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East London & Essex Section Notes
(as appearing in Jampot magazine from 2017)
Only seven of us got together for the mid-week meet on 3rd July, which was less than earlier in the year. Although the weather was nice and sunny perhaps it is just too hot at the moment for some to enjoy riding, or maybe holidays are reducing numbers at the moment.
June 23rd a group of us had a pleasant day at Chris Willis’ (Willis
Wheels) wheel building concern open day at his premises in North Weald where we
were hosted by Chris and his wife. All seemed to know where it was, except for
me that is, who being so sure that I knew where it was that I never asked and was
rather lost when it wasn’t where I thought. However, thanks to a BSA Gold Star
Club member at the airfield cafe, who looked up the Willis Wheels web site for
me on his phone to get the address I got there in the end if somewhat later
than intended. One thing that needs to be recorded though is that those of us
who were there at the time were amazed to see
On 6th July dedicated ACU/BMF National Rally enthusiast Bob Russell took part in his 46th event when, despite taking a tumble during his ride, he managed to finish and sign off at the Harlow control. Bob, who had previously been presented with a “Spirit of The Event” award by the organisers says that this year’s event really will be his last, and we will remind you of that next year Bob if you happen to forget.
Only six of us met up this time for our 5th June
mid-week meet at Stapleford but those who did were lucky to see a flight of
around seven Dakotas pass over on their way to Duxford
to join with the rest of the D Day commemoration flight to
The following day Roy, Geoff Gibbins,
Steve Carvosso and Dave Walling left to ride up to
the International Jampot, meeting up with Graham
Eaton at Hatfield Peverel. Graham was having trouble
with sticking throttles but they all got going, only for
Dave got his magneto firing again but his tale of woe was not
finished though as on the Friday return run from Walcott it stopped again and the
breakdown truck took back to site, where a points
adjustment again got it running. However, coming out of the museum at
Steve’s woes however also continued as he only got a hundred yards or so from site on the Sunday run when the magneto packed up again, this time terminally. Steve rode the breakdown van to Sheringham and back again! Did I mention it was Roy who oversaw the fitting and repairs of the various magnetos on the three bikes? Swapping bikes for the journey home and borrowing Roy’s Rhubarb and Cream G12, which Sergio had been using, he suffered a minor issue with fuel starvation, easily fixed by running the rest of the (very wet) way home with both taps open.
So, the Piston Broke Award might not be so cut and dried, although Dave’s G9 CSR was leaving a trail of smoke behind him all the way home, looking like an engine strip and rebuild will be needed. The committee will have some head scratching come award nomination time methinks!
Our second mid-week lunch meet took place on Wednesday 1st May at Stapleford airfield, with a good turn out of around 10 on a fine day, if a little too windy to sit outside.
days later four of us, Roy, Geoff, Steve and myself, set off from Crown Corner
bound for the Open Day at
The section run to the High Beach tea hut on Sunday 17th March saw Roy, Steve Cardozo, Pete Berry, Geoff Gibbins and Dave Kewell set out from Crown Corner and meeting up with Pat Gill at the tea hut, while the first section mid week lunch meet of the year on Wednesday 3rd April saw 10 of us gathering at Stapleford Airfield. Arriving on my sidecar outfit in sunshine the weather unfortunately changed to quite heavy rain on the way home, although Pam kept dry in the sidecar.
planned run to the Ardingly show saw only three of
the intending five leaving from the meeting point and with Geoff Gibbins leading Roy and Pete Berry they had a fairly
uneventful run down. However,
28th February club night it was decided that the mid week lunchtime
meets at Stapleford Airfield and the mid week runs for 2019 should start again
in April. As for the previous year the dates would be kept to the first
Wednesday of each month for the lunchtime meets and the third Wednesday of each
month for the mid week runs. This of course gives an extra meeting opportunity
for the two weeks in each month when there isn’t a club night.
Although we have yet to start spring it is a sign of just how early things need to be booked ahead that we had to make a choice as to whether we wanted to book our 2019 Christmas dinner at The Plough, Bulphan, again. It was agreed amongst those present that we enjoyed the 2018 dinner there, so it was decided that we would book it again for this year. The date will be announced later.
intended to have a section run to the Kettering HQ Open Day on Saturday 4th
May. It will start from Crown Corner and further details can be had from
It was mentioned that the British Owners Club were holding their annual classic motorcycle event on Blackmore village green on Sunday 12th May, but as it was such a nearby event there would be no section run to it and members would make their own way there as we did last year.
