Wednesday, November 30, 2005
I am prepared to collect entries for the DA Photographic Competition. A selection of last years entries are to be seen (click on image for a larger view) The rules of all DA competitions are on the main DA Website.
From Pete Mitchell
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
On Wednesday, 'B' group of Norman, Les, Cliff and Steve (Terry phoned to tell us that he and John M had hit black ice near Reigate and both had fallen off- cuts and bruises but otherwise OK. Bikes damaged, so they went home), trailed 'A' group past East Surrey Hospital then separated, we carried on to Horne to the intended lunch stop The Jolly Farmer. With only four of us we arrived too early. So plan B! On to the Fox and Hounds on Tilburstow Hill. We have passed this pub tens of times on the way home but never stopped. A pleasant and friendly pub, good food. The sun appeared, giving us good ride home via an off road trail north of Bletchingley to Merstham, then Fanny's Farm for tea. Les did not stop, so three of us rode back home via Banstead. Cheers Norman.
Hi Brian, Sorry to hear that Mike Withers, Bernard and "Young Tom" are under the weather. Please pass on my best wishes for a speedy recovery to the lads.
I feel very lucky to be wearing shorts in our wonderful 70/80f when I hear of black ice in Surrey and its only November. Be lucky, Bob Lees (living now in Florida)
Hi All There is a Christmas tea at Brockham Hall next Sunday, 4th Dec. They will be serving a light lunch, soup & a roll from 12-1pm; then afternoon tea and cakes, with Christmas Carols from 1pm-4pm. Anyone interested? (Brockham Hall teas start again on the first Sunday in April and go through every Sunday till first Sunday in November, before the annual Brockham Bonfire) Bye for now, Lynda.
Friday, November 25, 2005
Riding along well-named Slipshatch Road (south of Reigate) en route to Redhill with John Mason, I slid to earth thanks to some black ice. John also came off, ending up in the ditch. We picked ourselves up and checked our bikes (John's front forks were bent and had a crack at the carbon/alu join, mine had a couple of small dents in the top tube and the chainwheel change up lever has 'gone limp' but Guy Pearson has spares). We both received a few grazes at the corners so we gently made our way home. It was an interesting experience sliding along the road on right ankle, knee, thigh, wrist and elbow seeing John catching me up, wondering what he would do and glad he wasn't a ten ton truck. We did later see a motorist going in the opposite direction having slight traction problems. Hopefully we'll see you all next week at Shepperton. Cheerio, Terry.
Oops! How could I get your name wrong, Julian?Put it down to decrepiticity (add to spellcheck). I wonder how many more will point out my error - I'll let you know and apologise next issue.
Brian,No worries, as they say. Incidentally, I can't come next week- we're going to Amsterdam - but hope to be out on 7 Dec. I was very sorry to hear Bernard's news. Best wishes........... Julian
Shepperton next week, then! Brian
Thursday, November 24, 2005
Hi Brian I am having treatment for my neck and shoulder. The physiotherapist suggests I lay off cycling for a few weeks; I shall be taking her advice. I can keep in touch through your weekly emails; thanks for these. Happy Christmas - see you in the New Year. Mike Withers
Brian, please excuse me from leading for a while. The little op that caused my recent unavailability to lead was a biopsy and I got the result today. It's bad news in that the low grade Lymphoma I've had for 6 years has converted to a high-grade version. So I shall start chemo on 7 Dec, which will take 24 weeks followed by a bone marrow transplant. I hope to be with you next week but how I shall feel after that I don't know. Regards Bernard
We all wish you well Bernard, and you too, Mike.
Pat and Bill Matthews tell me they wish to be relieved from leading so, all considered, we are down to too few 'B' group leaders - volunteers would be much appreciated.
I had a call fro Tom Fish on Saturday and on Sunday he missed the SWLDA AGM, which was probably the gist of his call. As joint vice president, he rarely misses AGM, so he must be under the weather and would love a call from his Wayfarers friends.
We had a record turnout of 'A' & 'B' groups plus Eric at The Arches Coffee Shop Redhill yesterday, welcoming Mike Morley (see pen-picture in current Sou'Wester) and welcoming back Steve Cox (absent lately). Eric passed round a SWLDA members list from 1992 and it was remarkable how few names are still on board.
On Tuesday, Bob, Will and I on our regular MTB ride, going through Sutton Recreation Ground, met six others coming the opposite way, led by our own Godfrey Potter.
This, we learnt, is also a regular MTB fixture, started by the late lamented Tom Fiddemore and we duly turned tail and joined them for a splendid ride through the woods to Cobham and on to Weybridge in steadily improving weather, enjoying the British Volunteer's hospitality before a Thames towpath return. We split and four of us called on Ed and were treated to tea and his lovely homemade cake. I mention all this as it led to the aforementioned Mike and Steve joining us at Redhill yesterday and we shall again be a united MTB group for an urban ride next Tuesday, from St Barnabas Road Sutton at 10am.
