Meriden Branch Report March 2017

Hello members, welcome to the first of what I hope will be a regular blog.  Because of the word count limit that applies to to the branch reports in Nacelle it is often very difficult to cover all of our branch activities.  Don’t get me wrong, I am not knocking the club mags limits, they are there for very good and practical reasons but to keep you all fully up to date I really need to be somewhat more verbose.  Hence the blog.

Although this is really the report for March I am kicking off with Monday the 27th of February when we held our branch AGM.  It was quite well attended and, speaking for myself, rather entertaining.  There is a page of bullet points posted on the branch web site should you wish to go over them.  

So into March itself.  We had a talk given by Pete Brown at our regular weekly meeting at the clubhouse on Monday the 6th.  His talk was a light hearted look back over his years of wheeling and dealing with his father in law.  This was a highly entertaining which was topped of with a buffet supplied by the branch and the Heart of England Social Club, our permanent home.  So thanks all round.

Then on Sunday the 26th we had our first organised run of the year, the Mike Hailwood memorial run.  This is now something of a traditional opening to our riding season.  The run was organised and led by Keith our Runs Captain and there was a fantastic turnout.  We had 26 bikes turn up with 4 of  them carrying pillions.  The first destination was Tanworth in Arden where, at the Bell Inn, refreshments were enjoyed courtesy of the branch.  After that we went to the grave to pay our respects to the great man.  Then we all headed off to Wren Hall where more tea and coffee was consumed along with the fabulous home made cakes available there.  All in all it was a grand day out and it has to be said, hugely enhanced by glorious weather.  We can only hope for more such weather for the rest of the year.

The following evening we had another speaker.  This time Bob Haines who spoke about his rather varied career.  He started with farming before going onto Francis Barnet, Triumph engineering - comp – shop – experimental – co-op, Jaguar and Norton.  Naturally the majority of his talk centred around his time with Triumph with amusing stories and anecdotes of what went on at Triumph during his tenure.  His talk was enjoyed by a large attendance which included members from the Vintage Club.  The talk was followed once again by a buffet which was also thoroughly enjoyed so, once again, thanks all round.  There was however one further highlight of the evening which was having a new Bonneville Bobber on display.  The bike was provided courtesy of Performance Triumph Stratford and was brought along by Carl.  We are grateful to both and say a special thank you to them.

As always it gives me great pleasure to welcome this months new members who are:-  Michael Ennis, Craig Farrington, Danny Hull, Leslie Scally and Paul Weston.  We really hope you will all come along to one of our regular weekly meetings at The Heart of England Social Club, Berkswell Road, Meriden, CV7 7LB.

Now finally forthcoming events:-

On April 16th we have the branch Easter egg run.  This is an annual event run by our Martin Wake.  It is in support of the Acorns Children’s Hospice in Birmingham.  We do take some chocolate eggs but these tend to be for the siblings of the patients because, understandably, some of these kids are poorly in the extreme and can’t eat the chocolate so cash donations are most welcome.  The monetary donations are converted into Amazon vouchers so that they benefit the kids directly rather than being swallowed up in the hospices general expenses.  There is still time to donate should anybody wish to do so.  Obviously the easiest way to donate would be to pop along to the clubhouse on a Monday night or you could contact Martin direct.  To do that I think calling him would be best.  His number is 07779271635.  I spoke to Martin yesterday and he told me that so far he has received over £400 in donations.  We would like to say a huge thank you for every donation and we would like to say a special thank you to the Heart of England Social club who donated back the cost of the room hire for the evenings of our talks.  We would also like to add a second thank you to Pete Brown who generously donated his fee for his talk on the 6th of March.   If you would like to join the run please be at the clubhouse around 9:30 for a 10am departure.

On April 30th we have the Bike 4 Life fest at Cosford.  Meet at the Toby Carvery, Stonebridge 9am for 9:30 departure.

Donnington Park Classic bike race weekend is on May 6 – 7th.  We will be having a branch stand.  Details are, as yet, to be confirmed so watch this space.

Sunday21st May sees the Rugby Bike fest.  Meet at the Long Itchington Diner 9:30 for 10am departure.

Monday 29th May Wings and Wheels at Bidford on Avon.  Meet at Stratford Bike Park 9:30 for 10am departure.

I think I should also add that all organised day trips should be considered to be weather permitting so if in doubt please check before setting off.  You can find Keith’s contact details on the branch web site.

Looking a little further ahead, we have a 3 day trip to Wales on the 6 – 8th of June.  We will be staying at the Bikers Retreat near Dolgellau.  Last I heard there are no single rooms available so everyone will have to share.  Once there members will be free to arrange their own ride outs or join Julie and Len on a tour of the Elan Valley or even join Keith on another route altogether.  Personally I will be looking forward to the Elan valley as I know it of old.  It is, without doubt, an area of outstanding natural beauty.  On the other hand Keith’s routes are always highly interesting so it could be a tough choice.  The total cost of the 2 night stay is £90.00 but you can secure a place with a £30.00 deposit with the balance payable on the day of departure.  The best bet would be to contact Julie whose details are available alongside the branch report or, again, pop along on a Monday evening.

Well that is about all for this report but I will say this:-  I am new at this so if you have feedback you would like to offer I would be most appreciative.  You can email me at

So that really is it.  I hope you have enjoyed it.  Bye for now and best regards,


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Page edited 04 April 2017