Wakefield MAG January 2018 Newsletter

Happy New Year from Wakefield MAG

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.

I hope everyone had a brilliant Christmas and has a fantastic and biking filled New Year. In addition to getting some Christmas pressies that you really wanted, hopefully you also got some that you gladly want to give away !!!! WHY ? ....... because the Wakefield MAG Post Christmas Auction is rapidly approaching (See below for details).


1) Christmas Do Report
2) New Years Resolutions
3) Changes to Moped and Motorcycle Training
4) MAG looks back at 2017: a year of action and progress
5) Post Christmas Auction
6) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting
7) December Social Meeting Report
8) January Social Event (Pool Tournament)
9) The Daft Way Up MAG Fundraiser
10) Forthcoming Events (for January and beyond)

1) Christmas Do Report Report

Check out the event report Here

2) New Years Resolutions

Hands up how many people have made a New Years Resolution or two? Give up the fags .. drink less .. exercise more .. lose weight .. get out on the bike more, whatever the weather? How many can honestly say that they will be able to keep it up for the whole year .... probably not many.

Want a New Years Resolution that is easy to keep, will make you feel better about yourself, and your contribution to others, will save you money & make the world a better place? Sounds too good to be true? Almost, but not quite ....

One of the best NY resolutions you can possibly make is to join a non-member to MAG this year (or join yourself if you are not a member, rejoin if you have recently lapsed, or ensure you maintain your own membership throughout the year if you are already a member !!!).

This resolution is dead easy to keep (just £27 will guarantee that), you will be positively contributing to the on-going maintenance of your chosen lifestyle, both for you and everyone who rides a bike, you are joining a union of 10,000 like minded souls, and best of all, you will be able to save money by taking advantage of the many benefits and deals only available to MAG members.

You can join MAG at:

Join (or renew) by Direct Debit, then you'll never again have to remember to renew as it will be done automatically for you: http://www.mag-uk.org/files/Renewal_DD-1_page.pdf.

Membership fees are: Single Membership - £27.00; Joint Membership (two adults) - £40.50; Family Membership - either single or joint adult membership with children added to the membership at £5.00 per child. New members between the ages of 16 and 25 years old receive a £5 discount on first year of MAG membership.

Make this one New Years Resolution you will honestly say you have been able to keep ... Don't put it off ... Join (or rejoin) MAG now !!!

3) Changes to Moped and Motorcycle Training

Earlier this year there was a consultation by the government into proposed changes to the motorcycle training and testing regime. The consultation ran from 30th December 2016 to 17th February 2017, and a good many of you responded to the consultation. The outcome was published recently (19th December 2017) - see www.gov.uk/government/consultations/improving-moped-and-motorcycle-training for further details.

The most significant points are:

  1. You will be required to do a theory test before doing a CBT (a number of highway code type questions have always formed a part of the CBT anyway)
  2. The CBT content will be revised
  3. Getting 6 points on a CBT means the certificate will be cancelled
  4. Taking a CBT on an automatic means you will only be able to ride an automatic
  5. There will be a training course for people upgrading from licence category A2 to A, instead of having to take a 2nd test (this is something that MAG campaigned for at the time of the introduction of the previous changes, so this is very much a welcome development)
  6. Changes to instructor training
  7. Changing from paper to electronic administration of CBT certificates

The government has decided to take most of these forward as soon as it's legislative programme allows. Some proposals will need further consultation before they can progress and hence, a date for implmentation of these changes is yet to be set. However, the proposals are sensible and welcomed (unlike the last round of changes !!!). Watch this space for further updates.

4) MAG looks back at 2017: a year of action and progress

The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) Chair, Selina Lavender, says she is delighted by how much progress MAG has made in recent years. "MAG perhaps used to focus more on the 'fun' aspects like rallies and demonstrations but in more recent times it has become increasingly focussed on a professional dialogue. It looks like this change is delivering a lot more clout than we've had previously, which is very good news for MAG."

