Wakefield MAG February 2022 Newsletter

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Dear Wakefield MAG Member,

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


1) Changes to the Highway Code
2) Fred Hill Run
3) Wakefield Hospice 10K Race Marshalling
4) Rally Tickets
5) Post Christmas Auction
6) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting
7) Motorcycle 'Action Plan' is just half of the story
8) Bikes in Bus Lanes Trial in Leeds
9) London MAG save Lewisham riders big money
10) Forthcoming Events (for February and beyond)

1) Changes to the Highway Code

A number of changes have recently been made to the Highway Code to 'supposedly' improve the safety of vulnerable road users. One of these changes is the introduction of a hierarchy of vulnerable road users: Pedestrians, Cyclists, Horse Riders, Motorcyclists, Cars/Vans, Buses and Trucks. Potentially, that could benefit motorcyclists as those in charge of vehicles that can cause the greatest harm in the event of a collision bear the greatest responsibility to take care and reduce the danger they pose to others.

However, controversial rules surrounding the priority that should now be given to pedesrians and cyclists could actually result in more deaths and accidents.


Changes to the Highway Code

The changes can be read here

A Barrister outlines some of his concerns in this enlightening YouTube video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=zU9tBBQNq_0

The Alliance of British Drivers, FairFuelUK and Motorcycle Action Group, operating as the 'Voters For Motors' campaign Group, are campaigning to scrap the new rules as, although well meaning, are flawed and dangerous. This has resulted in quite a bit of coverage in the mainstream media, including Daily Express, Daily Mirror and The Sun newspapers:


Watch this space for developments, but in the meantime, do take extra care whilst out and about on your motorcycle / scooter.

2) Fred Hill Run

Fred Hill (during one of his many arrests)

After a gap of a few years, Leeds and Bradford MAG are again hosting the annual Fred Hill Memorial Run for Yorkshire MAG. Meeting on Sunday 13th February from 10.30am (to leave at 11.30am 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. All very welcome.

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 and Bradford MAG Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/LeedsBradfordMAG and/or web site: leeds.mag-uk.org/ before setting off.

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.

3) Wakefield Hospice 10K Race Marshalling

Wakefield Hospice 10K Race

The Wakefield 10k Road Race is organised for and by Wakefield Hospice, with the aim to raise as much as possible for patients and their families living with an end of life diagnosis. Wakefield Hospice annually needs to raise £4 million. They would not be able to achieve this without the help of local people going out of their way to raise funds through taking part in events like the Wakefield 10k.

This years event will be the 25th annual Wakefield 10k and during that time runners have raised more than £0.5 million for those who need specialist care at a very difficult time in their lives.

The 25th Wakefield Hospice 10k race is being held on Sunday 20th March 2022, and takes a similar route to previous years: starting from Clarence Park, it's a linear route straight out and back along Horbury Road.

Wakefield MAG have helped to marshal this popular event for more years than we care to remember, and our role is as mobile race marshals, looking after those competitors at the tail end of the race. The roads will only be closed for an hour maximum, and although the bulk of runners will be finished whilst the road is still closed, a good number of runners (walkers !!!) will still be on the course, hence the requirement for mobile marshals (that's us !!) to ensure their safety, once the road is re-opened to traffic. We are generally the last 'officials' remaining on the course, and hence play a vital role. We generally need around 6 marshals, although the more the merrier.

If you would like to volunteer, please let me know. P.S. you'll be home for lunchtime !!!

On the day, meet at 08:30 on Lawfield Lane to be issued with your marshalls Hi-Viz vest and receive any last minute instructions.

N.B. Please ensure your own bike insurance does not have an exclusion relating to marshalling non-motorsport events i.e. runners on a partially closed road route - MAG's preferred insurer, Bikesure, does not in it's standard insurance cover exclusions.

4) Rally Tickets

MAP Rallies 2022

We will receive our Branch allocation of tickets for the Yorkshire MAG 2022 Rallies at the end of February for sale at our weekly meetings.

Ticket prices and dates are:

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 !!!

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

5) Post Christmas Auction

Check out the event report Here

6) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting

The Wakefield & District Motorcycle Action Group Branch AGM was held in the Thatched House, on Tuesday 11th January 2022. This was our 20th AGM (and birthday), and in our 20 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 increased as compared to the last few years, although members physically attending meetings has dropped compared to pre-Covid pandemic levels - so if you are reading this and used to attend our meetings but no longer do, we would love to welcome you back. Similarly, if you have never been to a branch meeting, we'd love to welcome you into the fold. We have been successful again in our fund raising for the MAG fighting fund and have remained very active (once we were allowed to meet up again), 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 2022 can be seen Here. Our illustrious branch heroes of 2021 were:

The full AGM minutes are available Here.

