Sunday, August 23, 2015

Sunday August 23 2015

Dave's Ride

As we waited at the start, a continuous sea of lycra rolled past. So to avoid further embarrassment we headed into the park leaving via the pool gate. After Hanworth we passed the "Young People's Estate" Feltham then Bedfont. Our Tour de Heathrow started at Hatton Cross but was cut short when we turned towards Harlington. In Sipson we joined NCN 89 but used A408 for the final miles to Good Yarn Uxbridge aka Wetherspoons. Already arrived were Alan and Irene which made ten (Dave, Don, Ken, Paul, Tony, Graham, and Ed plus a surprise appearance from Daniel).

Among the news that he was retired Dave unveiled a plan to shorten the ride due to the dire forecast. We continued north passing but not stopping at Willowbank (no surprise - Dave's far too young to recall Cyril Davies). We eased around the Denham roundabout on the pavement before sampling the village and climbing towards Higher Denham. After roughstuff in Baker's Wood we were back on the A40 which we traversed until the Fulmer turning. Some rode through the "Genevieve" ford though most used the bridge; here Alan left us. The raindrops started as we sped down the hill into Hedgerley and with minutes the sandwich eaters had joined the rest in the White Horse.

By 1330 it was time to go but still raining hard. Gypsy Lane then several outliers (Stoke Poges, Wexham, George Green, Langley) saw us bypassing Slough itself before crossing the A4 into Colnbrook in bright sunshine. Vermeulen's cafe was empty when we arrived so we dried out slowly before dispersing around 1530. Around 50 miles door to door.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Sunday 16th August 2015


A beautifully bright morning with warm sunshine.
 I picked a well trodden route to Horsham with the only suprise speed......a comfortable 12.5mph.
In one hour 10 minutes, we were sitting (still with warm sunshine) on the first floor of Bill's cafe.
Unusually for me it was "Bill's Breakfast" - £7.90.
The others' choice ranged from a bacon brioche to a cream tea!
We left in a south-easterly direction to Monks Gate where we picked up the lane going south to Littleworth & Partridge Green.
East along the B road and the rough stuff past Shermanbury Place where Dave punctured.
We emerged at Wineham,still travelling east toward Hurstpierpoint.
The Jack & Jill pub,Clayton appeared popular and if I hadn't reserved a table we would of been eating outside.We were now under heavy cloud with the threat of rain although nothing was forecast.
A cheese and tomato baguette for me,macaroni cheese for Janice & Dave.
Whilst in the pub it occured to me that NCN 20 was relatively unexplored this far south so with a change of tea stop I led the group directly north on a combination of quiet roads & surfaced cycle paths to a long drag past Bolney where Dave suffered his second puncture.
Costa at Pease Pottage services was adequate if a little pricey.
Home around 6pm.
An enjoyable day out,although the weather could of been better after an intial lovely morning.Relaxed stops and nice lanes........82.4 miles for me/Janice.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Fanny's Farm Shop.........RIP

According to the Surrey Mirror, Fanny's will close on September 12th 2015.
Fanny died in June and her family have decided to sell up.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Sunday 9th August 2015

Eight were gathered at Chalk's Hill Bakery in Reigate on a sunny morning. As we were heading off leaving Bob and Terry, Richard arrived but decided to stop for a cake so Jeff, Andy, Ed, Paul, Ken and I climbed Chalks Hill towards our lunch.
We cycled along Lonesome Lane then through Salfords and Outwood before turning left at Blindley Heath towards Tilburstow.  We turned down Hart's Lane before the best bit of the hill where Ed left us. We continued towards Hurst Green and turned towards Merle Common and our destination - the Royal Oak at Staffhurst Wood. Just before arriving Jeff was the victim of a totally unprovoked attack by a wasp. Retribution followed during lunch as Jeff managed to trap the wasp (it looked like the one that attacked him)  in his soup then ground it underfoot.
After lunch we headed East for a circular ride before heading West again through Hurst Green towards Bletchingley.  This time we climbed the best bit of Tilburstow before a fast descent on Rabies Heath Road stopping for tea at Lamingtons. Ken headed home then leaving the four of us at the tea shop.
After a leisurely tea we left via Church Lane until the junction with White Hill Lane where Andy and Paul turned left towards a cycle route and Jeff and I right along the lane. Then left along Spring Bottom Lane where Jeff and I parted company as he headed towards Rockshaw Road. I turned up Hilltop Lane for a scenic ride across Farthing Down and home.
Perfect cycling weather. For me door to door 43 miles. For the others a lot more.

