Reports of Section Runs and Meetings for 2021

Reports are listed in reverse order i.e. newest first. At the start of a New Year they will be removed to the page called the 'previous year' on the Lounge drop down button above.
the photos use a slide show type of presentation, just click any photo to start there.

17th-20th September - Isle of Wight Scurry
Two bikes represented the section at this event on the Isle of Wight - Jean and I took our Nimbus and Rob J his 1959 Velocette MAC. We were staying at the Orchards campsite and on arrival a group had congregated for an evening ride. Jean and I had taken Ian Young with us. The weather looked good but we decided not to ride, so Ian, Rob and ourselves piled into my van and headed off for the Horse & Groom pub for a meal. All those that had gone on the ride were already there by the time that we arrived. Saturday dawned and again the weather looked ok as we rode into Newport for the usual display of bikes in St Thomas's square. There was something like 50 odd bikes but there were so many substitutes, that I gave up trying to decide what was what and just took photos.

The evening saw us eat from the take away on the campsite. Sunday again dawned dry and looked promising. Jean and I followed Rob, as I couldn't fit a roller route to the Nimbus. The route took us all over the Island and on a variety of roads, but by the time we reached the lunch stop in Whitwell, we were feeling pretty tatered. Especially after a few close calls with the Nimbus, and a three-speed gearbox that had four neutrals in it.

Anyway, after downing our Sunday lunches, Jean and I decided to ride back to camp via the Military road, whilst Rob opted to follow the route sheet. If you ever go to the Island, you really should ride the Military Road - it's beautifully surfaced and is 15+ miles of real joy on a motorcycle. The road runs from Niton to Freshwater along the coast and has to be one of the best rides ever. The Nimbus batted along at a steady 45-50 and ran like a watch. The following photo, taken by our Rob, is of his Velo overlooking Freshwater bay on the Military road.

The evening saw us all head to the Six Bells pub in Carisbrooke for an evening buffet and to say our goodbyes. The trip home was uneventful, whilst Rob stayed on for another two days, as there was a section ride out on the Tuseday evening - but please don't ask how he missed the 11am ferry on Wednesday morning. He transferred to the 12 noon ferry that then broke down - so it was then the 1pm ferry - with lots of hope. A good weekend, for sure.

12th September - Vale of Glamorgan event
The weather forecast was giving it dry but overcast for the Vale of Glamorgan Road Event. There were twenty-three riders in total. Unfortunately, there were no Veterans entered but all other classes had entries including three in the Post Vintage. 

The honour of first machine away was given to Jim and Joyce Codd in their very nice Triumph NSD and Gloria sidecar which was originally supplied together back in 1929. The original logbook reads ‘bicycle and sidecar’. They were followed by David Jones on his immaculate 1929 Ariel F which had been discovered in a garden of the village to which it was first dispatched. Morgan Thomas was next away on his 1929 unrestored Velocette KSS. Other machines from the major manufacturers of the British motorcycle factories followed: - AJS, BSA, Norton, Triumph and Velocette, as well as foreign machines from Honda, Yamaha and Moto Guzzi, plus three wheelers in the shape of a 1933 Morgan Family, two Lomaxes and a Yamaha trials outfit.
The morning route headed westward and meandered through narrow lanes and pretty villages before turning east along the main road to Cowbridge.

Here a selection of entries was photographed heading along the main street. Turning left at the traffic lights they headed to the first checkpoint. Unfortunately, some missed the turning and added a few more miles to their route. Also, in the lanes near St Hilary, one Triumph suffered electrical problems but the rider managed to find his way back to the start. Two others also returned having got completely lost. More lanes followed with views of the sea, lovely churches and spectacular houses including one amazing manor house with Tudor origins which was on sale for £2.5 million.

Lunch was taken at the Horseshoe Inn, Marcross, and after being suitably refreshed everyone set off again. The afternoon route retraced a little of the road to lunch, before turning off to Llantwit Major. The riders headed through the town past the old castle, St Illtud’s Church, the old market square and Town Hall. Next, the route headed out into the countryside of the Vale, skirting RAF St Athan to the village of Llancarfan, well known for its ford.

This is another good place for photographs. This time the water was low, and everyone made their way through without mishap. One Norton rider allowed his wife, Lesley, to walk across the small footbridge so she wouldn’t get her feet wet as he rode through the ford. Who says gallantry is dead, Stuart? Crossing the completed road works at Five Mile Lane the riders headed towards Dyffryn, passing entrances to the National Trust Dyffryn Gardens and the Tinkinswood Burial Chamber on their left. Reaching the A48 it was a left turn, soon followed by a right which led to Peterston super Ely and the afternoon checkpoint. Immediately after the checkpoint it was a left turn along the last lane to Groesfaen. Here the riders took the main road which headed back to the finish. Many thanks to the riders and passengers who entered. Also, to Bruce for the Concours judging.

