February 2024
Dates For Your Diary
Group Meeting
Monday club nights will be organised on the second Monday of the months of - March; June and September. This gives us lighter nights.
11 March - Steve Tucker, RoADAR Examiner

6 April 2024 meeting at the Dandy Highwayman Cafe Cherhill.  9.30 am for 10 am start

Monthly Ride-Outs

Bike Ride-Outs on the 3rd Saturday of every even numbered month and the 3rd Sunday of every odd numbered Month. Email will be sent out to Bikers and added to the Forum.

Next ride out Sunday 17 March.  Details will be forthcoming via email to all bike members.

Do you have a topic you would like discussed, or know of an interesting speaker?  Please contact speaker at speakers@wiltshireroadar.co.uk 

Congratulations to the following members who have passed their Advanced Tests recently:  
Anna Mattocks - Bike - Gold - Tutor David Blackledge
Please welcome the following to the Group:
Steve Tucker - Bike
Don’t forget that we have a range of clothing available to purchase. We also offer a range of books, such as Roadcraft, Motorcycle Roadcraft and the Highway Code, and these are available at discounted prices.

For more information visit the Merchandise page of our web site 
We are always looking for more articles, ideas and news for the newsletter. Have you been somewhere interesting recently that would make a good story? If you attend any group events then take a camera and send us your pictures!

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Chair's Ramblings
It has been a very wet month and the driving conditions have been challenging to say the least.  The roads are deteriorating in font of our eyes, and I know of at least 4 cars which have suffered punctures due to an ever-growing pothole near my house.  I trust you are all using your advanced training and observation skills to avoid such damage to your vehicles.  Please always apply advanced driving and riding skills and stay safe.   
We have our first meeting on 11 March, and I hope you will come along.  Steve Tucker, Coach Mentor, will be talking to us about the alien world of time space and distance.   More details are elsewhere in this newsletter so please take a look.  Steve is passionate about driving and riding and has a wealth of experience.  It promises to be an interesting evening.  We have invited the Gloucester Group to attend as well but please think about bringing a friend or two as we will all benefit form Steve’s wisdom and experience.
In discussion with some tutors this month the average age of our membership as raised.  We can all take a guess at this, but we did take a look at the data base discovered our youngest member is 30 years old and our oldest is 80.  A good spread but I suspect these are the extremes!  It is good to have such a spread of ages and we continue to try and engage with all ages – ideas on a postcard please if you think we can take a new approach.
I would also like to thank Nick Carrington for stepping into the role of Car Training Officer. 
Please remember to not only take your 3-yearly retest but also to let us know when you have (the membership secretary is the best bet but any of the committee will do).  This allows us to publish your success (if you are happy for us to do so) and for us to keep our records up to date.  Please remember if you are a tutor you need to be a member of RoADAR so you are covered by their third party indemnity insurance.
In the meantime, as the weather warms up (and hopefully dries up a bit) and the days become longer I trust you will all stay safe and enjoy your driving and riding.
Group Meeting 11 March
One of our newset members, Steve Tucker,  Coach Mentor and a RoADAR examiner, will be speaking at our next group meeting.

Steve is new to the area but had a full career in the Metropolitan Police as a Traffic Officer then ran his own business for driving and riding training for which he achieved the highest training qualifications available.  He is also a published author on advanced rider training and  was the driving force behind the establishment of RoADAR Cyprus. 

We are fortunate to have him helping Wiltshire RoADAR to develop.

He will talk on The alien world of time, speed and distance; which is equally applicable to drivers and riders.   Steve will be entertaining, informative and engaging so this promises to be a lively evening so please come along for some continuous personal development with Steve, or just for interest and a catch up;  why not bring a friend who is not a member?

Looking forward to hearing all about this so see you all on the 11th March at Liddington Hal at around 19:30 for a 19:45 start.

Church Road, Liddington, SN4 0HB;  what 3 words:///inflict.skims.modifies.  We will finish by 2100.


As a group we often provide support at the Police  organised events. They are well attended and it is a good opportunity for us as a recruiting ground.  A recent email appeared with the following tips.

Booking a Retest
Please be aware you need to book your 3 yearly retest directly with  RoSPA via their website.  Sadly we cannot book it for you as it is all done electronically.  You may also need to check when your re-test is due if you have not been paying your subscriptions to RoADAR as they will not remind you.  

Tutors will be happy to conduct a refresh should you wish one prior to a re test.
Members' Activities
Have you been up to anything to do with Riding or Driving lately? If so, then please let us know as we would love to include it here; photos would be great too!
February Ride Out - We need a big table in the café – the no ‘U’ turn ride!!

