Muriel Hind (1882-1956) right.

Agnes Muriel Hind first found notoriety in the early 1900s, when she reputedly became the first woman in Britain to own and ride a motorcycle, and then soon after, compete in national motorcycle trials and races with great success, often over-shadowing many of her male competitors.

Hind was born in 1882. She became a keen cyclist during her teenage years, but was to become more and more interested in motorised transport as time went by. Her first machine was a 2 hp Perks & Birch ‘Motor Wheel’ made by the Singer Company of Coventry. Shortly afterwards, Hind relocated to Coventry because of its growing involvement in the motor industry.

As a lady, Hind was also determined to cycle in a graceful manner and soon adopted a style that became closely associated with her – a hat held in place with a tulle scarf, an ankle length tweed coat and skirt, gauntlet gloves and tall lace-up knee boots.

Although it was unheard of for women, Hind was eager to become involved in motorcycle competitions so in early 1905 she became a member of the Motor Cycling Club. Her first competitive ride came in October 1905 for the Albert Brown Trophy of which she was awarded a token certificate, losing out to overall winner Mr. R. M. Brice.

1906 saw a string of successes including a Gold Medal at the Automobile Cycle Club for London to Edinburgh 24-hours Run, followed by a Bronze Medal at the Six-day run from Land’s End to John o’ Groats, both in 9 hp Singer tri-cars.

Whilst taking part in trials and competitions, more manufacturers began to look towards building machines that catered for female riders, and Muriel Hind began testing many of these models and reviewing them in the motorcycle press. One such company that wanted to break into the female motorcycle market was the Coventry based Rex Motor Manufacturing Co., and in late 1907, they created the ‘Blue Devil’ to a design specified by Hind.

From 1910 she became more active in writing – notably in a fortnightly column called ‘The Lady Motorcyclist’, influencing more and more women to take up motoring.

Through her business dealings with the Rex Motor Company, Muriel became friendly with Mr. R. Lord who held a senior position at the firm. After many years of working closely together, in 1912 Muriel married Lord at Paddington, London.

In 1931 Muriel became the first woman to be elected a life member of the Association of Pioneer Motor Cyclist, and in 1950, became an honorary life member of the Motor Cycle Club.

Muriel Hind died in 1956 at the age of 74.
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