call out to a ship called the 'Teasle' and the lifeboat running aground at the Point of Ayre; boats owned by Cottier including the 'Atlantis'; history, ownership and subsequent sale of the 'Atlantis'; mackerel fishing industry, characters and decline in fish numbers; being demobbed after the Second World War; family's first boat which was a coracle when his father was a small boy; small boat the 'Medusa'; 'Zanita', the first boat he remembers, built by Robert Cain in Port St Mary.

Language: English

Extent: 1 hr. 8 min. 47 sec.

Item name: magnetic recording tape

Collection: Sound Archive

Level: ITEM

ID number: SA 0135

Access conditions: All reasonable attempt has been made by Manx National Heritage to trace and request permission (where needed) from the copyright holder(s) in this sound recording. If however you think you are a rights holder then please contact Manx National Heritage.

Subject tags : #UOSH


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