News feed, 29.5.17

The warm summer sun shone down on Ray and I as we revved up the trikes, making our way down to Angels Place for the North East Coalition of Motorcycle Clubs’ meeting last Friday. Many others had taken also had the same idea, lining the street outside the pub with their beautiful bikes. Clutching a glass of the amber nectar, we stayed outside for some chat with our coalition friends. It’s a great way to start the meeting.

Steve got the meeting underway and there were a few absentees this month. Firstly, he thanked everyone for coming down to the NECMC photo shoot at the Angel of the North on Wednesday. It was a great turn-out from everyone in the coalition, with nearly two hundred people there. The HA will get some prints and canvas pictures made for everyone for a reasonable cost. In the meantime, here’s a sneak preview from the picture that made its way onto Facebook.

Everyone then ran through the various events and activities that are coming our way over the summer. We’ve listed some of these in our February write-up, here, but in addition we’ve got the following …

  • 10.6: the HA is hosting a rave at Angels Place, with live bands and DJs keeping everyone entertained
  • 1.7: HAMC Custom Bike Show, with loads of north-east custom bikes on display. Get there for about one o’clock. There are loads of categories for bikes, so get your chrome polished ready for the day.
  • 18.6: the Bad-Landers MCC is convening the annual Armed Forces Day at Bents Park. It’s on between ten and five o’clock and it looks like there’s a stack of things to do, including bands, a bike and car show, and the parade itself. If anyone would like to join the parade from Angels Place to Bents Park, get there for about nine o’clock, ready to ride at quarter to ten. There’s also a raffle with some big money prizes. All in support of our armed forces.
  • 23.7: the Ride of Respect to Catterick. Starts at Angels Place at eleven o’clock. It’ll be busy, so get there early.
  • 5.6: Brigantes Brotherhood MCC is hosting an Open Night
  • 24.6: Geordie HOG ABC ride, starting at Albemarle, up to Boulmer and then to HMS Calliope. You’ll need to have photo ID with you to join this ride.
  • 24.6: the Hylton Hornets MCC is hosting a fund-raiser for the RVI Children’s Wards, 1A and 7, at 12.00 pm. It looks like it will be a great day for the entire family. It’s on at The Golden Lion, South Hylton.

As an aside Bellatorum MCC thanked everyone for their support at the recent event at their place. They raised more than £1,000, bringing their total to nearly £6,500 so far this year.

The next meeting is on 30.6 at 8.00 pm. There are lots of websites and Facebook pages for all these groups, so get online and help support them and the NECMC.

News feed, 25.5.17

We all met up at Bradbury Services on Sunday for the first monthly Chapter ride of 2017, led by Duncan. A few arrived early, having gone straight there, then the Washington posse landed en masse just before ten. It was great to see so many people taking advantage of the good weather, and also so many new chapter members. We chatted to John, Gill and Tony in the car park beforehand.

The Road Crew huddled together to get their game faces on, then Duncan delivered the all-important ride briefing. Barry announced that James would be celebrating his sixtieth birthday on Monday, so we raised our voices for a quick burst of Happy Birthday for him.

Once we’d completed the formalities, everyone got kitted up, started up and ready for the off about half ten. A kindly Stobart’s lorry gave us all a free pass straight out of the service station, then we crossed the A1, heading west up Weardale towards the A68 and Wolsingham. The roads were fantastic and we tucked in behind John B on his Dyna and Ian on his Breakout. Ron and Lyn were close behind us.

The Road Crew got us quickly through the relatively straight route to St John’s Chapel, then a quick left, heading south towards the B167, High Force waterfall and Teesdale. We used part of this route on our first ride from last year when we raced from Alston down to Durham Tees Valley Airport to see the Great North Air Ambulance.

Right onto the B6276 took us onto the North Pennines AONB and the moors. The weather turned distinctly chilly as we soldiered on, and a bit of mist managed to dampen our shiny chrome. Thankfully, the sheep kept out of our way and in no time, we landed at Brough, crossing under the A66. It was a bit bumpy on the roads on the moors and it was good to ride some better roads for a change.

