Wakefield MAG February 2020 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) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting
2) Congratulations on your election success from the local motorcycle community
3) MAG calls for fair treatment in charging infrastructure
4) Rally Tickets
5) Post Christmas Auction
6) 2020 Wakefield MAG Events
7) West Yorkshire MAG Fred Hill Run
8) MAG looks forward to more motorcycles in Cardiff
9) 2019 Powered Two Wheeler Market
10) Forthcoming Events (for February and beyond)

1) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting

The Wakefield & District Motorcycle Action Group Branch AGM was held in the Grey Horse, on Wednesday 15th January 2020. This was our 18th AGM (and birthday), so we are now legal to drink (not that has ever stopped us before :-)

In our 18 consecutive years as an active MAG Branch, we haven't had to reform / re-launch at any point to keep going. The overall membership numbers (Full MAG members with a WF postcode) has remained static as compared to the previous year, which is a shame as an increase would have been nice to report (if you are reading this and are not a MAG member ... JOIN NOW !!!). However, meeting attendance has remained very strong throughout the year and the majority of meetings have around 10-20 members in attendance (circa. 20% of MAG Members in the Wakefield area attend their branch meetings - Nationally, 10% is considered the 'best' average). We have been successful again in our fund raising for the MAG fighting fund and have remained very active, and packed an awful lot of activities into the year and laid on some very successful events. We have maintained our support of charities, but (very importantly) without diverting any funds away from the MAG Fighting Fund !!!

All in all, another highly successful year for the branch. A huge thanks to all our meeting regulars and all those who have supported the branch in all our activities. Hip Hip .... Hooray.

The Branch Committee for 2020 is virtually unchanged from 2019, with the notable exception of a new auditor (Terry Scott replacing Martin Burgess). Our illustrious branch heroes of 2019 were:

Note from Steve: I was seriously humbled to receive the Wakefield MAG Justine Travis Chairman's Trophy at the AGM, as nominated by the membership. It's an honour and a privilege to be your Rep

The full AGM minutes are available Here.

P.S. Steve was voted in as Rep / Chairman again (for the 18th time), so unfortunately, you are all stuck with him for yet another year :-(

2) Congratulations on your election success from the local motorcycle community

In line with the other Yorkshire MAG groups, Wakefield MAG has recently reached out to our four local MP's:

The purpose of the communication was to congratulate them on their recent election success, introduce ourselves as the local MAG group representing riders issues in the constituency, and encourage further dialogue. We'll let you know how the subsequent meeting(s) go. Text of the communication sent, follows:

Dear xxxxxxx,

Happy new year and congratulations on your recent (re-)election to the post of MP for xxxxxxxxxxxx.

My name is Steve Travis and I'm the Wakefield & District Rep for the Motorcycle Action Group. We are a national lobbying organisation who look to protect and promote riders rights for all motorcyclists in the U.K.

We have a growing membership in excess of 60,000 passionate motorcyclists and represent the riders of 1.2 million registered motorcycles in the U.K. in the local councils, media and, via local MP's, in the corridors of Westminster through a network of local and regional groups around the country. We have been working locally with all five of the West Yorkshire Councils and the West Yorkshire Yorkshire Combined Authority for several years, to get a fair deal for motorcyclists within transport legislature.

We see that ALL single track vehicles (cycles, motorcycles and scooters) have a fantastic ability to cut congestion (less road space, designed for single occupancy, ease of parking) and emissions (no single track vehicle gets stuck in traffic and sits with an idling engine for long periods). Can I firstly clarify that neither myself or the Motorcycle Action Group are anti cycle. Many of our members are cyclists as well as motorcyclists. Most of the challenges, as well as the benefits, of cycling are shared between the two modes of transport (inclement weather, invisibility to other road users, theft, cost savings, air quality and congestion benefits etc.) but we see an enormous missed opportunity in the way that transport policy both nationally and locally portrays only cycling as a golden bullet to solve all local transport ills.

