It’s been a hectic few weeks since the last newsletter which is usually the case during these warmer months.
At the beginning of June I attended the National Committee meeting in Warwick
Here’s the update from the June NC meeting
DEFRA (Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) are pushing councils towards charging motorists in CAZ’s. Coventry’s plan not to charge has been rejected and they’ve been told that they have to charge all petrol and diesel vehicles. DEFRA have to approve all CAZ proposals nationally so this could cause a lot of issues.
Dr Gary Fuller has produced a document entitled “The invisible killer – the rise in the global threat of air pollution” that has some very dubious ways of measuring air quality and also seems to unfairly target PTW’s. Colin Brown has been in dialogue with him and has blown his arguments to pieces. He’s backtracking massively now so hopefully Colin can stop this document being taken seriously by the authorities
Pollution on the underground currently stands at 30 times that of the average London street which makes a mockery of the current war on motorcycles
The campaigns team is at war with TFL regarding motorcycles being included in ULEZ charging. An injunction is too risky and a judicial review is too costly so MAG is currently a case for the ombudsman to review against TFL’s actions.
Vision zero continues apace in London – no road deaths by 2041! So far this year 94 miles of roads in the capital have had 20mph limits imposed, even though it’s been proven that these limits don’t affect casualty rates and increase pollution.
Every police and crime commissioner post is up for election in 2020. We’re looking to get FOI requests from all police constabularies regarding bike thefts and make this an issue nationwide in these elections
As part of this campaign I’ll be sending out a separate email in the next week with contact details for your local Police and Crime commissioner. We’d like you to email, Facebook and Tweet to them, voicing your concerns about bike theft and asking them what they’re doing about it. This type of campaign really works as it’s our way of putting pressure on from the very top. Let’s start to fight back on the theft issue that has gone on for far too long in ever increasing numbers.
The MCIA (Motorcycle Industry Association) have chosen not to promote ride to work week any more as they’re concentrating on other “micro mobility” forms of transport, so MAG is going to approach the world wide organisers to see if we can promote it from now on. It’s a great way to get MAG’s name out there.
FEMA are looking into electronic detection systems on modern vehicles and their impact on motorcycling.
The nominations for awards at AGC will be discussed at the next NC meeting. If you have any nominations from your group, can you let me know who they are, why they should get an award and a proposer and seconder (with membership numbers) as soon as you can so that I can get a list going. As the AGC is in West Yorkshire at the end of September, it would be great to get some local members getting recognised.
Here is the link to the current “Network” which will keep you informed with MAG happenings around the country: https://wiki.mag-uk.org/images/5/5d/Network_2019-07.pdf
Locally things are moving on apace. I had a meeting with officers at Leeds City Council regarding secure motorcycle parking. As you’ll be aware we’ve secured £15,000 per year, per Council for four years in West Yorkshire that is ring fenced for secure motorcycle parking. Leeds have now gone one better as they hadn’t spent last year’s money due to city centre developments, so they’ve got the 2018 money plus the 2019 money giving us £32,000 to spend throughout the Leeds City Council area. They have rounded this up to £50,000! Hopefully we can help them to spend it wisely. Already ambitious plans have been drawn up for one of the multi storey car parks to have a dedicated motorcycle parking areas with extra CCTV, bars to lock to and a narrow entrance to stop cars/vans entering. I have another meeting at the end of July so I’ll keep you up to date.
It looks as though we’ve finally got movement on motorcycle access to bus lanes in Leeds after 7 years of trying and two months after Richard Lewis was voted out. We seem to have an ally in Councillor Lisa Mulherin who now holds the Transport portfolio. There were some write ups in the YEP, T&A and BBC website saying that LCC were looking at discussing bikes in bus lanes with quotes from two councillors, one positive and one negative.I was phoned at The Farmyard and asked to do a live radio interview on BBC radio Leeds which seemed to go well.On my return from the Farmyard I emailed councillor Mulherin thanking her for allowing the matter to be discussed and offering to attend the discussions to answer any questions and also to offer pillion rides to any councillors interested, so they can see the issues faced by bikers in this congested city.
Huddersfield MAG has been invited to send a representative to meetings of the Calderdale Cycle Forum and new Political Officer, Tom Lonsdale, has gladly accepted. MAG has much to gain from closer association with the increasingly effective cycling lobby, especially if we can foster wider recognition of the vulnerability on the roads that both groups share. There have been one or two sceptical voices about this collaboration but Tom is pleased to report a very warm welcome at his first meeting, during which he suggested that “we are just people engaging in activities that give us pleasure but expose us to risk, so we should focus more on reduction of those shared risks than on the unhelpful labels that accentuate the differences between us.”
Tom also believes that the cycling lobby is more likely to support our desire to be allowed to use bus lanes if we are perceived as friends and allies and not simply another threat to them. There could be other shared viewpoints to, for instance our claim to lesser environmental impact (congestion and pollution) may not be quite as strong as that of the cyclists but it certainly puts us in the same category as ‘part of the cure rather than the problem’. We can even teach cycling a thing or two about conviviality and camaraderie!
Membership remains steady throughout the region as is generally the case at this time of year. When you come to renew, please think of doing it by direct debit as this way, it’s all done automatically and you continue being a MAG member.