Hi Brian, After saying, 'Hi' then 'Bye', to A + B groups at North Cheam; Judy & I made our way to Weybridge. We went via Briarwood, Aureole Park, and Tamesis Gardens to Malden Manor station, crossed the Hogsmill to Tolworth, and passed Long Ditton to Hampton Court, then the towpath to Weybridge. I had had a phone call from Albert, saying he went out Monday on his bike, had a tumble and was knocked unconscious and wouldn't be coming out today. Fuzz, Derek and Geoff A. were at the Day Centre. Fuzz getting to be quite a regular again and Geoff, who is nearing his move, made their way home after 11's. Derek went his own way for lunch and Dave led the rest of us, Beryl, Ron W., John G., Judy, Dennis, Alan and myself to Ripley. We went towards Addlestone via Poets Corner, and then we went over a bridge with glass doors, passed Row Town, New Haw and West Byfleet. The sun was trying to come through now and passing through Pyrford was very scenic. Four of us had a nice hot lunch at Watson's and the sandwich brigade went to the Day Centre. Cobham was our afternoon stop; where we passed a very pleasant teatime with Maria, the Centre Assistant there. A long-standing joke came about when Maria said she had lost weight, so Ron retrieved from his saddlebag a tape measure. Measurements were taken; it seems this had been done a previous time, when I wasn't there. The outcome was correct. Albert - you will have to ask Ron W. for more details! After tea and muffins we made our own way home. I went thro' a very eerie Nonsuch Park, round about 5pm. I passed a couple of dog walkers and could hear the sound of hooting owls. I was very pleased to get to the other side and see some lights. Then I was off to Cannons to pass a nice, relaxing time in the Jacuzzi and sauna. I entered 47 miles on the Fitlinx machine. Let's hope it doesn't snow too much before next week. Bye for now, Lynda.
Ed led 'A' group, comprising Mike M, Grant, Toni, Pete B, Brian, Pete M, daughter Jake, daughter-in-law Jen (lunch only), John D, Ray D, Jeremy, Rob and Bob on a spirited ride to Dormansland, where The Old House at Home once again did us proud. Being the year's bleakest day, we skipped tea and headed home via Bletchingley having covered around 60 miles from Ewell.
Norman led 'B' group and their destination was Outwood, but no more details are yet to hand. A call en-route from Terry to say that John Mason had been returned home before reaching Redhill leaves us hoping you are OK John. As for Albert, read on…….
Thanks for your kind wishes Brian. Sorry I was not quite up to yesterday's ride but now I have healed up well and am taking my usual nourishment, I should see you next week at Shepperton, hoping to lead a modest ride without snow-chains! All the best Albert
Friday, November 18, 2005
I have been up to my neck in Poppy Appeal accounting, hence a delayed newsletter. Thanks to Rob (and Ruth) and Ed for helping the Banstead Poppy Appeal.
Following up on an earlier note, Pete Barnard advises that the Carol Concert mooted for cyclists/ramblers at Walton on the Hill will not take place this year due to short notice, but please note that a provisional date of 10 Dec 06 has been set for next year's event.
Hi Brian As we will be off to Oz and NZ from 18 Nov (Heathrow 6am - with Frank C) we think it would be a good idea if you delete us from your email circulation list for now. We shall be thinking of you all, especially on Wednesday mornings, and hope you all enjoy your various Xmas and New Year activities and festivities, with or without bikes. We shall catch up with everyone on our return. Merry Christmas and a happy new year to all. Doreen and Ron.
Thanks to Terry and his helpers for another enjoyable downhill competition from Norwood Hill towards Charlwood, with about thirty entrants and won in fine style again by John Mason, with Grant and Pete B again in close contention. We adjourned to the Rising Sun only to find lunch-time food no longer available, then to the Half Moon - closed for refurbishment and finally to The Greyhound, an already busy Hungry Horse pub, with too few staff. The food and drink was excellent. We had an outdoor award presentation, with special thanks to Ed, who had, as always, created the shield for the winner John - needing one more win for his hat-trick. We got a bit split up afterwards, but most found their way to Denbighs for tea and tactics review.
