British Vespa Days Llangollen | RALLERY
I was up bright and early for my close to 220-mile ride to the 2019 British Vespa Days at Llangollen in North Wales. My plan was to leave at about 9 am… I finally got going at quarter to 11. Pretty standard for me. It was dry but windy as I left and I had an uneventful 60 miles (unusual for me) to my first fuel stop at Chieveley on the A34. I filled up and felt the first raindrops, raindrops that followed me for the rest of my journey.
With the motorway filtering behind me and in spite of the weather it was a lovely ride up through The Cotswolds, past Worcester and up to Shrewsbury to pick up the A5 to Llangollen. Only 30 miles to go, so about half an hours riding. Yeah right! 30 miles of filtering on the slippery white lines in the rain and I finally arrived at Llangollen nearly an hour later.
At least the rain had eased up a little. I booked in, grabbed my goody bag and pitched my tent. My first thought was ‘wow!’ the venue was amazing, with a huge pavilion and plenty of room for camping. Next stop the bar.
Meet and greet
For those that haven’t done a British Vespa Days event it’s not how you might imagine. It’s not full of old fuddy-duddies who compare tyre treads on their Douglas Sportiques, it’s just people that enjoy all things Vespa, oh, and beer.
As I stood at the bar I got to catch up with loads of friends as well as make new ones. That’s what I like about BVD, everyone’s so friendly, and if you don’t know anyone when you arrive, you certainly will by the time you leave. That’s the beauty of the more intimate events.
Friday night had DJs playing classic tunes to an appreciative audience and eventually I headed back to my tent for a well-earned rest.
Saturday dawned and the weather was as good as it was bad the day before. There was a full schedule though, with a rideout to the Horseshoe Pass, custom show, fun and games, as well as a question and answer session with Norrie Kerr.
Even with all that going on there was still time to pop into town for a wander around and to grab some cheesy chips.
Quintessentially English… errrm I mean Welsh
Back at the venue and now the rain had stopped and the clouds had lifted I actually get to see the area around the site. On one side is a canal with horse-drawn pleasure boats and on the other a steam railway. I do have to wonder what the weirdos using them make of us ordinary folk doing what we do.
How very civilised
The evening had a gala meal as part of the ticket price, which in all honesty I was a little dubious of, the previous BVDs I’ve done didn’t have a sit-down meal and I really didn’t know what to expect. Would everyone be in smart dress? Would everyone be on their best behaviour? Well, the answers were definitely no to both. The atmosphere was fantastic, and as far as dress code is concerned just take a look at the pictures!
The meal was great, they also had a raffle, with a new Vespa Primavera (supplied by Midland Scooter Centre) as the top prize. There was even a harpist playing during the meal, and awards to finish off made it a tour de force. It was frankly brilliant and I can’t wait to do it again next year.
Saturday night had a 70s theme, with fancy dress (hence some of the more outlandish outfits at the meal) and band, Glam 45, nearly took the roof off the place. Finally, the night was rounded off by the Lightfoots DJing more 70s tunes to complete what was simply an awesome weekend, a credit to all that organised it.
Words and photos: Booga
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