If you’re in a group of riders, and you say the words “National Motorcycle Museum,” what kind of reaction do you get? In the US (which, incidentally, is where RideApart is based, but is far from all we cover in the wide world of motorcycling), our own National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa, Iowa will be closing for good in September 2023.
However, if you talk to British riders, the UK’s National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull, in the West Midlands, remains very much alive and well. Part of the way that the British National Motorcycle Museum sustains itself each year is by raffling off some amazing prizes, taking the funds from raffle tickets sold and using them to keep the museum running smoothly.
Typically, one or more of the top prizes is a desirable vintage British motorcycle of some kind, fixed up by the restoration experts who work at the museum. Back in 2020, it awarded a 1977 Norton Commando 850, a 1948 Ariel NG 350, and a 1959 BSA B31 to the top three lucky raffle winners—and in doing so, also kept itself afloat into the following year. In other recent times, modern British bikes including a Triumph Trident 660 and a new BSA Gold Star 650 have also found their way to new owners as raffle prizes.
So, what fantastic piece of British motorcycling history is the British National Motorcycle Museum raffling off in 2023? This time around, the first prize is a 1974 Norton Commando 850, which the NMM describes as “an immaculate and original [bike] with highly desirable AP Lockheed front disc brake conversion.”
Second and third prizes aren’t bikes in 2023. This time, they’re tools, so you can work on your own machines at home. Second prize is a Sealey Tools/National Motorcycle Museum voucher for £1500 (about $1,874 as of May 1, 2023) to be spent entirely on Sealey Tools via the NMM shop. Third prize is a Sealey Tools “Patriot” roll cab tool cabinet (retail value £719.95, or about $899), in your choice of five flag designs: Union Jack, St. George Cross, Scotland, Wales, or Ireland.
British National Motorcycle Museum raffle tickets are available at the time of writing on May 1, 2023, at a cost of £2 each (about $2.50). They’re sold in packs of five, so the minimum purchase is £10 (about $12.50) via the NMM website, which is currently only accepting debit card payments. The prize drawing will take place on Sunday, October 29, 2023, during the National Motorcycle Museum Live! Event.
International fans, there’s some bad news for us, I’m afraid. Due to UK laws, tickets for this raffle may only be purchased by UK residents. All other fans of vintage British motorcycles may not purchase tickets at this time (and that includes Northern Ireland). That said, if you’re in the UK, and you want raffle tickets, check the link in our Sources.