Weymouth Week 11th to 18th May 2013
(Click the photo to see a larger picture in a slide show.)

Terry and Dilys Hopes, Bruce and Diane Grant, Rob Jones, Alun and Steph Williams, plus Jean and I, had all entered this event. This year we were also joined by Vince and Angela Chivers aboard their Vincent and Howard and Carol Jayne. As it happened Howard was unable to ride his Honda 400/4 due to back problems. The weather promised to be a bit iffy and the forecast was changeable all week but we managed not to get caught by the rain too much. Thanks to Diane and Terry for some of the photos.

Saturday 11th
The day of arrival and Terry and Dilys were already on site from the day before. Everyone had camper vans apart from Howard and Carol and us who had rented a cottage for the week.

After settling in we all retired to the Victoria Inn for an evening meal. Afterwards we assembled in the large Marquee for the evening.

Sunday 12th - The 46th Weymouth run
Dilys was suffering from some bad sciatica so opted not to ride pillion at all during the week. The rest of us headed into Weymouth for the start on the front at the Pavilion car park. From the sky it looked as if rain was on it's way, as we set off in convoy into Weymouth. On arrival at the start it was pointed out to me that the Indian fuel tank was leaking at the rear. So, I quickly decided to take the bike back to the campsite and bring the Morini instead. Just as well, I suppose, as on the way back the screw-in front cylinder priming tap decided to shoot itself off into the undergrowth on the bypass. Where it went I have no idea and I didn't have time to stop and look - so it was press on to the campsite of one and a bit cylinders. Morini collected and I was soon back at the start. The rain then started but it was a constant drip drip and not a downpour. Consequently, cameras never came out. We'd all decided that the evening run for Fish and Chips out on Portland Bill was going to be a non-starter, as the weather was a touch lousy, so we found a fish and chippy in Weymouth and had ours just after the run and before the prize giving. Terry managed to collect the Post Vintage trophy.  

Monday 13th - Ride the Jurassic Coast
The weather was dry and overcast for most of the day and it remained that way for the rest of the week so we were lucky. Today the run was along the coast road to Charmouth for coffee, then on to Seaton and Sidmouth for lunch at Bicton Park. Certainly the coast road between Abbotsbury and Bridport has some magnificent views of the coast and is well worth using. Charmouth coffee stop photos:

We then headed on towards Seaton and Sidmouth. Bruce had suggested that we had a look at the trams in Seaton, so took a small detour to see them. Just as well that we stopped, as Bruce's Honda decided that the battery was going to give up the ghost. So, we swapped the battery with the one on the Morini, as the Morini did not need a battery to run - clever Italians! Job done and we were on our way again after deciding that the Honda charging system was at fault.

The lunch stop was at Bicton Park, which had some beautiful manicured gardens. Apart from the plants and trees etc there was also a small museum and the possibility of a 25 minute train ride around the site. We did both after eating.

We had to do another battery swap on the way back to camp - luckily just after we'd negotiated Lyme Regis, which is a nightmare to get through. Back at camp and Bruce proceeded to dismantle the charging system in the hope of finding the problem but nothing showed up. That's sod's law!

The evening was spent in the marquee where we all had a go at the quiz. We tied for third place and the tie breaker question was how many active volcanoes are on our planet. I plumped for 24 and Gill, on the other team, went for 15. We won because we were the nearest - seems that there is around 1500, wow. The prize was a nice tin of shortbread biscuits which we soon saw off.

Tuesday 14th - North through Blackmore Vale to Shaftesbury
This morning showed that the charging system on the Honda seemed to be working again - so, fingers crossed, we set off for the first stop of the day at the Hambro Arms in Milton Abbas. Mind you the refreshments were a touch expensive there - 2.50 for a tea in a polystyrene cup.

On to Shaftesbury for lunch in the Mitre Arms.

The return back to camp had a coffee stop at the Halsey Arms in Pulham. This is where the Dorset section hold their meetings and apart from the coffee there was also cream teas etc available. lush they were too.

The evening entertainment in the marquee was provided by Nick Crump, who reckoned that you could put a mouthpiece on anything and play a tune. He demonstrated various objects from a simple piece of tube with a funnel on the end to an Alphorn. The finale was a toilet pan with a long pipe attached, whilst the toilet lid acted as a damper. It was all quite entertaining, for sure.

Wednesday 15th - Across the Somerset Border to Perrys Cider Farm
The Honda charging system was still behaving itself, so Bruce reconnected the stop light switch and decided to use the electric start and indicators all day.
We set off in convoy with Bruce leading, just in case he had any more problems. The first stop was at Mangerton Mill, which we eventually found after getting around a road closed situation:

A picnic lunch was taken at the Perry Cider farm.

The afternoon run back resulted in a forced stop to allow a herd of sheep to pass in the opposite direction.

The evening run was to Helmet City in West Bay, near Bridport. We also had the opportunity to partake of some really good fish and chips as well as free coffee in Helmet City, the local bike shop. What a real pleasure it was to ride the coast road again that evening.

Thursday 16th - Visit Bovington Tank Museum

The weather still remained dry and all bikes were running fine, although Alun Williams had a flooding problem with one of the carbs on his BMW, which he and John Mockett managed to fix. The morning coffee stop was at Badgers Brewery in Blandford Forum.

On to Bovington Tank Museum for lunch and a good look around the museum.

During the Museum visit it bucketed down, but the sun was peeping through when we came out. We decided to retrace our steps a mile or so and visit 'Clouds Hill', the home of Lawrence of Arabia. It was a small cottage, two rooms down and two up.

Whilst we were in the cottage looking around the weather decided to bucket down again. By the time we left the sun was out - talk about lucky. The run back to camp was only 20 miles.
That evening there was a hog roast at 6pm - good it was, I must say. Then at 8pm Mike Chipperfield gave a talk on some reminiscences from his time as a police officer in the Metropolitan Police in Limehouse, London.

Friday 17th - Around the Isle of Purbeck
Due to Dilys' sciatica, Terry decided to head home to get to a doctors appointment - a wise move as it happened. So, the last day, and the weather threatened to be pretty poor today, but as it happened it was just rather cold with no rain at all. We set off on the first leg which was to Lulworth Cove for a coffee Stop.

On then to Swanage for lunch, where we managed to get split up. Bruce and Di ate in the White Swan whilst the rest of us ate in the White Horse. By the time we arrived at the Galton Garden Centre which was the afternoon coffee stop it was spitting with rain, but still we were lucky that it didn't come to anything. The sky looked very dark when we arrived back at the site. All the bikes were loaded up in readiness for the trip home the following day.
Evening entertainment in the marquee was provided by The Loose Connections who played 50's and 60's music. They were good and the evening was only marred by the lady in the site reception who said that she had received complaints so switched the marquee power off at 10pm. It was eventually switched back on and after a few minutes it was off again. That happened on and off for nearly an hour - seems we were not supposed to enjoy ourselves - according to the campsite receptionist. But we did our best.

Saturday 18th - Home
The trip home was dry but the roads were hectic and as we sat in a traffic queue listening to the traffic report, I found it amusing that Chris Evans should add 'Who on earth would want to go anywhere on a Bank Holiday?' Gosh, he was right. The highlight was on reaching the Avon bridge we caught up with a Vee twin JAP engined Morgan that was batting along at 60+. Fabulous sight and sound.