Fancy a GoldWing Light Parade?
BLP 2010 Warwick at Night

Photographed at the 2010 Blackpool Light Parade

GoldWing Light Parades can be great fun, for riders and spectators alike. If you’ve never been to one then 2014 could be the year to give it a whirl, with a choice of at least four Light Parades being organised for this year already.

A GoldWing in standard trim looks just as impressive at night as it does during the day, but add a few extra lights and the bikes soon start looking really special.  You don’t need to have extra lights to attand an event but Wingers who are into Light Parades mostly do get the bug and fit lots of extra lights, sometimes illuminating their riding clothng too.

GoldWing Light Parades began when a Winger in Lancashire suggested to his mates that a ride together through Blackpool Illuminations might be good fun, so they did, about half a dozen of them.

The following year a few more Wingers joined in, someone thought of sticking some extra colourful lights on the bikes and then things really took off.  Accommodation in a holiday camp was arranged to cater for Wingers from all over the Country who wanted to come and it grew like topsy.  The police were helpful, by shepherding the bikes through traffic (and traffic lights) as well as ignoring the illegal extra lights on the bikes, and the Town Council were very helpful too.  Within a few years the numbers had built up to over 300 bikes in the Parade and the public turned out in huge numbers to spectate.

Parades on this scale were too good to last and they didn’t – difficulties of various sorts continues………

GoldWing Light Parade Website lives on

LP CaptureWhen the Federation of UK GoldWing Clubs closed down, so did it’s GoldWing Light Parade Website, which was by far the longest-running webiste of its kind, having started off when Blackpool Light Parade was still the only GoldWing event of this type.

The Website needed its usual annual updating, to reflect the new Season, but it had just had a substantial re-structuring, so it would have been a real pity to see it disappear.  Apart from anything else it provides the only place where Wingers (and other supporters) can get comprehensive information about GoldWing Light Parades.

So this interesting Website, which includes a large historical collection of photos and videos, is now being sponsored by this Blog.

It will be re-launched for the new Season on January 1st, when you will be able to read about two brand new Light Parade venues for 2014 – and find out which of the 2013 light parades will not be running during 2014.

There will still be a Comparative Table page providing at-a-glance information and links about all the Light Parades, to aid comparison and selection, and each event will have its own details page – or sometimes its own set of information pages – to provide in-depth coverage.

Organise may provide information for inclusion but they aren’t allowed to control what gets publsihed, so the information will be independently chosen – and no Light Parade will be favoured over another except on genuine merit.

Berwick GoldWing Light Parade – new for 2014
Click on the poster to see a larger image

Click on the poster to see a larger image

Berwick on Tweed, the coastal Border Town, is to host a GoldWing Light Parade next year on Saturday 6th September 2014.

GoldWing Misfits, the thriving independent GoldWing Club, are trying their hands at organising a GoldWing Light Parade, following the decision not to run Scarborough for 2014.   Scarborough Light Parade is also now an independent Event and if all goes well Berwick and Scarborough may alternate in early September for future years.

Accommodation has been arranged at the Berwick Holiday Park, which is occupies a clifftop position just outside Town.  This is a large holiday caravan park with excellent indoor facilities including a swimming pool and sports hall and there’s also an 18 hole golf course nearby.  There are no facilities for camping, touring caravans or motorhomes on this site; it’s all static caravans.

There’s no rush to book your accommodation yet but a discounted rate is on offer until the end of February,  so it will be worth booking before then.  Ring the Holiday Park directly on 01289 307113 and mention “GoldWings” to get your discounted rate.  You can follow the planning for the Event on Misfits’s Facebook Page.

Berwick is an attractive Town and should make a good Light Parade venue.  GoldWing Misfits is a very active Club and they have lots of experience of attending Light Parades, so they should know what to do to make this work.  The charity to benefit will be the RNLI and the local lifeboat team are likely to be involved.

 

 

Avon Wing Ding – July 3rd to 7th 2013

Avon WingDing 2013

The ACU National Road Rally 2013 – Control or Compete?

NationaRoadRally2013There are lots of things which are organised by the Autocycle Union (ACU) which are unlikely to appeal to GoldWing riders but their annual National Road Rally might be the exception and it certainly provides a useful test of motorcycling and navigational skills, so read on.

It’s a “scatter rally” which means there’s a choice of control points to use as your personal starting and finishing points and these are all over the Country, so you can compete without travelling a long ay before you even start, yet you are involved in a national event for purposes of judging your results.  You can also choose from a selection of competition categories which cover various distances, ranging from 120 miles (and nothing else) to as many 540 miles (involving 18 hours of riding) plus some special riding tests at the Motor Industry Research Association Proving Ground at Nuneaton.

The Rally is a test of planning and navigational skills as well as riding and it’s competitive, in that those who complete the Rally have their performance checked and winners are declared.  The special section at MIRA’s Proving Ground is only required for the top level “platinum” category of competition and for other categories you don’t need to go there and the wide geographical spread of Control Points will allow riders p,enty of scope to start and finish without the need for a long preliminary transit journey to get there, or back afterwards.

