He wanted to go out in style and he certainly did.
For Lindley biker David Beaumont, 70, was carried to his funeral in the world’s fastest motorcycle hearse.
Dozens of motorcyclists joined the cortege from West Vale to Huddersfield Crematorium to give David - known as Brigadier - a perfect send-off.
But their huge machines paled into insignificance beside the Hearse Rocket.
It was designed by West Yorkshire minister the Rev Ray Biddis, who has managed to reach a staggering 114mph in the tricycle hearse.
Yesterday was a bit less frenetic but the cortege did pick a route which included a stretch of New Hey Road, Ainley Top, to “open up the throttle”.
The hearse has been fitted with a three-cylinder 2.3 litre Triumph Rocket III engine capable of 135-140mph on a conventional motorcycle.
The Hearse Rocket is fitted with a glass coffin carrier, and Mr Biddis spent £20,000 building the vehicle.
“It’s what David would have wanted,” said his son-in-law, Marcus Craven.
“When he finally retired three years ago, he went out and looked for a motorbike. We thought he’d get something sedate; he came back with a Honda 650cc Fireblade.
“He loved being a biker.”
Mr Beaumont, of Temple Street, Lindley, had a spell as a millworker and on the railways in Huddersfield before spending 27 years as an engineering cutter at David Brown Gears.
When he left that job he became a caretaker - ironically at Crow Lane School, in Milnsbridge, where he had been a pupil 60 years earlier.
“He was a real character,” said Mr Craven.
“He loved things like clay pigeon shooting and ferreting, but had also developed a love of rock and roll dancing and became pretty good.”
Mr Beaumont, who was divorced, leaves two daughters, Sharon and Amanda, and six grandchildren, Craig, Ben, Natasha, Charlotte, Josh and Brad.
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