Despite the unseasonable time of year, Tuesday saw the BMF amongst the hundreds of riders from all over Europe who converged on the European Parliament building in Brussels to protest at the latest raft of motorcycle related Type Approval Regulations emanating from the European Commission.
Organised by Motor Cycle News, about 200 riders, mostly from the UK, assembled at the Parc du Cinquantenaire to take part in the ‘Back Off EU’ protest ride. Before the start of the ride they were addressed by MCN’s Senior Reporter Steve Farrell, the British Motorcyclists Federation’s Government Relations Executive Chris Hodder, British MP Mike Weatherly and the Motorcycle Action Group’s President, Ian Mutch.
A ride-past the European Commission offices ended at the European Parliament at the Place du Luxembourg where UKIP MEP Marta Andreason also addressed the riders, emphasising that she had been previously campaigning with bikers across the UK and with MCN to ensure that ‘this needless legislation is thrown on the scrap heap.’
Although there are a number of issues of concern say the BMF, the principle one is of the anti-tampering regulations. These have the effect of preventing any changes to a machine from its standard specification which, given the independence and individuality of owners, is an anathema to many motorcyclists say the BMF.
Speaking afterwards MCN’s Steve Farrell said: "People can question whether protests like this make a difference, but we can be certain that nothing will be achieved by sitting at home."
Supporting this line, Chris Hodder of the BMF said: “At times it’s important to visibly show solidarity and demonstrate the strength of feeling there is when debating items like this with politicians and civil servants.”
The BMF’s EU Type Approval Briefing document can be found at: http://www.bmf.co.uk/pages/briefing_room.php?fullstory=1020
(Photo courtesy of Motor Cycle News)