Using the data from the last local transport survey, 1% of commuters around West Yorkshire were cycles and 1% were on motorcycles or scooters. Both are classed as vulnerable road users (VRU's) by the government. The main difference we see with commuting on these modes of transport is physical ability. Our topography is very hilly and not everyone is able to cycle in such a terrain either through age, disability or injury - which makes both the local council and national transport strategy stance of promoting only cycle usage (as opposed to all single track vehicles) very short sighted and potentially discriminatory. We strongly feel that both modes of transport should be treated the same when it comes to both national and local policy.

We certainly don't call for preferential treatment in comparison with cyclists, but would like parity with cycles when it comes to road infrastructure, secure parking and support in general. We hope that you can take on board our assertions and hopefully help us to protect and promote motorcycling both nationally and locally throughout your tenure as MP for xxxxxxxxxx.

I would welcome the opportunity to meet you to discuss our thoughts on all things connected with motorcycling, and you are always welcome to attend any of our meetings and events to get to know your local motorcycling community.

If you have any need of help, advice or even a point of contact within the motorcycle community, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Yours Sincerley
Stephen Travis
Wakefield & District Rep, Motorcycle Action Group

3) MAG calls for fair treatment in charging infrastructure

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced a doubling of funding for on-street charge points on 21st January. The Motorcycle Action Group has welcomed news of this funding, but raises concerns about the suitability of provision for owners of electric motorcycles.

Speaking on Monday 21st January, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: "We want to make electric cars the new normal, and ensuring drivers have convenient places to charge is key to that. By doubling funding again for charge points on streets where people live, and opening up data we are helping drivers easily locate and use affordable, reliable charge points whether at home or on the road."

The Motorcycle Action Group, whilst welcoming the announcement, has, however, raised concerns that national and local government thinking is demonstrating a blind spot when it comes to the provision of charging infrastructure that meets the needs of motorcyclists.

MAG's Director of Campaigns & Political Engagement, Colin Brown, commented "I have had many conversations with local authorities, infrastructure hardware suppliers and other bodies that reveal little, if any, consideration of the needs of motorcyclists when it comes to charging infrastructure. We support and promote the use of electric motorcycles just as much as conventional internal combustion versions, but if we are to see progress in the electrification of the motorcycle fleet, then some serious debate needs to be had on the specific needs of motorcyclists when it comes to the question of charging.

With the constant threat of motorcycle theft at the forefront of most riders' minds, owners will need provision of facilities that allow secure parking at the charging locations. This is before we even start to question the technical and ergonomic aspects of charging facilities. To date, I can see no evidence to suggest that these questions are being asked or addressed.

I am calling on the charging infrastructure industry and government to take a long hard look at the needs of motorcyclists when it comes to charging infrastructure. We cannot afford the option to switch to electric to be denied to motorcyclists simply because no thought was given to charging these machines."

4) Rally Tickets

MAP Rallies 2020
MAP Rallies 2020

We now have our Branch allocation of tickets for the Yorkshire MAG 2020 Rallies and these are for sale at our weekly meetings NOW.

Ticket prices and dates are:

See Lorna at any of our weekly meetings to buy yours. Remember, if you buy your tickets directly from us, you save on the on-line booking fee and postage .... more money in your pocket = more beer money .... what more of an incentive could you possibly want !!!

Also, on the gate tickets are only available at the Farmyard Party, Into The Valley and Yorkshire Pudding rally are pre-book only, so you have no option other than to get your tickets in advance if you want to go to these quite splendid rallies.

See the Yorkshire MAG Events site for more details of these 3 fantastic rallies: www.mapevents.co.uk

5) Post Christmas Auction

2020 Auction

Our 16th Post Christmas Auction will be held on Wednesday 29th January 2020. 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. We have lots of auction items already and lots more to come on the day itself no doubt !!!!.

The auctions are always hugely entertaining and there are always some real quality items donated, and hence, some real bargains to be had.

I hope to see you there. Be there early, with viewing from 07:00 onwards, and the auction starting at 08:00 prompt (and don't forget to bring your unwanted Christmas pressies !!!).

