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The Seventh Scarborough VMCC touring week 2009 by Terry Hopes
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VMCC runs/events are increasingly becoming weekend events, rather than the day runs of the past, this probably reflects the demographics of the club membership, with retired members making up an ever-greater percentage of the membership, and, with an increasing amount of leisure time available, it does allow us to indulge in our hobby of riding vintage motorcycles.
Lately there has been an increase in the number of vintage events of a longer duration of a week or more. The Scarborough bike week is one such event and as I now own a motorcycle more suited to this type of event, my other half and I, decided to enter on the Moto Guzzi.
Friday 26th June early morning, and on the road with our camper van and trailer. We made good progress, apart from the last twenty or so miles, when we encountered thick fog. Finally arriving at Olivers Mount mid afternoon, where the campsite was located.
Olivers Mount race circuit is a public park overlooking Scarborough, but only a mile or so from the town centre, which makes for an ideal location. However, its elevated location does mean that the weather can sometimes be somewhat inclement. Well it is Yorkshire.
Set up camp and became acquainted with, old friends from the Swansea and West Wales sections.
Later, a welcome and get together held in the camp marquee, with an introduction by Colin Bell. The organizers, Stan Bartle and team, gave a briefing of the week’s event followed by a light buffet.


Saturday
Signing on was required for each days run, normally from about nine a.m. for a non-competitive run. Start time was from 10.30 a.m. at your own discretion.

Today’s run was The Forest Run.
A run of about 85 miles through the scenic North Yorkshire Forests the weather was fine at the start, but got increasing murky as the day progressed, the rain and mist tending to obscure the views of the scenery.
Lunch was at the Baldersons Welcome Cafe, in the picture postcard village of Thornton-Le-Vale.
The afternoon run took us through the Dalby Forest with a tea break, at the Dalby Forest visitor centre, before returning to the campsite at Olivers Mount, to be greeted by Diane and Bruce Grant, who had arrived that afternoon.

In the evening, socialising and a film show, of the previous years run, was shown in the Marquee.



Sunday
Today’s run The Helmsley & Bilsdale of approximately 120 miles, through two of the most picturesque dales in the Moors.
Lunch was taken in the pretty village of Helmsley at one the many pubs and café’s, a motorcyclists mecca judging by the number of bikes parked up in the village square.
The town is a popular meeting place for motorcyclists as it is at the end of the B1257 road from Stokesley, which is a favourite with local bikers.
The return run along the B1257 was fifteen miles of sweeping bends & hills, to a viewpoint near Ingleby. The route continued along a series of minor roads with an abundance of steep hills and, hairpin bends, across the Moors stopping only take shelter from a torrential thunderstorm.
The tea stop in the village of Rosedale as a welcome relief. We returned to the campsite having negotiated the many-flooded roads.

Evening in the marquee - A free and easy night in the pub with no beer.



Monday
The Eden Camp Run, a shorter run today, only 84miles.
I travelled in convoy with Bruce on his Honda 400 with Diane riding pillion, my other half having decided to have a rest day, in order to recover feeling in her backside. A slight deviation from the route, made to visit a private museum in Thornton le Dale. Essentially, a garage restoring and trading in classic cars, never the less, a collection of cars and motorcycles were on display, albeit in a slightly chaotic manner, which gave it a certain charm, as did the entrance fee of one pound.
Eden camp at Maldon was a second world prisoner of war, now a museum, 29 of the huts have been converted, each depicting a different theme. The museum uses interactive technologies and forms of theming to educate the public. One of its buildings contains three manned torpedoes. Another of the buildings contains the NAFFI style café, where we had our lunch.
The return journey included tea break at Fimber café, the site of a former railway station, closed pre Beeching, and located in a wooded clearing, a pleasant half an hour or so was had, seated in the sunshine observing the wild life!



Tuesday
The Original Ultimate Hills Run.
Bright sunshine greeted us this morning, for a challenging run of over 100 miles through the Dales and Hills of North Yorkshire. Steep ascents and descents with multiple hairpin bends, took us past Rosedale Abbey, and on to the lunch stop.
The sixteenth century Lion Inn on Blakey Ridge, the highest pub on the North Yorkshire moors.
After an excellent lunch, the return trip was via more interesting roads, with a tea break at the North Yorkshire Railway engine sheds at Grosmont.

In the evening, in the marquee a film show and social get together.



Wednesday
The East Yorkshire Coast Run- down the coast visiting Filey, and then Flamborough, for refreshment and photo opportunities. At one, time famous for its “cobble boats” fishing. The 17th century Beacon Tower looks like an original lighthouse structure claimed to have been built in 1673.
The run continued through Bridlington and on to the lunch stop at the Seaways cafe, a bikers rendezvous apparently. The return trip was through the lanes and villages of this scenic part of Yorkshire.

This evening in the marquee was a free fish and chip supper supplied by a local fish and chip shop and conveyed in by car. Giant sized portions was the order of the day it seemed!



Thursday
Sheep Dodgers Run to Heartbeat Country. A fine day and a glorious run through the hills and dales of North Yorkshire. Our lunch stop destination, the village of Goathland, now better known as Aidensfield, the setting for the television series Heartbeat. The bikes were lined up alongside Scripps Garage, although you would be hard pressed, to find a garage mechanic. Mementos and souvenirs are the only purchases available.
Lunch in the Aidensfield Arms (Gothland Hotel) which was across the road, followed by one of Bruce’s five minute strolls, to the railway station.
The return trip by a scenic route, with a tea break in the pretty village Hutton Le Hole.

In the evening, in the marquee, a film show was shown of the weeks runs.



Friday
A run of 91miles in total, up the coast to lunch in Whitby, in one of Whitby's famous fish and chip restaurants, after parking the bikes in an area, reserved for us on the West Pier.
After an enjoyable lunch, and a stroll around the waterfront and town, we returned, after making a slight detour to visit, Robins Hood Bay.

Bruce and Diane were making a nostalgic return, to the scene of their triumphant finish, of their coast to coast walk.

A visit to the pub in which all who complete the walk are invited to sign a yearbook for posterity. Unfortunately, the yearbook for that particular year was not available!

Incidentally, BBC Two on Tuesday nights are currently showing a series of programmes of Wainwrights Walks, which features the Coast-to-Coast walk.


We returned to the campsite and were surprised to find that a lot of the entrants, had already departed for home. We, as had Bruce and Diane stayed the night, for a leisurely return drive on the Saturday.
An overnight stop was made at Stratford-upon-Avon racecourse, a short walk into the town to enjoy a meal in a Thai-restaurant overlooking the canal boat basin.

A very enjoyable weeks motorcycling, in one of the prettiest parts of the country, it will certainly be high on my list of things to do next year.

The popularity of the event can be judged by the fact, that the175 entry limit was oversubscribed.
Other events of a similar nature, that I certainly will be considering next year, is the Weymouth Week, the VMCC vintage week on the Isle of Man during Manx Grand Prix week, the Scottish and Irish rallies and possibly others.