Who remembers Pussy Galore?
Pussy Galore was a fictional character in the 1959 Ian Fleming James Bond novel Goldfinger and the 1964 film of the same name. In the film, she is played by Honor Blackman. She passed away this week at the age of 94.
Norton Big 4
How long it had been since she last rode a motorcycle I don’t dare to say but this was what she was known for; for riding a Norton Big 4 back in the 40s.
Some actors might have refused to play a character called Pussy Galore, especially in those days, but Honor Blackman reportedly loved the notoriety of the role she played in 1964.
Pussy Galore becomes Miss Galore
Even though notoriously conservative US censors refused to allow the name “Pussy Galore” to appear on promotional materials. Instead she would be shown as “Miss Galore”, this didn’t stop the fun-loving Honor Blackman from taking delight in embarrassing interviewers by repeating the character’s name over and over during a US promotional tour for the movie. My kind of girl 😊
Far lesser known fact is that, Blackman played motorcycle-riding, black-leather-clad Cathy Gale in the second season of British TV series The Avengers. She even piloted a Triumph Speed 500 in an early episode but even prior to The Avengers, it turns out Honor Blackman had an already developed adventurous streak; her working life began as a motorcycle dispatch rider for the Home Office during the Second World War while she was in her teens.
Female dispatch riders
Because men were being sent to battle during WW2, nearly all dispatch riders were women. These riders played a crucial role in the war effort, delivering urgent messages and information between headquarters and remote field units. She was not only pretty, she was a Bond girl ánd motorcycle-riding war hero.
Parts of this article first appeared on Cycle World