What We Did 2022.
Ok That's all for 2022, Page now Archived. Watch out for reports on 2023 events.
Wednesday 14th December Christmas Meal.
A most rewarding night out with over 80 friends and their family from our Section’s Christmas Dinner and Cabaret held in the Winter Wonderland Suite at the National Motorcycle Museum. Thanks to all our Dinner Guests for their support of the event and Members not able to attend on the night for their support at all other Section events and activities during the course of the year.
Special thanks go to Committee colleagues Steve Fenton for the arduous task of squeezing £2 for a mandatory Raffle ticket from everyone entering our Club on Club Night and of his enthusiasm for providing imaginative Raffle prizes month in and out.
Andrew Walsh who has mastered the intricacies of the Internet to produce an up to the minute Website (midlandsvmcc.co.uk) which reports on our Section activities historic notes, plans for 2023 and proposed Ride Outs and Coach Trips.
To Treasurer John Surman with his no nonsense approach to keeping track of Section spending (by use of a Rubber Baton and Bright Lights) and his excellent bookkeeping. Last but certainly not least to Chairman Geoff Ansell who welcomes every new visitor to our Club each month, makes them feel really welcomed, comfortable and at ease then charges them £48 for a coach trip to Motor Museums throughout the UK – brilliant.
Thanks also to the tremendous team of 20 or so volunteer Maintenance Crew who have amazed the National Motorcycle Museum Family with the results of their efforts in polishing Nickel enhanced bikes, transporting machines to various shows (Stafford, NEC and Exel in London) then collecting and returning same and all done with great good humour. Richard Anderton for a constant supply of biscuit rewards after every maintenance shift, Dave Whitehead for his clever tracking system indicating which machines have been polished to sparkling brilliance and when. Jennie for putting the fear of God into her section of the Maintenance Crew who produce amazing results under her watchful eye and all those others who make up this amazing band of enthusiasts so highly praised by the NMM family.
Merry Christmas everyone
Bob Badland Midland Section Secretary
Boxing Day Run 2022
A better turnout than some of our summer runs, with 20+ riders and a few in cars to follow on to our final destination, The Dog at Nether Whitacre. Now under new management we were treated as old returning friends.
Bobs route from the Motorcycle museum was as ever just short enough for a cold and bright day and managed to include a 2ft deep ford, much to the pleasure of those on winter stored cleaned and polished bikes.
A quick bucket of soapy water and a rinse down on arriving home returned my machine to its faded glory
Sunday 9th October Jim Fellows Memorial Run
Jim Fellows and his wife Gill, always supplied Riders taking part on his named run with Coffee and Biscuits from their cottage in the village of Barston. This was always the starting point of the run until Jims demise in 2008.
Since then the start has been from the lay by on the Balsall Common to Knowle Road.
The Run ends at Umberslade Estate Farm:- Emma’s - Jim Fellow’s Granddaughter’s home where Jim’s two Sons, Chris and Tim and their Sister Sarah, will help Emma serve the Coffee and cakes– a real Family affair.
Things didn't start well (Brians Honda!) but after a delay Geoff and Brian went straight to the destination, while the rest of us followed Bob on a 32 mile marathon with 25 Drop Off stations making it an interesting Ride to arrive only 7 miles from Knowle (almost at the startingpoint) for the return journey!
Pictures from today including Max the dog (and his owner Rob), who mysteriously disappeared (from the convoy) sometime during the run.
There are loads of Photos below
Saturday 15th October Klondike Mill Steam Rally Run
As always we paid a visit to the twice yearly “Steam Up” at the Klondike Mill in Draycott in the Clay.
Damp early morning roads put off some attendees, but we still had 10 riders for Bob’s country lane
tour through Staffordshire villages, passing through Seckington and Walton on Trent en-route.
Club Night 19th October Connaught Motorcycles
Thanks are due to Serge for stepping in a short notice and providing us all with an interesting talk on his experiences owning a vintage Connaught Motorcycle.
His was one of the early 470cc two stoke models, capable of 55mph and used for local runs as well as a trip to the Isle of Man in 1982.
We understand that Connaught has been resurrected and are planning to manufacture again using a new breed of Villiers Vee twin engines to be manufactured both brands are owned by a company in Norfolk, who also made a Connaught sports car with a 2litre V10 (!) engine.
Breakfast Run XI Thursday 20th October
Weather forecast was set fair, but on the day it poured.
Still there were 7 foolhardy explorers who made it all the way from Meriden to the Narrow Boat Basin at Barton Under Needwood.
