Friday, December 31, 2010

Leader Required


Please note that I will not be available to lead the group on this date, and I should be grateful if someone else could do it instead.

Perhaps a volunteer could announce themselves here, or let Jeff know please?

Roger S

2010 Mileage Charts

Send in any total mileage charted for 2010
it will appear on the link of Ten year totals on the side of this page as they arrive to me
From Pete Mitchell

Easy Riders Dec 29th

It was good to be out on the first ride after the ice and snow. We had a good turnout at Molesey with me and Pete on the tandem trike, John C. Ron, Fuzz, Dennis, Derek, Bill and Margaret S., but we did not reach a decision right then on our lunch venue since Pete wanted to make a call at a place in Walton which held a large stock of such items as fireplaces, windows etc.
I wandered off for a change on the front seat, but Pete feels happier with me stoking, so when I returned we resumed our usual saddles. The general consensus was to press on to The Swan near the Thames for lunch.
Pete and I made for home afterwards, but I received a sad story from Dennis who, on his way home through Bushy Park had an encounter with a dog, resulting in a broken shoulder blade. Get well soon dear old lad.
Best wishes for a Happy New Year---------Albert

A Group, 29 December 2010

Molesey - Stoke d'Abernon - Fetcham

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Ride 29th December

There was quite a number of us departed from East Mosely Centre on a short ride to The Plough Stoke D'Abernon. After a few stops on the way when a few became detached due to traffic lights getting in the way (the lights couldn't cope with the number) and slight deviations by yours truly experimenting with the route, afterall we had time on our hands.
I had cried off on the notion that the Scarlett Arms at Walliswood would have been more in keeping with the 'A' team, so my apologies to those who like to keep fit year round.

We, I think, had a pleasant and orderly lunch and after much discussion and sometimes debate departed, 10 or more of us going via the Elizabeth Foundation on Woodlands Road to Leatherhead to let our food go down and give time for wife Beryl to receive us with further food and drink to warm the cockles of the heart. There were some that needed to get home to beat the lights and no doubt be rewarded, I hope, by a warm rest after the efforts during this time of the year.
A happy and fit new year to you all.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Thank You Ray & Beryl 4"T"

Beryl thank you for preparing such a lovely spread and to Ray for inviting us. Vic is looking very happy even before the lovely tea and cake.
And the same with Ed looking very "MOG" He too was even happier after the odd 10yr old Port and even more potent "Slow Gin" that Ray had concocted over the last two years and how melancholy it was too! The ride home to Walton/Tadworth via the Chequers was pretty swift after that for Jeff & me.
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B Group

B group 29 December 2010

B group enjoying lunch at The Pelican

From Molesey I led Maureen, Steph, Cliff, Eddie, Godfrey, Harold, Ken, Les, Norman and Roger along towpath and roads to Walton bridge then via usual sideroads into parakeet country at Weybridge. A short ride alongside the Wey Navigation led to lunch stop at The Pelican at Addlestone. (Non-cricketing antipodeans have been heard to remark 'A peculiar bird is the pelican, Its' beak can hold more than its' belly can'). The landlord was pleased to see us, we trebled his clientele.
After lunch we headed west to Rowtown, Woodham and New Haw to Byfleet. Here Godfrey punctured but Eddie stayed to assist. The rest carried on, passing through Brooklands, along Redhill Road, semi-circumnavigated the M25/A3 roundabout when Harold punctured and Roger stopped to assist. Determined to have tea at Cobham we pressed on along Plough Lane to find The Medicine Garden closed so we headed for town and whatever might be open (it was only just turned 1500). Terry then punctured on the Mole bridge, stopped to repair it and bade the remaining few farewell. Hopefully everyone else had an uneventful ride home.

A Group 29th December

Pete's prediction for my spike tyres turned out to be true - the snow and ice has all gone. So a mild but damp day for Ray's ride - the last of the year. A modest and steady mileage to the Plough at Stoke d'Abernon for lunch, then back to Ray's house for tea and cakes.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Dec 22nd

Instead of the tandem trike, Peter and I went to Walton by car to find Phil and Harry (who made it by bike from Wimbledon). We saw Roger also on his bike as we left but that was the extent of our ride.. Have a Merry Christmas and I hope to see you next year!-- albert

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Spike Tyres

Just got some - I'll bring one to the Clubroom this evening for people to have a look at.

