Monday, 10 September 2012 8:58 AM
Owning a motorcycle can be about more than having a low-cost form of transport, as riding is also a social activity. There are events across the UK throughout the year that see bikers get together to talk about their machines, admire classics and view the latest equipment.
You should not forget that motorbike owners know how to have a good time. Many of the rallies and shows include live bands and parties, but you will need to book overnight accommodation or take a tent if you wish to enjoy the festivities.
Condom Rally, Essex
This charity event has been running since 1987 and the 26th will take place at Mersea Outdoors near Colchester between October 5th and 7th. Tickets cost £20 and for that you get to spend the weekend watching live music and talking bikes.
If you own a machine you are particularly proud of, you can enter it in one of the categories in the bike show, so other riders can admire it. Bands will perform in a marquee during the afternoon, before the entertainment moves into the main hall after dark, with rock covers acts Prezence, Circa Fall and Sounds of the Suburbs among those set to play.
British Superbikes, Brands Hatch
The 12th and final round of the British Superbikes championship is scheduled to take place at the famous Kent circuit from October 12th to 14th. Weekend tickets cost £32 if purchased in advance, although entry is free for children aged under 13.
Sunday is race day, when fans will be hoping for a repeat of the dramatic events of last season that saw Tommy Hill edge out John Hopkins for the title. In addition to the main event, the seven other categories in the series will come to exciting conclusions.
Brightona 2012, Brighton
The Brightona Charity Riders have raised more than £120,000 for good causes by staging rallies since 2003. This year's event will take place at Madeira Drive, Brighton on October 14th, with all profits from the £5 admission price going to the Sussex Heart Charity.
In addition to the prestigious custom bike show, you can enjoy the Wall of Death and hot rod displays. There will also be plenty of live music, with bands performing on three stages throughout the day.
Classic Motorcycle Mechanics Show, Stafford
If you love old motorbikes, the only place to be on October 20th and 21st is Stafford County Show Ground. The Classic Motorcycle Mechanics Show features a huge selection of machines from the 60s, 70s and 80s, together with trade and autojumble stalls selling spares, accessories and memorabilia.
Tickets cost £12 a day, or £10 if booked in advance, and you can look forward to seeing trials demonstrations from Brian Marr and Yrjo Vesterinen, as well as the Wall of Death.
Motorcycle Live, Birmingham
One of the UK's biggest bike events, Motorcycle Live will take place at the NEC Birmingham from November 24th to December 2nd. Exhibitors include all the major manufacturers, so you will get a first glimpse of the next generation of Honda and Ducati motorbikes, as well as new component and clothing ranges.
A number of machines will be available to try in the Test Ride Zone and you can also have a go at trials riding. If you would prefer to watch, you can view displays of classic and custom bikes, meet top racers in the Eurosport Entertainment Zone and see the world's best daredevil riders in action at the Ramp'd Up Freestyle MX Arena.