As you may already know, I'm standing for the post of Area Representative for Scotland, in the VMCC. I thought I'd better try and explain what I would hope to achieve if elected. The main remit of the job, as I understand it, is to visit the various Scottish sections (6 in total, not including the NE Scottish) and listen to what they have to say in order to communicate their views to Head office. There would also obviously be a reciprocal transfer of information back to the sections, so that they would be more fully informed of what is going on in the club.
Alongside this, it would be great to work with any section who would like to do something new in their area, so that we can raise the profile of the club in Scotland, and the old bikes it is trying to keep on the road. With this in mind, I quite fancy starting a "Try A Veteran / Vintage / Classic Bike Day" in the North, as they already have down south, to enable anyone to come along and find out what it's like to own and ride an old bike. It is amazing what a difference talking to owners and seeing the bikes being ridden makes to a person's perception of what it's all about. It is one of those sad facts, that if more young people don't start owning these machines then in years to come there will be no-one to look after them and all the work being done now to restore and use them will come to an end. It's great to see loads of beautiful bikes at events and on rides, but in twenty or thirty - or maybe even as little as ten years time, there may be no-one to care for them. Hopefully, I can bring youth and enthusiasm into the mix to help to prevent what seems like the inevitable - no challenge too big for GBC!!
You'll also know that last year I helped to organise a brand new event in the Northeast of Scotland - The Haggis Run (and if you don't know, where have you been??) This was a fantastic day, and much more successful than we dared to hope. It is now planned as a regular event, and although we can't always expect glorious weather, we have got off to a good start, with a lot of people promising to come back. Another new event is planned for this coming summer - the Plus 1, which will slot in between the National and the S&T - those two great dates in the diary for riders of regularity/reliability events, and I've got loads more ideas for the future to get people out and about on their bikes. Talking of which, I don't just spout on about how one should actually ride one's motorcycles, I do try to get out and about on Cubbie as much as possible, in most weathers, and I'm about half way to completing my Charity Challenge, Cubbies Counties. By the way, that should be back on the road very soon when I head to Orkney in February...
So there you have it, this youthful enthusiasm, and my attempts at journalism are my ways of promoting the use and enjoyment of old bikes. They are, after all, a part of our heritage, and the old British bikes are a part of our industrial and social history, and are therefore worth looking after. It'll be too late when they've gone.
Well, I don't usually get this serious on the blog, but this is a subject that needs some thought. Do you ever wonder what will happen to your collection of old bikes when you're not around to exercise / polish them?
I hope those of you who are VMCC Scotland members and who read this will feel you would like to vote for me when the time comes. Thanks for taking the time to read this, and please pass the message on to members who do not have internet access - and remember, don't wait for someone else to vote - pick up your pen and VOTE GBC!!!!
And in other news....HUGE THANKS TO SLIM JIM for sorting out the hot water situation at Cubbie Towers - after we collected the replacement tank on the weekend, Slim arrived to fit it, only to find the new one had different fittings to the old one....and all the DIY / plumbing places shut on a Saturday afternoon, apart from B&Q, but they didn't know what he was talking about. Then the shut off valve broke. So it all went as well as expected, but finally, and fingers crossed...we have a non-leaking hot water tank and the floor is nearly dry. Gosh, more 'other news' - thanks to McKwak for delivering the exhaust manifold to me last week (thanks also for mending it), and I promise not to tell anyone that you drove the trolley round Asda for me. I won't tell a soul. Promise.
PS, BigBob and Darrell has anything nice arrived in the post for you lately?