Follow Us

Newsletter Sign-up

Jun July

Norfolk Branch visit Europe - June 2019 by Phil Barker

Five bikes from the Norfolk HOC, with pillions headed for the Harwich ferry and a trip to Europe. Things started OK but on the way to the ferry it rained and when we arrived at then Hoek it was still raining but this time there were strong winds as we headed for Arnhem.

Spirits undamped we stopped at the Arnhem museum where a very interesting guide told us the story of the British and Polish soldiers attempt to take the bridge whilst massively outnumbered.
Here, Ian found he had a large screw sticking into his rear tyre but was quickly sorted by Ian and Mark, so we were soon on our way to a lovely hotel in Weibersbrunn for the night. 

Next stop was the Amber Hotel in Bad Reichenhall via many twisty and steep roads as it was decided to cut across country. From the Amber Hotel we visited the Eagles Nest and more hills, twists and amazing scenery.
The next day was 11 hours to the beautiful Rheine Falls and more amazing roads and scenery finishing at Singen for one night. From Singen we headed for Klotten via the B500 (One crossed off the bucket list) and yet more amazing roads and views.

Here we stayed at the Zur Post Hotel, we could not have been made more welcome, the owner Klaus is an excellent host and chef. We had three nights there visiting the castle at Eltz, Cochem, Koblenz, a cable car ride over the river to the fort, and rode the hills around Boppard, not forgetting a run to the Nurburgring to watch the cars. Unfortunately, there had been a motorcycle accident on the track that afternoon and motorcycles had been cancelled for the rest of the day.

Sadly it was then time to head home, after visiting Netherlands, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Lichtenstein and France (Mark loves France).
A great trip organised by Tony (Now known as Tony's Tours).
LINGS DEMO DAY - Saturday 22nd June
 Once again, thanks to the courtesy and hospitality of Mark and his team at Lings of Harleston, several branch members were able to enjoy a fantastic morning of sampling a great line-up of motorcycles, including CRF450L, CB650RA, Africa Twin Adventure Sport Manual and Sport DCT, Africa Twin DCT, NC750XA, CBR500RA, CRF250 Rally, CB500XA, CB500FA, CBR650RA, and CB1000RA, phew!!

 Our eight branch members began arriving at around 9:00am, bringing the usual selection of cakes, doughnuts, and biscuits which were enjoyed by all and suplemented the drinks supplied by Lings. We spent the first three-quarters of an hour or so with the usual good-natured banter including that my bike needed a polish, chat about the recent European holiday, and the attributes of the demo line up, then at 10:00am we commenced the test rides alongside Lings customers. Although we get invited to try these bikes, we never forget that this is another ordinary working day for the Lings team, we are always very grateful for the opportunity even though it gives them extra work. I decided to try the much vaunted, Africa Twin to see what all the hype was about and once shown all the switches and knobs plus a clutch lever for me!! it was off on the open road and I must say that I really enjoyed it, especially the riding position which is so different to my regular ride, I was surprised at how agile it was for such a tall bike and had a whale of a time before returning it to Lings. As each of us returned from our ride we discussed the results of how we found the different bikes and compared them with our own. Then at just before 12:00noon, and once we had tested to our fill, Mark was on hand to slave over a hot grill to cook a very welcome, popular, and tasty, free barbecue. Although we had had finished our rides we did not manage to finish off the bbq although we gave it an heroic try. 

 Following that, we decided that as it was such a hot sunny June day, we would ride to the coast, consequently, our Mark led a few of us on cross-country rideout ending up in Aldeburgh where some of us forgot the diet for a day and devoured a very welcome ice-cream. Soon we decided to head seperately to our homes having enjoyed another brilliant day.

  Again, a massive thank you to Mark and his Lings team and thank you to our branch members who supported the event with their presence, cakes, and biscuits, hopefully we can do it all again next year. 
BREAKFAST, THEN A SPIN -  Sunday 7th July, by Phil Barker.

  Rob, Mark, Andy, Tony (Tonys Tours), Michael and Phil, plus three significant others met for our usual Sunday morning breakfast before deciding where to go for a ride. As a leader had not be appointed, and the club, being a democracy, Tony said we are going to Thorpeness and that was that.

Bacon and eggs sorted, and with the weather being perfect we left Norwich and headed to the beautiful winding lanes and rolling hills of our East Anglian cousins in Suffolk.
The A146 was our route of choice and we soon found ourselves passing through the sleepy village of Beccles, where the main road was closed and an unfathomable division was in place, which meant we avoided the main square, as I suspect a witch was on trial and they wanted to keep strangers away. The rest of the route was easy, once through Beccles we just followed the road to Leiston and when you smell the sea turn right, first left and keep going until you get to the pond, Thorpeness.

 Lots of people, old cars and motorcycles were to be seen passing by, including a horse and cart, there was an old Austin Healy and an old old Bentley supercharger came roaring by, luckily Mark knows a lot about interesting old cars and things. 

  We sat in the sun, enjoyed an ice cream and began planning next year's European trip, following our recent success in Germany, with the hope that we will be let in after Brexit.


 Eight of us met at the McDonald's just outside Swaffham ready to depart at 10:30am for Roger and Freda's rideout to Rutland Water, Michael (from Cambridge) joined us here for the start and first part of the ride and informed us that he would peel off after a good few miles, returning home after making the journey worthwhile. Roger and Freda led us on a lovely cross-country route, picking up Steve and Debi just outside Downham market, through Nordelph, Outwell, and some beautiful picturesque villages, keeping us off the main roads except for a short stint on the A47 around Peterborough. From here it was again cross-country until we arrived at Rutland Water where we enjoyed refreshments and relaxed watching the boats and birds on the lake. 

 After a couple of hours and with Andy leading, we returned via a different, just as good, cross-country route back to Downham Market where some stopped for tea at Arbuckles.
 A big thank you to Roger and Freda, plus Andy for two very good routes on some brilliant roads.