Dave S.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Sunday, 9 August

 Reigate - Staffhurst - Bletchingley

One of the little buzzards got me again!

Coffee, lunch and tea, with a bit of cycling in-between

Monday, August 03, 2015

2/7/15 alternative ride.

The route to 11's at Tanhouse Farm would have proved difficult with road restrictions imposed by the Pru Ride London. So a breakaway group, (Tony, Alan, Pam and Vic) headed for 11's at Dorney walled garden. Queues for tea/coffee were enormous but we all manage to get served,  apart from Vic who arrived late. Then where to go for lunch? Alan headed for home but the remaining 3 decided to head West towards the Walthams and maybe the Beehive pub for lunch.

Having reached the pub we decided it was a tad early so headed North to Littlewick Green and and the Cricketers pub, cycling part of NCN4 the combine harvesters were in full swing with dust clouds from them delaying our progress. We reached the pub and were welcomed and served quickly with fine fare sitting outside in the Sun.

Then the decision as to tea? The best option for all seemed to be Windsor farm shop, so retracing the last part of our route we headed off. Approaching the peanut roundabout from the West via Winkfield and then through Windsor great park on the main road into Windsor and onto Old Windsor to tea in the Sun at the Farm shop. Finding it hard to leave we eventually went our separate ways home.


2 Aug Tanhouse Farm - Wisborough Green - Capel

The Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 was always going to draw greater numbers than a gentler ride from Tanhouse Farm so I expected this to be a rather exclusive C&M ride.

My own ride out to Tanhouse Farm was diverted over Epsom Downs and Walton on the Hill to avoid the closed roads in Leatherhead and Dorking. But I did get to have a short look at the Pru Ride near the top of Pebblecoombe before rushing off to see how many had made it to Elevenses.

Arriving late I found Jeff tucking into a bacon sandwich. Lilian, Terry and Ken were also sitting there wondering where the leader was. Mick had phoned in apologies having been obstructed by the barriers in Leatherhead.

So just five of us headed south towards Rusper. Turning sharp right on the entry to the village, we gently lost our altitude to cross the railway at Warnham Station. In Warnham we turned right into Friday Street to pass The Greet's Inn before Byfleets Lane brought us back to a right turn into Broadbridge Heath Road.

At the Billingshurst Road T-junction we usually turn right down to the Newbridge Roundabout and the main road. But today we found a traffic-free route through to the quieter lanes. Turning left and right into Church Road we found the end of the new cycle path that crosses the A264, through the new housing estates and  across the River Arun. Here it joins the bridleway up through the woods and connects with the Downs Link as it re-joins the road at Weston's Hill.

Here we looped round through Itchingfield before passing through Barns Green and on to Billingshurst. Unfortunately this left a couple of miles along the busy A272 to reach Wisborough Green.

Ken left for home (having been up since three o'clock to take his son to the Pru Ride) and the remaining four chose to stop at The Old Mill Cafe.

I then had to leave to get to Guildford for my sister-in-law's 50th birthday celebrations. But not before discussing and leaving a highlighted route to tea at Capel. I hope they all made it!

Tanhouse Farm to Wisborough Green - 21 miles
Wisborough Green to Capel - 16 miles if they didn't get lost.

Sunday 2 August 2015

Tanhurst - Wisborough Green - Capel

Neil, please put away those dentures!
Thou shalt not pass
Neil headed north to BBQ in Guildford. The orphaned lambs bleated as they watched him disappear in a cloud of dust and burning rubber, to celebrate his sister-in-law's half century with a burnt offering. But these Surrey lambs are made of stern stuff and have a built-in homing instinct. In no time they were trotting northward through Newpound, Poundstreet, Drungewick and Rudgwick. Soon they smelt the green pastures of Capel and were grazing contentedly in the cemetery. Refreshed they trotted on to Dorking where, at the Friends not so Provident, they separated to make their ways to home pastures. Here the providential barriers were down, but some soon found themselves penned in at the top of Little Switzerland. With no escape, they waited until released, not understanding the reason for their captivity.  Finally they were home after their exciting, ovine escapade. Our thanks to Neil for letting us off the leash.