With the weather not being very predictable at the moment we have not had any runs planned but our section nights have carried on well attended. The 24th January meeting was interesting in that new member Barry Thompson and his friend George fetched along a large assortment of small parts from a heavyweight single which they needed identifying and it was made into a competition between teams trying to identify the various bits and pieces. From the other end of the room, where Dave Kewell and I were trying to assist another new member, Mick Roberts, to sort out the arrangement of some parts on his 250 lightweight it seemed, from the volume of voices at the competition end of the room, that part identification was being disputed quite often. At the end of the evening however Barry and Geoff were pleased that many parts had been identified and it had been a great help, and hopefully Mick’s lightweight parts arrangement for the brake pedal and associated fixings had been successfully sorted as well. It’s the sort of thing that sections do well, helping out with information from the knowledge and experience of other members when someone is stuck and it is a very good reason for joining a section if you possibly can.
Not a lot happening within the section over the Christmas period but prior to that, on the December 13th club night the section held its well attended “Social Night” at Stapleford, where Geoff Gibbins was presented with his Section Clubman of The Year award, much to his surprise.
December 30th we had an “End of The Year Run” to the
On our 22nd November club night we had our section AGM. It didn’t take long though as there was nothing contentious and all the committee were re-elected to serve another year.
On the evening of the 8th December we had our annual section dinner, this year for the first time at The Plough, Bulphan, and around 30 of us sat down to a nice meal in pleasant surroundings. As the winner of the “Clubman of The Year” award, Geoff Gibbins, was not present at the dinner it was decided not to announce the winner of it on the night but to award it to him on the section “social night” at Stapleford a few days later on the 13th. However, the winner of the “Piston Broke” award was present and after a re-appraisal of the original decision by a “sub committee of the sub committee” it was awarded to Roy, much to his surprise, for his machine problems at various events during the year. Serves him right for stitching me up with it last year.
Vic Sayers has been very active again, green laning on a bike he has resurrected, and on one of the wettest weekends so far he was part of a group that arrived dripping and quite muddy at Andrewsfield airfield, where despite their condition they were still welcomed. Places like that deserve patronising.
Not a lot
happening at this time of the year but on Sunday 4th Nov Roy, Geoff
and myself took a ride out to the
Sunday 11 members plus a friend, made the section’s annual trip from our
meeting place at Stapleford airfield to the North Weald War Memorial for the
annual service of remembrance, with Roy, Geoff, Steve, Dudley,
On 3rd October the section said a sad farewell to former speedway rider and section member since 1995 Dave Slater. An expert welder Dave had made many finely crafted parts, notably carriers, for club members over the years. His funeral procession on October 3rd was followed by section members on five bikes, two of which had been built by Dave in past years and which he had ridden at many Jampot rallies and club runs. Our sincere condolences go to his wife Pam and their family
There was a good turn out for the mid week run of September 19th when the run finished up at Chris Willis’ wheel building premises at North Weald Airfield, probably the first time that some had been back to that airfield since we lost our meeting place there a couple of years ago.
Pat Gill’s WW1 Motor Machine Gun Corps outfit is continuing to get recognition, a photo taken at the VMCC Founders Day event appearing in the pages of Real Classic magazine and it was also on display at this year’s Goodwood Revival event.
topic of this month has to be the excellent Jampot
Rally hosted by the Heart of England Section. While most of us section
attendees made our way there by means of “wheels with a top”
think that it ought to be mentioned, after remarks in previous years, that this
Pat, once again, took the best pre-war Matchless award with his WW1 machine gun corps outfit, so Mary can look forward to cleaning it again before the next “Jampot”. It was a shame that Pat had electrical troubles and was unable to get far with it on the Friday run though as it would have made quite a talking point for bystanders. After all they have could hardly been a common sight on the roads since about 1918.
On the 7th July Bob Russell took part in his 45th ACU/BMF National Rally (of which he has finished in 44 of them). Although these days and not in the best of health he restricts himself to the day class rather than going for maximum marks he still covered 298 miles and is surely one of the event’s most dedicated competitors.
