Tuesday April 12th 2016

We are dedicating the blog today, to Martin Lampkin - RIP.

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HUNDREDS of people gathered to mourn motorbiking legend Martin Lampkin at his funeral today in Silsden.

More than 200 well-wishers listened to the ceremony outside St James’s Church because the building had filled up with hundreds of people long before the 1.30pm start time.

A loudspeaker was erected outside to relate the service, which was led by the Rev Susan Griffiths and included tributes from friends and family.

The overriding message was of a “true gentleman” proud of his roots, full of Yorkshire grit, who would help anyone.

Even during his last days, despite his own illness, Martin helped fellow patients by bringing them water or, on one occasion, helping a young cancer sufferer connect to the Internet to hear a sports commentary.

Martin, 65, was part of the Lampkin trials riding dynasty of Silsden and in 1975 became the first-ever FIM Trial World Champion.

His brothers Arthur and Alan excelled in the sport and his son Dougie has also won the world title several times.

Speakers at the service highlighted the many and varied sides of lifelong Silsden man Martin’s professional and personal life.

The Rev Griffiths told how Martin and his wife Isobel met as young people whose families were both involved in trials riding, and were engaged within five weeks, marrying eight months later in August 1974.

At various times of his life Martin was a coal merchant, engineer, welder, publican, restauranteur, newsagent, farmer and entrepreneur.

Following his professional career as a trials rider he remained heavily involved in the sport, supporting Dougie and organising high-profile events, most notably for 21 years the Sheffield Indoor World Championships.

The Rev Griffiths told how Martin liked to play down his world champion status in trials biking, but to his grandchildren claimed to be the world champion at everything else, including tiddlywinks and snowboarding.

Jake Miller, who had worked with Martin for more than 20 years and regarded him as a father figure, described enjoyable days of travelling the world with ‘el Martino’.

He said: “Martin lived the life of 100 men, sharing such experiences with his family. He stood for trust, honesty, hard work and wanting to do the best job he possibly could.”

Since Martin died on April 2 his Isobel has received hundreds of tributes by post and on social media, most containing comments such as “a true gentleman”, “a lovely man” and “a legend”.

Martin is survived by Isobel, sons Dougie and Harry, and four grandchildren.

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