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The Suffolk 100 Takes Off

It was two members of the Norwich Section, Nick Farthing and Pete Bennett who decided to resurrect a run for Pre 1931 machines only.  The Norwich Section has a very active membership and does organise runs for Pre 1941 machines but has always allowed other VMCC eligible bikes to run alongside.  Routes are always a compromise when there is a big gap in machine age, some roads being better for some than others, which is the reason to why the Suffolk 100 was organised.

Firstly the name, the run was started and finished from The 100th Bomb Group Museum at Thorpe Abbotts in Norfolk.  The museum is based around the Control Tower of a WWll USA Flying Fortress Airbase, known as ‘The Bloody Hundreth’ due to the massive losses of crew and aircraft during the duration of the war.  The museum is an incredible place to visit and runs totally on donations, you can find their details at www.100bgmus.org.uk.

The museum welcomed 18 riders on a fine sunny day and entrants were offered free drinks to get them started for the day; bikes were displayed at the base of the Control Tower before the start.  Riders came from Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Nottinghamshire to enjoy the Norfolk and Suffolk countryside roads.  The 38 mile morning route took in the villages of Hoxne, Stradsett, Laxfield, Heveningham and Harleston to name just a few.

The organised lunch stop was at The Red Lion, Needham where everyone was made very welcome.  Once rested and fed everyone was away on the 26 mile return route to the Museum.  The route passed through Hempnal, Hardwick Airfield (an ex WWll Liberator base), Pulham St Mary and Dickleburgh. 

On our return we were welcomed back by the Museum volunteers and visitors, the bikes were displayed and trophies awarded for ‘Most Desired Bike’ as voted by the riders themselves, this award went to a 1929 Sunbeam Model 7 ridden by David Emmerson from Cambridge.  A second award, ‘The Flat Tank Shield’ was awarded by the organisers to Simon Hewitt riding a 1927 Triumph (TWN).

Thanks go to Dave and Val Cartmell who supplied full Recovery backup for the event and two Roving Marshall’s in the form of Roger Barton and Peter McNamara were also on hand.

Everyone went on their way having voiced their delight on a well organised event, a great route, great pub and all especially designed for pre 1931 machines and their riders.

Will they come back for more next year – “you bet” they said.
Will they be bringing friends to ride – “yes” they said.

Will we be organising another Suffolk 100 next year? – I guess we better!










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