A jaundiced view, however - winter tyres or no, a lot of snow and ice riding is just awful. Maybe I'm getting old.


An idea from Adam

While I hope bike riders in the UK wont have the severe weather for too much longer we Canadian (BC) riders have adapted to winters for so long we must take it in our stride or not ride. One thing we use locally is studded tires for the icy days. Take an old mountain bike tire and insert small screws, cover the heads by layering with duct tape to protect the tube and keep pressure on the low side. However be careful if you happen to fall and run yourself over, it can be nasty. Also make sure you keep all the cables well oiled to prevent freezing.
sent in from Adam
Just using up last few minutes at yet another library; I really must get a life!

Above is something else cycle-related I'd be interested to hear from anyone who adapts a pair of tyres and does a test run on local by-ways. Certainly cheaper than the £29.99 per tyre that Clas Ohlson in Kingston charge for studded tyres. Maybe you could try out whether the theory really works?!

Report from Adam Dec 22nd

As John B may not have done a post and Harry wasn't planning to, here is a small contribution about our triplet of riders yesterday if you want to add it to your blog. I'm not quite sure how it all works , never having been responsible for such important news! Have a good holiday and see you soon, I trust.

"Connectivity with the internet proved a major deterrent yesterday as, when I arrived at Walton DC totally unaware of any warning blogs from Irene, Rob or Fuzz posted during my sleep, I saw only one parked cycle . My initial assumption that I had yet again chosen the wrong DC for 11's proved incorrect as I spied Harry Cole sipping a cuppa in the company of the locals and seemingly enjoying the ambience of the place. Just behind me came John Bassett who had diligently read the blog but disobeyed orders whereas Harry and I couldn't be accused of that, not being web savvy or even reliant!

After a brief democratic discussion as to where we should proceed , it was unanimously agreed to lunch (or maybe brunch would be rather more accurate) at the cafe at Pembroke Lodge in Richmond Park . Absolutely the only slush we encountered was for a few hundred metres on the south side of Teddington Lock in Ham ; the rest of the way passed without incident though disappointedly we'd only clocked about 20 miles according to John B's reliable (one hope's) odometer. After brushing aside fellow diners from a wedding reception taking place in an adjacent reception room ,(I cannot confirm whether a discount could be arranged for civil ceremonies through the SWLDA secretary in case there are any interested couples in our midst) Harry pointed out an information board at the exit with copious details of past owners and occupants of Pembroke Lodge amongst whom had been Bertrand Russell, the well known philosopher. He has, apparently read his biography and can even recite several humourous quotes which he will repeat when he is leading a B ride soon if there is sufficient request!

Adam "

More Revellers from "A" Group

Firstly well done Cliff, Les & Simon for making it out yesterday. Bob Starey will be pleased that you are keeping attendance up at his favourite pub chain! To add to the seasonal spirit the collage depicts some more of last weeks Xmas lunch bunch at the "Cricketers" plus one wild domesticated cat trying to escape the snow appropriately named Daisy.
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Dec 22nd

Three hardy, foolhardy,riders ventured to the North Cheam meeting point today Les, Cliff and Simon.After a brief disussion it was agreed we would go to Leatherhead together where Simon would continue to Rusper and Les and I would go to Wetherspoons!! Having enjoyed a coffee we, Les and I would try to get to Dorking then return to Leatherhead ( yes Wetherspoons ) for lunch. The cycle path appeared impassable so we turned around and headed for Ashtead intending to make a circular trip back to L' head. Instead we continued to Epsom for lunch at The Assembly Rooms, yes a Wetherspoons. Having put the world to rights over lunch we returned to Worcester Park having covered 18 miles,not bad for a couple of oldies!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Rules of the Road - Instruction Video

One Way to Negotiate London's Traffic

Some of us were disappointed last Sunday that weather conditions demanded the cancellation of Simon's Cheam & Morden ride, through London to the Olympic Stadium. However, we all know what a stickler he is for safety. He always carries out a portfolio of risk assessments, including at least one recce. You may be interested to see this preview of what you might have missed.