Vic Sayers recently covered considerably more miles when, in company with two friends on their RD Yamahas, he rode his AJS Model 20 on a 1857 mile week long tour from his home in Harwich via the lake district passes to Fort William in Scotland then on to the pass to Applecross before dropping back down to Ripon before taking a days break at Pateley Bridge then heading down to Derby, where they attended the Aircooled RD Yamaha Owners Club Rally. Vic gained the Spirit of the Event award at the rally and also took in the rally run on the Saturday before heading home on Sunday with another 190 miles back to Harwich. Vic, who’s pre 65 scrambles exploits featured in last month’s Jampot and who has also taken part in track day events in previous years is surely the section’s keenest rider and the reliability of his Model 20 is also a credit to his maintenance and preparation skills.
July the section run a successful stand at the Battlesbridge
Classic Motorcycle event where although no new members were actually signed up
on the day a lot of interest was shown by show visitors. One of the highlights
on the stand was surely Pat Gill’s 1914 first world war replica machine gun
corps outfit, complete with Vickers machine gun. It certainly caused great
interest at the
Recent section member Norman now has his 350 lightweight running OK and following the DVLA formalities another lightweight will now be joining our ranks and hopefully he will enjoy many happy miles on it.
There was a fairly good turn out for the July mid week lunch meet on the first Wednesday of the month, although the extremely hot weather did discourage some from donning their riding kit this time.
first mid-week run took place on 18th April and eight members set
out for a run around the countryside in fine sunny weather to end up at the
The weather was a lot
different on April 29th for the Spring Intersection Meet when it was
a dull and very cold day. Only two of us from the section went this time. At
least I think that was the case as when we got to the venue at the
The weather didn’t improve for our second mid-week lunch meet at Stapleford on 2nd May, with heavy showers all day. Even so we had a good turn out of eleven, but none of us on bikes this time though.
The perils of having a month’s lead time for these notes and late date changes for section events were revealed last month with the wrong date appearing for the fish and chip supper. For this I can only apologise and I will have to be careful about announcing specific dates of section events and risking confusion in future.
March seven of our section set off for the Ardingly
Classic Motorcycle Show in
The section’s first mid-week lunch meet at Stapleford Airfield on 4th April was a success with ten members turning up on a windy day where we were expecting heavy rain showers, which fortunately never really materialised. Hopefully we will have a good turn out for the rest of these “first Wednesday each month” meets and also the mid-week runs on the third Wednesday each month.
Over the Easter weekend Vic Sayers, probably our most active rider, took part in a classic moto cross event. Unfortunately his bike (not an AMC) let him down with a loss of sparks, so he didn’t manage to finish his race. Better luck next time Vic.
The past month saw
the completion (the DVLA inspection, that is) of
The section fish
and chip supper has had its date changed and will now be held on the 12 April
club night and not the date originally shown in section calendar. The first mid
week lunch meet at Stapleford will be on Wednesday 4th April and the
first mid week run is on Wednesday the 18th of that month, with the
run to the Spring Intersection Meet at Castle Hedingham
taking place on Sunday 29th. Both runs are intending to start from
Crown Corner but finalised details can be checked with
At the 8th March club night there was a discussion about a venue for the section end of year dinner. It is essential that a venue be booked within the next few weeks if there is to be any hope of getting somewhere that could take us at that time of the year. Currently there only two options found to be “possibles” with no other researched alternatives being offered by anyone. So if members wish to try somewhere different from the Fox then it looks like it will have to be one of those.
Not a lot happening within the section at this time of the year other than our usual twice monthly club nights. At the second January meeting it was decided that the section would definitely go ahead with having a club stand at the Battlesbridge event on 1st July, with the setting up being on the previous day. Thos attending on the day would, of course, need to be on bikes of the marque and be prepared to stay for the whole of the event.
The first of our mid week lunchtime meetings at Stapleford airfield will be on the first Wednesday in April and it is intended that these meetings will continue to be on the first Wednesday of each month, with the mid week section runs taking place on the third Wednesday of each month, these being easier to remember than random dates.