Couldn’t have got any wetter if they’d jumped in the canal.
Pictures to follow.
Sunday 13th November Remembrance Day Run.
Not many for this run just Bob and four others, any way we made our way from the cross in the centre of Meriden to Lichfield Cathedral.
All the roads around the Cathedral were blocked off for VIPs and Parades, but Bob, resourceful as ever managed to blag his way through the cordon and we were able to park right outside.
We listen to the bells and the church organ for a short while and then set of to Morrison’s for a warming Hot Chocolate as the weather was a bit misty and dank.
Wednesday 16th November Treasure Hunt.
Lots going on at Club Night this month
The Midlands Section is the Oldest in the VMCC being founded in 1948 and next year we celebrate our 75th Anniversary.
Four Past and Present Section Chairmen were on hand tonight in recognition of their service and as a precursor to the celebrations to be planned in 2023.
Graham Handley (Past President) celebrates his 80th Birthday this month and a fancy cake with an icing montage was presented with Slice for all distributed for a distraction whilst Bob gave the answers to the Treasure Hunt...
63 members of our section supported our zany annual Treasure Hunt throughout all 5 Halls of the National Motorcycle Museum last Wednesday evening.
The winning team members (Lynne & Dave Whitehead; Dave Parry, and Rob Peabody) were each presented with their expensive prizes of Sherlock Holmes Magnifying Glasses (at £1.50 each) and medallion mementos!
A great fun night in with all the usual horror questions Bob’s warped mind generates.
This year proved particularly trying with the winners only managing to score 17 points from a possible 30.
Here’s an example
Q:- What dyslexic bike belonged to the King?
(It’s an anagram of Elvis the king of Rock & Roll surprisingly not a lot of people got this one)
Thanks again for your support and good humour and all our thanks to Bob who put in significant time and effort in compiling the clues and taking photographic evidence of each and every answer, regardless of the personal risk and danger he endures as the answers are revealed.
Thursday 6th October Mystery Breakfast Run X
As the weather was fair we squeezed in an extra Mystery Elevenses Run Mark X.
Thirty miles, 80 minutes Riding Time with 23 Drop Off Stations, some lanes were familiar, many others not so much but all of them took us closer to yet another really nice riverside destination!
Raphael’s on the river at Evesham is a traditional Café with an extensive Menu or perhaps you just preferred just a cup of tea or mug of coffee.
Wednesday 21st September Club Night
We were looking forward to a visit from Central Wheel displaying their skills at Wheel Building; unfortunately due to ill health they have to postpone the event.
Instead we ran a film evening with some 50s Motorcyle Public Information shorts and the main feature
started at 20:00 starring John Surtees out Road Testing a number of old bikes.
The Third Draw for the "Cleaning Crew" was made Jenny Westwood and Dave Whitehead being the lucky winners of the Marco Pierre White Restaurant meal at the Manor Hotel or a Spa Day at the Windmill Hotel
As always Free Tea, Coffee, Soft Drinks and Biscuits were be available throughout the evening and free entry into the Museum where we were able to view the 800 plus British Machines on display.
Thursday 22nd September 2022 Mystery Elevenses Mark IX Run
Abandoned on the 8th inst., due to bad weather, this run took us to the Riverside Cafe at Bewdley
Thirty miles, 80 minutes Riding Time with 37 Drop Off Stations, some lanes were familiar, many others not so much but all of them took us closer to a really nice riverside destination.
This was a traditional Café with an extensive Menu. Six started the run but only 5 arrived at the final destination, as one had a works call and had to return part way through the ride. A great ride through lots of minor roads.
Sunday 25th September Tour From Birmingham
Destination for the annual “End of Season” longer tour was Broadway Tower in the Cotswolds. Numbers were down, but Bob had laid out a superb route there passing through Tanworth in Arden, Welford on Avon and Long Marston en-route.
Coffee and cakes at the Tower for some and a fine lunch for some at the nearby Snowshills Arms.
New member Robert came on his Honda 250-4 on which the redline starts at 18000 rmp!
Sunday 2nd October Pete Smith and David Wall Memorial Run
This year the run coincided with the Atherstone Show. Originally scheduled for the 18th September it was postponed due to the Queens Funeral and we decided to amalgamate both events.
Wednesday 21 st September McMillan Coffee Morning
A ride out to Allen House, Burton on Trent, for Coffee and Cakes to support fund raising for the Macmillan Cancer Charity.