P.S. Steve was voted in as Rep / Chairman again (for the 19th time), so unfortunately, you are all stuck with him for yet another year :-(

7) Motorcycle 'Action Plan' is just half of the story

MAG has commented on the recently released MCIA & Zemo Partnership's Joint Action Plan: 'Realising the Full Potential of Zero Emission Powered Light Vehicles' - A Joint Action Plan for Government and Industry.

Link to the plan here

The 'Action Plan' for zero-emission Powered Light Vehicles (PLV) is just half the story that misses too many opportunities. The document is billed as the 'Action Plan' for Government and industry to help realise its full potential in decarbonising the UK's transport sector. The plan makes ten recommendations but in the document's foreword Minister Trudy Harrison states that she "can't endorse and commit to everything in this plan".

MAG's Director of Campaigns & Political Engagement, Colin Brown, said: "The Government committed in its Transport Decarbonisation Plan to work with key partners on an action plan for the sector. For me a fundamental mistake has been to exclude the most key partner in this equation - the users of these vehicles! Riders often make the claim "if I had to explain, you wouldn't understand". It is clear that this plan doesn't fully understand motorcycling from a rider's perspective. Sadly we are going to have to make a real effort to explain. I hope the Government is prepared to make the effort to understand."

Colin went on to say: "MAG often uses the strapline 'the heart and soul of biking'. We are not prepared to stand by and allow the Government to remove the heart and soul of biking. We believe the current policy proposal to end the sale of new petrol motorcycles by an arbitrary date will do just that. For our members, motorcycling's heart and soul cannot be fully perceived through the restricted 'mode of transport' lens used by policy makers. The proposed policy route is set to destroy innovation, variety, passion and choice in motorcycling by focusing on a single technology route to banality. Motorcycling as we know and love it will be destroyed. We cannot accept that future."

MAG is calling for the action plan to be reconsidered with the input of the riders' voice. MAG Chair, Neil Liversidge, commented: "I was re-elected as Chair of MAG with a clear mandate: to oppose the ban of ICE vehicles. MAG is dedicated entirely to opposing those proposals. We are not opposed to decarbonisation but the Government must allow the rider to decide how that is achieved."

8) Bikes in Bus Lanes Trial in Leeds

After years of campaigning, Leeds and Bradford MAG have finally managed to achieve a motorcyclists in bus lanes trial in Leeds. Council chiefs have given the green light for a £40,000 trial which would see motorcyclists being allowed to use bus lanes on the busy A65. Although in typical Leeds Council fashion, Kirkstall's councillors have expressed their concerns.

Read more here.

9) London MAG save Lewisham riders big money

MAG activists in London are campaigning to save big money for motorcyclists in Lewisham. Proposed motorcycle parking charges were set to be the same as those for cars. MAG activists rallied support from Lewisham's motorcyclists and worked with the Council to dramatically revise the proposed charges.

Lewisham Council first proposed a new parking charge structure in the summer of 2019. They claimed the need to tackle air quality as the principle justification for the charging regime. The consultation said that the proposals would 'ensure that low emission vehicle owners will see charges reduce, while those who own the most polluting vehicles will pay the most.'

The charging scheme would have seen motorcyclists paying up to £3.50 per hour for short-stay parking. Residents with motorcycles would have been shelling out up to £125 for a resident's permit. Additionally, riders using their bikes to earn a living would have faced bills of up to £625 for an all-zone business permit.

Thanks to the work of MAG's London members and Save London Motorcycling the revised charges are reducing to a far more palatable 80p per hour or £2 per day. Resident motorcyclists will be able to get permits for just £20-£42 per year, and business permits for riders are slashed to £50-£125 per year.

MAG's Greater London spokesman, Spen McEvoy, commented: "This is a great victory for common sense. We would have been paying the same charges as vastly more polluting cars. We are delighted that we have made such a significant intervention on behalf of riders in the Borough"

The Council will apply a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) to implement the charges. The TRO is subject to a statutory three-week consultation, but the implementation is expected to take place later this year.

10) Forthcoming Events (for February and beyond)

Sunday 13th February 2022 - Fred Hill Memorial Run

See Above

Saturday 12th March - An Evening with Sam Manicom

Leeds MAG is proud to present their 7th annual talk, An Evening with Sam Manicom. Wanting to do something completely different, Sam Manicom learned to ride a motorcycle and within three months he'd set off to ride the length of Africa. This one-year trip turned into an eight-year epic across 55 countries.

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

Sunday 20th March - Wakefield Hospice 10K Race Marshalling

See Above

Friday 29th April - Sunday 1st May - Into the Valley (ITV) Rally

See Above. www.mapevents.co.uk

Friday 17th - Sunday 19th June - Farmyard Party (FYP) Rally

See Above. www.mapevents.co.uk

Friday 5th - Sunday 7th August - Yorkshire Pudding Rally (YPR)

See Above. www.mapevents.co.uk

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 Thatched House, Stanley, Wakefield at 8:00pm every Tuesday. New (and Old) faces are always welcome.