Monday, July 27, 2015

Sunday July 26

Summer still hasn't arrived and the Met Office forecast was spot on - six hours of steady rain so little traffic and few signs of Lycra. It was drizzly as I left home but by Runnymede the waterproofs weren't. Just seven (Irene, Alan, Ed, Graham, Pam, Paul, Vic) braved the conditions. David Leach(?) too came and went as our initial thought was "thus far and no further".

But by 11.30 an improvement persuaded us (not Alan) to carry on though not to Binfield: we settled for five miles and not a pub! After the usual back of Old Windsor we headed along the cycle path beside the A308. A few twists and turns through less salubrious parts of Windsor brought us to lunch at Wyevale Garden Centre Dedworth - crowded but prompt service.

On the restart we were greeted with more drizzle. The ride to Fifield was easy but as we turned east, we faced strengthening headwinds or crosswinds - Bray Marina, Eton boating lake, Datchet and Wraysbury. We were "too wet" for North's so we called it a day at Notcutts Laleham. Dry clothes were most welcome after only 50 miles door to door.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Sunday 19 July

Garsons Farm - Knaphill - Ockham Bites


 Before leaving the garden centre, our numbers had swelled to a 'bakers dozen' !   Angie and Bob left to do their own thing whilst the rest of us headed into the wind for Weybridge, avoiding the High Street by using Portmore Park Road, on to the cycle path alongside the A317.  At Addlestone Moor we crossed over to pick up Green Lane, Bittams Lane, into Homewood Park leading us to Stonehill Road.   Gracious Pond Road next which took us to Burrowhill - straight over the crossroads to take a left turn into Ford Road - then a short ride along a rough path took us over the first ford!   Second ford was in Lovelands Lane and from there it wasn't far to the Garibaldi at Knaphill.      None of the group felt the need to actually cycle through the fords!! 


 Alan had waved us goodbye at Burrowhill which left 10 of us for lunch where we sat in the garden for it was such a lovely day which came as a surprise to me for I thought rain had been forecast!  


Once we had all eaten and drunk our fill we were off to the Basingstoke canal.   I left the canal at Sheerwater to take a shorter ride, (rather than go to West Byfleet), to Pyrford Road.   Lock Lane next, over the A3 at Wisley and onto Ockham Bites where ice creams, as well hot drinks and bites...were very welcome!


Good company and the weather all added up to a lovely trouble free day.    Tony did a grand job as back marker and Terry and Neil were there usual helpful selves!!!   In fact -thanks to everybody for keeping me in touch with all behind me!!


Cheers Pam :) :)


Sunday, 19 July

Garsons Farm - Knaphill - Ockham
The Pub at Knaphill
If you look very hard you might see the ford behind Pam

If you look very hard you might see Irene (Ed, get out of the way!)
As for that cheeky old codger behind Paul, I'm very tempted to drop a turd on his pate!

That's better!   

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Sunday, 12 July

Gomshall - The Haven - Capel

The caprice of mobile technology struck today. My camera app was ousted by a rogue 'WhatsApp' camera app. The photos were there at lunchtime but not to be found when I got home and were invisible to Dropbox. Bring back the Kodak Box Brownie!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Sunday July 12

It was damp and cool when Lilian, Jeff, Paul,Ed, Graham and I left Jordan's of Gomshall, and it didn't change very much all day. Our route was Burrows Cross, Little London and Farley Green to Winterfold Heath. Normally mountain bikers by the dozen are on this road, but not today. After a bumpy descent we soon joined the B2128 to Cranleigh, which we escaped by turning into Knowle Lane. We then enjoyed a nice, quiet run south to cross the A281 then via Tisman's Common back onto the A281, albeit briefly before turning south into Haven Road. Shortly we headed west to approach The Blue Ship from the west. (Approach from the west via bridleway and Gibbon's Mill not recommended). After placing our orders we sat outside under cover, but only briefly.

