Blenkiron Florence (w3002)
Florence Blenkiron and Theresa Wallach posing with their Panther motorcycle before departing on their historic journey from London to Cape Town. The women are both wearing trousers, button-down shirts, and wide-brimmed tin helmets. The Daily Sun-Times, Owen Sound, Ontario, 17 Dec 1934

Blenkiron Florence (w3002)

  • Alias-Pseudonimo-Pseudonyme: -
  • Nationality-Nazionalità-Nationalité: UK, Inglese, Anglais
  • Birth/death-Nascita/morte-Naissance/mort: 1904-1991
  • Means of transport-Mezzo di trasporto-Moyen de transport: Motorbike-moped, Motocicletta-motorino, Moto-cyclomoteur
  • Geographical description-Riferimento geografico-Référence géographique: Africa
  • Internet: Visit Website
  • Wikidata: Visit Website
  • Additional references-Riferimenti complementari-Références complémentaires: Wallach, Teresa. The Rugged Road : Due Donne E Una Moto, Da Londra a Città Del Capo. Roma: Ultra, 2014

On 11 December 1934, Florence Blenkiron and Theresa Wallach set out from Crown House, Aldwych in London to Cape Town, South Africa, on their 600cc single-cylinder Panther motorcycle named "Venture" with sidecar and trailer, seen off by a crowd which included Lady Astor, the first woman MP, and the High Commissioner of what was then South Rhodesia. The event was widely reported in the press, as was their progress on the journey.

In June 1935 the Woman Engineer journal reported "Miss Wallach and Miss Blenkiron are now heading for Nairobi on their motorcycle combination; some of their more unpleasant adventures have included four nights in a tropical jungle without food or shelter, and capture by Tourags in the desert".

The route they had planned took them through FolkestoneBoulogneParisMarseillesAlgiers to GhardaiaIn Salah to Tamanrassat then via In Guezzam to Agadez. Leaving there on 4 March 1935, then travelled through to Katsina by 11 March then to Kano, and to Fort Archambault by 19 April. From there they travelled to Ekibondo by 30 April, passing Mt Ruwenzori to Kampala, then Nairobi arriving in Arusha by 5 June. They travelled past Mt Kilimanjaro, reaching Iringa by 11 June, then via Victoria Falls, through Bulawayo reaching Beitbridge by 11 July.

They finally arrived in Cape Town on 29 July 1935, having recorded snippets of their journey on film and still photographs.