Monday, 27 November 2017

Events 2018

section events 2018

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Christmas dinner 2017

the long table gets settled

Ray's ready but Dermot can't sit yet

wood panelling  like on a yacht!

draw prizes and a Christmas tree

Sandy has no worries, Dermot not so sure.

this end are camera shy

had to hide the 'tach I won as there
were better round the table!

first course over

now where did I put my speech

Dermot remembers a dream

Once again the year flies by and we are at the annual dinner, over 30 people attended the Town arms for this years event, judging by the conversation level, it seems it was enjoyed by all. I enjoyed my meal and hope everyone else did, it was quickly served and there was plenty of it. Dermot gave a run down of the years events and praised the committee for the planning and organising of runs and club evenings though he expressed disappointment at the numbers attending the latter. We are learning more of our Chairman of late as he has admitted recently to having once been moved to tears and today to having dreams!. Dermot then gave the answers to the quiz left on the table on our arrival and the winners were my wife Marilyn and I ( with heavy emphasis on the former! ). Mike announced the winners of the 3 cups available they were: pre war, John Boyd, post war, John Tribble and Foreign, Maurice Lay. Richard saw to the draw prizes of which there were many and the event came to a conclusion around 1500. Now an event like this does not go off so well without some hard work by many people, Chris produces the events calendar which is always available at our place settings, Richard has handled the main link with the Town arms and produced the menu etc, Mike has organised the trophies and had them engraved, and Dermot the speech and quiz; now here I must say that they are not alone as I happen to know that their better halves had more than a little input!, lastly of course the committee who are at the moment working very well together to make this section the success it is, well done all. I hope you all have a good Christmas and hope to see you at our next event which will be January 7th for the new years lunch at the Welcome Fryer South Molton.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Club night 161117

13 members turned up to an excellent presentation by Dermot on the vision, construction and sailing of his yacht. We were able to see through photographs just how the boat was built in Malta and the problems encountered, then the tricky business of moving the completed yacht downhill to the harbour, followed by sea trials and finally the trips around the Med and over to the USA. All this was accomplished in 8 years, unfortunately, my invitation to join him on one of his cruises seems to have been lost in the post at the time!. However, we did learn that Dermot can be broken to tears but only apparently by Maltese customs officials!, Thanks Dermot for the evening.
We have been very fortunate to have had a very interesting and varied programme this year on club nights but unfortunately they have not been well attended, the committee have produced another interesting year next year and we would love to see the numbers climb to reflect the hard work put in.
Sadly, next month will be our last club night of the year, it will consist of a natter evening with mince pies and is on the 21st December, I would personally love it if you come along as I definately ate to many mince pies last year!.

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Guy Fawkes run 051117

lunch time at Nomansland

lunch time banter

nice setting

I was unable to join the start of this run due to a long term engagement but I have Dermot's route notes and debrief. It seems around 13 riders  turned up at Okehampton station for this Guy Fawkes run organised and led by Dermot. With Ian and John agreeing to bring up the rear, the run set off to Exbourne on B3217 then Monkokehampton, Iddessleigh, Dowland and Dolton before crossing the A3124 to Riddlescombe, Ashrereigny, through Winkleigh, Morchard road and Morchard Bishop to Black Dog, ( Dermot has put Black Cat to see if I'm awake! ), then Thelbridge Cross to arrive at the lunch stop at Nomansland. Some rain was encountered during the morning run and judging by Keith's bike I would say quite a bit of mud too. I was able to join the riders at the Mount Pleasant pub where the talk was of the unfortunate mating attempt by a Velo on a honda which resulted on the two riders having to dismount unintentionally!. John appears to have had is bike fall over when his side stand slipped into a trough. However, it seems all were able to remount and ride away though Cyril rode for home as a precaution. 
The Mount Pleasant looked after us well, I say us as by now I had joined the run, and a good meal was enjoyed by all. Whilst enjoying the meal, the rains came heavily and after some discussion it was decided to stop the run here.
Thanks to Dermot for the run and to Ian and John agreeing to do back marshal duties, now we have a few months to attend to fettling our steads ready for next year, don't forget the Christmas lunch, this year at the Town Arms on November the 25th 12 noon, see Richard or Chris for places, your section would like to see you all there so ring and book now.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Autumn run 081017

some of the bikes at Sainsburys'

in sunshine!