It is also intended to have a section run to the Spring Intersection Meet at Castle Hedingham on April 29th.
Although the section Social Club Night with “nibbles” on 14th December went well the same could not be said for the proposed Post Christmas section run on 27th, which was called off due to it snowing on the day. However, the following evening’s club night saw a fairly good turn out of section members as the previous day’s snow never really settled in the end.
The section’s Annual General Meeting, which originally was scheduled for 14th December but postponed to make room for the Social Night, took place during the 11th January club night. As all the existing committee were willing to stand again and there were no nominations for any of the posts all the previous post holders were re-elected on a block vote. The section calendar for this years activities is in the process of being amended and finalised and will be distributed to section members in the near future.
Ten from the section (members and family) attended the North Weald Remembrance Day memorial event, with those going by bike meeting up at Crown Corner and being led to North Weald by Chris Willis in his classic Land Rover.
On the 9th
December 28 of us gathered at “The Fox”, Matching Tye
for our annual section Christmas Dinner, where we had a nice meal in pleasant
(of course) company. This was our third year at this venue and it is good to
record that the serving of the food was a lot better than it had been the
previous year. At the meeting our Section Clubman of the Year award was
presented to Reg Green (
The last section events of the year are our club nights on 14th and 28th December, with 14th being our section social night with “nibbles” and, if the weather permits, a section mid week run from Crown Corner out to the tea hut at High Beach on 27th.
October seven of the section set forth over the
With a short piece
of tow rope and some heroic efforts, which I won’t elaborate here, from Roy and
Chris, they eventually got to the garage area just off the roundabout, where
they had met up that morning and from there Chris’ bike was recovered home by
van. All the time this drama was played out
At our first
November meeting Reg Green (Harlow) spoke about the
enjoyable Colombres rally that he had attended in
On December 9th
we have the section dinner at The Fox, Matching Tye
and on our14th December club night it will be a family social night.
Not much planned for our section this November, our usual Thursday club nights for November are on 9th and 23rd. The section Christmas dinner at The Fox, Matching Tye is on the 9th December and those who are now booked in should be sure to get their menu choices back to Pete Berry as soon as the menu becomes available.
On 6th to 8th October some of the section attended the “Alternative” at Woodbridge and one of them, Dave Wallings, wrote:-
“Five section members attended, myself, Roy, Geoff, Graham Eaton, Steve and Vic
After a false start
when my G9 had the speedo drive lock up and I had to
change bikes to my M18S, we had a good and uneventful ride to
The rally was
excellent and the food provided by
The weather was kind, some rain on Saturday as we returned from the rally site to our digs, the only time we got wet, and the journey home uneventful apart from my tank vacuuming due to a blocked fuel cap breather hole causing a brief stop on the A12 at Galleywood.”
Over the weekend
of 5th/6th August a group of section members took part in
the West Kent Run and meeting at Aylesford in
On Wednesday 20th August eight members started out on the mid week run around the lanes which finished up at our Stapleford airfield section meeting place where another eight members joined them for our August mid week lunch meet. This was the highest turnout of members for both the run and lunch meet for some months.
August 24th to 28th saw 23 section members, partners and guests travel to Stow-on-the-Wold for this year’s Jampot Rally. With excellent weather the whole event was a great success with higher attendance numbers than previous years which, despite a few resulting shortage problems, must be a step in the right direction. Roy’s infamous “Clockwork Orange” bike got plenty of use on the runs with a different rider each time – none of them Roy, and on Sunday Pat Gill once again took the award for best pre-war Matchless while Dudley got a commended rosette for his pre-war AJS.
to 8th October some of the section will be attending the
July run saw seven leave from Crown Corner. Keith Smith initially led the run
to Blackmore where they met with
This year’s ACU/BMF National Rally saw the section’s arch enthusiast for this long distance navigation trial, Bob Russell, take part in his 43rd event, his first being way back in 1961. Now restricted to “twist & go” scooters since an accident some years ago left him unable to operate conventional clutches, his enthusiasm for this particular event remains undiminished. There can’t be many riders who have completed as many Nationals as Bob.
Our Sept 20th
mid week run is on the same Wednesday as our mid week meet at Stapleford. The
run will again start from Crown Corner and end up at Stapleford for the lunch.
