It is with deepest regret that I have to inform members of the death of our former Chairman, John Kirkman. I first met John in Aldershot while we were both serving in 5 Airborne Brigade, John in the Royal Signals and me in the Royal Engineers.
I met him again, over 15 years later, when I joined Harrogate Advanced Bikes in 2003. John was Chairman of the club at that time, and completed two terms as HAB Chairman from 2003 to 2007 and from 2010 to 2013 when he stepped down to spend more time with his family. He was also a member of the Harrogate and Northallerton IAM car groups.
John was a safe, experienced and enthusiastic motorcyclist who, as a Senior Observer for many years, helped numerous associates gain the skills to pass the IAM Advanced Motorcycle and Car Tests. He was always keen to encourage more people to become Observers following their test and put tremendous effort into their training. John trained me to be an Observer in 2005 and most of the Observers in the group today have benefitted from the training that John provided. He was an excellent instructor and has played a major role in shaping the club we have today. John was also keen to expand the social activities of the club and was famous for his ‘Cannonball Run’ which took place on the Summer Solstice and involved riding across the country to see the sunset on the West coast and rise again in the East.
On Thursday 30 July, John was riding with two other motorcyclists near Sutton Bank when he was killed a in collision with a car just outside the village of Scawton. He will be sorely missed by all his friends in the club and our heartfelt condolences go to Diane and the family. The funeral will take place at 1pm on Thursday 13 August at Stonefall Crematorium then the Pavillions. All are welcome as are motorcycles.
Bob Hill, Chairman.