Phil led fifteen 'C' group from Claygate, comprising Lynda, Beryl, Carol, Anita and Helga, Alan, Ron, Mark, two Johns, Dennis, Dave, Geoff and me. I can't remember if Roger was there and I hope Harold's cold is better. We took a pretty off-road route across Claygate Common, Princes Covert and Ashtead Common to Epsom. The winding route through Ashtead Common was particularly attractive with the autumnal colours everywhere. Helga had a spill but she was OK and so was her bike. I think some of us found the hills a bit steep, in particular one on the racecourse with a soft sand surface and hoof prints. I had to walk that one. We lunched at the Derby Arms. Tea was to be at Ewell. I'll take a map another time to find out what sort of return journey that might involve. It was not until I recognised Kingston Bypass that I realised I had followed a home-going group. We were approaching the Tolworth Tower and Mark gave me a quiet route in the direction of Esher. I must have taken a wrong turn and after a mile or so found myself going east along the service road alongside Kingston Bypass. I continued back to Tolworth roundabout and on to a westerly heading until reaching Scilly Isles roundabout and the long hill to Esher. At least after 40mls I reached Addlestone before needing lights. Think I'll change to a softer saddle! Regards, Albert
Friday, November 11, 2005
We visited yet another new 11's venue, the Bradbury Centre in Kingston, where we were warmly welcomed by the staff of this lovely new facility, despite the snag that the manager (absent on a course) forgot to mention the booking for 40 or so, made formally a couple of months back.
We were delighted to see Fuzz again and Geoff Hunt, putting in a rare appearance. Albert was seen arriving as we left, but I guess he caught up OK.
Frank C reports: Leaving the new 11's venue (well done Brian). I anticipated an 'A' group of maybe 12 members, however, with 'B' group leader sending apologies for non-attendance, our combined group swelled to 29. We had 2 Pete's, 3 Franks, 4 Johns and 5 of the fairer sex. Pete M, Pete B, Frank P, Frank H, John S, John M, John B, John G, Bob, Brian, Grant, Pam, Rob, Ray D, Norman, Ed, Judy, Nev, Gill, Mike & Mary, Ray H. Graham, Les, Terry, Irene, Cliff and Toni. Negotiating Kingston town centre via the cycle route, we turned right off Richmond Road into Latchmere Road, across Tudor Drive and into Richmond Park at Ham Gate, the climb up to Ham Cross was the last real climb of the day. Exiting at Richmond Gate we passed the construction crane at Mick Jagger's house and continued into Richmond via the back road to the bridge, we then turned right along Ducks Walk and through old Isleworth, through Syon Park and out at Brentford. We could not pick up the Grand Union towpath here due to its closure for building luxury apartments, (how Brentford has changed since the days of the gasometers) so we continued through the Butts of Old Brentford passing the home for three years from 1875 of JWM Turner, to the A4 and picked up the Grand Union Canal towpath here. It is also here that our crocodile group of 29 stretched for probably 1½ miles, and at that distance at least I couldn't hear Judy complaining that her new bike was getting dirty, (again). We passed 8 locks and 5 width restrictions in the 8 miles of towpath, to leave at Horton Bridge, Yiewsley. It was then a short ride to Harmondsworth were we needed the 2 public houses to cater for our needs. After lunch we had a quick view of the famous Tithe Barn. 4 members excused themselves to ride via Staines, the rest of us rode a quiet route through Sipson, Harlington, Cranford, Heston, Osterley Park, Kew, and to Richmond Park for tea by 3-30. By this time we had covered 31 miles from Kingston. And unlike the earlier weather report, it turned out to be a glorious sunny day. Frank C.
Weather great but a bit cooler. I arrived in Kingston by 10:30 but got a bit bogged down in Brook St. so it was 10:55 when I found the elevenses venue. Two ladies outside assured me that everyone had left and if I hurried I would `catch them up at the lights` This turned out to be a no go, so back over the bridge I went and made it to Hampton Court where I received a call on my mobile from Lynda who told me 'C' group were due to arrive by the same route. It appeared they were in fact still enjoying elevenses when the two ladies gave me the bum steer. I joined them at the bridge and we pressed on to Bushey Park where we did a circuit of the Round Pond to enable Ron to take some photos. Ron was leading in the absence of Cliff, followed by Dave, Lynda, Beryl, Alan, Bill, John, Mark, Dennis, Harold, Roger, Derek and me. We went through to Teddington and on to Richmond Park where a bit of off-road and a few stiff climbs took the stuffing out of me. We had our lunch break at The New Inn at Ham, after which it was back to Kingston for tea. We had lost Derek early on with a broken mudguard at Bushey Park and before arriving back at Kingston Alan and Harold peeled off for home. At least I got my pint and Harold shared his sandwich with me. The tea was OK also but I was unable to remonstrate with the two ladies. Perhaps they were locked in the lavatory! I clocked up 42 miles and arrived home at 4:55pm. See you next week at Claygate. Albert
For some next week, it's Dorking and our annual downhill competition from Norwood Hill towards Charlwood - see you there!