Each rider who takes part pays an entry fee and riders can group together to ride as a team continues………

Light Parade News
HOW MUCH do they lose? (As they ask in Yorkshire)

They lost HOW MUCH?
(As they ask in Yorkshire)

If you haven’t been visiting the GoldWing Light Parade Website to catch the news, you have probably been missing something.

There have been a series of intersting “newsy” developments lately and although the next Light Parade is some time away yet, there’s plenty going on.

New announcements about additional facilities for example – the Welsh Guards are coming to the Llandudno Light Parade and GoldWings will be providing them with a guard of honour rather than the other way around for a change – but there is other news too, including attempts by GWOCGB’s Committee to scupper the Scarborough Light Parade, which last year was their Club’s only successful National Event.

To read more visit the Light Parade Website click here (and keep doing it regularly) or maybe even better subscribe to RSS feeds from the website to ensure you don’t miss the latest news.

You wouldn’t want to miss the news that GWOCGB lost £27,000 last year mishandling their own big event, would you?

Light Parade Website gets a lively News Section

LPW NewsI mentioned the revamped GoldWing Light Parade Website recently for its comparative information – now it’s got a News Section which is delivering insider information as well.

For one reason or another, and maybe just because some Wingers are grumpy old men and women, bike club politics has been screwing up light parades far more than other GoldWing Events, as one faction falls out with another and takes action to try to queer their opponent’s pitch.

Chris Hinds, GWOCGB Chairman, has featured in this sort of situation before and he’s been spreading the word again – criticising another former Club Member who has fallen out with Chris’s Committee and wanting to undermine his Light Parade for that reason.

You can read the latest news as it affects light parades by clicking here.

Hunstanton – Snowy but they still raised over £500 for charity
Better luck with this bit next year!

Better luck with this bit next year!

The Hunstanton Light Parade suffered from the coldest March for 50 years and some of the Wingers who had booked simply couldn’t make it because they were snowed in at home. East Anglia had a lot of snow too so it was remarkable that anyone made it, let alone that they still put on a display.

In the end they had 40 inscriptions, at least 20 bikes showed up and they managed a display on The Green for a while before the cold defeated them. And come time for the evening parade, or Light Run, as they call it, the snow was falling again so discretion had to be the better part of valour.

They nevertheless raised £500 for East Anglia Air Ambulance and at least the bar at Searles Holiday Park was warm and dry.

Well done Norfolk Wings for sticking at it and better luck with the weather next year.

GoldWing Light Parade Website Revamped
The Daytime static display at Hunstanton in 2012

The afternoon static display at Hunstanton in 2012

The GoldWing Light Parade Website, the original and best way to find out about UK GoldWing Light Parades, has been re-launched after a serious reconstruction, converting into a comparison website.

You can visit by clicking here and view the new features, which include a comparison table of all this years light parades, so you can compare them at a glance.

There’s a Countdown Clock to the next Light Parade and lots of detail about each event is provided on its own separate set of pages, which will often give you more accurate and complete information than you can get anywhere else.

The Website is provided as part of its range of free services by the Federation of UK GoldWing Clubs, to help Wingers see in one place what’s available and what’s worth going to in way of GoldWing Light Parades.  There are no partisan restrictions, so every light parade of any size in UK is covered and each Light Parade gets a similar spread, including types of accommodation and costs, the Parade route and whether it’s good enough – even the price of beer!

The information about each Light Parade is resourced, checked and written independently so that although event organisers can submit information and make suggestions for changes, they can’t control what’s written – so you get the down side as well as the positives.

The Federation is keen to promote GoldWing Light Parades so there’s no knocking things for knocking’s sake, but club politics has often plagued light parades in recent years and sometime spoiled them, so this websites gives you an opportunity to know what’s been going on.  The facilities are also described in enough detail to let you see what the snags for you might be.

The first Light Parade of the season is at Hunstanton this coming weekend and if you haven’t considered going, there’s still time to do so.  The information you need is all there on the GoldWing Light Parade Website!

The GoldWing Light Parade Season starts soon
At a glance information - click on the image for an enlargement

Click on the image for an information table

There are four large-scale UK GoldWing Light Parades scheduled for 2013, the first one taking place at Hunstanton later this month.  The other three take place close together towards the end of the season.

There’s a big difference between what’s being provided and what it will cost you to attend and these days maybe you need to look more closely at cost and value as well as distance, to gurad your pennies.

The best way to find out where they are and whether they are worth going to is to visit the GoldWing Light Parade Website, where they are all conventiently listed.

Each event also has a set of Details pages, where you can find out further information.  Links are provided to the Organiser’s own websites where available but the advantage of using this site is that the information is provided independently and impartially, so it will include unfavourable as well as favourable stuff.  So it’s a bit like a consumer’s comparrison website!

The GoldWing Light Parade Website is provided by the Federation of UK GoldWing Clubs as a free service to UK Wingers and no charges are made to even organisers for promoting their events either.

« Previous Entries