Kirkby Stephen was very busy but everyone stopped and stared, open-mouthed, as we navigated the traffic lights through the village. Up and out again as we headed for Nateby and Outhgill towards Aisgill, next to the very remote Hell Gill Beck. Once on the A684, we landed at the Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes.

Things have changed at the creamery recently, including a new car park. We all managed to find a space, then headed for lunch. It’s such a great place, and Lyn took full advantage of the cheese-related merchandise on offer.

 

We left about an hour or so later and we rode through Hawes itself. It was rammed with tourists and fellow bikers yet we still managed to cause a stir as we went by. There’s something cool about riding in such a big group, and watching everyone watching us! This time, we were following John L, Trish and John B, with Ian tucked in behind. There’s always something entertaining watching John B whacking the throttle grip on his ride, but he kept the hammer down and we made a good pace!

Pretty soon, we dropped down a very steep bank and crossed the lovely Aysgarth Falls. Unfortunately, Kevin Costner was nowhere to be seen! The roads were again magnificent and kept us on our toes, although we nearly ran out of Road Crew at one point. Everyone was doing a good job in letting them through but there were a lot of junctions to cover.

We dropped out of the Yorkshire Dales National Park at Richmond and headed north, crossing the River Tees again, west of the A1 at Darlington. Finally, we had a short stretch of A1 to travel before we landed at Newton Park Services. Everyone was full of smiles for a job well done, all credit to Duncan and the Men in Orange for a superb day!

News feed, 15.4.17

CRAGG 2017

With Clyde Valley and Red Rose chapters, we held our annual pre-season event over at Gretna Hall Hotel. We got underway on 7 April for a couple of nights. Each day had perfect weather, much better than last when we had sleet, rain and snow!

Between us, more than a hundred and fifty turned up to join in the fun. On Saturday, Derek and Rachael Norman arranged a ninety mile blast round some great rural roads of Dumfries and Galloway. We stopped for a lunch break at The Steamboat Inn at Carsethorn: well worth another visit. The ride was just superb, and we arrived back at Gretna mid-afternoon. In the evening, after a superb dinner, a group called Rocket Man entertained us. They were previously on at last year’s Wake the Lakes rally.

CRAGG is a great opportunity for everyone to get together after the long winter’s break! Roll on next year!

Barry

Chapter Meeting, April 2017

Barry welcomed everyone to the April Chapter meeting and handed straight over to Charlotte Campbell. Charlotte gave a short talk about the Children’s Heart Unit Fund (CHUF) and the fantastic work that they do over at the Freeman Hospital. We have a ride-out to the Freeman in July to support CHUF. For more details on CHUF, click here.

Barry then whipped us through a quick commentary of a few events and activities that we convened recently, including two Road Crew-led rides from JH-DG and the First Aid training for our Road Crew. Thanks to James and Allen for the former and Dawn, Greg and Shaun for the latter. These activities are an essential part of getting everyone ready for our forthcoming riding season. Barry also talked us through a few events coming up, starting this weekend …

  • If anyone wants to join a ride over to Gretna on Friday for CRAGG, meet at JH-DG at one o’clock
  • Paul gave us an update on the Easter Egg ride, on 12 April. There’s an egg collection basket at JH-DG, so please contribute if you can.
  • Easter is shaping up nicely with a proposed ride to West Coast H-D on Good Friday (meet at Todhills Services, between J44 and J45 of the M6) – see our Facebook group for times etc.
  • The Normans are convening a ride to The Lakes on 16 April, starting from Hartside Café – see our Facebook group for times etc.
  • Barry also suggested that there might be something else in the mix for Easter Monday too …

Helen handed out event sheets for everyone. It’s a very busy season ahead! Helen will update this as we go forward. We’ve got full details on the website too: www.geordiehog.com/events.

For those not going to CRAGG this weekend, the Sportster Sickness group are getting together at JH-DG. There is also a season-opener at JH-DG, with Bessie and the Zinc Buckets on stage entertaining everyone. There are more details on the JH-DG Facebook page. If anyone has something they’d like to add to the events listings, please contact Helen directly.

Ruth has arranged another Afternoon Tea event at Lumley Castle, with a murder, mystery flavour. It’s on 4 June with a £10 deposit required. There are more details within these hallowed pages and on Facebook. There’s also another Bowling Night planned for 17 June. If you’d like to go to either event, please contact Ruth directly.

