Vicar sets motorcycle hearse record

A vicar, self-dubbed as "heaven's angel", has set an inaugural world record after clocking a little above 114mph in his custom built motorcycle hearse.

The Rev Ray Biddiss, 57, from Halifax, West Yorkshire, hit 114.1mph in his specially built "trike-hearse" known as The Rocket.

The clergyman only had to reach a speed of more than 80mph during the ride at Elvington Airfield to be recognised by Guinness World Records.

Liversedge-based DTB Panther Trikes built The Rocket using a Triumph Rocket III with a 2.3-litre, three cylinder engine to meet the reverend's specifications, while keeping it within the relevant road traffic regulations.

The unique hybrid trike-hearse merges the body of the British-made 2008 Triumph Rocket III trike conversion with a coffin carrier to create a sleek black and chrome hearse outfit, the firm said.

Mr Biddiss, who has been biking for more than 40 years, said he uses The Rocket for real funeral services.

He added: "Many people who are or have been bikers agree that a motorcycle hearse is the only way to travel for your final journey."

Copyright © Press Association 2011