Wakefield MAG April 2010 Newsletter

Dear Wakefield MAG member,

Welcome to the Wakefield MAG e-newsletter. If you can’t attend our Wednesday meetings regularly, it’s the next best thing to keep you up to date with what we are up to.


1) Charity Pet Food Run Report
2) Wakefield Hospice 10K Race Marshalling
3) Freedom Run
4) Wakefield MAG Bike Show
5) Leeds MAG Celebration Run
6) Event Tickets
7) Motorcycle Test EDM
8) ePetition to restrict new car licences
9) Massive Motorcycle Protest in France
10) MAG Survey
11) Forthcoming Events (for April and beyond)

1) Charity Pet Food Run Report

Twenty five bikes and two trikes took part in Wakefield MAG's inaugural Pet Food Run on Sunday 21st March.  We assembled at Stork Lodge Tea Rooms with our huge collection of dog food, collars, leads, blankets, assorted doggie treats & toys, fastened onto our bikes & trikes, some by quite ingenious methods.  After our obligatory group photo, we headed out of Wakefield on the A650 towards our first stop, Whitehall Dog Rescue in East Ardsley.

We were greeted at Whitehall by Brian the proprietor. Brian gave us all a guided tour of the centre and a very knowledgeable potted history of all the dogs in need of new Mum’s & Dad’s.  Next came an introduction to the permanent resident’s of the centre – dogs that for various health reasons can’t really be adopted.

We were all hugely impressed with Whitehall, and the terrific work that they do.  Morrison’s Supermarket provide dog food to Whitehall (way to go Morrison’s !!!!), but that still leaves lots of other items that they are dependant on charitable donations for, to continue their great work.  We donated various doggie treats & toys, blankets, towels, leads/collars and other items.  We also presented the proceeds of a collection taken at the start of the ride-out, towards vet’s bills, a total of some £60.

We then assembled and set off towards our second call of the day, Ponderosa Animal Rescue in Allerton Bywater.  We took the back route out of East Ardsley along Fall Lane, onto Long Thorpe Lane (B6135), then onto Thorpe Lower Lane (A654), staying on this road through Rothwell and Oulton, then taking the A639 through Methley and into Castleford.  In Cas, we took the A656 (Lock Lane) towards Allerton Bywater, and Ponderosa on Nineveh Lane.

After offloading the various bags of dog food we had brought along, we had a tour of Ponderosa, meeting the various dogs (and cats) in need of new homes.  It was great to see that a good few of the Ponderosa residents already had new ‘parents’ lined up.

Following the tour, we all headed off in several different directions, with some going onto Squires for a cuppa, others heading off for a mystery tour rideout, and others heading home for various domestic chores etc.

It was a great first rideout of the year for the branch, in rather nice weather, and we were all unanimous that this will become an annual event.

A huge thanks to everyone who donated cash and dog food and other doggie related items, for the Charity run.  Particular thanks also have to go to John Millea & Sons of Hemsworth (01977 610229), who very kindly donated a huge bag of dog food, for the most worthy cause.

2) Wakefield Hospice 10K Race Marshalling

Wakefield MAG once again helped with marshalling this years Wakefield Hospice 10K road race, on Sunday 28th March, as we have done for many years now.  Our role is predominantly to provide motorcycle marshals for the race's wheelchair competitors.  In previous years, we have also provided front and back markers for the main race, but this year, as the road was entirely closed to traffic, in both directions, two Police cars performed that role.

Steve & Justine arrived at 08:30 to take part in the final race organisers briefing in Clarence Park.  Daz, Lorna, Pingy, Martin & Chas all arrived at 09:00, in good time for the wheelchair race start at 09:35.  It was perfect weather conditions for the race, dry and sunny but not too warm.  This year, three wheelchair competitors had entered and assembled at the start line on Lawefield Lane.  The official race marshal set the wheelchair race off, after getting clearance from the police & highways, and we escorted the competitors down Park Grove Road and turning left onto Horbury Road.  By this point the field was starting to split up and the lead wheelchair was literally leaving the others for dust.  The race, as last year, followed a linear route along Horbury Road, to Quarry Hill, where it doubled back on itself, back towards Clarence Park.

