Mr Ralph Neville Watts (OS 1948)
The School was saddened to receive the news that Old Stopfordian and Grand Prix motorcycle racer, Ralph Neville Watts (OS 1948), passed away on 30th November 2021, aged 91.
Old Stopfordian Martin Tootall (OS 1965) gives the following update:
Known as Neville, he lived at the same address in Mellor and worked in Marple for over 70 years before moving to the Isle of Man.
A quiet unassuming man, Nev had an unusual hobby – motorcycle racing! He was a member of one of the UK’s oldest and most successful motorcycle clubs – the Stockport-based Manchester 17 MCC – which is where I met him in 1965.
Nev’s racing career ran from the 1960’s – 80’s on 125 and 178 Hondas, competing on the Isle of Man in 29 TTs and 6 Classic Manx Grand Prix.
His best finishes included a 5th place in the 1971 Lightweight TT and 4th in both the 1988 and 1989 Classic Lightweight Manx GPs. Nev always had the Manchester 17 MCC badge on his helmet and won his club’s John Simister Trophy several times.
Neville and his wife Pat volunteered for many years with the British Red Cross, running First Aid courses. He was also often to be found helping in the coffee shop at Stepping Hill hospital and taking books and magazines around the wards.
Martin Tootall (OS 1965)
Martin has kindly provided the following photographs of Neville: