February 2019
Dates For Your Diary
Monthly meetings are held on the second Monday of every month at Liddington Village Hall, opposite the church

March  11th
Speaker to be advised


Next date is 6 April 2019 at Three Trees Farm Shop, Chiseldon
BikeSafe Lyneham 
3 July 2019
Supporting to Police with tutors at MOD Lyneham
Calne Bike Meet
27 July 2019
Monthly Ride-Outs
Remember that monthly Bike Ride-Outs take place on the 3rd Saturday of every month. Check the Forum for details
Do you have a topic you would like discussed, or know of an interesting speaker?  Please contact Monica!

Congratulations to the following members who have passed their Advanced Tests recently:  

Andy Fitchett; Bike   - Silver - tutor Peter Genet
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 at www.wiltshireroadar.co.uk.
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!

Please forward all contributions to newsletter@wiltshireroadar.co.uk
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Farewell to John McKellar - off to new and sunny pastures!
At our February committee meeting, most of the committee of the Wiltshire group met up as usual in the local pub for coffees and to chat about the group's business. 
What was different on this occasion was that we had invited a departing member of the group for dinner.
John McKellar will soon be leaving our shores for a new life in the sun in Malta and retirement.
John has been a senior bike tutor and member of the committee for many years, and will be missed.

The committee members wanted to mark his departure with dinner, a gift of a group baseball cap and a certificate with life time membership, presented by our chairman.
After the presentation, John did express his gratitude, and then performed an impromptu magic show for us at the table!
We wish him all the best with his fishing, scuba diving, sun-bathing and magic shows in Malta. We look forward to hearing about the Malta chapter of RoADAR in due course!
Pictured: Bob Fram (Chairman), Mark Sealey (Bike training officer), John McKellar, Phill Colbourne (Bike Tutor), Gary Franks (Membership Secretary).
Skillshare  - We Need Your help
Skillshare will take place in 2 locations again this year.   6 April, 1 June, 3 August and 5 October at the 3 trees Farm Shop in Chiseldon and 4 May, 6 July and 7 September at the Haven Cafe near Salisbury. 
All Members please do your best to advertise this; we did not get the message out well last year and turn out was poor. A concerted effort from us all to promote the group and this FREE skills session will help to boost our profile, so ask your family, friends and work colleagues to come and have a go.  Details and the ability to book are on the website.
Grateful if all tutors look to see if they can come and help  - without you it simply will not work
Bloodbikes – Geoff Brown, Severn Freewheelers Bloodbike group.
Overall there are 31 blood bike groups in GB enabling blood and other necessary products to be relayed from Land’s End to John O’Groats! The Severn Freewheelers started at a meeting in Tewkesbury in 2006, subsequently forming using an adjacent group, the Bristol Freewheelers operation, as a model. Funds had to be raised to buy their first bike which was a Honda Pan Euro ST1300 ex-Police Bike.
Severn Freewheelers went live in April 2007 with 50 volunteers, one bike, one coordinator and one rider. Hospitals call a central number for this free service, though being free it took some time to gain trust from the hospitals.
First night of operation – no call; second night – no call; third night – happy days as calls start to come through. And, since April 2007, Severn Freewheelers has carried out in excess of 40,000 jobs and ridden over 1.5million miles.
The sevice was a success and the group grew buying three BMW RT1150s. Now, there are four bikes available for use every night of the year operating between 7pm and 5am and in all weather conditions, though it is down to the rider to determine whether it is safe to ride or not.
Severn Freewheelers covers an area divided into four; Swindon Trust, Cheltenham & Gloucester, Worcester M5 to Redditch, Hereford and surrounding area.
In 2018, Severn Freewheelers rode 180,000 miles, performed 5,200 jobs of which 1,200 were for the Swindon Trust.
How does the service work?
Hospitals simply call a dedicated premium rate number between the hours of operation that diverts to a mobile phone of the on shift coordinator. The coordinator contacts the on shift rider for one of the areas noted and they work together, normally via text, to fulfil the job.
What do they carry?
All sorts of things that can fit into panniers or a motorcycle top-box.
Blood samples – eg from Savernake hosptial to GWH Pathology to Filton Hospital for cross matching. Samples from John Radcliffe down to Southampton and Portsmouth.
The group often relay products between London and Bristol too.
Drugs courier – legal drugs of course! These are controlled drugs and to do this Severn Freewheelers must be approved which is done by GWH Path Lab.