The outbound route, although looking quite flat, is pretty much uphill most of the way, and proved to be a bit of a killer, coming back there are some long downhill sections, and the wheelchairs hit speeds of 30MPH+

We passed the main race competitors, who had set off 15 minutes after the wheelchairs, on their outward leg, just as we were nearing the finish.  The lead wheelchair, who had led for the entire race, finished very strongly, followed a few minutes later by the second wheelchair.  The lead runners finished shortly afterwards, putting in close to professional athlete times.

The third wheelchair competitor was struggling a little bit and was caught up with the mass of runners in the main race but Lorna, Martin & Daz did a cracking job of segregating the 'traffic' for him.  Massive credit to him though, he didn't give up and kept going all the way to the end, even though his arms probably felt like they were made of rubber by that stage.

This years 10K race was very well attended, and was covered on that evenings Calendar TV news and Ridings FM radio news.  The best news however was that the race raised £30,000 for Wakefield Hospice, which is a fantastic result.

A huge thanks to all our mobile marshals and it is great to be able to support our local charity.  Our next event, supporting Wakefield Hospice, is our bike show, at the Hospice May Day Gala, on Bank Holiday Monday (3rd May).  This year is the 20th anniversary of Wakefield Hospice, so lets help them celebrate that milestone by putting on our biggest and best bike show to date !!!!

3) Freedom Run

East Yorkshire MAG are hosting a Freedom demo run on Saturday 1st May. The demo run is for two key purposes:

The demo starts from the Riverside Cafe, Beverley, HU17 0LD at 11:30am. There will be a ride-out at 11:00, for those who are attending the Into The Valley rally, to the demo run assembly point.

The demonstration of over 1000 motorcycles is set to leave Riverside Cafe, Beckside, Beverley at 11.30am and plans to travel to Hull using Swinemoore Lane and the A1174 Beverley Road. On entering Hull, the run will proceed through Hull city centre using Beverley Road and Ferensway then will proceed west on the A63 were the run will terminate at the Humber Bridge viewing area.

At the Humber Bridge, speeches will be made by local MPs and MAG Representatives. Already Graham Stewart MP for Holderness has agreed to take part, as has the Humber Bridge Bridgemaster, to give an update on road tolls. MAG speeches will be made by MAG El Presidente Ian Mutch, Nich Brown & Paddy Tyson. The demonstration and speeches are expected to take around two and a half hours.

Wakefield MAG are holding a rideout to the demo, and we will meet at our normal place and time - 09:30 at Stork Lodge Tea Rooms, Thornes Park, off Thornes Road, Wakefield, leaving at 10:00, thus leaving ample time to get to the Riverside Cafe for the 11:30 start. All Wakefield MAG members who attend the demo will receive a massive 75 points to boost their branch points total !!!

4) Wakefield MAG Bike Show

Wakefield MAG are once again hosting a bike show at the Wakefield Hospice May Day Gala, to be held in Clarence Park Arena, Clarence Park, Wakefield on the Bank Holiday Monday (3rd May).

Free Bike Show entry (but a donation to the Hospice would be most appreciated).

Multiple Show Categories (Modern, Classic Brit, Classic Jap, Vintage, Custom Paint, Custom Engineering, Rat, Trike & Overall Best in Show) to cater for all types of Bike & Trike

Show to be judged at 15:00, Entry into show from 09:30 onwards (Gala officially opens at 10:00)

All Welcome to come along and show off their pride & Joy, and there will be lots to do at the Gala whilst waiting to see if your bike has won. It's the 20th anniversary of the Hospice this year so let's make the bike show our biggest and best yet !!!!

5) Leeds MAG Celebration Run

Leeds MAG are hosting a Celebration Run on Saturday 22nd May. The run leaves the Red Lion public house (on the A64, just inside the Leeds boundary) at 13:00, for a police escorted ride through Leeds City Centre, and finishing at the The Dragon on Whitehall Road (A58). Following the Celebration Run / Demo ride, a 'The Good, The Bad and The Ugly' Bike show will be held at the Dragon (entry fee to raise funds for MAG).

Wakefield MAG will meet at Stork Lodge Tea Rooms, Thornes Park, off Thornes Road, Wakefield, at 11:00, leaving at 11:30, for a ride-over to the Red Lion Celebration Run assembly point. The police escorted Leeds demo runs are always great fun, and a superb spectacle for Leeds City Centre Shoppers, so really hope you can make it.