After a good lunch (a little slow service -- but we weren't in a great rush) we headed north to join the A281 before shortly turning off to Rudgwick. We followed the 'usual'route to Capel ie Cox Green and Ellen's Green but then some chose Oakwood Hill and potholed Weare Street (presumably to have a larger choice of cakes). Jeff and I rode via Walliswood, Standon Lane, Mole Street and Ockley - and there was still some cake left.

Less than fifty miles for me but all will have done much more.

Many thanks for your company.


Friday, July 10, 2015

Daniel Arthur & Helena Wedding 4 July 15

A regular with C&M finally got Wed on Sat, independence day! It was a very grand do with both sides of the families well represented. I was invited along with C&M, KPRC and Epsom CC members to sit on the cyclists table.

Go to KPRC Blog for more photo's.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Sunday, June 28

Conspiracy or C Cup?

Two months off the bike seems to have begat an embryonic inclination to conspiracy theorism. Is C&M trying to tell me something? After a warm welcome within sight of the red hot pokers of the Garden Centre and the still redolent embers of Clandon House, I enjoyed the somewhat damp company of the C&M as far as Guildford High Street. Here  not quite time enough to remove sunglasses and don waterproofs before the peloton was off for North Street. Baulked by red lights and traffic, I did briefly glimpse a luminescent Vic at the bottom of N.St. but that was my last contact with C&M for the day. An anti-clockwise circuit  in the face of horrendous Forces Day traffic got me to JDW.  After an obstacle course of one way traffic and endless barriers, I eventually found my way to the friendly A31 Farnham Rd, where I could cycle once again, even if the only way was up and parallel to the Mount. Down then past the Watts Gallery and up again to Puttenham Heath Road and the Good Intent in Puttenham. I thought I might be the last to arrive, but there were no bicycles.

After a damp wait I fished out the mobile to 'phone Ed and found a voicemail from him to say that the party was going to Hurtmore. This puzzled me as I was sure that Puttenham was the destination. Nonetheless I left a message for Ed (I had no idea that some form of code is necessary),  upped sticks and headed down to Hurtmore. It seems ill-endowed with taverns. I searched high and low but found no sign of cycling life. After another vain 'phone call, I responded to the call of home via Farncombe and Loseley Park.

On the +ve side, I did enjoy some unexpected hills and was not tempted by bacon rolls, beer  or carrot cake, so the calorie and cholesterol count was nil, though without the company of the phantom riders of the C&M. My roll of Kodak film remained unexposed.

Jeff (Lone Rider)

Sunday June 28 2015

I mentioned Conan Doyle in last week's post and this week we had our very own "Adventure Of The Solitary Cyclist" (more of this later). With three octogenarians, this must ranked first among rides based on highest average age!

On the way to 11s there were plenty of signs and cyclists so at least two sportives. Clandon Park may have lost its no roof, windows, ceilings and floors but the hoardings are up and security guards are in situ so action is imminent . Just nine were gathered at the garden centre with Jeff and Andy making welcome returns. However Andy's stay was short lived - he was unwell. We needed an substitute leader - me.

The A25 saw the six into Guildford. Nothing in BBC's weather forecast had suggested that our passing shower would last from Merrow to Puttenham. So we donned waterproofs on the High Street  and then the fun started! AFAIK there is no east-west cycle route through Guildford centre so my plan was to use pedestrianised Friar Street to reach the town bridge. But that was scuppered when the trailing Vic turned right off North Street towards the bus station. So we advanced to the inner ring road and happily he spotted us. But of Jeff there was no trace. On the bridge Ed made the first of several calls through the day - it went through voicemail. Later on Ed did receive a voicemail but without the passcode, we were none the wiser!

We rode the Loseley road to Farncombe. Charterhouse school was out for summer and in Norney a first right led us through Shackleford and on to Puttenham. The Good Intent had plenty of room for the unbooked - another worrying sign of the times?

By two it was warm and sticky and time for some of Andy's promised roughstuff. The NDW got us to Watts Gallery and the uphill brought us to the start of the trackway. The Mount has been resurfaced so the town bridge soon hoved into view. And it's now possible to ride the cobbles without riding on the pavement - thank you Guildford council.

