How do you bring a collection of static motorcycle displays to life? Well, for starters you drag some of the most unusual and iconic bikes outside and… start them up. Then you invite a squadron of motorcycling celebrities and sporting superstars together with innovative engineers and automotive experts to chat on stage and meet the public. And then you let everyone else in for free…
The National Motorcycle Museum’s LIVE event has firmly established itself in the UK’s classic biking calendar since the first open day back in 2014. Indeed it’s proved to be such a success that this year’s fandango takes up takes up two full days on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 October 2022. Admission to the museum itself – all the usual display halls plus every extra attraction – is completely free, as is motorcycle parking. So if you turn up on a bike then you’ll pay not a penny, while there’s a £15 charge to park each car. Car sharing is obviously encouraged!
All the action takes place inside the luxurious conference halls in the museum complex, so it’s warm and dry no matter what the weather’s doing. You’ll find an array of independent trade stands and automotive industry displays including auction houses, tool and oil brands, and motorcycle manufacturers like Royal Enfield, Triumph, BSA, Norton and Langen. Meet The Experts features Central Wheels who’ll reveal the secrets of spoke patterns and such in live wheel building demonstrations. There’s also a chance to put your technical questions to the museum’s own workshop staff and specialist suppliers.
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On the Sunday, you should have your raffle tickets at the ready to see if you’ve won what might well be the best classic motorcycle prize in the whole wide world (feel free to discuss that among yourselves!) Tickets for the museum’s 1958 BSA DBD34 Gold Star have been on sale throughout the summer, and the draw will be made live on stage on the afternoon on 30 October. This matching numbers machine has been fully restored in the museum’s workshop, and there’s still time to buy a ticket if you haven’t already grabbed a handful.
Star bikes from the museum’s extensive inventory of classic British motorcycles will be fired up on both days – and listen out for some historic Moto GP machines and Allen Millyard’s 500bhp V10 Viper getting all revved up. TV celeb Henry Cole hosts personalities from his show, while Steve Plater will be talking on stage to the likes of Peter Hickman (on Sunday) and Steve Parrish (Saturday). There’s a chance for fans to meet their heroes in person for autographs.
In case this all sounds like too much to cope with, you can pick up a full timetable of what’s happening, when and where, as you enter the museum. The shop will be open on both days offering a huge range of classic motorcycling books, clothing and memorabilia. The food court and café will serve great grub – including a breakfast barbecue – from 8.30am. For directions and more up-to-the-minute info, see the National Motorcycle Museum site.