Selina believes that this professional approach, along with investment in political and industry relationships, is paying dividends. "Our political unit spends a great deal of time in meetings, and although that may not look as exciting as attending rallies or demos, the truth is we generate more of an impact by sitting inside the Home Office than we do by demonstrating outside it. That's why our presence on the Home Office Task Group, which has been set up to tackle moped-enabled crime, is so important. They've got the resources and we've got the specialist knowledge: it's a good combination."

MAG has also been effective at generating new activity around the country. MAG's team in the North West achieved a superb result by helping the restart of a motorcycle show at Blackpool's Winter Gardens. Meanwhile, in Northern Ireland, Regional Rep Martyn Boyd and his team had a membership surge and are busy getting ready for next year's Motorcycle Show in February 2018. Elsewhere, MAG Cumbria has recruited half the MPs in the entire region.

"We've also got much better at appearing in the media regarding biking issues. Down in the South East, Steve Mallett has become a bit of a star, with regular appearances on the BBC. Colin Brown is doing the same in the West Midlands - and that's all set to increase around the country next year. It's partly about how we share best practice these days and I was delighted with the training weekend we held in York in November. It's all about making sure we operate professionally without having to work everything out from scratch every time."

MAG has great expectations for 2018. "There's a lot to worry about, from illogical pollution charges through to the implications of Brexit for riders' rights. But that's why we're here - to fix problems. It's been a great team effort by staff and volunteers throughout 2017 and we're looking forward to building on this during 2018."

5) Post Christmas Auction

Our 14th Post Christmas Auction will be held on Wednesday 28th February 2018, at 20:00, at the Grey Horse, Kirkgate, and if previous years events are anything to go by, an event not to be missed. The idea is that you bring along all your unwanted Christmas presents, together with other stuff you no longer want, or have the room for, donate them to the branch, and we auction them off to the highest bidder.

The 2017 auction raised (with a little help from the raffle and a bit of rounding up) £510. This allowed us to split the proceeds nicely into 1/3's, with 2/3 (£340) being donated to the MAG Fighting Fund, with the remaining 1/3 (£170) charity donation being split between the following 4 worthy causes:

That was pretty staggering, especially as the bidding on a lot of items started at 50p. Of course, we want to try to beat that for 2018 !!. We know times are hard at the moment, but that's all the more reason to come down to the auction, grab a top bargain, and save yourselves considerable amounts of money. We are already accumulating auction items and we still have 3 months to collect even more !!!!.

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

Proceeds from the auction will again be split (2/3 to the MAG Fighting Fund, 1/3 to a charitable cause(s).

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) Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting

The Wakefield & District Motorcycle Action Group Branch AGM will be held in the Grey Horse, on Wednesday 10th January 2018, starting at 8:00pm (prompt). All members are invited to attend this special meeting, so please try to attend if you can. At this meeting there will be a review of the year, elections for the branch committee and the prize giving for our branch heroes. As this meeting is effectively a MAG political meeting, it carries with it a whopping 75 branch points for everyone who attends (a normal branch meeting only carries 5 points). As all the points are tallied at year end and go towards the branch heroes presentation, points really do mean prizes !!!! What better boost to your branch heroes tally for the new year !!!

In order to save costs (given the huge hike in postal charges), the Annual Wakefield MAG mailshot will be emailed to all eligible Members, i.e. current or recently expired MAG members with a WF postcode, to formally place notice for the meeting. Those members for whom we don't have valid email addresses, will be posted the letter. The meeting is also advertised in the events section on the main MAG website (www.mag-uk.org), on our own website, and in the latest edition of The Road magazine. If anyone has a preference for a mailed copy of the AGM mailshot, instead of an email, please let me know.

Last years AGM minutes are available Here.

N.B. Motions for the AGM should be submitted the week before the AGM (Wednesday 3rd January 2018).

7) December Social Meeting Report

Check out the event report Here

8) January Social Event (Pool Tournament)

Our January social event, to be held on Wednesday 31st January, will be a pool tournament. The Grey Horse is no stranger to pool matches, as the pub hosts two pool teams. However, as the 'season' doesn't start again until February, genial landlord Dougie, has kindly offered us his pool table for our January Social Event. So, come along and show off your pool skills on Wednesday 31st January, starting at 20:30. Hope to see you there.

