Wakefield MAG December 2020 Newsletter

Merry Christmas from Wakefield MAG

Dear Wakefield MAG Member,

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Welcome to the Wakefield MAG e-newsletter. As meetings are currently suspended until further notice due to Covid-19 restrictions (AGAIN), this Newsletter is THE ONLY WAY to keep up to date with what we are up to, in these quite surreal times.


1) Suspension of Weekly Meetings
2) Postponed Christmas Do
3) Rally Dates for 2021
4) It's Time to Level Up Motorcycling
5) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting
6) New casualty analysis for vulnerable road users gives fresh perspective
7) 2030 end of sale of petrol and diesel vehicles
8) Remembrance Sunday
9) MAG Christmas Draw
10) Post Christmas Auction

1) Suspension of Weekly Meetings

Just as we were looking forward to our weekly meetings starting again following the end of the 2nd lockdown period on Wednesday 2nd December, the whole of West Yorkshire is announced to be in Tier 3, meaning our HQ the Thatched House has to remain closed, which means our weekly meetings have to stay postponed until further notice. Watch this space for when the meetings will restart again (realistically, this will be sometime in 2021 now).

N.B. For those of you who have pre-paid for the weekly meeting raffle, the raffle is being suspended and your entries will simply be c/f until the next 'physical' meeting.

In the meantime, keep up to date with this newsletter, published monthly, and our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/groups/wakefieldmag) where regular updates will be made.

Hope to see you all again at a meeting soon !!

2) Postponed Christmas Do

Our much anticipated Christmas Do at our new HQ, the Thatched House in Stanley, was due to be held on Saturday 5th December. However, as stated above, with West Yorkshire now being in Tier 3 lockdown restrictions, the Thatched House has to remain closed, so our Christmas Do will now be held sometime in the New Year, whenever the prevailing rules and regulations are lifted sufficiently to allow it to happen. Again, watch this space for details.

3) Rally Dates for 2021

2021 Rally Dates"

These are the dates for your diaries for 2021:

Into The Valley - To be confirmed

Farmyard Party - 18th - 20th June, where else other than Duncombe Park, Helmsley

Yorkshire Rally - 6th - 8th August, Escrick Park, Escrick, Nr York.

Tickets will go on sale in early 2021 and we expect it to be a bumper year as every one want to party hard in a field and put this year behind us. Even if we still have restrictions in place by then, as the YPR in August proved, these events can still be held in a Covid safe environment. Be sure to get your tickets early !!!

4) It's Time to Level Up Motorcycling

The Chancellor's new £4 billion Levelling Up Fund is a great opportunity for motorcycling !! Motorcyclists can win investment for secure parking facilities and bus lane access, so the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) advises members to contact their councillors and MPs.

The recently announced £4 billion 'Levelling Up Fund' for England is money for schemes from bus lanes, to railway station upgrades and the Fund will finance a broad range of local projects.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak said the initiative is about funding the infrastructure of everyday life. Projects must have real impact, be delivered quickly, and have local support. Motorcyclists are part of the community. We don't ask for much, but our needs are often overlooked. MAG therefore suggests that members speak to their local MP and councillors to ask for installation of motorcycle-friendly infrastructure. You can propose that new bus lanes allow motorcycle access; or ask for regeneration projects to include secure motorcycle parking.

MAG Chair, Selina Lavender, said: "We are used to 'no money' being the response to all our requests. But this Levelling Up Fund is a great chance to get past that issue. We should seize it. If you have never contacted your councillor or MP before, now is the time to start. Let's see motorcycling level up and see some investment."

Find your local councillor's details here, and your local MP's details here.

Meanwhile, MAG is developing designs for dual use secure parking rails. We want to create innovative secure parking products for members to promote. Please contact MAG Central if you are a manufacturer or individual with expertise in this area.

5) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting

Around this time of year we usually send out our annual mailshot to formally place notice of our Annual General Meeting, which would normally have been held on the 12th January 2021. However, in common with MAG Nationally, and the Yorkshire MAG Region, our 19th Annual General Meeting is being postponed until restrictions are lifted and we are able to physically hold the meeting. All current Branch Officers will hence remain in post until such time as we can host the AGM and hold elections for our 2021 Branch Committee.

6) New casualty analysis for vulnerable road users gives fresh perspective

The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) has published new analysis of vulnerable road user (VRU) casualties. The report opens the way for a fresh perspective on VRU road safety. Motorcyclists, pedal cyclists, horse riders or handlers and pedestrians are defined as vulnerable road users. This is because they are not protected by a vehicle body. They can also be harder for other drivers to see on the road.

MAG starts from the premise that motorcyclists - like all other road users - do not set out to cause injury, nor to be injured. Collisions happen when errors are made. Reducing errors and opportunity for errors will reduce casualties. The work carried out by MAG looks at trends in the statistics over the five years 2015 - 2019.

Colin Brown, the report author, said: "MAG is keen to look at whether the safety of VRUs is improving or getting worse. This analysis looks at regional and local authority levels and we found that national figures hide wide differences across the country. We will go on to look at road safety approaches and campaigns on the ground. By finding any differences at local level, we hope to identify what works and what doesn't."

The British Horse Society (BHS) gave valuable support to establish data for horse riders. Alan Hiscox, Director of Safety for the BHS, said "The whole 'official' reporting system for equestrians does not give a realistic picture of what happens on the roads, and injuries and fatalities to horses are very rarely reported by the police. Therefore, it is so important that equestrians report any incident - but especially incidents that have resulted in injury to the horse - to the British Horse Society, so we can present a 'real life' picture."


Some of the key revelations of the analysis show that:

The full report can be found here.