Then on Sunday Sept 24th there will be a run to Battlesbridge
from Crown Corner at 10am. More details can be got from
On our 22nd June club night Vic Sayers, who belongs to both our section and the North Essex, led a group of the North Essex members to Stapleford on a visit, so there were a lot more bikes than usual to look at. It was a fine evening so we could stay outside as well as inside the club room and our Stapleford hosts once again supplied a good buffet for all to devour.
June some of the section said farewell to a friend at the funeral of Dave
Speck. Although Dave lived in
As the Jampot Rally approaches
For our August
section events we have the section run to visit the
May the section said a sad farewell to
members who attended the International Jampot in
For the July
section events there is a run to the Battlesbridge
Classic Motorcycle event on 2nd, from the usual Crown Corner meeting
place at 10.00am and on Wednesday 12th July there is our next Mid-week
meet at Stapleford, which might have a mid-week run on the same day and ending
at Stapleford for the lunch time meet, as happened for the June event. More
details can be had from
Our April 27 meeting was the section’s “fish & chip supper” night and our hosts at Stapleford Airfield did us proud, with tablecloths, real plates, metal cutlery and condiments, certainly a step up from what we had been used to in previous years. We sat down to an enjoyable evening, rounded off by a music quiz organised by Rob, Jan and Kerry Harknet.
Six riders set off
for the Inter Section meet at Blackmore End on 30th April and met up
I got my own
come-uppance a week later, when four of us rode up to the open day at
For June there is our next mid week meet at Stapleford on 14th. Possibly also be a mid week run organised for one Wednesday but nothing has been arranged yet.
The section has
now held its first mid week lunchtime meet of 2017 at Stapleford airfield. Around
eleven of us attended and were pleased to see Margaret Earl who had made the
trip over from
It only came to my attention after the evening that we had a new visitor to our section meeting on 23rd March who got missed until almost the end. If that member was you then please give us another try. Ask the first person you see to point you in my direction and I will be happy to chat about bikes and introduce you to our section properly.
The four events in May for our section involvement are the next mid week lunch meet at Stapleford on 3rd. Then the run to the Kettering HQ Open Day on 6th, the run to the local Jericho Cottage Classic Bike Day on 14th, and the first Wednesday Run on 19th. All three of the runs start from our usual meeting place at Crown Corner.
March this year was a sad month for the section as we say farewell to our good friend Dave Nichols, who will be greatly missed not only by us in the section but also by the many members of the club as a whole.
meeting of 23rd February didn’t quite go according to plan, when a
shortage of staff resulted in our usual meeting place at Stapleford airfield
not being available to us which resulted in a lot of hasty phoning around by secretary
Our 9th March meeting was back to normal and we are keeping our fingers crossed that the staffing problems for our meetings at Stapleford can be overcome in future. At least this will not be a problem for the first of our mid-week lunchtime meetings at the airfield on Wednesday 5th April from around 11am
For our second and third section meetings of the year our numbers were back to around the usual attendance for section meetings after the previous meeting where only the hardy few braved the first snow of the year in these parts, not forgetting of course Zoe, who so capably caters for us behind the bar at each event and who also had to brave the weather to get home after all others had left.
Not much is going on at this time of the year as regards events that we might attend although several future events were mentioned as possibilities, including one at Stowe Maries airfield on 21st May and a “Wings and Wheels” event at Damens airfield later on 16th July which we may visit. There is also the regular Blackmore village classic bike event taking place on 14th May, which many of our section members go along to. There is also the Club’s Spring Intersection Meet at Blackmore End on 30th April and the Club HQ open day on 6th May, so plenty to think about for the future
The dates of our mid week runs and mid week meets at Stapleford airfield for this year are in the process of being decided and intended to be given out at the last meeting, but due to a few errors they will now hopefully be available next meeting and subsequently be put on our section web site.
At our last section AGM, in my absence, apparently I was voted in as the new section scribe against strong competition from…..absolutely no-one else. As I start my new job at a time of the year when there is not a great deal happening I do have a little time to work myself into the role.
For our last club night
before Christmas the section decided to have a “buffet evening”, to include
family members who do not normally attend meetings and the opportunity was
taken for our new section secretary
Our last run of
2016 was a short one to