6) 2020 Wakefield MAG Events

Our programme of events for 2020 will be published shortly, but to whet your appetite, check out our forthcoming branch activities:

We also have our monthly social events with various different activities planned (held on the last Wednesday of every month) - we are also likely to pencilling in evening rideouts in the summer months (Jun-Aug).

And to supplement our own activities, we'll also be attending as many of the activities of our very good friends in the other Yorkshire MAG groups, as time dictates. One thing is for sure, you wont get bored being a member of Wakefield MAG !!!!

See the events page for further details and more !!! (once it has been updated for this year that is ;-)

7) West Yorkshire MAG Fred Hill Run

Fred Hill (during one of his many arrests)

The West Yorkshire MAG groups are hosting the annual Fred Hill Memorial Run for those living in the West and Northern parts of God's own county of Yorkshire (there is a sperate event for those in the East Riding, being hosted by East Yorkshire MAG).

Meeting on Sunday 9th February from 10.00am (to leave at 11.00 prompt) at Squires Cafe, Newthorpe Lane, Sherburn in Elmet, LS25 5LX. The run will take us through the fabulous North Yorkshire countryside ending at The Sun Inn, Brame Lane, Norwood HG3 1SZ. www.thesun-inn.com

If you don't know who Fred Hill was, or why MAG holds him in such high esteem, check out his obituary Here. Although Fred's protest was against the mandatory helmet law, introduced in 1973, it must be remembered that the helmet law in itself is NOT the issue. The issue was, and still is, the individuals right to freedom of choice. MAG's central ethos of Let the Rider Decide is as relevant now as it ever was.

Please note these runs are very subject to the weather, and may be cancelled at short notice (for very sensible safety reasons). It is advised to check the Leeds MAG Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/groups/306110975566 and/or web site: leeds.mag-uk.org/ before setting off.

8) MAG looks forward to more motorcycles in Cardiff

This week, Cardiff Council launched a Transport White Paper, which lays out an ambitious 10-year plan to reduce congestion and improve air quality in the Welsh capital. Proposals include a Congestion Charge which is expected to exempt motorcycles, a move that will inevitably increase the prevalence of this transport mode.

When London introduced its Congestion Charging Zone back in 2003, it too exempted motorcycles from all charges. Modal shift to motorcycles is universally accepted to help reduce congestion and thus also emissions. Studies show that a 10% modal shift from cars to motorcycles will reduce congestion by a staggering 40%.

MAG's Director of Campaigns & Political Engagement, Colin Brown, commented "We broadly welcome the approach of a universal congestion charge on all larger vehicles as opposed to complex emission-based charging schemes when it comes to solving the urban congestion problem, and improving air quality. The logic of an exemption for single-track vehicles is obvious when starting from a congestion perspective, enabling a much simpler policy approach that achieves the same results as the confused and administratively burdensome emission charging model which revolves around the complexities of Euro ratings. An important additional bonus to an increase in the prevalence of motorcycles on the road was also observed in London, where collisions between motorcycles and other vehicles significantly reduced."

"We look forward to seeing an increase in motorcycles in Cardiff and will be engaging with Cardiff City Council to ensure that the benefits of motorcycles are fully embraced, supported and encouraged."

Director of Communications & Public Affairs, Lembit Öpik added "This is a great news story to start a new decade. Let's hope we see many more as MAG pushes to get motorcycles put back where they belong: at the heart of transport policy."

9) 2019 Powered Two Wheeler Market

Mixed fortunes for the UK's best-selling manufacturers sees Honda increase its market share while the likes of Harley-Davidson, Yamaha and Ducati slide.

Royal Enfield, KTM and Honda emerged as the biggest winners in terms of UK sales achieved during 2019, while Harley-Davidson, Ducati and Yamaha each suffered a notable slump in overall numbers.

Figures from the MCIA (Motorcycle Industry Association) confirmed UK motorcycle sales in 2019 rose by a modest +1.5%, a promising outcome but markedly lower than other improvements in key European markets such as France (+15%), Spain (11%) and Italy (6%).

