MCN’s long-term columnist and friend Neil Murray passes away

Neil Murrary

By Richard Newland, Editor, published on 28 July 2021

It’s with enormous shock and sadness that we have to report the passing of MCN’s long-term columnist, contributor and friend Neil Murray, who died last Monday, July 19.

At just 63 years old, and seemingly always brimming with an effervescent love for a wildly eclectic range of motorcycles, fine wine, good food and travel, and for his oft-mentioned family – Neil deserved to romp towards old age while regaling all who were listening (and sucking in those who weren’t with his boundless enthusiasm) with his anecdotes and tales of derring-do.

He was the sort of lovable eccentric who should have been propping up the bar forever. But tragically, he suffered a heart attack on Saturday, July 17, and passed away on the following Monday.

Described by pretty much all who met him as an 'eccentric', it was Neil’s breadth of knowledge, innate intelligence, passion and quirky outlook on the world that led to this affectionate description.

As happy tinkering with a 1970s £500 barn-find to flip it for a £500 profit as he was riding his Kawasaki Ninja H2 for a blast up to MCN Towers (in riding kit you’d have reserved for the barn-find), he also loved to tour on two wheels.

Neil wrote over 325 used bike columns for MCN in recent years, and contributed to countless other pieces throughout the media.

He was – as described by his wife Anne – a "larger than life character." The pair had only recently returned from a riding holiday to Cornwall on his Ducati ST2 and were planning an imminent jaunt to Scotland as a follow-up. He had also been hoping to head to Gedinne and to do a French tour in August with the UKRM group in which Neil was a prominent force – as Neil said himself: "leaving a trail of happy hoteliers and bar owners, and irritated gendarmes, in our wake. Game on!"

As well as his consuming passion for motorcycles, business and journalism, Neil was a very proud family man, and seemed able to weave a mention of his wife and two daughters into almost every email or call.

The thoughts of the entire MCN team are very much with Neil’s family at this terribly sad time. Their loss is by far the greatest, but we are all poorer for Neil’s untimely passing.