Weymouth Week 2024


The South Dorset Section held their Weymouth Week from Sunday 12th May through to Friday the 17th.  Members from many parts of the country attended again this year as they have done many times before.  Perhaps it’s our sea air or the beautiful Dorset countryside that keeps them coming back, but either way they are assured of a good welcome and a good weeks riding.

Sunday dawned bright, sunny and dry, a very good way to start.  60 plus riders with many passengers assembled on the promenade on Weymouth’s sea front.  Parking with kind permission of Weymouth Council.  All documentation complete we set off northwards and eastwards doing a circular route of 22 miles before our first stop of the day at Rainbow Garage Cafe for the morning coffee stop.  Refreshed we set off again heading south and travelling across the army ranges at Lulworth and enjoying spectacular views along the way.  We then dropped down into Lulworth Cove for the lunch stop, having covered another 24 miles.  A chance then to walk down to the Cove and get close to the sea and admire the location.  A short hop of 13 miles took us to a garden centre at Owermoigne for our customary afternoon tea stop.  A run then along Weymouth Bay and back to our starting venue.  A gentle start to the week with just 68 miles covered.

Monday again it dawned bright and dry.  From now on our activities were based at Bagwell Farm Camp Site and around 35 machines assembled at the start and signed on ready for our 10am move off.  A gallop over the hills to enjoy the views and 27 miles later we arrived at the very picturesque village if Milton Abbas.  Coffee was served at the Hambro Arms.  The next leg took us further northwards and as we neared Gillingham for our lunch stop so the rain started to fall.  Lunch was eaten amid a collection of many exotic motorcycles which are kept on display there.  Back once more on the bikes and the rain was by now very heavy, and continued to be heavy for the rest of the day.  Next a leg of 20 miles took us to the village of Glanvilles Wootton and a visit to the Village Hall.  A group of ladies there do various things to raise money to keep a small nearby church afloat.  This time the ladies supplied copious quantities of tea and coffee and the tables groaned with the weight of delicious homemade cakes.  Our small fee helped to boost their coffers.  Another leg of 22 miles took us back to Bagwell Farm by which time all of us were thoroughly drenched but not downhearted.  88 miles completed today.

Tuesday Thank goodness the sun had returned and a much better day in prospect.  Riding kit was at best damp, if not saturated, but around 60 bikes set off in our usual fashion.  Skirting around both Weymouth and Dorchester the narrow lanes took us to Moreton and the Walled Garden Cafe.  Some took refreshments whilst others walked next door to the cemetery were the grave of Lawrence of Arabia can be seen.  We continued travelling east to Upton Park which is owned and run by Poole Council.  A large park with plenty to see and a large cafe to meet the necessary requirements.  Returning west for 20 miles brought us to the stately home of Athlehampton House.  Afternoon tea and cakes were taken in the Long Room which is part of a medieval building.  All very grand and terribly posh but very well received.  The last leg of 19 miles saw us return to Bagwell Farm.  Another good days riding and thank heavens all riding kit had by now blown dry.  78 miles completed.

Wednesday and good dry weather once more.  Today we headed west along the coast road.  Miles of stunning views both out to sea and inland as we follow the Jurassic Coast.  We then go northwards and onto Broadwindsor where the coffee break was taken.  This place incorporates a large craft centre so there are lots to see.  With the 70 plus members present fully refreshed we then went further west and passed Pilsden Pen.  This is the highest point in Dorset and affords spectacular views.  Some members were even energetic enough to climb to the top so had the best views possible.  Dropping south once more we visited the ancient town of Lyme Regis.  Parking on the promenade with permission of the Town Council members were free to look around the town and take lunch wherever they fancied.  Reassembled we headed back east taking in some very narrow lanes but visiting some beautiful small villages along the way.  Our next stop was at West bay which has always been a magnet for all motorcyclists.  Here there are tea stops aplenty but my choice was the compulsory ice cream.  This was followed by the reverse trip along the coast road and back to Bagwell Farm.  Another 72 miles completed today.

Thursday we were greeted by another sunny day.  Around 50 members signed on before again circumnavigating both Weymouth and Dorchester.  Heading northeast by means of quiet country lanes we went to the Crafty Barn Cafe at Winterborne Whitechurch for our coffee stop.  Onwards once more through pretty villages we went to Lo’s Cafe at Pimperne for our lunch stop.  This establishment incorporates a large fitness centre and after the excesses of the week so far not one of our members could be seen taking advantage of these facilities.  Heading back southwest across the county more stunning views could be seen before stopping at The Three Compasses Inn at Charminster.  This is the home of the South Dorset Section and landlords Rob and Tina supplied the necessary tea and cakes.  A short hop over the hills took us back to Bagwell Farm.  Another day completed with another 82 miles recorded.