Why on earth do cyclists have a reputation for reckless, insane and murderous behaviour on the roads? Perhaps the following link might give a clue!


P.S. Apologies to Simon!

Ice, what ice?

A pootle along the river, avoiding the tow path.

While we are sitting at home beside the fire sipping broth, here is a link to a little video to show that cycling on ice need not be too intimidating. However, I'm not wildly enamoured of the braking / dismounting technique required.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Wednesday's Rides Snowed Off

Dear All

Once again, the snow seems to have come out on top.

Because of the widespread snow and low temperatures, it is regrettably necessary to cancel our led rides this Wednesday, 22 December, from Walton on Thames Day Centre. Rob has sent the following messagep:

"There seems to be a surfeit of the white stuff in my neck of the woods (it’s still snowing), and the roads are well nigh impossible for cycling. So regrettably I won’t be making it to Walton to lead the ‘A’ ride this Wednesday.
So apologies to any intrepid Wayfarer who turns up, and a very merry Christmas to one and all! "
Intrepid Irene has also come to the same conclusion for the B ride, as has Fuzz for the Easy Riders.

The Walton Centre has confirmed that it will be open and that all with nerves of steel and studded tyres who dare to brave the weather will be welcome. Hopefully, the snow and ice will have cleared before the following Wednesday at the Molesey Centre. In the meantime, may I wish everybody a most happy Christmas.


Christmas boxes

Whilst in Cobham this morning I called on Thelma, one of the BL ladies, and gave her four boxes of chocolates with strict instructions to share them with her other Wednesday helpers (see A group blog on Sep 1). She was very pleased and wished us a Happy Christmas.


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Charity Debate - Message from your National Councillors

Statement from Helen Vecht and Greg Price - CTC National Councillors representing London and signed also by John Meudell, CTC National Councillor for the South East.

Below is the text of a message that Helen and Greg asked the Chief Executive of the CTC to issue to the members that they represent.

The Chairman of the National Council is refusing to allow this message to be sent to their constituents without an accompanying message from him.

Draw your own conclusions!

Here is the message that the Chairman found so threatening that it could not be issued without a parental warning:

Dear Members

As you may be aware, when you receive your copy of ‘Cycle’ this month it will be accompanied by a yellow sheet of paper. This sheet is a ballot paper and members are being asked to vote again on a motion that was put to the AGM in May.

You are being asked to vote again on Motion 8 – which is proposing that the Club be converted into a charity and merged with the CTC Trust. This motion was narrowly passed at the AGM, after the Chair of Council used his discretionary proxy votes to push it through. Prior to the Chair casting his discretionary votes the motion had been lost on the directed votes of the members.

This re-run of the vote has been forced upon Council by the action of ordinary members who were dissatisfied by the way that the vote at the AGM was handled and by the unbalanced view of the proposals which had been put forward by Council prior to the AGM. Contrary to what is implied in some of the messages currently being put out by those supporting Motion 8, the use of the Article 36 procedure to call for a re-vote is perfectly legitimate and proportionate, and it is a valuable protection for members’ interests enshrined in the CTC’s constitutional documents. Only 200 members’ signatures are required to trigger a re-vote under Article 36 – and over 600 members’ signatures were gathered in a very short space of time.

Before the AGM in May, we made it clear that we did not support the proposal outlined in Motion 8 and we encouraged you all to vote against it – and we regret that since the AGM nothing has happened to change our views on the matter. Unfortunately, Council has not fully grasped the opportunity arising after the AGM to put things in order within the existing structure.

We would urge all members to vote against Motion 8 in this re-vote.

We appreciate that our views put us at odds with the formal position of Council. However, we believe that we have an obligation to you, our members, to be open and honest in our views and to act to safeguard your interests.

However, whatever your decision on the merits of Motion 8, we would urge you to make sure you vote. Please be part of the decision-making process, rather than letting others decide for you.

We should also note that we are aware that some of the ballot papers sent out by National Office have errors on them (e.g. the wrong names or people who are eligible to vote omitted). Please check your ballot paper carefully and, if it is wrong, please contact Peter Jackson at National Office ( to get a corrected ballot paper.

