The NI Volunteer Bikers Group delivering supplies and a little joy

Jonathan Rea and Eugene Laverty are among those to heap praise on a coronavirus NI Volunteer Bikers Group delivering supplies to those in need

Northern Ireland Volunteer Biking Group

The coronavirus pandemic has affected us all to various extents but amid all the desperate news of new cases and death tolls, there have also been tales of exemplary kindness and community courage bringing some welcome light in the gloom.

This is no less apparent than in the world of motorcycling where we have been bowled over by the various gestures and operations that have been borne out of the community’s strong bonds and spirit.

One such example is the Northern Ireland Volunteer Bikers Group, which was created to help deliver necessary supplies to people in need with an original hardy band of just five bikers.

However, the call to arms has seen the group swell to having 150 registered riders on its books, taking advantage of the ability to use motorcycle transport safely and conveniently to deliver all manner of goods in this lockdown period.

Their efforts have even caught the attention of some high-profile stars with WorldSBK’s Jonathan Rea and Eugene Laverty sending messages of support to them.

“The motivation started with Micky [Price], a bike instructor who when work stopped wanted to help the community and then got in touch with five of us to kick this all off,” the group’s Richard Webber told Visordown. “We are keen bikers and wanted to help somehow involving the bikes. In a few weeks from five starting we have several other key helpers and over 150 registered riders willing to help

“We are delivering PPE (personal protective equipment) made by local groups between them and frontline workers and hospitals, we are picking up and delivering scrubs for a lot of the local scrubs groups making them at home and also personal prescriptions for people isolating or vulnerable, who nominate us to pickup and deliver on their behalf.”

The group (clue in the title) is volunteer, but it has launched a fundraising scheme for anyone to direct their thanks to them with a donation to the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice. Mr Webber says the group is symptomatic of the motorcycling community coming together for the greater good.

“The biking community in Northern Ireland through this group has shown just how awesome it is, from five riders to 150 and counting willing at their time and expense to make sure the community in NI and anyone in need is not left in need. 

“We would not take donations so put up a donate for the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice and it is over the £1k mark in just a few days. The biking community in NI has always been close, but this just highlights it even further.”

You can visit the NI Volunteer Biking Group’s Facebook page HERE for more information, including how to access their services or make a contribution.