We’re still wanting to restart Scarborough MAG and York MAG or get a completely new group going in North Yorkshire. If anyone is willing to become a rep (it’s great fun and very rewarding) or even host a meeting, just to get a likeminded group of folk keeping in touch and pushing the MAG message, please give me a call (07867918722) or message me via email, text, Facebook etc. North Yorkshire is a big area and it’s a real shame we don’t have a North Yorkshire group or two, especially considering it’s a biking Nirvana. As I’ve had little interest in starting a North Yorkshire group up, we’ve decided to start a North Yorkshire MAG Facebook group. I’ll be admin along with Marcus, our webmaster, so if you live in North Yorkshire and want to chat with like minded folk, get on it
You’ll hopefully be aware that one of the stalwarts of Wakefield MAG, Justine wife of Wakefield Rep Steve Travis, passed away after a short battle with cancer several weeks ago. For Justine’s last ride there was a really good turnout. I contacted the police for help in getting the bikers in attendance from Tingley to Cottingley but they refused to help. On discussing it with some of the Wakey lot we decided to marshal the route anyway. It went very smoothly and we were commended by the hearse for the way it was done. It’s never an easy task to get 100+ bikes anywhere in one group so thanks must go to all those who helped. Justine will be greatly missed by all her MAG family.
We had a very successful Farmyard Party. I did the set up week which is always good fun. The weather was great and the bands that I saw were excellent. Attendance was up with lots paying on the gate. The only real downer was a few tent thefts on the Friday evening. This unfortunately seems to be the case at most rallies these days so please look after your belongings and take a bit of responsibility for your actions.
Next up for Yorkshire MAG is the Yorkshire Pudding Rally. Always my highlight of the rally calendar, tickets can be bought online, from selected local dealers or from your local meetings. Here’s the link to the ticket line. https://www.mapevents.co.uk/tickets_where.html
We had some new merchandise at The Farmyard Party that sold really well, to the point that we’re currently restocking again for a The Pudding. The only change from below is that we’re having some of the beanie hats done without the “Yorkshire” font on the back, as strangely, some folk didn’t want it to say that on it, so just to please the foreigners were having some done both with and without Yorkshire on them. Below is another rundown of the latest merchandise and if we can facilitate it, we’re going to look at doing an online shop so you can still show your allegiance, even if you can’t get to a rally to buy one in person! We have a revised Yorkshire MAG T-shirt, some new embroidered beanie hat, and we also have both Yorkshire MAG stickers and screen/window stickers. All will be available from KevKev at the Yorkshire Pudding merchandise store. For images, please see: https://www.facebook.com/yorkshiremag/
Yorkshire Pudding Rally marshals registration will be closed in a few weeks time. We’re always on the look out for new marshals, because without our marshals we can’t put the rallies on. We’re almost like a family within a family and I can say from personal experience that marshalling at our rallies gives a whole new appreciation of them and is fantastic fun. Anyone marshalling is given a good package for stepping forward which makes it a win/win situation. Email email@example.com for more details.
We’ve got a few events coming up in the next few months that you may want to add to your diaries.
Huddersfield MAG Elland Gala Parade on Saturday 6 July 2019: The parade sets off from the C of E school (which is at the bottom of Westgate, Elland approx post code HX5 0BJ) at 11.30am, thus it will help if you can arrive by 11.15am. The Gala Committee would love for us to park our bikes up in one of the car parks after the parade allowing families to come and have a look and chat with the owners.
Saturday 27th July – Leeds MAG’s third Yorkshire Day celebrations @ The Royal Hotel LS28 8PR from noon. Live music, Barbeque, tombola, raffles, Yorkshire quiz, evening disco. Everyone welcome.
Friday 2nd to Sunday 4th August – The Yorkshire Pudding Rally @ Escrick Park near York. £25 prebook. https://www.mapevents.co.uk
Friday 13th to Sunday 15th September – SPAT Back Into Hull @ Leven Social Club, North Street, Leven, HU17 5NF. Tickets are limited and only available to buy at Yorkshire Pudding Rally
Saturday 28th September – MAG Annual General Conference (AGC) will be held this year at Shawcross ARLFC in Dewsbury and will be hosted jointly by the Huddersfield, Leeds and Wakefield MAG groups. Secure camping on the Friday and Saturday nights, live music and biker quiz on the Friday followed by the conference on Saturday and fresh from their Farmyard Party big top appearance, we’ve secured The Interiorz to headline our AGC party on the Saturday night. The party is free to members and £3 to non members.
Finally if you want to get more involved at a local level (and to really get the most out of your MAG membership, I strongly recommend that you do) here are the meeting details of the five Yorkshire MAG groups – though we are looking to expand with more groups so if you haven’t got one close by and fancy getting together with like minded bikers, get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org
We’re very lucky in having some very strong groups in Yorkshire, but we need the members to join in, so pop along to your local meeting and help to make a difference
East Yorkshire MAG meet on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays from 8pm at The Forresters Arms HU17 0PR
Huddersfield MAG meet every Wednesday from 8.30pm at The Fieldhead HD3 4FB
Leeds MAG meet every 1st and 3rd Tuesday from 8pm at The Royal Hotel LS28 8PR
South Yorkshire MAG meet every 1st and 3rd Sunday from 7pm at The Ball,1 Hesley Bar, Thorpe Hesley, Rotherham, S61 2PW
Wakefield MAG meet every Wednesday from 8.30 at The Grey Horse WF1 1JG
Manny (Yorkshire MAG rep)