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Hawg Haven’s Terry Clarke dies

By Chris Newbigging -

General news

 08 July 2009 17:15

Terry ‘Nobby’ Clarke, one of the duo who formed Norfolk-based custom shop Hawg Haven, died suddenly on July 3.

Clarke’s engineering expertise helped create some of Hawg Haven’s most recognisable machines and countless customer projects – most recently the shop has built choppers for TV chefs the Hairy Bikers as well as building a bike live in front of the crowds at last year’s NEC show.

Si King had this to say about Nobby

"Dave and I are still reeling from the terrible news that Nobby (Terry Clarke of Hawg Haven) passed away last week. It came as such a shock to us – and to everyone else I guess.

"Nobby was a great mate of ours and will be sadly missed. I don’t think Dave and I have ever met anyone so enthusiastic and passionate about bikes – or about life in general for that matter.  He was such a positive character and if there was a job to do – he was the man to get it done.

"We got to know him really well over the past 18 months and it’s so hard to believe he won’t be around anymore to have a crack with.  We’ll sorely miss him.

"We first bumped into Nobby and Jon (Quantrell, Clarke’s partner in the Hawg Haven business) at a Hein Gericke shop in London when Nick Sanders was embarking on one of his around the world rides. The Hawg boys were there because they’d done the paint on Nick’s bike and we hit it off straight away.

"We kept in touch and the next thing we knew, was they were building bikes for us and both Nobby and Jon did it with so much passion – and with so much fun. We had several meetings to plan the project as well as during the build, and it was incredible to us that nothing ever seemed to faze Nobby – even when he worked though the night to make sure the bikes were ready for us to starting shooting.

"Nobby was a great engineer and a great bike builder. He knew more about motorcycle engineering in his little finger than we’ll ever know in our lifetimes. But most of all we loved him for his incredible positivity and his brilliant sense of humour.

"You couldn’t go out for a pint with him without splitting your sides. He had this amazing ability of being a great commentator on what was going on around him – no matter where we were.

"The people at BBC Birmingham are in shock too. He came on a shoot with us one time and just mucked in like one of the gang. He was there, carrying tables, fetching food – the crew loved him.

"I’ve got this abiding memory of always bunging rollies off him when we were on that shoot. We’d be up early in the morning, me and him standing around, just having one hell of a crack. It was just a spectacular time.

"Every memory we have of him is remembered with a smile. Dave and I will miss him greatly. He was a good mate."

This is the release from Clarke’s family and friends:

“To all our friends old and new - It is with the greatest sadness that we announce the loss of Terry (Nobby) Clarke 18.01.1960 – 03.07.2009.

“Terry passed very suddenly in the early evening of Friday the 3rd of July, with life-long friend Jon Quantrell at his side - All who knew Terry can reflect on his wicked sense of humour, an incredible drive to succeed in all he did, his passionate nature and love of life; Terry put this fantastically infectious energy into everything and everyone he came in to contact with throughout his life, selflessly making time for others, offering boundless help and encouragement along the way.

“Following a brief term with 2623 Squadron of the RAF in Honington between 1989 and 1992, Terry forged an engineering career at Lotus cars before beginning Hawg Haven with Jon Quantrell in 2002.

"Terry’s work with Hawg Haven set new standards in technical ability, taking numerous trophies at European motorcycling events with creations such as the ground breaking Psy-Bawg, the aircraft wing inspired Barnstormer and the iconic Las Vegas Wedding bike.

"Other well know machines included Charley Boorman’s Bobber, the Hairy Bikers’ dream bikes; as featured in 2008’s X-mas special of the “Hairy Bakers” and the Carole Nash Old Skool Bobber - Machines which will live on as a tribute to a man who will be greatly missed.

“The funeral service is to be held on the 20th of July and will begin with a memorial ride commencing from Terry’s home; all wanting to show their respects are very welcome to join the ride from the Quality Hotel roundabout, Barnard Road, Norwich NR5 9JB at approximately 15:40 heading on to St Faiths Crematorium, 75 Manor Rd, Horsham St Faith, Norwich NR10 3LF for an informal service at 16:15

“All mourners are encouraged to join a further celebration of Terry’s life at The Lodge Country House, Vicarage Rd, Salhouse, Norwich NR13 6HD, which is expected to continue well into the early hours of the morning – Camping facilities are available on-site.

“The Clarke family have respectfully requested that anyone thinking of sending flowers should make a donation to the British Heart Foundation in Terry’s name.”