An up-and-coming north Suffolk custom motorcycle manufacturer is displaying one of its models in the world famous Harrods store in London.
Old Empire Motorcycles, owned by 25-year-old Alec Sharp, has been thrust into the world of the nation’s wealthiest, with one of his models being featured on a stand which is promoting an expensive and exclusive book on motorcycles.
Mr Sharp, of Framlingham, whose workshop is in Redgrave, said he was pleased with the exposure for his business, which takes motorcycle building back to its purest form, and takes inspiration from the golden age of British motorcycle manufacturers and British manufacturing generally.
He said the opportunity came about through a new network of contacts he has developed, and the fact his bikes are so eye-catching.
Mr Sharp, who also takes inspiration from the old motorcycle movies featuring the likes of James Dean and Marlon Brando, and its associated culture among the youth of the day, said: “The Harrods market is not exactly our target demographic, but as a brand building exercise, it is excellent.”
The promotion, which has only just started, will run for six months, advertising a book called The Impossible Collection of Motorcycles, by luxury publisher Assouline.
One of Mr Sharp’s bikes will then feature at the launch event at the luxury London hotel Claridge’s, in October.
Although his bikes can sell for £10,000, Mr Sharp’s vision for the business was not necessarily to target the wealthy.
He is working with other British manufacturers of things like leathers and sunglasses, to inspire a new passion among young people for British-made, quality goods.
“I do not want to run this business in a very commercial way,” said Mr Sharp.
“Getting people interested in the scene is important and our aim is bigger than just custom motorcycles.”
Old Empire Motorcycles will feature in a new promotional video, recently filmed in the south of France, which will communicate that vision to the target audience,