Membership - Helen Stratford

PEMC Membership Secretary - Helen Stafford

I was first introduced to motorcycling when I was about eleven by my father, who used to take me for rides on the back of his Honda C200 (90cc). We didn’t do any long distances but as we didn’t have a car any ride seemed to be exciting in those days. 

My own riding started with a Batavus GoGo moped (one of those with pedals!) which I used to commute on. I graduated from the moped onto a Yamaha DT100 trail bike on which I took my test. My next bike was a Suzuki GT185 which then got swapped for a Honda XL185 so that we could have a go at trail riding. My husband Graham also bought an XL185 and that first Christmas we rode the bikes to Brecon, did a week’s trail riding and then rode back home again – we didn’t own a car in those days so it was the only way to get there! 

Once interested in trail riding, I started entering some long-distance trials including the famous MCC ones which involved riding through the night and attempting sections in the dark. I also rode in some 3-stage trials and even entered an enduro as part of a ladies team. I no longer ride off-road but am still involved with organising trials for our local club.

Over the years I’ve owned around twenty different bikes and even had a pillion ride on one of the first Heskeths. The largest bike I owned was a BMW R850RT grey import which I had for 7 years before deciding it was too big and heavy and swapping it for a Moto Guzzi Breva 750. Since then I’ve had a few more BMWs and a Triumph Newchurch – I currently ride a Triumph Bonneville T120.

I’ve been a member of the PEMC since November 2011 and have thoroughly enjoyed the numerous UK hotel events that we’ve attended and the two European trips that we’ve done with the Club. I helped to organise Wednesday Turnups in the South East of England from 2017 to 2020 but I moved to Lincolnshire in 2021 so will have to organise some in this area now!.