my thumb and the Blue Ball

The main body of riders arrive at the end
15 club members arrived at Sainsburys' for this the penultimate
run of 2017, many of us had endured bad fog and mist on the way but it soon burned off to leave, what promised to be, a dry mostly sunny day. We attracted a number of interested folk who gave us their early days on similar machines and wished they could return to those days. John had his wedding anniversary today so he did not join us for the run, then Doug's Ariel decided that it didn't want to get going until he had cleaned out the carbs jets, so Chris, who was doing back marker duties with me, stayed back to lend a hand and we remaining 12 set off on time after a briefing by our run leader today Mike. I must confess I had not expected Mike to  have recovered from his op to the extent that he could lead today but there he was and on his Velo as well, good for you mate.
We were led out and set off to Barnstaple, then over the new bridge and on to Braunton, there was some heavy traffic and a bit of a holdup here before we set off to Saunton. The beach at Saunton and at the other bays we came across were pretty full of people enjoying the good weather. We had some great views passing through Croyde, Mortehoe, Georgeham and Woolacombe before heading back up to the top of Ilfracombe and heading for Blackmoor gate. Here Mike had to do a swift calculation as he had been asked by the Blue Ball to be on time at 1230, so we were taken down to Lynmouth and then up the hill to the pub.
After a good meal we headed off to Brendon down in the valley and on across the common to Simonsbath, but just a few miles from Simonsbath, Maurice found his front tyre was losing air fast, he asked me to catch up with Doug on his combination as it was thought he might have a pump. I think my ex police triumph thought it was back in harness as I shot off to overtake first Graham then Doug to wave him down. Between Doug's pump and Grahams air can gadget, he was able to get going again in company with Chris, Doug and Graham until he turned off for home, I can tell you all that he reached home ok and is very grateful to all who helped him overcome his problem. The run then made the way to the honey farm for a well earned cuppa.
Thanks to Mike for the excellent route, to Chris who agreed to join me bringing up the rear and to those who helped today. Now the next run will be the Guy Fawkes run on November 5th from Okehampton station.

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Girder fork run 240917

The first 3 bikes turn up

Tony's |Norton looks great

Nice to see Paul on his ES2

Brian pulls away to lead

Brian follows

Tony gets going at number 4

Ray brings up the rear

5 eligible bikes and riders turned out today at Morrisons Tiverton for this the last Girder fork run for 2017, as you know, we have included this year any bike born before 1960. The bikes attracted quite a lot of interest as they usually do and in addition there were 2 ineligible  bikes at the scene, one was mine as I had come to take a few pics and the other was a 500cc Royal Enfield who came to ride behind the pack for the ride. Todays route was chosen by Brian who led away out of the car park and on to the Rackenford road, then out past Rackenford and on towards South Molton, a right turn off the road took us towards the Cabin and here I left as I was not eligible and had come just so far for the ride. Ray tells me that the bikes ran on without any trouble but they ran into rain near South Molton. A very nice lunch was held at the Bell Inn Chittlehampton during which the rain kept coming such that the decision was taken to end the run there and make way home. Ray reported that the rain stopped almost suddenly as he skirted Rackenford on the way back, shame really but thanks to Brian for the run and for leading and to Ray who did back marker duties. Now our next run will be the Autumn run on October 8th from Sainsburys Barnstaple.
Now I will put a couple of photos from Merv's funeral if you don't mind to show just some of the 45 bikes that attended.

Friday, 22 September 2017

Christmas menu at the Town Arms 25th November 2017

Names and monies to Chris or Richard please, seating is limited this year so get your name in early.

View of club night 21st September 2017 from the Chairman

There have been several occasions over time when I have sought to understand the reasons for a chronically low turn-out at the Town Arms on club nights. More often than not, the response has been that if some suitable entertainment was provided, then people would come. In reply to this, I have said that the Committee would be very happy to invite guest speakers and arrange other activities but there was no likelihood of such invitations being extended if there was not a probability of a worthwhile number of members supporting these occasions. Last night's monthly gathering was an excellent demonstration of this chicken/egg situation.

