AJS & Matchless Owners Club

East Suffolk Section

Section Notes 1st November 2017


On October 1st, the section fielded a fine display at the Copdock show with nine machines on our stand, some not shown before. In addition, the Club’s two raffle bikes were on show, brought along with other Club display material by Stuart Smith. We had a steady stream all day of visitors to the stand, with one joining the section as a new member, so we look forward to seeing more of Steve McCullough. Particular interest was shown in one of the raffle bikes, the new AJS Cadwell. Two visitors to the stand asked to sit on it to “get the feel of it” and one was sufficiently interested that the following morning, he phoned the dealer in Lowestoft, arranged to see the bike in stock on Tuesday and immediately bought it. It was probably the weather on show day that prevented a high show attendance, since it was rather cold and windy so, although Chris, our star ticket-girl was kept busy all day selling raffle tickets, the overall total wasn’t as high as last year. As usual, there was keen anticipation of the selection by our mystery judge of the best machine of the marque on the stand, to win the Roy Stock memorial shield. This year’s delighted owner was Trevor, whose winning bike is a late AJS single finished in a striking colour– Cadbury purple– probably a shade never envisaged by the folk at Plumstead! Thanks again to the usual willing band of helpers for erecting and quickly dismantling the display.
The following weekend, we were very busy again, this time running the Club’s Alternative Rally, by tradition held each year on the first weekend in October. This year’s calendar gave us a unique chance to mark the section’s 20th birthday with a special event by doing this and the show as well. This year is also the 30th anniversary of the first Alternative Rally, held in Derbyshire in 1987. We erected the Section reception tent and marked out the College sports field on the Friday morning and as soon as the site opened at noon, the first two campers rumbled in, coming from Dortmund. By the time for the afternoon run to assemble, there were about 30 bikes ready for a short run to Parham airfield. There is a museum in the control tower there recalling Parham’s days as a wartime US bomber field and another museum alongside with detail about the British resistance organisation. Afterwards the riders returned to site, eager to enjoy a tasty evening meal.
After a man-sized breakfast, Saturday’s full day run to Leiston gave a choice of going either to the Long Shop museum or Sizewell Beach cafe. After the ride back and a quick tidy-up, people were soon filing into the dining-hall for another excellent meal provided by the College. In the bar later, among other awards presented was the one to the rider who’d ridden furthest to the rally on a bike of the marque; this year awarded to Chris Moore, from Millom, in Cumbria.
It was pleasing to get so many complimentary comments as people were leaving, so we felt that, all in all, it was a splendid weekend.