Tom and Jerry were partners in a small business. At the bike club one night, another member enquired "How's business, Tom?"
Tom replied "Oh, it has it's ups and downs."
Later Jerry quietly asked Tom "What were the 'ups'?"
That describes LPMCC.net through 2011.
We started with a morale boosting 10,000 visitors per month at the end of December and in January.
On Blank Wednesday 16 February LPMCC.net was pulled off the world wide web by our hosting company for exceeding bandwidth allowance. This catastrophe was followed by a rapid resurrection with a new host server at Easily.co.uk but repercussions continued through the year - Star Ratings didn't start getting through again until September. Significantly the visitor statistics were radically deflated from earlier figures and have now been replaced by 'page views' which may indicate the use made of the website more realistically.
The move to the new server was a blessing in disguise when, on Saturday 11 June, Microsoft changed their Skydrive cloud storage system that I was relying upon to hold photos for LPMCC.net. Fortunately I was prepared for such an eventuality. It took a lot of work and time to alter over a thousand pages and transfer all the photos to the new server, but adding pictures is a lot easier now.
Putting things into perspective - those adventures were small beer compared to the sad loss of irreplaceable past members and friends including Bill Langley, Keith Bainbridge, Johnny Croxson (The Vicar), Alan Barclay (The Banker) and Alan Kitson. They are all remembered on our website. See their names over on the left under "People" and hover over them to see where they are mentioned, are shown in photos, or have provided memorabilia.
What were the 'ups'?
There were plenty this year. Probably the most active motorcycle ride-out calendar since we were pukka club members, with visits to Rockingham Castle, Newark Air Museum, Easton Hall, Crich Tramway Village, Coventry Transport Museum and Skegness. We also went to the National Motorcycle Museum, BMF Shows at Peterborough and Lincoln, the Classic Motorbike Show and Motorcycle Live at the NEC. And again we had a keen team of volunteers staffing the Kegworth Control for the National Road Rally.
Those events would have made up a very full year for any club, let alone an informal group of past members. But there was more. To keep us in fine fettle a rapidly widening band have taken up cycling with more than a dozen trips to local hostelries.
In a less active mode, but just as enjoyable, we have met up for the customary refreshments on several occasions. Ten of us gathered at the Gate Hangs Well in February. We met Derek Foster and Tony Loach at the Lindens in Mountsorrel, there was a big gathering of members from the beginning of the club to welcome Alan Jarvis and his new wife Clara at the Horse and Hounds near Great Glen. The big social event of the year ... er ... the past FIFTY years was the combined Club Xmas Dinner and Anniversary Celebration.
(This busy and varied programme of events was just a practice run for 2012!)
LPMCC.net owes its success to excellent unique content generously sent in by many people who are gratefully acknowledged in the Bibliography. We appreciate you taking the time to write down your memories to remind us of events we shared. This year I will make special mention of Dave Ranger who has sent regular reports and photos of rallies. His total at the end of the year is ninety seven contributions.
Badges came in from Alan Kitson, Dave Cooper, Dave Honneyman, Dave Ranger, Hans Veenendaal, Hayley Easthope, Heather MacGregor, Mick Bemrose, Nigel Woodthorpe, Phil Johnson, Rachel Crossley, Ray Walsh, Russ Shand, Steve Easthope, Steve Giddens and Ted Trett.
We had accounts of favourite motorcycles from Bryce Bathe, Colin Cheney, Erum Waheed, Jim Fulton, Joe Virgona, Ken Horwood and Vin Allen.
We received rally reports and photos from Al Thomson, Andy Wilkinson, Baff, Bob McGrath, Brian Rennie, Clive Walker, Cobbo, Dave Cooper, Dave Ranger, Derek Haggerty, Eileen Preston, Gary Hough, Graham Cooper, Hayley Easthope, Hetchins, Jim Richardson, John Windsor, Johnie Wood, June Pennell, Lesley Turner, Mark Mingay, Mick Gilday, Mike Laffo, Pykey, Ritchie, Ron Seal, Russ Shand, Squire Neil, Steve Giddens, Steve Holbrook, Steve Parks, Tim Berry, Tony Graves, Tony Martin, Tony Partridge, Tony Smith and Yvonne Townsend.
Russ Stevenson recalled motorcycle instructors from the Star Rider era.
Photo galleries were expanded by John Muschialli, Steve White, Paul Draycott, Tony Loach and Derek Foster. Wishbone consolidated an essential position on LPMCC.net with photos and reports of current activities of which he is a prime mover.
Although LPMCC.net is mostly about recording rallies from years ago, Hans Veenendaal provides us with a huge collection of current UK and European rally dates. These now form the definitive
Hans is also a regular provider of
rally treffen badges and carefully geocodes the location of all his contributions. I also strongly suspect that LPMCC.net standing in the Netherlands is largely due to evangelising by Hans!
The regular News Email was brightened up with a new format. (Pity it's the same old drivel in it.) An archive of the year's old News Emails is on-line in case you need to look back after deleting your copy. By the way, there has been four hundred News updates to ... er ... date.
When we celebrated the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton it presented a challenge to create a better photo zoom system that is now being put to wider use.
The latest Google Maps improved pages that locate past and future events.
Diverse forms were integrated into the ubiquitous Contact Centre © where error reports and other information are collected for you to send me - along with your stories (hint). Just open the Contact Centre © and press SEND.
Dates were included in the background badge information so all badges added in the past week can be easily identified. Badges arrived in such profusion through 2011 that I had to instigate an alphabetic work schedule and ask senders to check their contributions on a badge audit page.
LPMCC.net is based on the shared experiences of past members of the Leicester Phoenix MCC but we include friends from brother clubs in the hope that they can rediscover the camaraderie that we continue to enjoy. If your old club does not have a website to make contact through, you are welcome to recall your past and plan your future through LPMCC.net. We have past members of the Balloch Bears, Saltbox and Solent clubs searching for old friends through our pages. Read all the names in the People index to see who you knew and who you are still in contact with.
In 2011 we added 132 new pages and a further 165 pages were extended with new content. That works out as something new every 30 hours! Little wonder my Trident is still languishing in the garage, untouched.
I fully expect 2012 to be as bumpy and exciting. The adventure continues ...