31st July/1st August - Val Newton’s Riding Weekend
The Weekend was based at Llandrindod Wells and was well attended with members from the local VMCC Sections and others from Derbyshire, Bristol, South Hants and Devon. Our section was represented by Rob J on his Honda 400/4 and John F on his BSA A10. The weather on Saturday was a bit overcast but the rain held off. The route was approximately 110 miles and signing on was at the lakeside in Llandrindod. There were 24 entries, made up of solos, sidecars and Lomax three wheelers. Rob and John were joined by Angelo Conti from Carmarthen on his Triumph at the 10.30 start.

We cut across country to Newbridge on Wye and headed up the A470 before turning off through the narrow lanes to Elan Village and a tea stop at the Elan Valley visitors centre. Riding on, we took the mountain road to Aberystwyth enjoying the views as we went. Our lunch stop was at the Vale of Rheidol Railway station at Devil’s Bridge where we caught up with some of the others for a chat.

Next the road took us to the A44 and a left turn northwards to Nant Y Moch reservoir. This road was virtually traffic free and again the views were spectacular. We stopped at the reservoir for a photograph and were passed by Andy and Dai from the West South Wales Section.

We caught up with them at the pub in Talybont. From here it was main road all the way back and we were able to enjoy the ride at a quicker pace.

Sunday’s route was shorter as the finish was to be at Llandovery. John and Angelo had gone home so Rob rode with Keith from Bristol and some of his friends, all of whom we have met at the Cornwall Riding Week. The route took us on the back roads over the hills to Hundred House before swinging down to Aberedw and the back road to Builth Wells. This is a delightful road for motorcycles. From Builth we took the main road to Llanwrtyd Wells and the Neuadd Hotel for lunch. Lunch over, we took the narrow road signposted to Abergwesyn as Val had planned for us to ascend the bends known as The Devil’s Staircase. This road was extensively used in pre and post war days as a section for the International Six Days Trial. The road is metalled and easy to ride and the scenery is very good. The Devil’s Staircase is a series of hairpin bends on a 1 in 4 road - and is well worth doing. Descending the other side of the mountain we took the left fork and rode around Llyn Brianne again on a road which afforded us with some lovely views. It was interesting to notice that the water levels in all the dams we passed were lower than normal.

After a quick stop at the view point, we continued on to Llandovery and then a quick spurt along the main road to the finish of the weekend at the Owls Nest cafe. Val did us proud with her choices of routes as both days produced a variety of roads, both slow and quick and views that most would agree that were quite spectacular.

Rob was due to return home on the Monday but was persuaded by Keith to join him and his friends for another day of riding. They wanted a scenic and coastal ride so after a discussion in Keith’s motorhome a route was worked out. Using knowledge of past roads from the Dragon Tour and the road used two years ago on the Bala Trip an all day jaunt was planned. At 10 we left Disserth Campsite and headed to Newbridge on Wye and up the A470 before turning right in Rhayader on the B4518. This is a delightful hilly and windy road to Llanidloes where we continued on taking the scenic route around the Llyn Clewedog Reservoir.

We re-joined the B road and turned left on a back road to Dylife, Forge and Machynlleth. Another road, with bends, which climbs before cresting a hill with unbelievable views across Machynlleth to the mountains in the north. Crossing the river, we continued on via the coast at Aberdovey and had lunch in Tywyn. Hugging the coast at Tonfannau we headed north to Fairbourne with views across the bay to the Lleyn Peninsula in the distance and also Barmouth nearby. We stopped on the sea wall at Fairboune in the sunshine (having decided not to pay the £5 carpark fee per bike!) and watched the narrow gauge train chug by. From here we headed towards Dolgellau picking up the A470 through some majestic mountain roads before diverting back along the B4518 to Llanidloes and then the A470 back to camp at Disserth by 5 o’clock. A bit of a long day with 145 miles but the bikes performed faultlessly and the views more than made up for the time in the saddle.

12th July - Follow the Velo run
Eight members met at Caerphilly for the Follow the Velo Run. The group consisted of Vince C, John H and Wayne B on Hondas, Paul D, Bob R and Andy W on Triumphs, Ken B on a BSA and Rob J,  obviously on a Velo which needed the customary VPS(Velo Push Start) to get it going. The planned route took us along the A470 before turning off a Pontypridd and heading to Ynysybwl and Llanwonno. It had been misty but now the rain began and spoiled the views we would have had of the mountains. We lost Vince and Paul about here. The main road from the Rhondda took us over the mountain to the Dare Valley Country Park for a tea stop. Continuing up through Aberdare we took the country road from Penderyn to Cwm Cadlan before turning south towards Merthyr. At Cefn Coed we took the back road to Talybont, stopping at The Old Barn for lunch. Due to the weather we decided to head home after lunch.