For further information on our objections, please see the Save the CTC web-site:

Kind regards

Helen Vecht and Gregory Price

CTC National Councillors for London

John Meudell

CTC National Councillor for the South East

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Group Xmas Lunch

Some of the revellers having a good time.
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From John Hammond

I am very pleased to see how well the Wayfarers are doing despite all the unhelpful weather throughout 2010 - remember all the strong winds and rain! I cycled everyday in 06-07 and 08, always on the road, to complete 80 years of cycling! Many years ago i rode with the truly remarkable Ron Beams on a FCOT weekend during which we visited Castle Combe (without the snow!)
My sincere thanks to all who signed my Birthday Card - Sorry i cannot write to you all - particularly Bill & Margaret Squirrel, Roger Mitchell, Roger Taylor, Mark Roy, Geoff Clarke, Beryl Granger, Dennis Broughton, Pat & Bill Mathews, Phil Marx and a Host of others.
Sorry about another stalwart Tom Fish
God Bless You All
From John Hammond
P.S. Have just posted my vote against the CTC motion!

Easy Riders Dec 15th

From Leatherhead, I led, Roger, Fuzz, Chris, Mike W., Liz, Eddie, Charles and Cliff from the day centre towards the bridge over the A3 to Skinners Lane. We turned left here, and went down to Ashtead, over the green and passed the station to the Common. Here we found some ice on the paths, so manoeuvred with caution. Mike stopped off at The Cricketers at Stamford Green, as he was more on course to get back home. The rest of us continued to The Spring at Ewell. As we got there, we saw Norman just arriving and he joined us for lunch. The pub has been renovated with a french atmosphere. It was quite busy there, and eventually we were seated at a long table for 8. We had to wait a long time for our orders; but when they came, everyone enjoyed what they had ordered. Mostly, we had smaller portions of pasta or pizza. Prices have increased, with no sandwich menu. Myself, I prefer the ambience and food at Prezzo. A shame, as the 'old Spring' was a favoured and regular lunch stop for us. After about an hour and a half there, Adam arrived, and 5 of us went to a favourite tea room of mine at Ewell Court Park. It was very Chrismassy there, with craft decorations in their grotto and in the cafe area. We then made our way to Stonleigh and continued home. It was drizzly rain by this time, so I went for a nice, hot sauna.


B Group Dec 15th

A tiny group of 4 left Leatherhead for a quick lunch at The Cock at Headley, thence home via Walton on the Hill and Epsom Downs. Harry Steph Alan and Les
From Steph

A Group Dec 15th

A jolly party goer at lunch!
A short ride to a long lunch. Out of Leatherhead through Fetcham to Stoke D’Abernon where a group of “short cutters” turned right up Blundel Lane. The rest of us continued via Tilt Road and Leigh Hill Road to Sandy Lane. Then across the A244 to Heath Road and back to Epsom. A convivial lunch at the Cricketers followed taking rather longer than anticipated given the inadequate staffing levels at the pub following the change of ownership. I checked the Stonegate pubs website and I quote from it… “What makes us different? The common thread across all our pubs and bars is our dedication and commitment to serve our customers better than they are served elsewhere.” Well you could have fooled me. I have left appropriate feedback making it clear that my target is not the staff who struggled through on the day but the management who peddle this rubbish and then understaff their pubs.

Wishing you all a Happy Christmas

Brian Greenwood

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Group Christmas Lunch

A short ride and a long lunch today, each impeccably organised by Brian. 11.9 miles at 11.9 mph - spooky, eh?

Not the time to worry about calories.


Thursday, December 09, 2010

A Mini-Group 8 December 2010

Dorking - Ifield - Reigate
Today, Dorking seemed a lot further away than usual. The really tough bit was the totter from front door to the A217. At St Martin's, a hardy band from far and wide (well done Gill, Irene, Pam, Vic) was already making serious inroads into the tea and sausage-rolls. Come decision time, the vote went heavily in favour of following Terry to the Royal Oak, Brockham. With only two sympathy votes, I lost my deposit.