Having said the largest group for a while turned up last month, we grew again to 13 bikers on the ride led by Paul Prictor.  We met at Chippenham and headed north into Gloucester.  As ever the imagination of the ride leader found us some interesting roads through the countryside. 
The start

A great mix of small country roads and fast sweeping A roads saw us snake through the countryside gracefully.  Some were more graceful than others, according to our Tail End Charlie, who got to see all the group ride in turn and observed it was fascinating to see the different styles and levels of smoothness amongst the group – he would not spill the beans on who fitted into which category though!
The café (the boat for sale is in the background if anyone is interested)
Such a large group took some organising, and we revised the drop off system to ensure no one got lost.  We also added a few rules learnt form last time and it worked well.  The main issue was to mark the direction of travel with a hand signal and not rely on the indicators (which may be giving different information to other road users).
Paul chose the right places to put markers down and we all behaved ourselves and did not venture from the route.  There were some complicated junctions and a number of small towns and villages, but the system saw us all safely reach the coffee stop at the Black Shed in Slimbridge.  The café was really welcoming despite being busy. 

The Bridge doing its thing
The Black Shed is on the Gloucester and Sharpness canal, and we were entertained by the swing bridge which had to open to let boats navigate their way along the canal.  There was also a boat for sale, and we reminded ourselves of the saying; a boat makes you happy twice; once when you buy it and once when you sell it!

Our route back took in some challenging roads around Nailsworth and into the Cotswold water park ending up at the AV8 café at Kemble airfield.  Some minor maintenance due to tyre pressure sensors indicating a loss in pressure and some eagle-eyed observation of a screw in a rear tyre.  Pressures checked (many of us fighting to show our preparation for such an occasion!) we enjoyed another coffee (and some cake!) before making our way home under our own navigation.

A great ride well managed and without any 'u' turns – thanks Paul.

Driven Ohm Racing - 2024 preview 

Even though we are no longer sponsoring Gary and his Driven Ohm team, we continue to receive and publish updates to their successes!

After the amazing finish to the 2023 season, where we scored 3rd overall in class C with Ben Pemberton in the normally aspirated Mini Cooper and team leader Gary scored 8 podiums out of 9 races to scoop Class Champion in class E for the Supercharged Minis, securing 3rd overall in the Hot Hatch series along the way, we have not been idle in the off-season.
Gary got down to some serious CPD (continuous professional development) with several of his clients hosting refresher training. An interesting addition to this was spending 4 days in Finland with Porsche getting qualified as an ice driving instructor.


The race team has now signed 3 full time drivers for the cars in 2024. Ben is stepping up to the Cooper S #887, with Dan Sadjadian filling the empty seat in the class C Cooper #265. Max Gray is joining the team for 2024 after a one-off outing in 2023. Max's arrival meant that the team had effectively run out of cars. Max will move into the class winning Cooper S #905 that Gary campaigned to 4 wins and the class title last year. 
This left Gary without a seat when the music stopped - or so it seemed. After the successful pairing of Gary's Driven Ohm Racing team with Darren Duffields 119 Edition team in 2023, with Darren looking after firstly Gary in 905, then the other two cars as guest drivers signed to race them, the two teams have formed a more formal partnership for 2024 and beyond.
Now operating as 119 Racing, with the Driven Ohm Racing cars forming a satellite sub-team within the main team's garage, Gary will now move sideways into 119 Racing and be the lead 119 Racing team driver in a new for 2024 Mini Cooper S #119. More details on that car later. The three Driven Ohm cars have updated liveries which will be identical to the two 119 Racing team cars, and the team has a few Owner-Drivers in their own Minis which will be similarly decorated.

We have a test day on March 15th with a public media day on March 16th where 119 will be shaken down and Ben and Max can bed themselves into their new steeds for the year ahead. The cars will be battling in the debut season of the Castle Combe Hot Hatch Championship as we have been promoted from a series to a full Championship from 2024.
Race dates are:
15-Mar    Combe Track Day        Test Day for race cars16-Mar    Media Day                    Test and Media Day01-Apr    Howards Day                Hot Hatch Rds 1&206-May   May Madness               Hot Hatch Rd 3&406-May   May Madness               Dave Allen Trophy27-May   Combe Carnival            No Hot Hatch Races27-May   Combe Carnival           Mark Sutton Memorial Race16-Jun    Summer Spectacular    Hot Hatch Rd 5&603-Aug    Combe Challenge        Hot Hatch Rd 7&826-Aug    Combe Countdown      Hot Hatch Rd 9&1005-Oct    Grand Finals                Hot Hatch Rd 11&12
Gary Franks
Highway Code App

The Stationery Office  has launched a new Highway Code app.  
The app is for all road users and makes it even easier - and more fun - to keep up to date with the rules of the road. 

