Isle of Wight Scurry - 23rd to 27th September
photo to see a larger picture in a slide show.)
Photos provided by various members.
Terry and Dylis, along with Jean and myself headed for Lymington and
the ferry, on Friday the 22nd. On the way Jean and I collected
Ian Young from his home in Berkeley. In 2016 Ian had caught three
trains to get to Lymington and it had taken him all day, so we offered
him a lift home as he didn't live very far off our route home. This
year I agreed to take him both ways as he doesn't ride a bike any more
and had to surrender his driving licence. We made the 4pm ferry and
were at the Brighstone holiday centre by 5.30pm. Terry and Dylis were
already there as we settled into our cabin. The weather looked to be
very good with the view from our cabin in the first of the following photos. Vic and
Laura Blake's 1938 Matchless outfit is seen in the foreground - all sorted
after up-ending itself on the 2016 Saundersfoot weekend.
The evening consisted of a get together during an excellent
meal put on by the holiday centre.
We all assembled in the car park, with Terry riding his side valve Beardmore, whilst Jean and I were on
our Indian. The weather looked
very good for the day as we set off for St Thomas's square in the
centre of Newport where we were to display our bikes for the public to
look at. The County Press trophy was due to be presented at 1pm, so we
wandered the shops and cafes whilst waiting.
2pm arrived and we were scheduled to leave Newport and set off towards the west for a
visit to Calbourne Mill. Not sure how we managed it, but we were the
first to arrive and parked up in the bottom yard. Sadly the mill was
not due to grind any grain during our visit, so it was a case of
looking around the agricultural implement collection, visit the cafe
and watch all the birds - ducks, doves, peacocks etc.
After a few pleasant hours we headed back to base. Jean and I had
arranged to head to the Chinese restaurant in Freshwater with Vic and
Laura Blake for an evening feed.
Another lovely day as we assembled in the car park for the 'Scurry'.
The route took us out to the East of the island on a variety of roads.
Terry, on the Beardmore was following us, until I stalled the Indian on
a right turn off a fast moving main road. As I was pushing into the
side road Terry shot past as I kicked the Indian into life. Jean
confirmed that it was Terry and that he was now in front of us. It
long before we were at the Chequers Inn for a super Sunday lunch and
Terry wasn't there - we'd seen the wrong yellow jacket overtake us.
Terry eventually arrived in the recovery van and
reckoned that the Beardmore had seized on one of the hills, not sure
why. Anyway, after a sumptuous lunch our
afternoon ride was a real pleasure as we rode the Military road back to
base. The Military road was built as part of the defence network in
1860 and remained a private road for 70 years - nowadays it affords one
of the nicest motorcycle roads that I have ever ridden, if only it was
re-surfaced properly. There are some lovely sweeping bends and longish
straights along it's
11 mile length. All with super visibility.
The evening consisted of a buffet in the site restaurant - just a bit
too much food, I found, after having a full breakfast and a huge Sunday
The day dawned grey and overcast and as Terry's bike was out of action
we opted for using our van so that we could all take part. The morning
run was to the Freshwater independent Lifeboat station that the Isle of
Wight section had adopted as their charity. This was not an RNLI
lifeboat station and it survived on charitable donations alone.
Interestingly the 'Warwickshire Section of the VMCC' were on
the list of donors. We spent a couple of relaxing hours looking out
over a very grey sea and watching some surfers enjoying themselves.
From the Lifeboat station we headed north to fort Victoria with a stop
on the way for a buffet lunch at the Boathouse cafe. We were, again,
one of the first to arrive and found a smashing table in the
conservatory that was overlooking the solent. The buffet lunch was
stupendous and the cafe did us proud, I must say. I think that we were
there chilling out for some three hours before we decided to move on.
We gave the fort a miss and headed back to the holiday centre, where it
was a case of put your feet up for the evening. One of the most
relaxing days that I'd had for a long time.
This turned out to be the real 'icing on the cake' day - a visit to the
Isle of Wight Steam railway. We had all bought raffle tickets and the
lucky winner, Richard Martin from the Chiltern section, won a ride on the locomotive footplate - wasn't me,
sniff, sniff. Anyway, us four, again, used our van to get to the steam railway
and the weather looked to be a lot better than the day before as we
arrived at Havenstreet.
We boarded our train for the ride to Smallbrook Junction and as the
engine was swapping ends for the return journey, it passed our
compartment and I missed a photo opportunity. However, Vic leaned out
of the carriage window and in his best posh voice shouted to the engine that
had stopped some ten feet further on, "I say, could you reverse please,
so that we can take some photos". The driver duly did as asked, and I
got the following out of our carriage window.
The train eventually left Smallbrook and headed back to Havenstreet and on to
Wooton, before returning to Havenstreet for us to disembark. An hour
of good fun, for sure. Terry and I then opted for one of the guided
tours of the workshop, before moving on to the fairly new 'Train
Story' exhibition, which had a variety of carriages and wagons on
Afterwards, whilst sitting outside the cafe with a nice coffee I was asked if I
could take a photograph of a 1947 KSS Velocette that had been in the
same family for years and was being ridden by Dan Anstiss, the third
generation to ride the bike. It seems that Dan's grandparents did much
of their courting using the bike in the mid 50's. It was decided that a
photo with the steam engine in the background would be nice, so the
bike was pushed up onto the platform and put into it's pose as we
waited for the train to return from Smallbrook. The photos weren't too
bad. Job done.
The evening was spent in the restaurant on site with a plentiful
buffet being provided. Trophies were presented and the results of
the 'bike I'd like to take home' vote resulted in loads getting only
one vote, our Indian included. There were about six bikes that had two votes,
but the clear winner, with three votes, was Terry's Beardmore.
The following day, and it was a case of catching the
10am ferry and taking Ian home to Berkeley, before crossing the bridge and
getting home ourselves. I feel that the Isle of Wight section have the
event about right, no pressure at all, and an enjoyable four days in
good company, which was a nice way to round off the riding season - if
you've never been to the Isle of Wight, come along to the Scurry next year.