The troika of Mark, John B and me therefore set off up Dene St. en route for Ifield. Keeping very much to the busier roads, where snow and ice had mostly been dispersed by traffic, we made steady progress. Where snow had thawed, the resulting wet surfaces were treated with caution. Has anybody got a foolproof way to recognise black ice - before you hit it?

We passed our fall-back options at Newdigate and Rusper, to arrive safe and perhaps a little over-heated by too many layers, at our destination, the Gate at Ifield. Here we cooled off and enjoyed good food, beer and conversation. Our return was to have been via Charlwood, but caution suggested that we mostly retrace our earlier route, as revealed by Mark's unfailing Garmin, before heading for Reigate.

Keen to return before the roads froze over, we forewent the comfort of afternoon tea and cake to part at Reigate, Mark to follow the A25 while John and I crested Reigate Hill before parting company. First time on two wheels for ten days and 41 miles in the legs.

Let's hope this snow and ice soon disappear!


Easy Riders Dec 8th

Only half a dozen or so at North Cheam this morning. Most set off for Dorking, Norman and I set off for Chessington to meet up with Ron. My first visit to the Kings Centre, very pleasant, a lovely array of cakes, they also do a good lunch and its all half price on Wednesdays. There was a lovely home made Christmas cake, £1.20 a big slice. The Squirrels arrived with Albert, then Philip, Ron, Alan, David Salmon, Doreen and husband. We had a very leisurely elevenses during which I discovered that Doreen as a child, attended the Beulah School, where I now teach. Eventually Ron rounded us up and five set off for the Beverely at Lower Morden. Infinitely flexible Ron wound his way through without encountering any ice, he had planned some lovely off road bits and pieces that could not be done but his knowledge of the local area gave us safe passage. Lunch at the Beverely was a success, two meals for £9 from a wide choice,after which we retreated through the cemetery and parted at Motspur Park. Couldn’t find Philip after lunch so hope he got home safely.

B Group Dec 8th

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

B Group December 8

Despite the very wintry weather there was a good turnout at Dorking this morning. I had planned a short run so after leisurely 11s led Gill, Irene, Margaret, Pam, Adam, Brians G and N, Cliff, Harry, Jed, Pete and Simon out via North Street, South Street and the Horsham Road to cross the Holmwood roundabout. Things then became much quieter as we rode along Inholms Lane, keeping a good lookout for the icy spots, fortunately easy to avoid. Soon we joined Bushbury Road, the flatter stretch of road following our previous freewheeling competitions at Roothill. We arrived at The Royal Oak, Brockham, seconds before a group of walkers but we were served quickly. (Both Brockham pubs have been recently refurbished. The first one, The Royal Oak is still a traditional pub, the other, formerly The Duke's Head, now The Inn on The Green/ The Grumpy Mole is a gastropub, very smart, red tablecloths, a bit pricey . I prefer the first.) The return route was via the A25 (the cycle track was icy) then via Pixham lane to Leatherhead. Many went straight home, a handful stopped at Annie's. A very modest mileage, I recorded 26 d to d, arriving home in daylight.


A Group 8th December

Jeff led a very select A Group from Dorking to Reigate, with lunch at The Gate, Ifield. 24.18 miles, carefully chosen to minimise the very evident risks of the ice and snow. Despite the conditions we managed a steady rolling average of 12 mph and burned 1,083 calories.

Should be enough for the pie - steak and stilton - just the job on a cold day.


News from John Scott

Just to let you know I am still alive and kicking but not cycling due to building activities in London and here in Wokingham and trips to France not to mention being stuck for three hours on English roads in all the snow. Changed car recently but was unable to purchase snow tyres in England so the trip to France had to include a hotel stop over due to the fact that we could not ascend the mountain climb in the Jura. Happily we have acquired the correct tyres now and the return trip was only hampered because of the jack knifed lorries on the English motorways.

Baby and mother doing well.

Would have liked to attend the Xmas lunch but never knew exactly who was organising it so I guess it is now too late to apply. Well I may have better luck next year when I should have been back in sync for most of the year and cycling with all my old buddies. However I guess I shall be starting from square one on the fitness front so I may need to go with a slower group at first.

