Road Safety News
 

RSO seeks support for motorcycling safety magazine

Thursday 24th June 2010

South Yorkshire Safer Roads Partnership’s motorcycle education officer is keen to develop a safety magazine for bikers along the lines of First Car magazine.

Emma Metcalfe, who has developed the Riding For Life scheme for 16-20 year old motorcyclists in South Yorkshire, says: “First Car magazine is published twice annually and specifically aimed at young drivers.

“I’m encouraging the publishers to create a magazine for motorcyclists of all ages who want to start, or have recently taken up, motorcycling.

“The magazine would be distributed via motorcycle dealers and trainers (CBT and ERS centres) for them to pass on to their customers.

"This initiative will require road safety officers to work together and at this stage I’m interested to know what level of support there is for the idea.”

For more information or to express interest contact Emma Metcalfe on 01302 737545.

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Once again a good idea but don't let it be just like an accident location report such as distributed to riders in Derbyshire. It is not enough in my estimation to just report on where accidents are. There must be more.

Also one must deal with the types of riders and accidents in town and then for those riding the country lanes.
Bob Craven, Lancs

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We have been publishing Hertfordshire Biker for a few years and have had a very positive response from the local motorcycling community. At the very least it has opened up aome great lines of communication, but there is also feedback to show that it has had some impact on attitudes and behaviour.

The magazine is partially funded by the council, the HA and the police, and the rest is made up by advertising.

There is also now a sister magazine, Bedfordshire Biker, and a couple of other authorities are following suit if the funding hasn't totally dried up.

If you want more details or would like to discuss, call me on 01992 556800 or email: simon.hoggett@hertscc.gov.uk
Simon Hoggett - Hertfordshire

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I'm not sure I agree that a magazine aimed at the whole diverse P2W rider market will work. Look at (and learn from) the commercial sector, as Mark describes; they don't even attempt to reach such a diverse audience with one mag. I'd be interested in something aimed at young scooter riders for use here in the West Midlands. Co-operative ventures like this are a way forward in a period of savage cuts. I agree a sound business case is vital, but also demographic analysis to see if the channel of a mag will reach the target and a psychological assessment to see if content can be devised to get the message across.
Mike Mounfield, Birmingham

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Mark from Wiltshire hints at some of the many issues that will have to be considered before this gains support. It will need clear aims and objectives, what is the purpose of the magazine, how will it affect or influence casualty reduction in the most vulnerable groups and how will success be measured?

Whilst the concept is sound the reality robust market research is required to identify if there is a need, a desire or a purpose in pursuing this. RSO's are not here to produce yet another motorcycle magazine, it must have a clearly identified purpose.

Public sector spending is under review like never before and any new venture must have a sound business case illustrating that the money is well spent. I have my doubts whether this is in this category?
Brian, Cheshire

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This is a great idea. The content will require careful thought and will need to be meaningful and of sufficient variety to appeal to a very diverse readership.

As the magazine is being aimed at all ages, there will be a range of potential readers. There will be those in their late teens for whom a motorcycle is a cost effective means of transport. There will be riders who are professional, very affluent, and ride a very expensive motorcycle because they choose to and can.

A quick survey of the glossy motorcycle magazines will reveal quite a bit of vareity. There are those that are fairly conservative with a small C, others target the rebel steriotype with a very jocular journalistic style. In between these are publications that seek reach out to those riders that arn't 'goody goodies' or 'badie badies'.

Finding the range of credible content to appeal to such a wide ranging potential readership isn't going to be easy, but it could be done. You'll need to talk to a range of motorcyclists and engage with them. There's a difference between talking and engaging - those involved in developing the magazine should try to get out to dealerships and bike meets to make the most of communication opportunities.
Mark - Wiltshire

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This sounds like a similar publication to "Hertfordshire Biker" so perhaps Simon Hoggett, the managing editor would be able to help Emma.
Roy Buchanan Sutton

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