Gordon went to considerable trouble to arrange a talk given by a member of the Freewheelers about his association and the important work it does. Despite plenty of advance notice and Gordon having circulated many leaflets advertising the event, only a thirteen people (and two of them were women pressed into service!) bothered to turn up; even the pub dogs were absent on this occasion. I found having to apologise for this lamentable attendance to "Freewheeling Rob" who had ridden to us from Bideford to be an embarrassing experience - one which should have been wholly unnecessary.

The purpose of my comments should be obvious so I shall not labour the point; a word to the wise should be sufficient but as I have said on past occasions, the quality and frequency of club night diversions rests with the membership. It's up to you.

Nevertheless, we were able to make a useful donation to the Frewheelers' coffers and enjoyed an interesting introduction to their work.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Sad news

Many of you will, I'm sure, remember my cousin Merv who has been a great supporter of the Devon section since I came back to motorbikes and joined the Devon section some nearly 30 years ago, well sadly I must tell you that Merv lost his long fight against cancer last week and passed away aged 79. I have hung on to writing this post until I had the details of his funeral which I now have. It will be at 12.30 on Tuesday the 19th September at the Glyn valley crematorium in Bodmin. Flowers are restricted to family only with donations being invited for the Little Harbour childrens hospice. There is to be a bike parade following the hearse starting at a Slade house in Wadebridge at 11.00, I think Ian B knows where this is. Merv was a prolific picture taker and you may have seen or been given photos taken by him, usually at times of a breakdown!. In his riding days, he brought many riders with him from Cornwall to the Scrumpy run, the Exmoor run and many others. R I P Merv.

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Evening run 210817

enjoying the sunshine

taking over the outside tables

Dougs' family try to steal show with Fiat,
whilst Dermot explains why he now needs 4 cylinders!.

15 people turned up at the Mitre in Witheridge on Monday evening for this our last evening meet of the year, the weather was dry and sunny as you can see from the photos. Ian came on his 'let's wake up Witheridge' Norton, Dermot showed off his Nimbus which is now on the road, and Doug came with family in a very early Fiat 500 in very good order, so plenty to admire. After the meet, we were all invited to Ian's to look over his 67 Norton collection, at this point my ever faithful T90 decided it wouldn't start until I had stripped out the jets and cleaned them out!!. The ride a bike night last Thursday was very low in numbers due to holidays, sickness and other commitments but I'm sure we will do better on the next run which is on September 10th from Kirsty's kitchen in North Tawton, see you there folks.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Dartmoor run 130817

lets have a cuppa before we start

Lunch at Princetown

gathering at the start in good weather

D & S supplies at Winkleigh

the bikes patiently wait

a comfort break at Widecombe

ah that's better!.

The promised good weather sent 24 riders and one pillion passenger to D & S supplies at Winkleigh for the Dartmoor run, organised and led today by Ian B. Promptly at 11.00, Ian led us away from Winkleigh through a few twists and turns toward the moor, I could clearly see the Tors in the distance getting closer by the mile, it wasn't long before we bumped over the first cattle grid on to the moor proper. Ian had warned us at the briefing that we should be aware of the 40mph limit as there had been covert camera vehicles deployed recently, also he mentioned the ponies and sheep likely to wander across the road in front of us and this they did. A stop was made at Widecombe for a comfort break and here the restart was held up a bit by a few riders being slow to get going, the back markers today were Chris and Roy and they followed them out allowing me , who was marking the turn out, to move off. There were a lot of visitors on the moor which held us up a bit but not too badly and after some 35 miles we all arrived safely at the old Police station in Princetown for lunch. After lunch the route took us through Chagford and on to Whiddon Down where people started breaking off for home. I must say this was an excellent route in very good weather amongst friends which is surely what motorcycling is all about. Thanks to Ian for the route and for leading, to Chris and Roy agreeing to do back marker duties and to everyone for marking the turns well. Now don't forget next Monday evening to meet at the MITRE in Witheridge followed by Ian L's offer to show us around his Norton collection which he tells me now stands at 67!, then our next run will be on September 10th starting at Kirsty's Kitchen in North Tawton.