Can't say much more.
Look forward to hearing from one or two cycling folk.
Kind regards,
John Scott

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Dorking tomorrow (2)

For those heading to Dorking tomorrow - the cycle track from Givon's Grove rdbt to Dorking is mostly clear, there are a few icy patches, mostly avoidable but I strongly recommend walking over the railway bridge at Dorking.

I checked out a very short route today, just a few avoidable icy spots on the lanes to Brockham. The return trip will have to be on the A25. I recorded just over eight miles D to D.

Hope to see some of you there.


Dorking Tomorrow

Dear All

Conditions are still rather treacherous, but I anticipate that a number of skaters will turn up at the St Martin's Christian Centre tomorrow. My road is still unridable, but I hope that I shall get down in one piece. I have recce'd the roads today (by car) and some are definitely 'no go areas'. Let's see what conditions are like tomorrow.

If we do have the stomach for a ride, I suspect it will be main roads only. For the A Group I had in mind a visit to the Gate at Ifield, near Rusper. Afternoon tea is, I think, impractical as the roads home too soon become icy and I don't want a 4 mile walk on cleats, or a 5 mile ride in the back of an ambulance. We may need to be less ambitious. Let's see!


Monday, December 06, 2010

Uncharitable Debate - VOTE

Re-Vote on the Future of the CTC
Dear All

By now you should have received with your December/January issue of Cycle magazine a yellow voting paper and Freepost envelope. This is to give you another opportunity to vote on the controversial and divisive proposal to change the constitution of the CTC and convert it into a full Charitable Trust.

Because of the way that the CTC tried to bludgeon through its proposal and its handling of voting procedures at the AGM in May 2010, a petition signed by some 600 members has forced the Chief Executive and National Council to undertake a poll of the whole Club on the contested proposal (Motion 8).

The CTC was required to publish the Petition in Cycle magazine. I was offered a telephone interview with the magazine to state my case, but only on its terms, which were unacceptable to me.

I therefore submitted to the Editor a brief statement, giving reasons to oppose the proposal, consisting of 11 bullet points. You will see a heavily edited version of this statement on page 8 of the magazine. Of the 11 points, three were unchanged, three edited and five censored. The CTC's electronic newsletter, CycleClips, is being used heavily to promote only the arguments in favour of the proposal. Hardly balanced.

You can see the full, unexpurgated version of my Statement, as well as much else, on the savethectc (click on link) website under News and 'read more'. Click also on the other links on the left for much more information.

You will know that our DA Committee decided that the proposal was not in the best interests of members. It opposed the proposal and recommended voting against the motion.

Remember, if the Club converts to full charitable status, our elected National Councillors would become trustees of the charity and obliged to put the interests of the charity and its duty of 'public benefit' before the interests of members. The two are not necessarily the same. What do you pay your sub for?

Unfortunately, this vote is not under the auspices of Electoral Reform Services, but now is your chance to vote again. You know my views, but please make up your own mind. Put an indelible X in the appropriate box (not a tick) and make sure that your details are correct. If they are wrong, get a correct version. There is no lower age limit, so if your great grand-daughter is a family member, she has a vote! I wonder how many toddlers will exercise their independent, democratic right to influence the future of the CTC.

Whatever you think, please vote.

Don't be a Sheep, be a Lion.



Thursday, December 02, 2010

Hurray Hurray 1st December 2010

Snow has come early this year. Well done John B, Ray & Terry for making it to Cobham. It was a grave situation walking through the church yard in Walton on the Hill.
Rumour had got out that Mark G would ski to the Chequers in Walton so I walked via the frozen pond below and met up with Jeff and he for a pint (or 2 or 3 or was it 4?). More like a Bob Starey Monday off-road ride. Mark I may say only had one pint and a coffee. He had to navigate back home when picked up by Maggie in her Panda 4x4 with winter tyres. Just the job - Italian Job! The open roaring fire in the pub was very welcome.
The ducks are having a hard time at the moment even less exited about the weather than we cyclists. Keep safe everyone!
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Cobham Dec 1st

I got there about 10 past 11 (I started after half past 10, so was not delayed much by the snow) by main Portsmouth road from Surbiton, and met Ray for a coffee. One more turned up after 20 minutes or so. We enjoyed our coffees, chatted for some time and returned home around 12:30.
See you, weather permitting, in Dorking next week.
John B

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Weather Warning

To Ride or not to Ride
Dear All

I contacted the Royal British Legion today, but unfortunately was not able to confirm what the position will be tomorrow. However, Terry has been told that the RBL Hall will definitely be closed. The alternative is therefore Sainsburys in Cobham.