At lunch we agreed on a teastop change and were delighted to discover that the A3 cyclepath has been gardened. Not so its continuation from Ripley to Ockham Bites. At Vic's insistence we stopped for a second time to admire orchids (bee, in this instance). And did you know the entire building is privately owned by Ockham Bites? After a desultory teastop we went our various ways. Just 56 miles door to door.

No photos so here's a previous visit in 2009.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Paul's Central America video from Feb 2015

Paul Days Central America trip video Feb 2015

Lunch time view Sunday 21st June

Midsummer 2015

It's a couple of years since we headed this way and much has changed. By ten or thereabouts, seven had gathered in Wetherspoons. Leaving Bob behind in Astolat, we headed south to Shalford before quieter roads took over : Bramley, Hascombe, Dunfold and Durfold.

Black Down rears up after Shillinglee but fortunately our route lay along its side. The first change was the re-opened Lickfold Inn (which must hearten the new Top Gear presenter). But it marks the start of the "climb" (Bexleyhill). This year the score was 5-1 with only Dave S wobbling to the top without putting a foot down. The Duke Of Cumberland was bathed in sunshine as we disappear in its vast gardens.

Mindful of our newest octogenarian, we skipped the King Edward VII estate and its 247(!) new houses and apartments by heading north. Since my last visit Fernhurst has gained a one-way system. Seeing no obvious alternative I ignored the signs without consequence; apologies to anyone appalled  by my rule flouting. The standard route was rejoined for the climb to Linchmere. Paul punctured in Hammer Bottom leading to an unscheduled delay of thirty minutes. With the A3 now underground, Hindhead has been transformed with even the old Conan Doyle house (Undershaw) being redeveloped.

Lillian and Ed headed for Haslemere and an early train so just four started the last leg. I can't recall the last time we used Boundless Road so Brook Wormley and Enton Hall were new to most. Another sign of the time: Milford Hospital has sprouted a large housing estate. Terry peeled off in Godalming for Shalford whilst we took the Loseley to Guildford where my day ended. Dave and Paul were last seen tackling the cobbled High Street.

Only 45 miles but b****y hard. Pleasantly warm with plenty of cyclists well off route if they were doing the L2B.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Cycle Safety/HGV

Read more about it on the SWLDABlog. Picture below starts the story.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sunday, 14 June 2015

W. Horsley - Forest Green - Brockham
A rather mangy Parrot
though very smart inside
 The glorious beef put a smile on their faces (though not the prices)

 In full blossom

 At Brockham - sitting around, eating and drinking once again!

Sunday 14th June

On a cool, damp morning eight of us (including Jeff, welcome back to C and M after sickness, Jeff) set out from Squires, West Horsley, bound for The Parrot, Forest Green. We soon warmed up after ascending Shere Road, with a stop at the top to order 'Six roast beef sandwiches, please' at The Parrot. By turning into Chantry Lane, we avoided the centre of Shere, also chose to avoid the stream by using the footbridge and were able to admire the flourishing allotments. After the climb south we turned into Brook Lane thence via Farley Green (Shophouse Lane) to Smithwood Common Road and Amletts Lane to bypass Cranleigh. As we passed, the refurbished Park Hatch looked very smart but we pressed on to Ewhurst Green along Plough Lane to rejoion the B2127 to Forest Green. Here our pre-ordered sandwiches soon appeared and we were able to sit outside and enjoy them.

After lunch the weather brightened and warmed up a litttle, we followed the 'usual' route to Capel where we ignored the welcoming signs of 'Teas at the Church' - we were heading for Brockham. At Newdigate we turned right and shortly left into Church Lane, soon joining Parkgate Road, then via Parkgate and Shellwood Cross to Brockham. Upon arrival we were pleasantly surprised to see Ruth and Rob already there with their choir friends, but, most importantly, there was still some cake left. After a leisurely tea break we crossed the golf course and after Pixham Lane I left my good companions at Denbie's roundabout. About forty six miles for me, d to d, but I expect others will have done more.


Monday, June 01, 2015

Sunday May 31 2015

Quite by chance all nine meet up in Stoke Poges before continuing to 11s. Thanks to a drizzle never heavy but penetrating, the cafe had few other customers. Alan headed back so the bunch was now:
Irene, Caroline, Janice, Lillian, Maureen, Pam plus Dave S and Graham.