The United Kingdom is Europe's sixth largest motorcycling market behind the aforementioned three, plus Germany and Turkey, with Honda maintaining a healthy margin over its contemporaries in this country.

According to Motorcycles Data, sales rose by +6% in 2019 to a final total of 21,150 units shifted, a significant portion of which are it's ultra-successful scooter ranges, but also its lower capacity models. As such, Honda's market share in the UK is undisputed with 19.7% of all models shifted in 2019 coming from the Japanese firm.

It's grip was assisted by rivals Yamaha seeing sales drop by -10.6% (11,115 units), which in turn reduces its market share to 10.3%. It too relies mostly on the sales of its scooter models, with the NMax 125 topping the sales charts overall in November and December.

Even so, it remains comfortably clear of third place BMW, which despite managing record sales of 9,235 units in the UK for 2019, commands just +4.1% share of the market.

Who were the biggest winners and losers in 2019?

In fourth place, Triumph took a slip of -5.4% in its domestic market, though it otherwise saw sales globally increase, while Kawasaki enjoyed a slight increase of 0.3% to consolidate its status as the fifth biggest-selling motorcycling manufacturer in the UK.

Scooter specialists Lexmoto enjoyed a huge +45.5 growth, albeit on the back of a poor 2018, in sixth overall, while KTM rose the order with a sizeable +11.7% gain, placing it only 500 units shy of rivals Kawasaki.

In eighth, Harley-Davidson's continued it's slide down the wrong end of the top ten with a -7.5% decline leaving it just ahead of Suzuki - which itself saw sales drop by -2.6% - and Ducati, which despite recording flat sales globally fell by -5.1% in the UK.

The most eye-catching statistic according to MCIA's figures, however, is Royal Enfield with a massive 121.8% boost in sales to 2,935 units. Indeed, having popped up into the top ten brands in various months this year, Royal Enfield finds itself close to cracking the top ten annually - it ended the year just 184 units shy of Ducati.

A more detailed breakdown of 2019 PTW registrations, month by month, can be found at: https://mcia.co.uk/en/market-intelligence

The MCIA is the Trade Association representing the Powered Light Vehicle (PLV) Industry. PLVs can be defined as lightweight, two, three and four-wheeled machines, typically powered by zero or low-emission motors. Also known as L-Category vehicles, they are an answer to the congestion and air quality challenges created by personal and goods transportation.

10) Forthcoming Events (for February and beyond)

Wednesday 29th January 2020 - Wakefield MAG 16th Post Christmas Auction

See Above.

Sunday 9th February 2020 - West Yorkshire MAG Fred Hill Run

See Above.

Wednesday 26th February - Wakefield MAG Social Night - Event: TBC

20:30 in the Grey Horse, Kirkgate, Wakefield

Saturday 14th March - An Evening with Steph Jeavons

Leeds MAG is proud to present their 6th annual talk, An Evening with Steph Jeavons. 'First woman to ride on all 6 continents'.

20:00 at Squires Cafe Bar, Newthorpe Lane, LS25 5LX. Tickets £10 plus postage (also includes free camping) from leeds.mag-uk.org/

Wednesday 25th March - Wakefield MAG Social Night - Event: TBC

20:30 in the Grey Horse, Kirkgate, Wakefield

Sunday 29th March 2020 - Wakefield Hospice 10K Race


Wednesday 29th April - Wakefield MAG Social Night - Event: TBC

20:30 in the Grey Horse, Kirkgate, Wakefield

Friday 1st May - Sunday 3rd May - Into the Valley (ITV) Rally


May Day Bank Holiday 8th May - Wakefield MAG Bike show at the Wakefield Gala

10:00 onwards at Clarence Park Arena, Wakefield

Friday 19th - Sunday 21st June - Farmyard Party (FYP) Rally


Friday 31st July - Sunday 2nd August - Yorkshire Pudding Rally (YPR)


See the events page for further details and more !!!

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

Ride Safe .. Ride Free
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.