I have spoken to Mike Withers on the 'phone and he has confirmed that, because of the conditions, he will definitely not be leading a ride for the Easy Riders.

The main thing will be what the roads are like. Frank has said he will endeavour to lead a short ride but give tea a miss. We shall see how many turn up. We shall each have to decide in the light of local conditions. At present, I am pretty well snowed in, but don't know what the main roads are like. I may be a dns. If the roads are icy, don't take unnecessary risks. Better to miss a day than spend Xmas in hospital.

Have an ice day,


Sunday, November 28, 2010

B Group Nov 24th

A record number of 25 started from Teddington. We had to make a split when riding. It was good to have two new riders join our group.
We went south across Bushey Park, over Hampton Bridge, right to Ember lane
Then left along Lower Green Road, R and L By the railway straight on to the footpath over the river. Left at Molsey Road straight on through Hersham along Burwood Road left on the Seven Hills Road footpath, left into Rocket Lane, left through Cobham main street to The Running Mare at Tilt Green
A Very English Up market pub good food. A small group went on to the Plough at Stoke D Abernon.
On through S D A and Blumdel Lane, then footpath across Oxshott Heath, R and L Over railway along Fairoak lane one mile left on footpath to Claygate Common and along Woodstock Lane through tunnel under the A3. Through Long Ditton, Surbiton, and back streets of Kingston to a new tea shop at the corner of Park Road and Glenville Road on the way to Richmond Park.

A relatively short ride. I arrived home just at lighting up time.

Cheers Robin.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

B Group Nov 24th

Easy Riders Nov 24th

When I arrived at Teddington parking the bike was a problem as so many were already there so I imagined there would be a fair number of riders.In fact there were not many easy riders.Three Fuzz,Roger and Lynda took advantage to visit Tom Fish whose residential home is close to Teddington centre.I led Chris and Ron to the Cricketers at Stamford Green via Chessington and Longmead via various paths and back roads.Ron left us in Green Lane as he wanted to investigate a ride he is leading in December.Chris and I arrived at the pub shortly followed by Lynda and Roger .Tom Fish is well ,Fuzz decided to head for home after visiting Tom. Sonia joined us at the pub coming straight from home. After lunch Lynda took us for tea at the Point in Cheam village which is connected to the Baptist Church where we had great cakes followed by an interesting talk by a lady who worked as a seamstress for Norman Hartnall from the 1950's many thanks Lynda.


A Group, 24 November

Teddington - Horsell - Ockham

Welcome to Peter Tiller
River Ash near Shepperton Studios, Littleton

A Group Nov 24th

It was a bright winter's day as I rode the short three miles to the start where about twenty were keen to dog my every step. Seeking out unfamiliar ways we entered Bushy Park beside NPL and departed into leafy Hampton via a carelessly unpadlocked gate. There was no time for General Ray as the Hanworth spiral and BP Sunbury were amongst the day's targets. The Black Dog saw us across the A308 to a Shepperton ford photoshoot. After Chertsey's level crossing we turned off up the hill past the hospital zigzagging through autumnal colours to the Plough at Horsell. As we arrived, John B and Ray appeared having been left at the start!

Luckily we arrived earlier as service took the best part of an hour with eventually Ray having to be separated from an half-eaten baguette. Back we went along the Basingstoke Canal to West Byfleet then the lanes past the Anchor to Ockham Bites for the farewell repast. At times we'd been a very long line but somehow the elastic never snapped - apart from Wisley Gardens sprint! Only 44 miles and home in the light (just).
from Graham

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Group 24th November

A cold day for Graham's ride from Teddington to the Plough at Horsell, with tea at Ockham Bites. 26.21 miles at a moving average of 11.7 mph and 1,174 calories.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Two Below Sea Level

Maggie and I have just returned from a trip to Death Valley with our tandem. It sounds an odd choice, but it's quite rational - Death Valley is a National Park, which means that the roads (and everything else) are immaculately maintained, people only go there on holiday so the few cars are outstandingly considerate of cyclists and the weather at this time of the year is spectacularly good. Access is quite easy - direct flights to Las Vegas, which is less than three hours away, and all arrangements were made by Rich Merrick of Cycling Escapes who provided first class van and ride support from airport pick-up to airport drop-off.