What's new?

  • Instant access to the very latest version of the Official Highway Code while on the move, on tablets and mobile devices
  • Quizzes and timed challenge features, that help users check their knowledge of the Highway Code and track their progress.
  • A voice over option enabling users to listen as well as read.
The app costs £3.99 and is available to download on both Android and iOS platforms.
Membership and GDPR

Due to GDPR we are required to remove an individual's details from our Group database when they are no longer required by us.  We remove a lapsed member's details if they have not paid a subscription by the 31 Dec following the AGM (3 months after the subscriptions are due).  If a member has forgotten to pay their subs and pays after 31 Dec we will require a joining form to be completed so we can replace them on the database.

It all seems a bit strange, but we do not want to get on the wrong side of the Government's Information Commissioner.  We understand if members forget or are late with their subscriptions, but please help us to keep our database accurate and compliant.

This is, of course, separate to those of you who maintain a membership with RoADAR HQ.
Promotional activities

SkillShare - 2023 - The Dandy Highwayman Cherhill

6 April 2024!

Successfully supported by Wiltshire RoADAR motorcycle tutors and WABAM Observers. Final confirmed date for the year is:

21 April
19 May
23 Jun
4 Aug
8 Sep
6 Oct 

If you have any ideas for events, then please get in touch with the committee using the committee email address :

Look forward to hearing and discussing your ideas.

Presentation material

A generic set of slides has been created for use if you are asked about Wiltshire RoADAR and have the opportunity to present. This could be at a local club, workplace etc. Please send a mail to committee@wiltshireroadar.co.uk   and the slides will be sent over to you.

We also have flyers and business cards so ask for these via the same means.

Call for Bikers from Severn Freewheelers

Many of you will be aware of Severn Freewheelers, the blood bike charity that provides its free service to the NHS and specifically the Great Western Trust (GWH)  at Swindon. Partly as a result of the Trust’s response to COVID and the service being better understood by the Trust, the workload now means we have two bikes serving the area. Last year we undertook over 2000 jobs for the Swindon Trust. Overall Severn Freewheelers did over 7000 tasks.

This is a request primarily seeking riders to help support our operation going forward. Naturally over time people fall away as their circumstances change, they move away or indeed decide this is no longer for them.

The service runs 1900hrs to 0700hrs weekdays and 24 hrs at weekends and public holidays. A typical duty is Wednesday evening till Saturday evening or Saturday until the Wednesday. You would keep the bike at home until you handover to the next rider. The bikes are the latest BMW RTs.

A new rider needs to have undertaken his or her advanced test in the last three years and is required to be retested every three years. In addition, there would be a check ride undertaken on joining and further periodic check rides with a nominated assessor. Managing the risks within the operation is a core value of the charity. There are of course other roles as coordinators and fund raisers and riders are expected to contribute beyond simply riding which is vital to maintain the service. From a response basis, riders need to live within 25 miles of the Great Western Hospital. Training is provided for all new members.

If this is of interest, please feel free to get in touch.


Geoff Brown

Severn Freewheelers

Media coordinator - Help us to broaden our reach

To help promote the group we have a variety of online media platforms, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter. To help make the most out of the opportunities that these outlets provide, we could use some help from someone who has experience of using such tools. Drop me a line at secretary@wiltshireroadar.co.uk  if you would be interested in helping promote our group.
Committee minutes   

These are available from the Group Secretary if any member wishes to see them. If you are interested in reading the minutes, then please send a mail to the Group Secretary whom will promptly forward them onto you.

Test results 

Reminder to let the Membership Secretary and your tutor know when you have taken your Advanced Driving/Riding Test and result. This is so our database is kept up to date; there is no need or pressure at all to have the result published on the website or in this newsletter if you wish to keep your result confidential.  
If you have read this far, thanks! If you have any feedback or suggestions about content for your newsletter, then drop us a line at newsletter@wiltshireroadar.co.uk   If you can't leave constructive feedback though, then we don't want to hear from you!
Membership Secretary: Mr Paul Prictor
Hon Secretary: Mr Mark Sealey
To make sure that you receive our messages we recommend that you add newsletter@wiltshireroadar.co.uk, membership@wiltshireroadar.co.uk and secretary@wiltshireroadar.co.uk to your address list.