Scooter showroom offers a blast from the past
4:00pm Sat Mar 19, 2016
Steve Blackmore at his scooter showroom, on the corner of Lombard Street and Millgate, Newark.
Steve Blackmore at his scooter showroom, on the corner of Lombard Street and Millgate, Newark.
A businessman who bought his first Vespa almost 50 years ago has set up a scooter showroom in Newark.
Mr Steve Blakemore sells 1960s and 1970s Lambretta and Vespa scooters out of the former car showroom on the corner of Lombard Street and Millgate.

The lifelong scooter fan has imported dozens of models to set up Classic Scooter Imports Ltd.

“It’s something I have been interested in for most of my life,” he said.

“There is an interest in this area and throughout the county as a whole in 1960s scooters.”

Mr Blakemore, who lives in Newark, got his first scooter 47 years ago.

“My first two-wheeler was a scooter — a Vespa 180 SS,” he said.

“There were mods and rockers then and I was a mod.

“There were regular trips to Skegness and Scarborough.

“I have had about 50 scooters and motorbikes and I have driven cars as well.”

Mr Blakemore used to own a pine furniture shop on Victoria Street called Rutland Pine.

'A lot of people come in thinking it's a museum'

He decided to set up his new venture because of the interest in scooters.

“There is a vast number of clubs around,” Mr Blakemore said.

“There is a huge number of rallies held around Europe each year.”

The scooters range from 50cc to 200cc and start from £1,850.

Mr Blakemore said: “A lot of people come in thinking it’s a museum.

“We have people in their 40s to 60s who had these scooters when they were teenagers.

“I’m happy for people to come in and I can show them round.

“Most of the scooters are 1960s and 1970s and most are for people to restore themselves.

“I have seen scooters restored from poor condition.”

Quest for rarer models

Mr Blakemore’s oldest model is a 1961 Vespa.

He will soon be taking delivery of a Vespa GS 150 and a GS 160, which will be on sale for about £8,000-9,000. Also expected are a 180 SS and a 200 Rally.

Mr Blakemore said: “Going forward I will be supplying and importing scooters for restoration and finding rarer models.

“There’s a few rare scooters coming in on another container soon.”

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