The first monthly Chapter Ride is on 21 May, some six weeks away. Duncan will lead it and we’ll learn more at the next Chapter Meeting. James also advised that the recent ride-outs to Blanchland have proved extremely popular with everyone, so the Road Crew might convene another one on 6 May, depending on numbers and Road Crew availability. Keep an eye on our Facebook group for more details.

Mr Stand-In Membership Officer, Peter, said we now have 251 members, with some new members at tonight’s meeting. Hello to everyone! As an aside, it appears that there has been some issues with H.O.G. and membership renewals. We’ll be taking this into account with the membership deadline within Geordie Chapter. If anyone is experiencing any issues, please let Peter know sharpish.

Robin said that the website is fully up-to-date with all the events etc. for the riding season. We’ll add details of start times and locations when they are available. All news, stories and photos gratefully received! We‘re already getting some great coverage of the new items that are on there.

Ray led off with an emotional thank you to everyone who attended the last ride-out for Phil, Lesley’s brother, who passed away recently. They split donations, amounting to some £900, between Cancer Connections, Macmillan and Marie Curie.

There’s a whole host of events going on within the Coalition. Some of these are listed on our website, under News. Some new highlights include:

  • Bellatorum MCC – pool night, Angels Place 29 April
  • Drangonslayer MCC – rally, Percy Park 7 July
  • Twisted Sprockets MCC – rally, 1 September

Dawn said that the rally organisation is going really well and we’ll resolve who’s going to do what, by way of help, at the next Chapter meeting. Hopefully, everyone can lend a hand! Ticket sales are going well too, and Barry encouraged everyone to get theirs soon!

Finally, a couple of last minute items:

  • Rob thanked everyone for the fantastic turn-out to his daughter’s wedding recently, everyone had a great time
  • The Three Horseshoes are offering a 25% discount to Geordie Chapter members and Barry has some vouchers if anyone is interested
  • Some people do still attend the Social Night at The Tyne pub: it’s on the fourth Tuesday in the month, if you’d like to join in
  • There was a stack of prizes in the raffle with Gary F, Judith, John L, Chuck, Greg, John B, Donna and Tony sharing the spoils

The next meeting is on 5 May, see you all there!

Ride safe everyone, Barry.

News feed, 25.3.17

Greg led the way on a great ride-out up to Blanchland, as we basked in some beautiful sunshine on Saturday. Our Road Crew play a very important part in keeping us together on our Chapter ride-outs and they volunteered to help new members understand riding in a group.

We met at Jennings Harley-Davidson Gateshead at half-ten for a comprehensive briefing from James and Greg to get us underway. We had about seven new members with us. We were soon underway along the A1, A69 and A68 to Kiln Pit Hill. There were some great opportunities to experience the staggered riding formation, and watching out for our Road Crew as they marked the junctions for us. Paul, helped by Donna, marked his first junction as a new member of the Road Crew as we turned right, and headed to Blanchland.

The kettle was boiling at the White Monk tearoom, as everyone settled down for refreshments. Others headed over to the Lord Crewe Arms, with its fantastic setting and beautiful grounds.

Suitably refreshed, we headed off again through Shotley Bridge, Medomsley, Burnopfield and Streetgate back towards the A1 and Dunston. We then had a post-ride briefing to round off the event. The pressure is now on Greg to organise similar weather as we head through the 2017 riding season!

See you all at the Haggis Ride next week!

News feed, 25.2.17

The North East Coalition of Motorcycle Clubs again met at Angels Place last night. Bikers had already packed the place by the time we arrived, so we went upstairs sooner than the others. We had a brief chat with Graham and Lyn, from the 2012 MCC, as everyone else made their way upstairs too. Craig led the meeting.

