Prescott Bike Festival

Prescott Bike Festival takes place on Sunday April 6, featuring plenty of action on the Prescott hillclimb near Cheltenham as well as a host of family activities with proceeds going to the Nationwide Association of Blood Bikes and Severn Freewheelers.

The fourth annual event will be larger than ever before, with even more bike manufacturers and clubs confirmed, plus a large display of historic, modern and race bikes on display in the paddock, demo areas, passenger rides, stunt show, trade stalls, live music, good food and a host of entertainment both on and off the track to keep the whole family amused.

Special guest appearances include: former three times British Superbike Champion and Bloodbike ambassador John Reynolds, MotoGP commentator Steve Parrish, racer Michael Rutter and motorcycle adventurer Nick Sanders.

Do community speed watch volunteers work?

Lots of villages now have speed watch volunteers.  The question is whether or not they have a long term impact on speed and accident reduction?

The main people who drive over the limit are mostly mums driving their kids to and from school, followed by the infamous white van man.

The speed watch volunteers spend their time recording speeds through their villages, but despite the fluorescent jackets, their powers are limited.  If a driver far exceeds the speed limit say by 10mph they can write to the local police with the vehicle details.  Officers will then check that the vehicle is being driven legally and then write to them warning them about their speeding.

Suffolk Police state that since their CSW initiative started in 2009, 51 schemes have been set up across the county with the volunteers are trained by police, sites are vetted and then volunteers are left to decide how often they operate.

Suffolk Police have issued nearly 43000 fixed penalty notices for speeding in 2012 with 16000 licences endorsed and 2900 prosecutions.  The fastest recording speeding offence was 129mph in a 70mph zone.

Kevin Clinton, head of road safety at the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), has said that Community Speed Watch schemes can be a useful way of monitoring speeds and encouraging drivers to stay within limits.

What do you think?

 

Matchless Motorcycles

For a while, Matchless were the largest motorcycle maker and from the turn of the century, the Collier Brothers were involved in powered two wheelers.  Both Harry and Charlie Collier believed in competition, and before World War 1, the marque was well established.

The company’s premises were in Plumstead, South East London, and were well removed from the Midlands centre of the industry, but this seemed to have little effect on their prosperity.

In the 1920s, they also built cars.  At the start of the 1930s, the company had a range of singles much as any other manufacturer, plus a big V-twin for sidecar work.

For 1930, they also had the new Silver Arrow, which was kept under wraps until the last minute.  It was another attempt to provide the touring rider with the fully equipped sophisticated machine.

The problem was that enthusiasts would clamour for advanced developments and sophistication but would never purchase it.  Fortunately, Matchless continued with their line of straight forward machines which sold well and kept them solvent.

The Silver Arrow had been a focus of interest when it was first shown, but it was too small and placid to excite people.  Within 12 months, this changed when the company unveiled a machine with a four cylinder overhead camshaft engine at Olympia.  It was called the Silver Hawk.

The 1934 range was slimmed down a little, and among the casualties was the Silver Arrow, D, D/5, D/6, D6 and D7.  The mudguard beading was changed to a gold line in 1935 and a change to chrome plated wheel rims reflected the move away from the economies of the depression years.

In April 1935, an important new model was announced which was to set the style and format for the range from then on.  The new G3 was known as the Clubman.  It had a vertical cylinder and used the trusted 69 x 93 mm dimensions to obtain 348cc.  It had an OHV, a magneto tucked behind the engine and a dynamo beneath that, where it was chain driven from the crankshaft.

During the 1930s, Matchless supplied engines to Brough Superior, Calthorpe, Coventry Eagle, OEC and OK Supreme.

Bonhams Auction – 8th September 2012

On 8th September 2012, Bonhams will be holding the Beaulieu Sale Collectors Motor Cars, Motorcycles and automobilia sale which is featuring the entire Exmoor Classic Car Museum collection.

It begins at 11.00am and has a wide range of items on the list.

They have a huge selection of lots, click here for details.