Friday  was the last day so a shorter and easier day was planned.  Around 40 signed on (approx 50 people present) and we rode off west once more along the coast road.  Turning inland more fantastic views were seen as we rode the lanes to the Kingcombe Visitor Centre for our coffee stop.  This is a fascinating place.  It is a farm which has not been intensively farmed for several centuries.  The hedges have been left to grow and the place is a heaven for all manner of wildlife and fauna and flora.  Kept now for educational purposes they run courses on land management and the environment.  There are lots of footpaths to be explored and holiday cottages for people to stay and enjoy the surroundings.  Travelling further north our next stop was at the Hann residence.  Carol laid on a buffet style lunch for everyone and an inspection of the garage/workshop saw a few old bikes.  This was followed by a straight run back south finishing back at Bagwell Farm.  Again the weather was fine anddry so members could load vans or trailers and pack up awnings in readiness for the journey home.  Today just another 62 miles were completed.

Conclusion  The end of another Weymouth Week.  Most people seemed to be happy and eager to come back in 2025 to do it all over again.  Planning has already started for 2025 with fresh routes and places to visit, it will all begin again on the 11th May.  Having collectively covered thousands of miles during the week I am happy to report that no major mechanical problems were encountered with just a couple of punctures to be sorted along the way.  Entries may have to be restricted next year so if this type of event tickles your fancy then I suggest you book early.

Thanks to everyone who supported this event.

Rod Hann


Founders Day Rally 2024 Section Checkpoint

We had 22 members visit our checkpoint at the Rainbow Garage Cafe at East Knighton, just 4 from South Dorset and 2 from Dorset and the remainder from Somerset, Bournemouth and New Forest and 1 from East Devon.  We may gain 4 new members for South Dorset as a result of the day.

Rod Hann

February 2024

During February the section had a very successful breakfast meeting at the Three Compasses where over 20 members enjoyed Rob & Tina’s full English breakfast.

Thursday 22nd was a “special” club-night dedicated to reviewing the future direction of the South Dorset Section. Where the members discussed ideas for improving the engagement with members in the area and encouraging new members to join.

This meeting was very well attended and various options were discussed.

Report and images from the Mince Pie Run 2023

Report from Rod Hann

Sunday 17th December 2023, saw the running of the South Dorset Sections ‘Mince Pie Run’.  A dry but chilly day (well it is December) saw 19 entries meet at The Three Compasses at Charminster.  We set off at 10-30am on a leisurely 30-mile route which stuck to mainly bigger roads in an attempt to keep relatively clean. 

One minor road broke that rule and was a bit messy.  Nice views of the beautiful Dorset countryside took everyone in a northerly loop and ended at Leigh.  Several members also arrived in cars, making the total attendees around 25. 

Carol had made copious amounts of mince pies, sausage rolls, etc. which with hot drinks were consumed at leisure.  Once refuelled everyone made their own way home. 

A good turnout for this time of year with at least four different Sections represented.  One entrant, unfortunately, broke down on his way home but was soon collected and recovered to his home, so all’s well that ends well.  That completes another year so look forward to some more good riding in 2024.


Christmas Supper 2023

Twas the season to be jolly at the Three Compasses, where Rob and Tina whipped up a Christmas supper that even Santa would envy! The food was so plentiful that it’s rumored some of Santa’s Elves had been co-opted into helping in the Three Compasses kitchen.

Section members gathered around, plates piled high, and Rob’s culinary magic left everyone wondering if he was secretly a wizard in the kitchen. The Three Compasses turned into a gastronomic wonderland, and the only thing missing was a Michelin star for Rob and Tina.

But wait, there’s more festive fun on the horizon! Brace yourselves for this year’s grand finale – the Mince Pie run on Sunday the 17th of December. We’ll be starting with a 10 am meetup at the Three Compasses. Rumor has it, that Rod and Carol are the proud owners of the world’s most coveted Mince Pies, so be there at their home in Leigh either by bike or car by about midday or be pie-less!


Club Talk by Rod Hann on wheel building

For our club night on the 23rd of November Rodney Hann gave a well-attended talk on his wheel building history.