6) Event Tickets

We now have our allocation of Yorkshire MAG (MAP) Rally tickets for sale at the Branch meetings (ITV, FYP & YPR). Ticket prices for this years MAP events are maintained at last year's credit crunch busting prices (Into The Valley £15 Pre-Book; Farm Yard Party £25 Pre-Book and Yorkshire Pudding Rally £15 Pre-Book). Let me know if you want some. YPR tickets are already selling fast and sold out months before the event last year, so if you are planning to attend this most excellent event this year, I'd buy your tickets sooner rather than later if I were you !!

Also for sale are tickets to our own Midsummer Mayhem Party Night on Saturday 3rd July, at the Horse & Groom Inn, Heath, Wakefield. All the usual MAG party night attractions including live music from local band (and MAG members) Twist of Fate, Silly Games, Raffle, Hot Snacks, Fancy Dress (optional, but prize for the best outfit) and lots more. Demand is high and entry by Pre-Book ticket only so be sure to get yours quick before they sell out. Tickets are only £5 and available from our branch meetings. If you can't make the meetings, let us know (via email or phone) and we'll reserve your tickets.

7) Motorcycle Test EDM

The MAG campaign for the adequate provision of testing centres moves forward a gear.

In a two pronged attack, the Parliamentarians seem to be working with MAG. The day after Mark Williams MP asked probing questions in Parliament about the conduct of the DSA (Driving Standards Agency) and their failure to provide adequate motorcycle testing provision in Wales, Ann Main, MP for St Albans has launched an Early Day Motion (EDM) in the House.

An early day motion, if it receives enough signatures from MPs, can lead to the introduction of a private member's bill, but it certainly raises awareness of the strength of feeling in the Commons about an issue.

These things only really gain legs when more MP’s sign, so please take the time to read the text of the EDM, contact your MP and urge them to sign EDM 1002. It just might help save motorcycling as we know it. Contact details for your MP can be found on the Local MAG page > Contact Your MP on this website.

* EDM 1002 *


"That this House notes that, following the introduction of a new motorcycle test on 27 April 2009, Driving Standards Agency figures show that 50,000 fewer people took the motorcycle test in the period to 31 January 2010 than in the same period in 2008;
further notes that 45 learners crashed attempting the new test during its first nine weeks,resulting in 12 hospitalisations;
further notes that the majority of crashes occurred during the new swerve and stop exercise, which has been combined into one exercise in Module One of the new test;
further notes that this is not obligatory under the European directive which prompted the introduction of the new test;
further notes that the new test has resulted in a reduction in test centres, requiring longer journeys for inexperienced riders to access test facilities;
is concerned that inaction to tackle this lack of test centres and combined swerve and stop exercise could lead to a decline in the overall number of motorcyclists and the motorcycle industry as a whole;
congratulates Motorcycle News and the Motorcycle Action Group on their campaign to have these issues addressed;
and calls on the Government to consider separating the two elements of the swerve and stop exercise and to investigate how the availability of test centres could be addressed."

8) ePetition to restrict new car licences

A new ePetition has been launched on the Number 10 website, that you may wish to sign:


It's about restricting new car drivers in the same way that motorcyclists are restricted until they have more experience. If everyone is so sure that it works for motorcyclists, why on earth would it not work for new car drivers, who statistically are at a high risk of accidents in their first year of driving. A little parity in the law would be nice don't you think ?

If you agree with the petition, follow the link above and add your support, it only takes about 30 seconds.

Visit the www.ridersarevoters.org website for other motorcycle specific petitions.

9) Massive Motorcycle Protest in France

Early March saw MAG's partner organisation in France, FMMC, bring cities across France to a grinding halt. In Paris alone, 10,000 bikes came out on the streets to protest against government plans to make filtering through traffic illegal. The same was repeated throughout France.

The bikes were ridden perfectly legally, but adopted the style that the new legislation would enforce. This meant one bike per lane, leaving a safe distance and imitating the way cars use the road. The demonstration illustrated the added congestion that urban areas throughout France would experience if this crazy idea becomes law.

Bikes are part of the solution to the problem of congestion, it seems insane that the French government wants to exacerbate the problem!