We set off on an amended course: a quick tour of the Beeches, then south through Burnham, past Dorney Court and over the Thames to Bray. Our target was Moneyrow Green but the White Hart had a private party and the Jolly Gardener, a 45 minutes wait for food. So after drinks but feeling hungry we continued to Windsor, Datchet and Wraysbury and into Staines where three enjoyed tea and cakes at North's. Grey until five when blue/sun appeared - naturally we were home by then.

Thanks all for turning out on a miserable last day of May.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Sunday May 31st 2015 - CHANGE OF LUNCH VENUE

I have decided to cut short ride as various people have shown concern about the distance to Dew Drop Inn. After 11s I will make my way to Maidenhead via Cliveden, lunch will hopefully be at The White Hart, Money Row Green, unfortunately no sandwiches but small portions on several meals. Afternoon tea will be at The North Cafe Staines.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sunday 24th May 2015

I arrived at Oaks Park with my sister Moira who was visiting from Canada in time for a coffee.  Just before 9 we were joined by Matt and a few minutes later by Dave.
The four of us  set off towards Woodmansterne before riding through Coulsdon and across Farthing Downs to Caterham.  This was followed by a quick descent of Burnwood Road and shortly after a not so quick ascent of the hill up to Woldingham Church. Then it was an easy downhill ride to our coffee stop in Westerham where Bob was waiting.
Dave and Bob left us there so three headed up Hosey Hill towards Chartwell then Four Elms and Bough Beech before turning onto country lanes passing through farmland and woods.
Then a climb - Bayleys Hill was the gentlest I could find to get us up to Stone Street although Moira wasn't convinced.  After that it was a gentlish ride through forested roads to our lunch stop at the Padwell Arms.
Matt headed off into Stone Street to find a picnic spot while Moira and I checked out the menu at the Padwell.  On the reconnaissance I chose the small portion of whitebait but was completely defeated.  Moira decided on a cheese and pickle sandwich this time so I chose that as well but had to leave the salad.  The Grumpy Old Git bitter is recommended. 
After lunch it was downhill to Seal then on to Kemsing to pick up the Pilgrim's Way.  A few miles of easy riding then a long slog up Starhill Road.  That put us on more or less the same level as Tatsfield so the remainder of the ride to tea went quickly.
The forecasted shower started while we were having our tea so we moved inside until it finished.  After tea a shortish climb up to the Croydon Road roundabout then downhill through Warlingham to Purley.  Moira and I turned off along Woodcote Valley Road leaving Matt carrying on towards Belmont.
In total about 57 miles.
From Dave S
Pictures here:

Sunday, May 17, 2015

17 May Staines - Littlewick Green - Runnymede

My ride to Staines seemed to have more headwind than expected but I consoled myself with the thought of being blown home later. Ten were already seated in The George when I arrived and a couple more arrived soon after including Peter on his first Sunday ride.

The nine heading for lunch were Vic, Ed, Tony, Paul, Peter, Graham, Ray Wren, Brian G and me. Alan joined us for the first part of  the route while Bob, Don and Dave W headed off for places various.

Departure was interupted by Tony rushing back to recover his helmet but we were soon heading for Egham via the level crossings. Through the backstreets we rode up Malt Hill to warm up the legs before crossing the A30 and up Middle Hill and Barley Mow Road. Then on to Savill Gardens where we entered Windsor Great Park and looped around to Ascot Gate.

Onward to Ascot Racecourse where we entered the centre by the tunnel and rode across to the A322 before cutting across to Forest Road and on to Winkfield Row. Turning right at Hayley Green, past Warfield church, through Moss End and then a mile of bridleway to reach the ford at Wesleymill.

Over the M4 on Drift Road we then headed north to White Waltham before passing west of the airfield on Butchers Lane before turning right at Orchard Farm and approaching Littlewick Green across the fields.

The sun was still shining when we reached The Cricketers so lunch was taken outside overlooking the cricket on the green. The roasts were very popular and by limiting myself to the still very generous "childs" portion I still found room for the treacle sponge and custard.

