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A 50th Birthday And A New Beginning For The bmf

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The 17th July not only marked the 50th birthday of the British Motorcyclists Federation, but has also signalled the biggest change in the 50 year history of the UK’s leading riders’ rights organisation, a change that will see a complete overhaul of the way the bmf operates.

As with any organisation, 50 years can often mark a turning point in its development and the bmf’s Management Team had already recognised that the organisation had moved away from its original focus of promoting, protecting and pursuing the interests of motorcyclists, the aims established by the bmf’s founding fathers back in 1960.

After a thorough review, three areas became apparent, the bmf was too far removed from its core target market – motorcyclists; the organisation had become too inward looking and thirdly its reliance on its outside events to fund the bmf’s activities had impacted on the organisation’s ability to Promote, Protect and Pursue the rights of motorcyclists.

Under the review, the bmf team asked itself three pivotal questions – Where are we going? How are we going to get there? And, What do we need to do to get there? A major step forward therefore has been the formulation of the 2010 – 2012 action plan designed to regenerate the energy and focus that saw the organisation successfully challenge threats like 100 bhp limits, compulsory leg protectors, bans on green lane use and the tax on merely possessing a motorcycle.  

To achieve this change of emphasis, the bmf’s Management Team have established three objectives:

  • To direct the organisation’s energies on re-asserting the prominence of lobbying across all areas
  • To re-energise the volunteer structure, reconnecting with the bmf’s regions on local and national issues
  • To promote the value of membership of the bmf, supporting lobbying and the enjoyment of all aspects of motorcycling

To meet these objectives and allow the organisation to concentrate on its core activities, the bmf is to be completely restructured, establishing the foundation of a new, refreshed and stronger bmf.

Phase 1 of the restructure will involve the re-organisation of administration, membership servicing, publishing and event management that is currently carried out at the bmf’s headquarters. These functions will now be outsourced or moved online with the result that two of the existing staff will be made redundant. This will enable the bmf to concentrate on its lobbying activities both nationally and at European level, a role that will continue to be carried out by the bmf’s Government Relations Executive, Chris Hodder, ensuring that the views of British motorcyclists continue to be heard across Government and the EU.

The bmf’s Leicester headquarters will be vacated once all functions are outsourced. Phase 1 will be completed by the end of October 2010.

Phase 2 will see the bmf developing the strength of regionally based lobbying work over the coming months through the establishment of new posts working with volunteers and members within the bmf’s regional network.

Bmf outside events will continue to be run by the recently appointed Mulberry group who, working with the bmf, plan over the next two years to re-establish bmf events as the UK’s premier motorcycling events.

The bmf Foundation safety charity will continue to be managed by the trustees and will not be affected by these changes.

Anna Zee the bmf’s chairman commented “These changes are designed to ensure that the bmf has a long future well into in the 21st century. It is very easy for an organisation that's been around for as long as we have to rest on past laurels and we will not forget our history, but the bmf is nothing if it cannot work well for its current and future membership. We regret having to make staff redundant but must control our costs and be flexible and responsive. Making the most of the opportunities offered by today’s technology and means of communication will go a long way towards achieving those ends.”

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