For more information and photographs of the Protest, follow this link

You certainly have to hand it to our nearest neighbour, they certainly know how to stage BIG and effective protests !!

10) MAG Survey

Your opinion counts !!!

MAG is soliciting the opinions of it's membership about the future of riders rights and motorcycle lobbying in general. This will be important given the uncertain future (hung parliament? double-dip recession? dwindling BMF? government leaving everything to local authorities and the EU?). So, we'd like your thoughts on a few things (there are a mix of questions, some specifc others general, some emotive others administrative, some principled others pragmatic). Feel free to answer all or just some as you wish, or to raise other questions you think have been missed. Send your answers back to the Wakefield MAG email address (wfd_district_mag@hotmail.com), and i'll collate these and send them onto Nich Brown at MAG Central, via our Yorkshire Regional Rep.

Survey Questions:


Who represents riders and why?

How have we responded to changes in legislation in the past - what have we learned from this?

What policies need to be defended / discarded / adopted / promoted?

Is there a conflict between what riders want and what we can reasonably expect to get?

Are there things we think are important to campaign for/against that simply don't mean anything to the average rider?

Are we defending the indefensible?

How sustainable are particular campaigns?

Does the motorcycle lobby operate effectively - what are it's main strengths / weaknesses, how can we do better?


What’s being going on outside the motorcycle bubble that affects us?

What can we expect in the future from a) Government and b) Society?

What direction is Transport policy and Social policy headed. Where should motorcycles fit with this?


After the election, who do we need to lobby most and why - Government, riders, our members?

How do we best serve member interests in the future?

What partnerships should we make?

What identity should we have?

Where do you see biking in 10 years and 20 years time?

Should we try to convince society about the things biking has to offer, or sit back and hope they stop bothering us?

How should we deal with the negatives: e.g.; Social attitudes, Safety, Environment - do most riders care? Should we care?

There are relatively few individuals who are highly active in the motorcycle lobby, as they retire or go on to other things what can we do for longer term succession planning?

11) Forthcoming Events (for April and beyond)

Saturday 10th April - MAG AGC

MAG's 2010 Annual Group Conference will be held on Saturday 10th April at the Moat House Inn, Kings Coughton, B49 5QF (A46 south of Redditch, where they made those mighty fine Royal Enfield motorcycles). AGC starts at 10:00 and will finish by 17:00 at the latest. Please remember your MAG membership card to register for voting. Camping is available from 17:30 on the 9th April at the Moat House Inn and there is a very large car park. There is also a Hotel approx 50 yds from the meeting venue: Kings Court Hotel, Kings Coughton, B49 5QQ (Tel: 01768 976311). Accommodation bookings can also be made online via www.kingscourthotel.co.uk

75 branch points up for grabs for all who attend.

Sunday 18th April - Huddersfield MAG 2nd Clay Shooting Challenge

Crow Nest Park Club, Brighouse, Huddersfield. £20 p.p. for 50 clays or £10 p.p. for 25 clays. Confirm attendance in advance with Ali on 0780 149 8940. More details at: www.huddersfieldmag.co.uk

Sunday 25th April - Wakefield MAG rideout up t'hill and t'over t'moors (Saddleworth Moor excursion)

Meet 9:30am (leaving at 10:00am) at Stork Lodge Tea Rooms, Thornes Park, off Thornes Road, Wakefield

Friday 30th April - Sunday 2nd May - Into the Valley

The first of the Yorkshire MAG rallies, at a brand new site in South Dalton in the East Riding. Tickets now available at the branch meetings (see above).

Saturday 1st May - East Yorkshire MAG Freedom Run

See Above

Monday 3rd May (May Day Bank Holiday) - Wakefield MAG Bike Show

See Above

Sunday 9th May - Wakefield MAG rideout to Matlock Bath

Meet 9:30am (leaving at 10:00am) at Stork Lodge Tea Rooms, Thornes Park, off Thornes Road, Wakefield

Saturday 22nd May - Leeds MAG Celebration Run

See Above

That's all for this month and I hope to see you all soon.

Ride Safe
Steve Travis
Wakefield MAG
0772 078 4734

Wakefield MAG meet at the Grey Horse, Kirkgate, Wakefield at 8:30pm every Wednesday. New (and Old) faces are always welcome.