Colin Brown states: "Commentary on motorcycling tends to be negative. I have shown in this analysis that there is cause to challenge that attitude. We all want to see more work done to improve the safety of riders; however, motorcycling policy and safety needs fresh perspective. MAG is working to promote the many benefits of motorcycling, but the critics habitually position safety as a blocker. In reality, motorcycling is getting safer. Therefore, long standing prejudices are not legitimate and must be challenged."

Alan Hiscox commented "I know horse riders don't compare to other VRUs in casualty numbers, but I am convinced that we have more near misses per mile ridden. We are creating a stronger voice by supporting each other and bringing attention to all VRU's."

Rachel Lee, Policy & Research Manager for Living Streets, said: "Increases in pedestrian KSIs have occurred across rural counties and metropolitan areas. The positive trends in absolute KSIs for London boroughs (including City of London) are in contrast to the significant reduction evident in the City of Glasgow and City of Edinburgh. Scotland as a whole shows an overall reduction in KSIs for all vulnerable road users, perhaps attributable to having a clearer vision for road safety through the Scottish Government's adoption of Vision Zero."

Nick Chamberlin, Policy Manager for British Cycling, commented: "We welcome this new analysis from MAG and thank them for throwing more light on this subject. Groups representing vulnerable road users must work together to highlight the dangers faced by our members. We must also seek to understand where progress is being made and encourage the Government to accelerate investment in our local road network, so that it is safe for everyone."

7) 2030 end of sale of petrol and diesel vehicles

You cannot have escaped the recent Government announcement on 18th November 2020 of a Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution. Included in the plan was the announcement that the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans in the UK will end by 2030. This is ten years earlier than planned and the announced date of the end of 2030 is a mere ten years away. The position on motorcycles was not mentioned in the announcement, therefore MAG contacted the DfT for clarification and received confirmation that motorcycles are NOT in scope regarding the ending of the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles (cars and vans). The Department contact went on to say that there are no timeframes for ending the sale of petrol/diesel motorcycles. Further, should the department wish to make such an announcement, they will consult first with the Motorcycle Action Group and its members.

One hopes that the laboratory boffins over the next ten years crack a green propulsion system for personal transport that is as versatile, convenient, readily available, as quick to refuel/recharge and at a similar cost to petrol !!

8) Remembrance Sunday

The 'official' City of Wakefield Remembrance Sunday Memorial Service on Sunday 8th November had to be cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. However, several Wakefield MAG members were at the Wakefield war memorial on Wood Street on Sunday 8th November, to pay our respects, as we have done for more years than we care to remember (and a pandemic wasn't going to stop us this year !!). It was particularly pleasing to observe that the crowd at the cities war memorial was only slighly smaller than in 'normal' years, albeit, all nicely socially distanced.

Chas Milner, 12 year veteran of the Royal Air Force, laid our own Wakefield MAG wreath, which we had ordered from the Royal British Legion.

We will remember them
We will remember them
We will remember them

A huge thanks to the Wakefield MAG members who attended, and hopefully, next year will be back to normal and we can attend the Mirfield event again too.

9) MAG Christmas Draw

MAG nationally is hosting a Christmas draw, to win a pair of Continental tyres. To be in with a chance to win this MAGnificent prize all you need to do is be a full MAG member when the draw takes place on Christmas Eve at 10am. Our thanks go to Cumbria MAG for generously donating this prize. For full terms and conditions see the MAG website: www.mag-uk.org.

Not a MAG member ? ... here's what to do to join and be in with a chance of winning the tyres:

Please complete either mandate, and then send it to the office address below:
Unit C13 Holly Farm Business Park

Please note that, unfortunately, MAG Central Office cannot accept direct debit instructions over the telephone.

All the joining options are listed on the MAG website: www.mag-uk.org/motorcycle-action-group-membership

Thank You to all of our members and good luck in the draw.

And, if you are stuck for a Christmas present idea for the biker in your life this year, Be stuck no more, as a MAG Membership makes an ideal Christmas present ... and as it will last for at least a whole year, it's the present that just keeps on giving !!!!

10) Post Christmas Auction

Our Post Christmas Auction's are the stuff of legends. The idea is you donate all your unwanted Christmas presents, together with other stuff you no longer want, or have the room for, to the Branch and we auction them off to the highest bidder .... with the proceeds split 2/3 to MAG and 1/3 to charitable causes. Thanks to the huge generosity of JP Roberts (ex-Doncaster MAG Rep), we have a huge amount of items that have already been donated (full details will be posted in January's newsletter), but to whet your appetite, this includes masses of riding gear, books, DVD's, camping equipment, tools, bike accessories, service items, garage equipment (incl. a Wolf Electric Air Compressor with spray gun, electric parts washing chest, paddock stands).

As we are unlikely to be able to host a 'normal format' auction until much later in the year, we'll be accepting bids against the advertised list of items, until the nominated closing date, after which, the highest bid will have won the item (subject to any reserve price being met). Any items that don't have any bids (or didn't meet the reserve price), will simply be carried forward to the 'physical' auction, whenever we are permitted to host it (watch this space for details).

Check out the January newsletter for details of the 'virtual' auction, and get in touch to donate any unwanted Christmas presents or garage clear out items in the meantime !!!

That's all for this month, have a great Christmas, hope Santa brings you lots of biking goodies, and I hope to see you all soon.

Stay Safe
Steve Travis
Wakefield MAG
0772 078 4734

Wakefield MAG meet (Covid-19 restrictions permitting) at the Thatched House, Stanley, Wakefield at 8:30pm every Tuesday. New (and Old) faces are always welcome.