Transport for Pharmacy – Tablet Take Out – TTO. It costs on average £1,000 per patient per night for a stay in GWH. So, its better, cost wise at least, to have the patient at home. Pharmacies can’t always get the tablets ready in time for discharge so rely on Severn Freewheelers to perform this duty – typically the latest time for delivery is around 11pm.
Breast milk - premature babies mother’s are not yet ready to give milk. Milk is carried from other mothers donations ie a modern day wet-nurse!
Funerary urn - One box that was carried between Bristol and Ipswich was an urn containing the ashes of a loved one. The outer packaging said “This way up” on it. So, all sorts of packages are carried!
Call Priority
Calls have to be prioritised based on Non-urgent (3), Urgent (2) or Emergency (1).
Blue lights are on the bike and can be used although does not mean a rider can speed. The group has not yet received a speeding ticket.
Geoff has completed over 1,000 jobs and only ridden on blue lights 3 or 4 times in the 11 years he’s been riding for Severn Freewheelers.
All riders have an Advanced Riders qualification earned in the last three years and  is typically RoSPA. Before being let loose on the blood bike a rider must have a check ride. The check ride is not an Advanced test but more to check confidence as a confident rider is more able to manage risk.
There have been incidents within the group but nothing too serious. Bikes often get dropped and deer do get hit. The bikes are serviced and maintained by Police workshops.
All Severn Freewheeler bikes have trackers as an added safety feature. Trackers record speed which does send an alarm back to the committee if limits are exceeded. Most riders ride well, although there are some complaints! Aren’t there always?
The bikes have Sat Navs fitted and riders often find themselves in the middle of nowhere in some rural location trying to find an address. But, Geoff nows knows all the shortcuts in Swindon so things are not all bad! Being in the middle of nowhere can be great on a summer’s evening, but more challenging in winter.
The Severn Freewheelers is an expensive group to run with operating costs of around £60k per year. The bikes get through 30 sets of tyres each year and the bikes generally run between 70k – 80k miles before being replaced which means two bikes every year are replaced.
Petrol – able to get VAT back as VAT exempt.
Surprisingly, or not, there is no discount from the bike manufacturers! Very few bikes can be used as they have to be shaft or belt drive and have fairings so the choice is limited.
Funds are donated via corporate sponsorship. One year, the masons bought a bike for each group in GB at a cost of around £250,000. Some groups are known to use their own bikes and pay for their own fuel!
The perception of blood bikes is that they are part of the NHS, which they are not. Though this is a great accolade.
Thanks for a very enjoyable and informative talk Geoff.
Peter Genet
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.
Committee membership   
Always on the lookout for willing volunteers to help run the group and maintain its high standards. Just for info, the committee meets once a month. However, the mix of the committee is very strongly biased towards bikers; there is only one car representative on the committee. Any car drivers want to change the balance?
We have lost a few of our officers in recent Months and whilst the Group seems to be running well we do need some more support from members.  We particularly need a new Secretary - the commitment is not huge with  few hours per month is all that is needed; mostly chairing meetings and taking minutes.
Please do not leave the Group to be run by a Gallant few we all have skills and ideas to come and help us develop the Group for all members


Please could all Members use the Forum on the Website which can be used for any purpose but particularly coordinating events, hints, tips and general conversation.  It is easy to register on the website so please do log on and chat away.
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.  
Bike Trip - Millau Bridge Southern France - end of April
Members Stuart Gore and Winston Castle are popping over to the Millau bridge at the end of April. This is a long ride with plenty of saddle hours! We are looking forward to the photographs and further update on their return.
This is of course before the main group ride to Yorkshire taking place later in May.
Safe riding Stuart and Winston!
Geeks Corner - How Many Are we?
Membership overall

Car Members 

Bike Members
Dual membership
Cars 9  Bike 12
RoADAR Head Office facebook Page
Reminder of the page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/161699161113584/ or type in RoSPA Advanced Drivers and Riders in to your facebook.
Membership Secretary: Mr Gary Franks
Hon Secretary: Mr Peter Genet
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