2nd July
Recently, I was asked to take my '59 Triumph for some more filming for the Antiques Road Show - and I had a new passenger. Filmed at Dyffryn Gardens for showing at some time in the future.


2nd-9th July - Rob's adventures in Scarborough
It all started with a request from Gareth Thomas of the Swansea Section. “My friend, Anthony and I are thinking of doing our own Scarborough week, do you have any of the old routes?” Count me in, was my reply, and I started looking for routes. Unfortunately I couldn’t find any but I knew someone who had his. When I rang Angelo Conti of the West South Wales Section he emailed me the routes and also said that he and a few others would like to join in. So Rob Jones, South Wales, Gareth Thomas and Anthony Begley, Swansea, Angelo Conti and Norman Robinson, West South Wales and Derek Manders and Geoff Kitchen of Lincs Section headed north. The bikes being used were Hondas 400/4, CB250RS, CB250, 3 Velocettes, 2 Triumphs and a BSA C15. Overall the weather wasn’t too bad. There were some days of rain but Gareth and Ann, Anthony and Sue and myself went out in the car that Anthony had hired.

Our first ride on Friday 2nd July was an 80 mile round trip in Goathland, better known as Aidensfield from the Heartbeat TV series. The day was cloudy but dry and the run went well over familiar roads. One section of the route around Littleback involved two valleys with hills of 1 in 3. Aidensfield was quite busy but we managed to park up on the main street. I was in luck as the local shopkeeper allowed me to park right outside his shop which was the grocer’s shop in the series. The bikes caused quite a stir as people stopped to look at them. Lunch of a roll and tea was taken outside before we headed off. Our return took us over a gated Roman Road and onto the moors for a 15 mile scenic ride to Pickering. We stopped at Thornton le Dale for ice-cream before reaching the Arosa campsite at Seamer.

Sunday’s run was to the south east coast below Scarborough. We meandered through the edge of the Wolds stopping at the WWII memorial for 158 Squadron at Lisset. The memorial is of seven 8 feet tall steel airmen etched with the names of all 851 personnel who perished when with the squadron. From here we continued towards Bridlington and Farnborough Head lighthouse which was our lunch stop. The afternoon saw us riding through the Wolds and back to the seaside at Filey to enjoy an ice cream on the front before completing our 70 mile trip at camp.

Monday’s run was the Ultimate Hill Run taking in the famous Chimney at Rosedale. The route took us over the moors from Pickering and runs along the edge of the moors giving some lovely views. We stopped at the Café near Rosedale Abbey before tackling the 1 in 3 hill which does have some steep turns. Our run up was without trouble and we stopped at the carpark to enjoy the views. Next we continue into Farndale and on to the Feversham Arms at Church Houses for lunch. The afternoon continued with the route taking us up to Blakey Ridge, Westerdale and Castleton before looping through Littlebeck and Forge Valley to the campsite after a 100 mile ride.

Our next ride out was on the Thursday to Helmsley and Bransdale and was to be 95 miles. I do remember a run to Helmsley on one of my first Scarborough weeks but it was nowhere near this distance. Settling into the route I soon realised that this was not the same as I had done previously. The route took us out through the Vale of Pickering, heading east then north to Hovingham and a cup of tea. Suitably refreshed, from here to was on Helmsley where we parked in the main square. Parking was £1.75 for an hour but some local motorcyclists explained that by pressing the green button on the machine you got 20 minutes free and if you were staying in the square you returned to the meter and pressed green again. This is what we did. They even suggested a good bakery for our sandwich and sausage roll. Our route from Helmsley took us north towards Carlton and a 16 mile run over the moors to Gillamoor. Here we decided to ride up one side of Farndale to Church houses and back down the other side to Hutton Le Hole and a drinks stop before returning to camp after covering over 100 miles on a lovely sunny day.

Friday was our last day of riding and we chose the East Coast Run. This was a relatively short run of only 70 miles. Heading up Forge Valley and Silpho we made our way to Falling Foss for our usual mid morning tea stop. The café is in an old game keeper’s cottage and is surrounded by woods with a river and waterfall. We had to park the bikes in the car park and walk some 200 yards down a steep path. The river and Waterfall are idyllic. Our next stop was at Whitby. We crossed the swing bridge over the harbour and found somewhere to park and made our way along the harbourside to a restaurant where we had some lovely fish and chips. Retracing our route over the swing bridge we headed up the hill, coming out just by Whitby Abbey before turning south and heading to Fylingthorpe and Ravenscar. Soon we were heading through Forge Valley and the end of our final ride.Another good week riding in Scarborough with likeminded friends.


14th June
The second meeting of the year and, at last, there's somethng good to report - Bring a Bike night. The weather was really good for the 8 bikes and 18 members who turned out. It was a very pleasant evening and after Howard and Carol counted up all of the votes, the winner of the John Wells trophy was Rob Jones with his 1959 Velocette MAC.