1970 - 1990. Red on White
So why is this part 1? Easy, it's because there's a part 2. We're talking about almost forty years here, and that's a lot of history. From 1970 to 1990 the clubs colours were red on white. These were also the colours of the Hells Angels. During the early 70s every cunt and his dog was wearing H.A. patches, and Manchester had it's fair share. A lot of these were better known as the Selnec angels, they would turn up at the pubs and cafes carrying crash helmet's and swearing the bike was off the road for repairs. Selnec was an acronym for South East Lancashire North East Cheshire and was the name of the regions bus company. Most town's and city's had their own versions of these people, although they soon disappeared when the established clubs got pissed off seeing dickhead's in patches and started beating them up. Some of these clubs (and were talking nationwide here) were using the name Hells Angels, although it was only the boys in London who held an American charter. It was during the 1980s that they began their 'clean up', getting rid of not only the unofficial H.A. clubs, but also the red on white clubs. So it was only a matter of time before the Sons got a visit. As it turned out, when they did come in 91 they found a Black on White Sons of Hell. The club having changed about eighteen months earlier. So part 2 will pick up the story from there. In the meantime this section is about the red on white years. The years when the clubs foundations were laid,alliances made and friendships forged, some of which have lasted a lifetime.
Sons of Hell Manchester
The Sons of Hell in Sheffield were actually more of a street gang than a bike club. In fact at the time of it's conception, Yorky was only fourteen years old, and as his fellow gang members were of a similar age I'm guessing their access to motorcycles was limited. Unfortunately I left it too late to ask him why he packed it in and moved to Manchester, but move he did. I do know that while he was there he had befriended a van driver from Salford, and after he moved it was through this friend that he met, and made a lifelong friend of Beef. Together they restarted the Sons of Hell (only this time with bikes), and kick started (no pun intended) something that would touch a lot of peoples lives in the years to come.
This is the only picture known (right) to exist of the clubs first patches, with the Drifters bottom rocker, and the centre patch that earned them the 'Knife and Fork gang' nickname. Despite the Drifters bottom rocker the pair were actually based in Salford. The gentleman playing tonsil hockey is Beef, who seems to be wearing a shirt made from the wallpaper. In 1972 the Manchester area already had it's share of Back Patch clubs, and new ones tended not to last very long. There were only two Sons of Hell then, and Yorky and Beef were both sixteen years old.
The Sons of Hell MC pictured below in 1975. From left to right are Beef, with Crow in the sidecar, then Yorky, Alice, Noddy with Sooty riding pillion, Judge, and Dougal on the end.
The mugshots below are the same people in the same order, but there's a couple of gaps where I've been unable to track down pictures, so I've had to improvise!!!