19th June 2013

MCI members encourage more staff onto bikes for Ride to Work Day

This year’s Ride to Work Day was a great success for MCI members, who used the date as a focus to highlight the benefits of commuting via a motorcycle or scooter.

A number of members held events this year, to inspire non-biking staff to switch to Powered Two Wheelers (PTWs).

These included Michelin, which encouraged workers across its UK production sites and commercial centre in Stoke on Trent to try for the first time - courtesy of  Get On, which was based in the staff car park at Michelin’s commercial HQ all day.  It also offered VIP parking for bikers and free bacon baps, plus the chance to get signed autographs from its sponsored riders, who visited at lunchtime.

  “Encouraging people onto bikes is something we are passionate about,” explained James Dimmock, Marketing Manager for Michelin (Two Wheels) UK.  “This was the first time we have taken part and hope it will result in more staff commuting on motorcycles and scooters.”

  Santander is holding a similar style event on Thursday 20th, with Get On providing free rides at its premises in Redhill, Surrey.  It also encouraged those with bikes to ride to work on the 17th, with KTM providing a full display of its latest range at Santander's offices.

  “It’s great to be able to pull in partners in this way to encourage those staff who don’t currently ride to try it out.  Ride to Work Day is a really useful focus for this.” explained Paul Munns, Motorcycle Development Finance Manager for Santander.

  The car park at Honda’s HQ in Slough was transformed into a riding school on Monday, to tempt non biker staff onto two wheels.  Established riders took part in a staff ‘ride out’ and enjoyed a ‘bikers breakfast’ free of charge.

  Biking staff at Yamaha met up for breakfast at The Barn café at Newland’s Corner, before riding to work across the picturesque Surrey Hills to its base at Brooklands, near Weybridge. PR and Marketing Manager Karl Radley explained that this trip would only have been possible by bike, “It would have taken far longer had we been in cars or taken public transport and we would have missed out on the fun of the ride and the fantastic roads so local to us”. Peterborough based bike insurance company Bennetts offered motorcycling staff a free breakfast, with a ride-out after work.  Bennetts also used its social media channels, including Bike Social, to endorse the day, with help from its celebrity supporters Charley Boorman and Darren Gough. Kings Lynn based insurers Bikesure treated staff who commuted in on a motorcycle on RTWD to a bacon roll, a hot drink and VIP parking.  They also encouraged non-biking staff to have a go the week before.
  Altrincham based insurers Carole Nash gave every policyholder free commuting cover extension on their policies for that day (encouraging policyholders to use their bikes to travel to work), and had a team based in the car park giving staff refresher or initial training.

During the first part of the day, Kawasaki UK provided a display of its latest models and bespoke performance machines at the Deep Mill Diner, situated on the A413 between Great Missenden and Amersham, Buckinghamshire.  The first 100 bikers who called in were treated to a free bacon or sausage sandwich and a hot drink (regardless of whether they rode a Kawasaki)! Harley-Davidson dealers across the UK entered into the spirit of Ride to Work Day offering everything from croissants to donuts.  As a long-time supporter of RTW activities, the manufacturer also offered prizes to be given away for competitions run through RTWD social media. Brand Manager for Harley-Davidson, Allan Brownridge joined the MCI committee for Ride to Work Day this year and said that motivating dealers to take part was a “no brainer” for Harley. “We position ourselves as a destination dealership, so this sort of event fits in perfectly with what we’re all about.  A day dedicated to getting bikers noticed is great for the industry.”

  ZingBikes also contributed to the MCI organising committee for Ride To Work Day and celebrated by opening its showroom in Huntingdon at 7.30, where it offered free coffee and muffins until lunchtime.  It also held a prize draw, offering a Zingwear motorcycle jacket and gloves to the winners.  

  A good number of other dealers took part, including Triumph World in Derbyshire, Performance Triumph, Gloucestershire and Fowlers Motorcycles in Bristol.

  At MCI Head Quarters in Coventry, staff and invited guests enjoyed a sociable breakfast together, where acting CEO Steve Kenward was first to arrive on his bike (pictured).  “Ride to Work Day is a great opportunity for members to show UK PLC how much better commuting would be for everyone if more people rode bikes.  It allows us to highlight the huge benefits to both employers and staff.

  He added, “All those who participated were well supported by Shirley Pattison and Charlotte Hempsted from Promark PR, who helped promote each event and provided a wide variety of downloads to brand the day.”




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