Rod learned and took up the discipline as a retirement activity, he covered the history of his involvement and also covered the technical aspects of what makes up a traditional wired wheel.

The difference between beaded and wired edge rims was discussed with examples of each type provided for attendees to examine.

Finally, a demonstration of the lacing of a full-width Norton hub to a traditional steel rim was provided. There were plenty of questions from those present and we’re sure all came away more informed on the technicalities and all were encouraged to have a go at lacing their own wheels at least once!


Section Calendar updated for the 2024 Season

Following the AGM the online calendar has been updated to reflect the draft entries agreed at the meeting. Select the “Events” menu item above to navigate the calendar.

Note that you can import the sections calendar into your own digital calendars such as Google, Outlook, and others, etc. To do this use the “Subscribe to Calendar” Pulldown menu as illustrated below and follow the prompts. On mobile devices, you may need to enable the imported calendar to make it visible.

Please report any errors or omissions to the site admin at


Cormack’s Australian Travels on a BMW K100

Club night 25th May 2023

Cormack delivered a very interesting talk about his 6-month trip around the coastlines of Australia to club members.

Cormack’s adventure was certainly very eventful, even before he’d made his final bike purchase for his trip. What was evident was the camaraderie of travelers he met during the trip and how important it was to have good contacts when traveling solo in what could only be described as a wilderness full of potential danger at every turn.


Weymouth Week 2023

Report from Rod Hann

The Weymouth Week organised by the South Dorset Section of the VMCC took place from the 14th to 19th May.  All week the weather was very kind to us with no rain at all which allowed full enjoyment of our beautiful Dorset countryside.

On Sunday we used some of the original route used in 1968.  A short ride took us to Moreton for our coffee break.  Some also visited the grave of Lawrence of Arabia.  We continued on across Lulworth Ranges but here thick fog prevented seeing the splendid views.  Back inland we went to the Bovington Tank Museum for our lunch break.  A shortish ride took us to Osmington for the tea break before returning back into Weymouth.  A nice gentle day to start things off.

Monday saw us heading northwest with magnificent views before stopping at Hamish’s Farm Shop at Ryme Intrinseca for coffee.  A gentle route took us to Spire Hill at Stalbridge where lunch was taken and another 20 miles saw us taking tea at The Cabin Cafe at Warden Hill.  Here everyone was also occupied looking around the Emporium second-hand shop.  18 miles further returned everyone back to Bagwell Farm.

On Tuesday we headed west.  We passed the famous Abbotsbury Swannery before following the coast road to Bridport and then to Morcomblake where coffee was taken.  A few twisty lanes next as we went down to Colyton where lunch was taken at the Tram Station.  Members took advantage of a ride to Seaton and back on the tram.  Returning eastwards we went to Freshwater Holiday Park for our tea before again following the coast road back to Bagwell Farm.

Wednesday we agin went east before taking coffee at The Rainbow Garage Cafe.  Further east we went to Studland where we had glorious views over Poole Harbour whilst many members enjoyed an ice cream.  We travelled into Swanage next and on to Putlake Adventure Farm where lunch was taken.  Returning west again we went to Lulworth Cove where tea was taken and members walked down to admire the views of the Cove.  A route back through Weymouth returned us to Bagwell Farm.

Thursday was the longest ride of the week as we went northeastwards across country to Milton Abbas for our coffee stop.  Further on we went through Ashmore which is the highest village in Dorset before descending the famous Zig Zag Hill. 

Into Shaftesbury town, we stopped at Abbey Walk where members walked into the town centre for lunch.  20 miles later we arrived at Round Chimneys Farm Cafe where tea was taken and many animals were seen on this working farm.  Another 23 miles returned us to Bagwell Farm.

Friday being the last day was a little easier.  A return trip along the coast road to Bridport and then to Broadwindsor where coffee was taken and people looked around the various craft shops on site.  Next, we enjoyed more nice views as we headed to Leigh where Carol had laid on a lunch for everyone.  They also looked at a few motorcycles.  A direct route returned everyone back to Bagwell Farm where we said our farewells with the promise that we will do the same again next year.


From the Archives Weymouth Run 1986

A number of weeks ago I stumbled across a number of grainy prints taken at the Dorset Section Weymouth run on May 19th, 1986.

It’s probably hard to identify anyone however, you may recognise some of the machines. Dusty’s “The JP” is there as well as Rod’s Model H with a wicker sidecar and Ken & Shirley Blake’s NUT.

If any members want any additional “From the Archives” posts included on the website please forward details to me at the following email address.