STILL RIDING AFTER ALL THESE YEARS…
Article contributed by Jane Carrott, BMRA Vice-Secretary
February 1990: Nelson Mandela is freed after 27 years imprisonment; the space probe Voyager takes photographs of the entire solar system; Sinead O’Connor’s “Nothing Compares to You” is number 1 in the charts. And in Boston, Lincolnshire, a group of like-minded guys and gals meet up to form the Boston Motorcycle Riders Association (BMRA).
Their inaugural meeting was held on the evening of Tuesday February 13th 1990. Wind forward to today and they are still going strong, with many of the original members still active in the club.
For many years the BMRA met at the Wyberton Sports & Social Club for its meetings and activities, but in recent times relocated to the Hammer & Pincers pub, near Oldrids Downtown. Rides out meet up on The Green, Wide Bargate, and range from short, local rides (which tend to be early and late in the riding season) to venturing further afield during the longer summer evenings. Some rides involve stopping off for a drink or a bite to eat.
The membership is diverse, and includes a retired businessman, an engineer, a driving instructor, a lorry driver, and workers in the health sector, education and the prison service to mention just a few. The range of motorcycles they ride is equally eclectic, and includes naked retros, cruisers, sport-tourers, classics, the odd sports bike and several outfits. Clearly the BMRA can’t be pigeon-holed, and perhaps this has contributed to their success and longevity.
Rides out take place every Tuesday evening during the summer (apart from the 1st Tuesday of each month, which is a committee meeting and club night). Then, as winter draws on, a range of activities is added to the calendar to help while away the dark nights; these include quizzes, competitions, talks and demonstrations.
Mindful of the ever-burgeoning raft of legislation that successive governments and the EU try to inflict on motorcycling, the BMRA is affiliated to the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG), who are key players in the field of rider’s rights, advocating education rather than legislation and providing much-needed guidance in respect to motorcycling issues. An example of the benefits of affiliation to this organisation is that they successfully worked with a local branch of MAG to gain improved motorcycle parking in Boston town.
They are also affiliated to the National Association of Bikers with a Disability (NABD), a charitable organisation with a wealth of knowledge and assistance available to help disabled bikers to get back on the road with appropriate and approved adaptations to their machines.
And if all that wasn’t enough, the BMRA is solely responsible for Boston Bike Night, which always takes place on the first Thursday evening in July. Since the very first one, held in 1998, this premier Boston event has gone from strength to strength and is possibly the biggest biker-oriented event in the south of the county, regularly attracting 40+ stalls and 2,000-3,000 bikes with an estimated 5,000-6,000 visitors in total, many of whom are locals who like to come along and mingle with the bikers and enjoy the spectacle of the event.
The BMRA is always happy to see new faces, and prospective members are welcome to attend one or two meetings or rides out to “try before they buy” their membership. To find out more, you can go along to a meeting or ride-out.