At our visit to the VMCC Head Office, we viewed the amazing library, chatted to the Staff and enjoyed a slice of cake and mug of coffee (Lemon Drizzle cake particularly nice).
A peek in the Garage & Shop along with a chat with the 'Grand Fromage' Mario rounded off a pleasent morning
I rode my Velo back along the river Trent past it's former owners home Catton Hall.
Breakfast Run Thursday 25th August
Seven hardy souls turned up for a traditional transport café breakfast this morning, at the Pound Café, Liverage Hill nr Henley. I think we may all have got soaked on the way home.
19th August THANKS TO OUR VOLUNTEERS!
This week marks the third anniversary of our fantastic volunteers taking over looking after the museum collection.
Simon and James laid on a superb slap up lunch for all the Volunteers as a reward.
Thanks to their dedication and hard work the presentation of the bikes as never been higher!
Contact our volunteer coordinator Bob Badland if you want to become part of this brilliant crew. firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday 11th August Monster Breakfast Run to Atwell Wilson Motor Museum
We planned a visit to the Atwell-Wilson Motor Museum at Calne in Wiltshire by riding there.
It was an 80 mile trip on good roads and travelling at no more than 50mph (as Geoff’s Panther gets a bit lively above this speed) we were there comfortably by 11:00 to 11:30.
We met at the Harvester Steak House on the Stratford Road, Shirley B90 4EE at 08:30 bikes away at 09:15.
As it was an all day trip we found places to stop for eats and drinks on both legs.
A section of the Run went through the Cotswolds, which was most scenic.
As the Petrol was “very realistically priced” did you all take advantage and fill up before the return journey?
Club Night Weds 21st August ‘Kart Night’
Our ever popular, ‘Try a Race Kart’ Night.
This year we had two Rotax Max 125cc Karts courtesy of Dave and Andrew, and three vintage 100cc screamers from Tony.
As ever there was a mix of “cautious” and “ambitious” drivers but the night finished without incident, and a great time
was had by all.
Not many pictures, but a few short videos.
Wednesday 10th August Birmingham Science Museum (day)
A select band of 15 managed to organize a behind the scenes tour at The Birmingham Science Museums storage facility. This is where they keep all the artifacts that there is no space to display at Millennium Point, and holds 3 time as many items as there are on public display
Not open to the general public the access was obtained through our sections links with the national Motorcycle Museum and the Help for Heroes charity.
Thursday 8th July Breakfast Run
Our, now regular Thursday run this week was a roundabout route to Middleon Hall, Destination for recent Tiddler runs, but still a great place to go, for Coffee and Cakes.
Thanks to Steve Lambert for the Photos (and video).
Wednesday 10th August Fish and Chip Run (evening).
14 Riders joined Bob (in his car) along with Pete Mahony in his 3 wheeler Moto Guzzi and zoomed off to our 7th Mystery Chip Run.
This year we enjoyed a picturesque route to one of our local Market Towns - Atherstone.
We visited Tracy's Friendly Plaice, the best Chippie in the town.
Our Treasurer agreed to supplement the evenings Supper and so Riders only paid £5 a head for a monster portion of Fish and Chips with either Beans, Peas or Curry sauce!
We had a great evening out, good ride there and back.
Another successful Chip Run…
No pictures this time......unless you send me some
Thursday June 17th Coach trip to York.
Another early start for Geoff’s charabanc tour to York .There were 27 travellers on the coach and the drop off point was only a short walk to the National Railway Museum. The rest of the time travellers were free to explore around York itself and the weather was superb.
Geoff did a great job of organising everything including changing our entry time into the museum as arrival was a little early - just a shame he didn’t take his tools with him so he could have fixed the air conditioning on the coach.
Breakfast Ride Out 30th June
10 Members out and about today for a tortuous, and pleasurable route from Meriden to the Smithy Farm Shop Tea Rooms between Polesworth and Atherstone.
Wednesday 13th July Curry Night.
Our annual run to the Queens Head Meriden with 10 partaking. The run started from close by and it took us the best part of an hour to get to the rice and poppadums.
Thursday 14th July Breakfast Run.
Final destination this time was to Hatton Locks as always a good turn out, and a fine interesting route to get there.
Wednesday 21st July Gymkhana Night.
Thanks again are due to the Museum for allowing us to use the field for our Gymkhana Night. Geoff Ansell, brave as ever, brought his two aged Bantams for all and sundry to ride around the course.
This year we have a few pictures and some videos of riders on the course. If you entered there’s a good chance you’re in one of them. They're all fairly short.....about 2 mins each.