9) The Daft Way Up MAG Fundraiser

Planning for the Daft Way Up MAG Fundraiser event is continuing and participants are being asked to secure their places with a deposit of £25 (see the event Facebook page for details: https://www.facebook.com/events/711034009087042/). This will get you an event T shirt, and including in the booking of accomodation / camp sites en-route, maps / directions and everything else that goes with the event organisation and logistics.

Daft Way Up Route Map

We now have 3 Wakefield MAG participants (Steve, Clare and Pete - who is restoring his old Triumph Tiger Cub in preparation), so we are well on the way with our aim of fielding a Wakefield MAG 'team' for the event. If you are thinking of going, but the lack of a small inappropriate machine is holding you back, there is a possibility of a loan of a Mash 125cc bike (www.mashmotorcycles.co.uk/model/black-7/black-7-125cc) for the week. This is being offered courtesy of Mash Motorcycles UK, through their Wakefield Dealership, Not Your Average Bikes (http://notyouraveragebikes.com/) - and a massive Thank You to Clare Ellam for brokering the deal !! If you are interested, please get in touch with Wakefield Rep Steve. Needless to say, there are conditions attached - you will be required to participate in publicity (both for Mash motorcycles and Not Your Average Bikes), take photos en-route and write a blog / article covering the bikes exploits on the journey. You must also fulfill all the event criteria (be a full MAG member of some standing, raise sponsorship via the Crowdfunding page for MAG and Macmillan Nurses (https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/mag-daft-way-up) and self-fund the trip). N.B. The potential option of a loan bike is being offered to Wakefield MAG members first and foremost, and if there are no takers from our own ranks, the net will be cast further afield. So, if you are serious about the event, let Steve know sooner rather than later as this offer will quickly get taken up.

Background to the event (if you didn't already know):

The original idea stemmed from a talk organised by Leeds MAG at Squires where Nathan Millward regailed tales of his journey from Sydney to the UK on a Honda postie bike (110cc of raw power!). Leeds MAG's Richard 'Manny' Manton and Dave Nash basically decided that we needed to do a 'daft' adventure too. A brief outline of Lands End to John O Groats, setting off on April 1st (when else?) on inappropriate motorcycles was hatched and if we were doing it, let's raise some money for MAG while we're at it. A letter into the Road from Manny floated the idea a couple of months ago and it seems that there's quite a few lunatics in the MAG family quite up for the challenge.

Any MAG member can join us as long as they are riding a small bike that is totally inappropriate and unsuitable to ride the length of the British isles on, and are also willing to get sponsored in aid of MAG to do it. We're all self funding the trip (I'm looking at it as a masochistic holiday - April in the Highlands on a 7 BHP scooter .... if that's not masochistic, I don't know what is !!!). We will be traveling on A and B roads (so learner friendly), and the idea is to keep costs to a minimum throughout (think camping and Youth Hostel type accommodation) and the trip should take one week.

The following journey legs have been earmarked:

  1. Day 1: Sunday April 1st - Lands End to Barnstaple
  2. Day 2: Monday April 2nd - Barnstaple to Gloucester
  3. Day 3: Tuesday April 3rd - Gloucester to Glossop
  4. Day 4: Wednesday April 4th - Glossop to Alston
  5. Day 5: Thursday April 5th - Alston to Kinross
  6. Day 6: Friday April 6th - Kinross to Inverness
  7. Day 7: Saturday April 7th - Inverness to John O Groats

This means approximately 150 mile days (making a total of just over 1,000 miles), all on A and B roads, so totally learner friendly. We are planning to get the bikes couriered down to Lands End and back from John O Groats, which, filling a large van / truck with small bikes will mean it's a cheap way to get to, and back from, the start and end points (of course, you can also ride there and back from God's own County, if you really want to do the trip twice ;-)

There is a Facebook event page to register your interest: https://www.facebook.com/events/711034009087042/

There is also a Crowdfunding page you can use to get / pledge sponsorship: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/mag-daft-way-up. The funds raised will be split with 50% for the MAG Fighting Fund and 50% to the Macmillan Nurses Charity. The reasoning behind this is that not everyone is into bikes (ridiculous I know) and it'll hopefully encourage non-bikers to support the madness. Also, unfortunately, most people have been affected by cancer in some way, whether personally or via family or friends and the Macmillan Nurses are simply awesome. All participants will pool the money raised and we'll make the donation at next years AGC.

