On the 25th June I took a ride to Skipton in North Yorkshire for a little bike show with a big name that happens once a year and has a band of dedicated followers.
For the last five years the annual ‘Big Bike Sunday’ has been run by the Girder Fork & Classic Motorcycle Club and takes place in the grounds of the Skipton Auction Mart just off the A629. It’s more Cow Shed than Bike Shed but the visitors and exhibitors are every bit as enthusiastic and engaged, though the only inking done was with a ballpoint and if you wanted a haircut there was a barber down the road (which would probably be shut though as it was a Sunday).
Big Bike Sunday is an opportunity for owners to show off their pride and joy and there are categories covering everything from venerable machines from times past to modern day sports bikes and everything in-between. A modest £3 fee covers entry and along with the raffles and other donations, raises funds for local charities, including the Air Ambulance Service.
Having parked between a Ducati Scrambler and a van, I made my way to the main arena where Honda and Harley stood shoulder to shoulder with the likes of Rudge, AJS, Moto Guzzi, Panther, Lambretta, Matchless and NSU. There were also trikes, combinations and three wheelers of every type in a separate area.
A single cylinder 75cc powered bicycle from France stood its ground against an over powered 2.3 litre Triumph Rocket III.
A Morini 3½ stood alone and a Matchless showed a hint of Heath Robinson where a pair of mole grips was pressed into service as an impromptu fuel cut off switch.
There were Choppers, Bobbers and imaginative paintwork too, but everyone stopped whatever they were doing to listen in the hope that their raffle numbers might come up and they’ll be presented with a new security chain or disk lock, MOT voucher, pizza stone or beer making kit.
The event only runs from noon until four in the afternoon but it still draws visitors and this year was no exception, with event organisers announcing that numbers were up on the previous year.