Friday, 11 August 2017


Dermot has written to me asking that I inform you all of a very kind offer from Ian that anyone attending the evening run to the Mitre on the 21st is invited to follow him home for a second chance to view his collection of Nortons which has grown since we last visited, so come along for a great evening out.

Monday, 7 August 2017

Fish and chips 020817

watch the birdie!

looks good grub as usual

The turnout at the welcome fryer on Wednesday last was a bit down on numbers due to holidays and sickness, however Ray tells me that it was still a very enjoyable evening as is usual at this venue so roll on the next one. Now whilst I have your attention folks, it was not possible to run Keith's observation night at last months club night due once again to holidays and sickness producing poor numbers, so we decided that since Keith puts so much work into the preparation, we would run it again at a future club night.
I need to remind you all that we have a talk on 21st September by the bloodbikes, or Devon Freewheelers to give them their correct title, please make every effort to attend as it would be embarrassing to have a poor attendance for this event.
Now the next event for us is this weekend when Ian will lead us off from D&S supplies on the old Winkleigh airfield site for a trip around Dartmoor, then on the 21st of this month there is an evening meet at the Mitre in Witheridge, this is our last evening meet this year ( what already! ). Thanks to Steve for the photos he sent me and Ray for the brief, I will in future try to time any illness to avoid fish and chips evenings!.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Evening run 170717

we take over some of the outside tables

good weather and good company

still room for a few more next year

the bikes wait patiently

some came by car but a real talking point

A reasonable turn out on an excellent evening weather-wise and at a really nice venue by the river Exe, namely the Anchor at Exebridge. Doug brought his 1934 car bringing the family and Mike from Brayford way, this car caused much conversation, not a motorway vehicle by any means but ok for the 23 miles they drove to get to the Anchor. These evening runs are really well appreciated but already we are now down to the last evening run which will be on the 21st August to the Mitre at Witheridge, where has the year gone?. The owners ran a raffle whilst we were there and Mike could not believe it when he won! so he will get a free meal for 2 at a time of his choice, lucky chap, Dermot complained that had Keith run the draw he would have won!.
Next run folks is the Dartmoor run starting at D & S supplies at Winkleigh on the 13th August, see you there guys.

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Ron Ley run 9th July 2017

no I didn't use a drone for this pic!.

Eggesford tea room

safe arrival at the Mount Pleasant Inn

poss new members?

Despit holidays and family commitments, 18 members turned up at the Eggesford garden centre for this years Ron Ley run, Jack came along with his dog to see us off, that left 17 but when Cyril arrived, he was not happy with his Douglas' performance so elected to limp back to Tivvy leaving 16 to commence the run. The Eggesford cafe did us proud and if it weren't for the road leading up to the car park, it would be a very good choice to use again. Todays run was mine to organise and lead, Ray had kindly driven me around the route some 2 weeks before as I was on a cruise up until this week so I hoped there had been no road changes in the meantime and that I could remember the turns!. With Ian and Richard kindly agreeing to do back marker duties, we set off on time at 11 am heading for Winkleigh, once there we wound our way through the town and set off for Monkokehampton, ( I'm told the town is known as Monkhampton ). I took the decision to lead the run around Okehampton to arrive from the west as it gave us a fine view of the tors on Dartmoor, however it did mean we had to negotiate a short journey on the A30, this was to short a run on the A30 for some and they elected to remain on it for another 5 miles or so meaning that I saw riders arriving from both directions on arrival at The Post Inn in Whiddon Down. The Post Inn did us proud and a good hour or so was passed eating a choice from the menu. The afternoon run saw us head to Spreyton and Bow then Down St Mary before crossing the A377 and on to Morchard Bishop and Black Dog before arriving at our finish stop at the Mount Pleasant Inn in Nomansland, again we were well received and looked after by the staff who were now catering for 14 of us. Thanks to the rear marshals for bringing up the rear and a well done to Dermot who finished the run without a call to Sandy seeking direction!, see you all next run which is an evening meet on the 17th July at the Anchor at Exebridge 7pm.