Thursday, November 03, 2005
Yesterday's 'A' ride was a wash out! But I think all 18 of us who were on it enjoyed themselves, I (Jen) certainly did. Cobham was 11s and Bob, Brian, Pete M, Pete B, Frank H, Frank C, Ray, Terry, John S, John, Irene, Pam, Grant, Graham, Les, Vic, Ed & Me, all headed to Effingham and upwards on shocker of a 1 in 7 climb to Ranmore Common Rd (where the heavens opened). But we survived and continued up to the top of Staple Lane and DOWN it, which was a real treat for me. The Horse & Groom pub in Merrow was very welcoming, considering I'd told them we'd be about 13, and laid us 2 tables near each other. Luckily they had a real ale festival on too. The food was understandably a bit delayed (very tasty, I thought), but, hey, it was pouring outside, so there was no rush. Finally we left at 2.30, and Graham took us on a very exciting shortcut over the River Wey to Send. When we finally arrived at Ripley for tea there was only 4 of us left...I did 46.5 miles from West Ewell, quality miles though' and rather wet at times. Hope Bob got home ok, the last I saw of him, he was heading towards the bar for another pint of real ale... perhaps he's still there? Jen
From Cobham, Ken, Carole, Gill, Judy, John, Mike and Mary and first time out on a Wednesday, Toni and I (welcome Toni - we hope to see you as often as work allows), made our way to Epsom Wetherspoons; via Claremont Park, Chessington, Poole Road, Ewell, Green Lanes, then over to Longmead cycle path to Epsom. We enjoyed a nice, hot lunch enjoyed by all after a wet ride. Norman, feeling a little under the weather with a cough joined us for lunch. I have since heard from John, who punctured before getting to Claygate, and told us to go on and he would see us for lunch. He didn't make it, due to 2 spare inner-tubes being wrongly marked in their boxes - from Halfords! He got the train and had to go back and collect his bike in the afternoon. Anyway, after a visit to the 'Best Loos in Surrey', we made our way down Ashley Road to the back of Sainsbury's to Ewell Village. Here, Norman and Judy left for home. Then there were six; who made our way to Hampton Court via Long Ditton. We took Mike and Mary home, then continued to one of my favourite tea-stops - 'five on the bridge'. We enjoyed afternoon tea and for me a delicious cafe latte and a 'generous' portion of lemon drizzle cake. Gill then left us for home; and Carole, Toni and myself made our way back to Cheam, where I popped into Cannons for a very hot Jacuzzi followed by a sauna. I clocked 45 miles by the time I got home. Although, the weather was grey, we had a good day.
Cliff led ten of us from Cobham in the pretty dismal weather en route to Mickleham, our intended lunch venue being the Running Horses. All the ladies apart from Beryl had already gone on a ride of their own and I hope they enjoyed better luck than yours truly! With Cliff in the lead then Mark, Ron. Bill, Beryl, Dennis, Roger and me (cant remember the other two) we went up Stoke Road straight on to Cobham Road towards Fetcham. Not my favourite route so in anticipation of a hard climb ahead I made the mistake of hammering down past everyone downhill expecting to be overtaken on the hill. This did not transpire so I waited quite a while until concluding they must have gone off-road (surely not in those conditions!) Confident I knew the way I pressed on through Fetcham towards Bookham then left down Lower Road. Faced with a climb up Hawk Hill near Leatherhead I punctured, found a fairly dry spot under a tree and changed my tube (front thank Heaven). A passing motorist offered a hand when I was putting the wheel back with the forks getting tangled in the spokes. I said I was OK and thanked him, then turned left with a fast downhill to join the A24 cycle-path. I got to the pub at one o'clock, had a slow pint and checked the menu. I decided to skip lunch since the least expensive item was a bowl of soup at £4.50! By two o'clock after another half of bitter and not having been able to raise Beryl or Bill on their mobiles I departed still in pouring rain through Leatherhead and Stoke D`Abernon where I collected another puncture. Opposite the Old Plough there is a bus shelter which I reached in a short walk and after phoning my son who was at work in Guildford got down to the nitty gritty of trying to stick patches on a wet tube. The fourth one was successful just as Pete turned up and ran me home in comfort. I phoned Cliff who said they went to the George IV at the rear of Frascati's and that they did in fact take the same route to Fetcham as me and that I must not have waited long enough. When I phoned Bill later on he said some of them went to the day centre at Leatherhead. Not much of a run report I'm afraid Brian. More a catalogue of miseries! Hope to find you at Kingston next week.
Some may remember the carol services held at Charlwood, which lapsed a couple of years ago or so. Horace Mouatt sounded out the vicar at Walton on the Hill recently and she has agreed to hold a service in her church on Sunday 4th December at 2.30 pm. Mike Morley is making the arrangements for seasonal refreshments. All are welcome.
Our new venue next week is immediately on the north side of the pedestrians-only iron girder bridge over the Hogsmill river at MR 184687 - see you there!