The Coalition Coordinator got things underway by welcoming the Gunnars MCC to the Coalition. They’ve been to a few meetings now and everyone welcomed them aboard. Back to Craig, and he outlined a few things happening in the coming months. Last month’s write-up, here, describes a few of them but in addition, there’s:

  • 24.3: Hells Angels Anniversary, with The Revolutionaires
  • 1.4: HAMC Poker Run, as described last month, will also include a hog roast. The ride should start about 11.00 am, so get there early.
  • 15.4: the Wyrm Riders Brotherhood is hosting an Alice Cooper Nightmare, Alice in Sunderland, with an Alice tribute band. It’s all for charity, so get along if you can. It’s at The Point. Flyers should be available at the next meeting.
  • 1.7: HAMC Custom Bike Show, with loads of north-east custom bikes on display
  • 23.7: Bad-Landers MCC Ride of Respect

Craig finished with an impassioned speech about what a great thing the NECMC is and how we all stick together. There’s a fantastic spirit within the group, and long may it last. Everyone needs to play their part in keeping it cohesive, watching out for each other.

The next meeting is on 31.3, at 8.00 pm. There are lots of websites and Facebook pages for all these groups, so get online and help support them and the NECMC.

News feed, 22.2.17

To kick off this year’s Chapter Mileage Challenge, we’re inviting everyone down to Jennings Harley-Davidson Gateshead on Saturday 4 March, from 10.00 am, for coffee and cakes.

For those not familiar with the challenge, it runs from 1 March to 30 November and it’s all about riding, having fun … and clocking up the miles as you go. At the end of the riding season, we collate all the mileages and send them to H.O.G. They then make awards in various categories, including greatest average number of miles, greatest number of participants, furthest travelled bloke and furthest travelled lady.

It doesn’t matter how many miles you ride, but every one counts! You can accumulate extra points by attending H.O.G. flag rallies and having your picture taken while you’re there. This year, we’re very proud to say that our Heart & Soul Rally is as a H.O.G. flag rally!

Geordie Chapter also has its own award for furthest travelled bloke and furthest travelled lady, won last year by Paul Wright and Rachel Ratcliffe respectively. We’ll announce our own winners at the 2017 Chapter Christmas Party.

For those who entered last year, your closing mileage is this year’s opening mileage. You can submit your mileage at any time from 1 March by popping along to the JH-DG but the sooner you register the more miles it means for the chapter. Though the official forms aren’t necessary anymore, we still need to verify your mileage then it’s submitted electronically by Jennings.

Weather permitting, our Road Crew will also convene a short ride-out, for new chapter members and anyone else who wants to ride along. We’re hoping to show new members how the Road Crew keeps everyone together on chapter ride outs. It should leave about half ten, so get along there about ten to hear the briefing etc.

All donations of cakes are welcome and we’ll give all proceeds to the Great North Air Ambulance. See you all there!

Chapter Meeting, February 2017

The H.O.G. Geordie Chapter 2017 AGM was a fantastic event last week, at Nissan SLC. It was standing room only, as everyone piled in to hear reflections on 2016 and what to look forward to this year. We even had pie and peas on offer too!

Barry got things moving in fine style, confirming the changes in the Committee for 2017. Gary is our new Treasurer, and Lesley takes over Chris’ role as Welfare Officer.

Barry steered us through some of the fantastic things that we did on 2016. And he outlined more for 2017, including increased participation in L.O.H. events and rides.

The Geordie Chapter Committee is here for everyone, to make sure that we operate on the right lines, and maintain a coherent message throughout the year. Barry emphasised the need to work with each person in the Chapter and if people have any comments or issues which need to reviewed, please raise it with Barry or Peter first. That way, we can make sure we have a solution that works across the board.

We have a great relationship with the team at HOG Insider and in 2017 we’ll again be doing our best to make sure we raise the profile of the Chapter within it. We also have a great website which everyone can use to publish their own stories, pictures and riding tales. It does take a lot to pull these things together but it’s always easier with help from members. We can all play a part in helping Harley-Davidson riders join Geordie Chapter.

Geordie Chapter hosted the annual H.O.G. Directors’ Meeting last weekend and there was a bundle of things for everyone to get involved in. We laid on a bus to Jennings Harley-Davidson Gateshead and there was a great atmosphere down there. The theme for Saturday was Building Bridges, with Barry and Grant giving impassioned speeches to the group. Barry said there’s a number of Chapters that are really struggling, with numbers and finances. We also have the demise of the SOfER rally, which is a real blow. On a positive note, the Heart & Soul Rally is now a H.O.G. Flag Rally!

