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SAM Weekly Newsletter – 15th March 2024


As I wrote last week, I am stepping down from the SAM Committee and as a Trustee of the SAM charity. I will continue to support SAM as a volunteer to write this newsletter, maintain and develop the website and manage the Google Workspace accounts. I will only step down from these roles when the SAM Committee has suitable arrangements in place.

Last Saturday was wet and cold, but SAM members put on their thermals and rode out. We had a great time chatting about our latest life events, what was in the news and how our week was so busy that riding out was a relief. Even if you can’t ride, putting the world to rights with SAM friends always feels better.

The views of SAM members on the recent management of the IAM were conveyed at a meeting with Steve Ellis (IAM Area Service Delivery Manager). We are informed that the IAM recognises the strongly expressed views of its members and is working hard toward a much better and sustainable future for the charity and its members. Just like the SAM charity, the IAM is looking to ensure that PTW (powered-two-wheel) transport is socially and politically valued; and, part of a strategic solution toward a lower carbon future. SAM members have an important role in ensuring that public education and the development of advanced riding thrives in our community. Lots of riders rely on the SAM charity to help them develop and maintain their riding skills; and, help the NHS and other worthy causes in our community. 

As usual, the Whiteknights NHS Blood Bikes were parked up with us at Meadowhall Retail Park. A number of members have expressed an interest in joining the Whiteknights to support our local NHS. They are always looking for advanced riders and people to help with public education in promoting their role in delivering better health care. Spread the message. 

The SAM Committee has decided to ask the Observers to suggest candidates to take over from Andy Frith as Chief National Observer. As the group of SAM members most affected by the change of leadership, the Committee has given them a chance to express their opinions. The SAM Committee has the responsibility for appointing the Chief National Observer. The person in that role also reports to the Committee on issues relating to the training of Observers and Associates. Andy has done a fantastic job and will continue in an advisory and support role to the Observers in the SAM Group. 

Onto more good news this week. The FREE web hosting provided by has been renewed for another year. Over the past 10 years this company has generously donated FREE annual web hosting, technical management and support. This has saved the SAM charity a considerable amount of money and we are happy to reciprocate by highlighting on our website and in our publicity material.

Spring is here and there is additional demand on our advanced rider training. As many local motorcyclists pull their machines from the back of the shed, it’s time to focus fully on what we do so well – public education and advanced rider training. Some members, including your editor, haven’t ridden as much over the winter as the rest of the year. Now is the time to check your advanced rider knowledge and skills. Assure yourself that you are still able to be an advanced rider. Recent BikeSafe data suggest that 80% of motorcyclists ‘believe’ they are competent riders. BikeSafe found that 96% of riders needed to improve their riding. There is no worse fool than a rider who ‘thinks’ they ride well, when in reality they need to ride better. SAM members riding in groups can help by checking each rider’s performance. Just a thought.

As stated above, I will continue to volunteer to help the SAM charity. Some things that SAM members can do are to talk to those around you about the role of motorcycles in our community. Stress that they can be a cost-effective purchase, produce less pollution, quicker journey times, have better manoeuvrability and that 90% of components can be reused or recycled. If you want to do a bit more than talk, we need volunteers to help out at various planned events. This might include talking to the public about our advanced rider training, handing out information material, or being a ‘meeter and greeter’ to ensure that visitors feel welcomed. We have a full Club Night speaker calendar through to September, but there may be other events you want to happen. Think about it and let a member of the Committee know. Thank you.

The SAM Committee decided that it should be up to members how much the membership fees should be in the next year. We conducted a survey giving various options. 61% of members completed the survey. 70% of respondents agreed to an increase in the SAM membership, giving the Committee a clear mandate to revise the membership fee. The Committee has agreed with the majority of members that the SAM membership fee should increase to £15 (for IAM members) and £25 (for non-IAM members). For members paying by Standing Order please ensure that your SAM membership is adjusted accordingly. Thank you to all SAM members who took part in the survey, your help is very much appreciated in securing the future of the SAM charity.

The closing date for entries to the SAM Annual Photo Competition is 12mn on 20th March 2024. Make sure that your best biking pictures are sent to Any entries after this date will not be accepted.

The closing date for booking the FREE SAM Spring Breakfast is 12mn on the 28th March 2024. This event is kindly sponsored by Supremecoat Limited, so make sure that you order your choice of sausage or bacon sandwich. (Mine’s sausage!) The event will take place at the Supremecoat Limited premises

There is a lot more to read in your brilliant SAM newsletter this week. Happy reading!

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