One can find little to suggest what his childhood was like or what he did as a young man but his early years must have taken him into the engineering world with a particular interest in motorcycles. By 1927 it was announced that two men were to attempt a round the world trip on motorcycles.
And so on the 2nd July Stan Glanfield, who is described as a London motorcycle dealer, and Flight Sargent Sparks set off on their attempt to navigate around the world on motorcycles. It is not clear if this was an attempt sponsored and encouraged by the motorcycle manufacturers Rudge or if it was a private venture. The riders chose to use an available Rudge machine fitted with a sidecar specially built to house the items needed for the trip. We know from the few available photos that the sidecar had painted on the front a route for the proposed journey and imagine that most of the available space would have contained spares and replacements as well as personal clothing.
It may be as well to remember that in those days roads both here and in the rest of the world were very basic, in the most part having been built on what once was animal and cart tracks. All went well with both riders making it to Bombay, India, where it seems they separated. It is said that Flt. Sgt. Sparks was still a serving airman and was required to return to his service duties whilst Stan Glanfield continued on a longer route arriving alone in Australia.
Arriving in Sydney during the Christmas season he met up with friend who was also in the motorcycle business. Lionel Wills, the friend, was spending his Christmas touring the area around Sydney also riding a Rudge but his was a solo machine. It is said that the two friends visited the recently opened Davies Park and were blown away by the thrills of dirt-
Enthused by his dirt-
Glanfield established a remarkable workshop in a four-
The Coventry Transport Museum has the Rudge that Glanfield used on his round the world trip on display.
The Brandon Opening photo is from the John Somerville Collection
Many thanks for his permission to use it here
Born Stanley Thomas Glanfield on February 4, 1900, Exeter, Devon, England.