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Bmf AGM - Yes We Can!

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Now in its 50th year, delegates to the bmf’s AGM on Saturday heard that while the bmf finds itself operating in difficult times, the structure is sound and measures are now in place for a bright future.

Held at the Burton Caribbean Association, Burton-On-Trent, chairman Anna Zee said of all her five years in the job, this year had been the most difficult, but she added, the bmf had an important role to play in fighting for rider’s rights and this must continue. She said that her job, and that of the team, had been primarily to ensure that the bmf was fit for that purpose.

While not standing for re-election, Anna nevertheless said she would stay on to help the bmf implement the action plan that was announced earlier in the year; streamlining operations, outsourcing some administration and using the best technology in order to concentrate on the bmf’s primary purpose of representing the road-riding motorcyclist.

On this theme, Chris Hodder, the bmf’s Government Relations Executive and Director of Lobbying for FEMA, (the Federation on European Motorcyclists), outlined a busy year of activities from work on the Riders are Voters campaign, through representations on the driving licence test fiasco to the latest European Framework Directive.

On membership, Member Services Director Peter Laidlaw said membership was holding steady at nearly 80,000 members and plans were in place to increase it still further, but the bmf, like many similar organisations, cannot operate on membership income alone and that is why the bmf’s portfolio of events is so important to its operations.

When it came to the events report, Martin Chick, MD of the Mulberry Group, the bmf’s event organisers, admitted that 2010 had been a very steep learning curve. He had come in at a time when it was acknowledged that bmf events had lost a lot of their originality and sparkle and stabilising the situation, let alone developing the events, had been difficult.

This had not been helped by bad weather at the Kelso and Tailend shows he said, but despite these downsides, the revitalised shows had been generally well received by the public and traders alike. Martin added that he had also been encouraged by the support that he had had from bmf marshals and the trade. “People want to us to succeed, the bmf’s brand is sound, we’ve learnt a lot and we are now looking forward to 2011” he said. 

Outgoing director of Public Relations and Communications Dorian Burrows said that modern methods of communication were key to the bmf’s future and outlined the steps taken for a new website, a new magazine and a new platform for email communications with members.

Reporting on Finances, Director of Finance Howard Anderson echoed Chairman Ann Zee’s feelings on 2010. It had been a tough year he said, but the bmf had weathered the storm and he firmly believed that with the measures feeding through from the new action plan, coupled to an upcoming year of rejuvenated events, the bmf was in a good place to build on its role as the UK’s leading rider’s rights organisation.

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