Nissan SLC then dished up pies and peas for more than a hundred hungry people.

Straight back into the meeting, we had updates from others in the Committee. Of special note, James gave a few words on the Road Crew. Firstly, James piped Allen aboard as the new Assistant Head Road Captain, which is a great appointment. Then, we had the following:

  • Rides are being prepared for 2017 but James is always on the look-out for ideas from members – get in touch directly if you’ve got somewhere in mind
  • If anyone would like to join the Road Crew, rock up and have a chat to someone on the Road Crew for more information
  • James is looking for greater participation from members and increasing safety as we ride, so he’ll be reinstating Saturday morning briefings soon. There’ll be an update on how we ride, what’s required from each rider and what the Road Crew do – keep an eye out for news of these events early in 2017
  • James again emphasised that the Road Crew are there for everyone’s benefit, making sure that we have the best time we can when we’re out and about, and keep us together, as far as possible. If anyone has any questions, just get in touch.
  • On another safety note, the Road Crew will be insisting that all non-members, including pillions of non-members, sign the H.O.G. disclaimer before we set off on Chapter ride-outs. If this applies to you, please make sure you do it when you arrive, not just as we are about to set off …
  • The Wednesday night ride-outs, hosted by Jennings Harley-Davidson Gateshead and led by Greg or Grant, will be starting up again on 29 March 2017. Everyone is welcome to come along and this year we’ll be using the second man drop off system, so there should be no confusion over which way to go.
  • Finally, the annual first aid refresher course that our Road Crew does is nearly upon us. We’ll be opening this up to others in the Chapter later in the year, depending on availability.

 

 

With some enthusiastic voting, Barry rounded off with a few changes to the way we run the Chapter:

  • The AGM will now be held in December, to match other chapters
  • The membership year will stay the same at 1 March to 28 February

And that’s it, a few highlights from a great meeting! See you all on 2 March.

Ride safe everyone, Barry.

News feed, 29.1.17

Ray, our Coalition Officer, led the way to the monthly meeting of the North East Coalition of Motorcycle Clubs at Angels Place, on Friday. We got there as the place was warming up and the band was getting ready. Armed with a drink, we made our way upstairs for the formal proceedings. The place was packed, and some highlight events include:

  • HAMC: St Valentine’s Massacre, 11.2.17, at Angels Place
  • HAMC: Rock Night, every Thursday, at Angels Place
  • Patriots MC: Twentieth Anniversary Rally, 5.5 – 7.5, in Bristol. See Patriots MC website for more details.
  • Bellatorum MCC: Family Day, 20.5, at Sunningdale School
  • Brigantes Brotherhood: 18.3 charity night and 20.3 open night
  • Draconians MCC: Life’s a Pitch Rally, 14.7 – 16.7, at Swalwell Junior Football Club
  • Dragonslayer MCC: St George’s Rock Night, 22.4, at A1 Allerdene Club
  • Hylton Hornets MCC: Rock Night, 21.4, at South Hylton Club
  • NABD: You’ve Been NABD’d Rally, 5.5 – 7.5, in Cheshire. See NABD website for more details.
  • The North Men MCC: Eight Gathering, 18.8 – 20.8, at West Hall Camp Site
  • 2012 MCC: Great North Swap Meet, 19.3, at Twin City Motorcycles
  • Twisted Sprockets MCC: Pre-season Prom, 4.3, at Stormont Main Social Club
  • Wyrm Ryders Brotherhood: Alice Cooper’s Nightmare, 1.4, at Sunderland

The Coalition Coordinator confirmed the final amount raised in 2016 was £23,390, which is amazing.

The evening then drifted back downstairs for some more beer and fun. The next meeting is on 24.2, at 8.00 pm.

There are lots of websites and Facebook pages for all these groups, so get online and help support them and the NECMC.

News feed, 16.1.17

There are some changes for our 2017 Road Crew …

James Jobson is our new Head Road Captain, supported by

Allen Glasper as Assistant Head Road Captain.

Many congratulations to both and we look forward to seeing our Road Crew leading us when we’re out and about this year.