HUNDREDS of motorcyclists turned out to pay their respects to a popular teenager who drowned after getting into difficulty in the sea.

Ben Quartermaine, who was 15, was described by his family as a “happy, loving and independent boy” who had a huge love for motorbikes.

His parents said he was looking forward to his 16th birthday when he could do his compulsory basic training and get out on his own moped.

His family was also doing up a moped for him as a present.

Ben’s body was found on Clacton beach on July 28, almost two days after he went missing in the sea close to Clacton Pier.


Ben Quartermaine and a still from Kerry Groom's film

The motorbike community, which meets weekly at Great Bentley, hosted the ride-out in Ben’s memory on Wednesday night.

Robert Black, a member of the Bentley Bikes group, said Ben’s parents were regulars at the Great Bentley meet up.

He said: “It was an amazing atmosphere.

“We had Vespas and rockers all there together.

“There must have been more than 600 bikes.

“Quite a few people came up to us and asked what was going on.

“They had total respect for what everyone was doing.

“This is what the family wanted and we were all happy to pay our respects in this way.”


Colchester Mods and Skinhead Scooter Club. Picture: Ant Niles


The event was organised by Kris Moore, Karl Bell and Colin Gentry, after being asked by Ben’s family to arrange a ride in his memory.

Hundreds of bikes took part in the procession which went from Great Bentley Green to Clacton seafront.

Kerry Groom, from Clacton, turned out to watch the bikes arrive at Clacton Pier, along with hundreds of residents, as well as Ben’s friends and family.

She said: “I went to show my respects to Ben but also to raise awareness.

“The sound of the bikes was amazing.

“There was such a community feel to it and it was really emotional. It was very moving.

“Everyone was just there to pay their respects.”


Picture: Ant Niles

Kerry has helped to launched campaign group Stay Sea Safe to raise awareness of the danger of the sea following the tragic incident.

The group aims to visit schools across Tendring to teach youngsters about the dangers of the sea and it is also calling for lifeguard hours to be increased in the summer season.