Unsuitable steeds for the trip so far include an AJS Modena Twist and Go 125cc Scooter (7.1 BHP, top speed of 55 MPH and a 4.6 litre fuel tank, so pretty unsuitable), 125cc Suzuki VanVan (12 BHP and 60MPH top speed), several Honda Innova's, Honda C90's, a Velocette LE, BSA Bantam and a Triumph Tiger Cub (several of which are currently being renovated / restored in preparation for the trip).

It would be great to have a sizeable Wakefield MAG team on the trip, so book the week out, grab yourself a totally unsuitable steed, get yourself sponsored and come and join in the inappropriate adventure. If you can't join us, follow our progress on the Daft Way Up Facebook page and sponsor us on the Crowdfunding page. We'll also be taking sponsorship at the Wednesday meetings.

Below is a picture of Keithy Bear (Leeds MAG Stalwart), Steve Travis (Wakefield Rep) and Manny (Leeds and Yorkshire Rep) on their inappropriate steeds:
Keithy Bear, Steve Travis (Wakefield Rep) and Manny (Leeds and Yorkshire Rep) on their inappropriate bikes

See you at Lands End Visitor Centre at 9am on Sunday 1st April 2018, either to wave us off or with your inappropriate motorcycle, tent, sleeping bag and wallet.

10) Forthcoming Events (for January and beyond)

Wednesday 3rd January 2018 - First Wakefield MAG meeting of 2018

The First Wakefield MAG meeting of 2018 (normal time of 20:30 in the back room of the Grey Horse). Also the deadline for any motions to be presented for the Wakefield MAG Annual General Meeting - See Above.

Wednesday 10th January 2018 - Wakefield MAG AGM

See Above.

Review of 2017, Officers Reports, Election of Branch Officers for 2018, plans for the forthcoming year & Presentation to our Branch Heroes of 2017. Current MAG Membership Card required to vote. 19:30 for a prompt 20:00 start in the Grey Horse, Kirkgate, Wakefield, WF1 4EJ.

Wednesday 31st January 2018 - January Social Event (Pool Tournament)

See Above.

Sunday 11th February 2018 - Leeds MAG Fred Hill Run

Meeting from 10am at Squires Cafe LS25 5LX to leave at 11am. For those wishing to travel in from Wakefield, you can meet at Redbeck Cafe on Doncaster Road, where we will be leaving at 10:00am, for the ride over to Squires to join up with the rest of the run participants. 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.

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.

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.

Wednesday 28th February 2018 - Wakefield MAG 14th Post Christmas Auction

See Above.

Our 14th Post Christmas Auction will be held on Wednesday 28th February 2018, at 20:00, at the Grey Horse, Kirkgate, and if previous years events are anything to go by, an event not to be missed. The idea is that you bring along all your unwanted Christmas presents, together with other stuff you no longer want, or have the room for, donate them to the branch, and we auction them off to the highest bidder. The auctions are always hugely entertaining and there are always some real quality items donated, and hence, some real bargains to be had. Proceeds from the auction will again be split (2/3 to the MAG Fighting Fund, 1/3 to a charitable cause(s). Be there early, with viewing from 19:00 onwards, and the auction starting at 20:00 prompt (and don't forget to bring your unwanted Christmas pressies !!!).

Sunday 25th March 2018 - Wakefield Hospice 10K Race


Sunday 1st April 2018 - Saturday 7th April 2018 - The Daft Way Up MAG Fundraiser

See Above.

Friday 4th May - Sunday 6th May 2018 - Into the Valley (ITV) Rally


Friday 15th June - Sunday 17th June 2018 - Farmyard Party (FYP) Rally


Friday 3rd August - Sunday 5th August 2018 - 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.