After lunch we continued across the fields and then around the east of the airfield and back to White Waltham. From there we headed south back to Drift Road for a three mile easterly straight blast. The wind was definitely behind us and good time was made. Heading north through Fifield and over the A308 we passed Bray Marina before crossing the Thames on the wooden bridge to reach Dorney Lake.

After cycling alongside the lake we used the Thames Path to Eton before crossing the old bridge to Windsor. The last hill of the day took us up past the castle and down the High Street before crossing the Long Walk, passing through Old Windsor, and along to tea at The Pleasure Ground in Runnymede.

Here six sat in the sun for a while before heading off home with the wind still behind most.

41.5 miles from 11s to tea.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Sunday May 11 2015

Despite a lively breeze, the improving weather produced a fine crop of riders; many on a sportive (Staple Lane, Ranmore Common and much later Box Hill). Our group at Tillings was more select, just six (Pete B, Bob, David, Janice, Paul, and the author). What - no bacon sandwiches!

For Paul there was a family affair. The three whippets rode by way of Peaslake and Winterfold and a left beside Cranleigh school so bypassing the village itself. Whereas Bob and I separately opted for something less strenuous (for me Shamley Green and the Downslink).  Lunch was at the Park Hatch (note the change of name). And boy has it changed - gone the gloom, the foliage, the enormous portions and much of the garden including that shed! No sandwiches, not much under a tenner,  so fewer visits in future?

With Bob Guildford bound, four sampled the emergent cycle path between Cranleigh and Ewhurst where with time in hand, we checked out the "railway" house. After Walliswood, we added Friday Street (Ockley) and Vann Lake. By Capel they were still too quick for me so the Pilgrim Cycles rendezvous was reached via Newdigate (them), Holmwoods (me). It was warm enough to an alfresco tea where I was shocked to learn that none had heard of Nick Drake.

We'd not been in snapping mood so here's his (and his parents') gravestone taken on the 2005 Easter tour to Warwick and a sample of his music:

About 60 miles door to door.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

South Bucks CTC Ride Report

3rd May: Joint ride with South-West London CTC. A very wet start to the day, perhaps no surprise that only four  at the Holmer Green start – John and Sue I. plus Jack and JC; we were decidedly damp before we even reached Beaconsfield, John I. was wringing out his waterproof gloves and John C had modified the route to avoid the puddle-filled, muddy lanes. 

Even the bluebells looked droopy and forlorn  and it was an early arrival at the cafe in Burnham Beeches, still raining but not so heavy; coffee; more glove-wringing and then we welcomed Ken Bailey, Mac Crombie and David Winterburn, but we were even more pleased to see a line of cyclists coming up the path to the cafe. Nine riders from S-W London (covers an area from Richmond to Sutton, Cheam to Kingston-on-Thames) had met at Hampton Court , ridden via Feltham and Datchett to arrive at precisely 11.00 despite the rain. It was great to see Tony, Pam, Caroline and the others; more coffee and social chat. Some of us knew each other from CTC holidays or the 2014 Golden Beeches, when the arrangements for today’s joint ride had been made.

John & Sue, Mac and David had other commitments, so just three South Bucks and eight visitors departed for lunch at Aston. The weather forecasters had predicted the rain would stop late morning and so it did, as we left the cafe to pursue a route past Dropmore, Cliveden, Bourne End to Cookham Bridge. Cookham had some sort of Bank Holiday Arts-Fest with decorated streets and the Stanley Spencer Gallery open, but we had no time to stop, except to divest ourselves of damp tops as we pressed on to Winter Hill, down the zigzags into Marlow. We had intended to use the lanes through Bisham and Hurley, but the thought of more mud and puddles led to a change of plan and we rode past the Leisure Centre en route for the Hambleden Weir crossing. The Thames was in full spate and two canoeists were having great fun paddling against the surge. Onto lunch at the Flowerpot, sitting outside in full sun.

After lunch, the pace slowed to enable one of our visitors to catch up after a puncture; the route took us  past  Knowl Hill, White Waltham, Holyport and Bray to afternoon tea at Dorney Court, after which we went our separate ways. Home at 6.00, escaping some very heavy showers. A grand day out and many thanks to Tony Hopkins and his colleagues from South West London CTC

John Capell