Breakfast Run Thursday 19th May
This morning’s run was to the Armouries at Stratford and ending up at Yew Tree farm as the Armouries café was closed
It was a good run, although with not as many people as I expected. 7 bikes and 1 JZR 3 wheeler with a Moto Guzzi engine, driven by Peter - a formed VMCC Midlands Secretary. And Max the dog came along too.
Sunday 29th May Ride Out
This was a combined ride out with the Maurice Sommerville Memorial Run and the Wings and Wheels both falling on the same day.
Jon Weaver led the assembled group through country lanes to our traditional breakfast stop near the river in Evesham.
Once fully fueled the riders set of for the Wings and Wheels event at Bidford Gliding Club, here they were treated to both a static and dynamic display, culminating in a WW2 Hurricane fly-past.
Wednesday 1st June Breakfast Run
Held on a Wednesday, our run to the Dog at Nether Whitacre, was to celebrate the retirement of the publicans as this was the last time they would be holding their cooked breakfast morning before departure to Spain.
Great turn out.
Saturday 4th June Klondyke Mill
Only four on this run, five if you count Bob who came in his sports car and lead us on a route through some picturesque lanes to the east of Tamworth and over the river at Walton on Trent.
Not sure if was the cold weather or the impact of the Queens Jubilee weekend that limited numbers, but, as always there was plenty on display at the Mill with a majority of the engines in steam and circulating round the field.
Saturday 10th June.
Again we managed to have two events on one day!
A number of the members assisted the Museum in the running of their Ride a Bike Day, where a number of machines are taken from the museum for preregistered Friends of the Museum to ride around a closed circuit in the grounds.
At the same time Adrian had arranged for behind the scenes access to Echills Woods narrow gauge railway based in Kingsbury Water Park. As ever we were treated royally, with free tea & cake, but more importantly entry into the storage sheds and workshops and rounded off with a free trip round the tracks behind a steam engine. Late arrivals from the ride a bike day being given the same access.
Here's a link to a video of the 'Ride a Bike' Day
Wednesday June 16th Club Night.
Once again we were pleased to Host the local Vintage Sports Car Club at our June Club night. They brought along a fine selection of cars to compliment the bikes.
This month saw the Draw for the first two quarters for the Cleaning Crew. The Motorcycle Museum donated Spa days at the Windmill Hotel and Meals for Two at Marco Pierre Whites for those who turn up for cleaning duties every fortnight.
Winners were George, Nigel, Steve and Richard
George and Nigel must have had their lucky socks on, that night, as they were both pulled out in the raffle twice, but were gracious enough to return the second win to a more deserving recipient.
David And Goliath Club Night 18th May
Another fine turnout although the weather forecast and a heavy shower prior to the runs starting limited entrants to 7 Hardy Souls.
Some spectators felt the event was best viewed from the warm and dry lobby.
As always it was the taking part that really mattered.
This year’s winner, Paul, had a record matching time with a difference of just 0.1 seconds!. As is the tradition he was presented with the actual stone used to slay Goliath, with runner up, Neil, being presented with David’s sling.
Sunday 15th May Tiddler Run.
Once again the Tiddler run proved to be a great success, our destination this year was Buzzards Valley Vineyard.
With only two machines below 350cc, we kept the spirit of the event alive, by using small country lanes, and keeping speeds below 40mph.
The damp and greasy conditions prevented any of our Bantam owing members from joining us as they were obviously intimidated that their abundant power might prove too much. Following riders did not miss their emissions, however the Velo did, at times provide a comparable alterative.
Thursday Breakfast Run 5th May
A few photos from todays run 15 riders and 1 car driver Geoff and Bob front seat passenger !!
We had a lovely run to Wedges bakery in Hockney Heath. Once we all had arrived safely we were treated to breakfast and tea / coffee courtesy of Bob Badleg!
Very good turn out, and excellent weather - maybe the 2 things are connected.
Club Night Weds 20th April "Barn Finds."
Our thanks go to Mark Bryan of Silverstone Auctions for a brilliant talk he gave to us all last night, without exception everyone really enjoyed it.
Bringing the White Byvan was inspired, as although most of our members are local they had never heard of one before. It was an interesting and oddball machine, but not quite unique!
Geoff Ansell, being a local lad went out the next morning and stumbled across another one, just to prove they are not as rare as thought. Anyway, this one in Red, was only 10 miles from the Museum, and looks to be reasonably complete, with magnificent signwriting. It appears to either belong to or had belonged to Len Vale-Onslow at some time.