Cycling Escapes offers 'challenging' riding - 100+ miles on some days and more than 5000' of ascent on others. We found the climbs hard - harder than the Alps - as the roads tend to be relatively modern, with steady gradients sometimes going on for twenty miles or more. They are designed for cars, not for walkers or horse traffic as many European roads originally were, so there's no respite. But starting below sea level and ending 5600 feet above it is a good day out (Mont Ventoux is 4200 feet of climbing); or riding for eighty miles without ever going above sea level is another interesting experience.

The routes were planned and supported by Cycling Escapes. The van is important, as for most routes you encounter no human habitation at all. Distances are large, and running short of water would be a serious mistake. The van and trailer are comprehensively equipped with spares, food, water and so on and wait at pre-specified 'SAG' points - about twenty miles apart - until all the party has passed, before scooting on to the next 'SAG'. Lunch is taken at the roadside - chairs and tables from the van - and the van is last in to the hotel, so no-one is stranded. Despite all this, it's lonely out there...

The trip is billed as 422 miles and 21,300' of climbing - we cut a couple of corners so did less than this, but we were still over 400 miles and 20,000' - not bad for November, and, with daytime temperatures in the 80s, all in summer kit.

So if you're looking for somewhere to beat the Winter gloom, the deserts of South Western USA are worth a look. We'll be back.


Easy Riders Nov 17th

Phil M lead from Claygate - Roger, Chris, Lynda, Ron, David S., John C., Fuzz and Dennis came along later. We crossed over the road from the day centre, turned left and up the hill, then right and left through a Private housing estate. Over a common then came out to Winney Hill. Continued down Gilders, Chessington, then over the mini roundabout and a sharp right; off road to Horton Country Park. Then onto Ashtead Common. Phil made me laugh, when he said turning left it would be muddy; but the right wouldn't be! Four of us enjoyed fish and chips in Ashtead High Street and the others went to The Woodman. After lunch, I led over the drier part of the Common to Longmead, then down Green Lanes to Ewell Court Park; where we had afternoon tea.


Saturday, November 20, 2010

B Group Nov 17th

Around 18 riders set off from Claygate on a rather murkey day through Hinchley Wood, Thames Ditton to Hampton Court. A quick skip via Bushey Park to Teddington, Strawberry Hill and Twickenham found us on the river
en route to Richmond. Passing through St. Margarets we reached our lunch destination at the Wharf in Isleworth. One wonders how they make a living, we were practically the only people in the place.
After lunch the group continued through Richmond Park via Ham and Teddington Lock to the YMCA (Hawkers) for an early tea stop before dispersing in our separate directions.
Not a great distance in mileage I'm afraid (I only clocked up 31 miles) but very pleasant.
My thanks to Stephanie as back marker.


Friday, November 19, 2010

A Group, 17 November

Claygate - Horton - Walton

Many thanks to Grant, who led us at a spanking pace from Claygate to Horton, on a route that often often spurned the soft option of firm tarmac, without sinking us up to the axles in mud! The rain held off till early evening.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Annual Attendance Competition

Dear All,

Terry tells me that not very many members have sent in annual attendance records for the period 1 October 2009 to 30 September 2010. You will have received the MWW Annual Programme/Attendance Record at or soon after the AGM last year. These can be sent to Terry as an attachment to an email or by using pen and ink and handing them to him over a cup of tea. Don't leave it till the last minute - you may have forgotten what you were doing that day!

I sent out programmes for this year from 1st October 2010 to 30 September 2011 by email before this year's AGM last month. Copies were available at the meeting. If you havent go one, Terry has copies or contact me.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Easy Riders before lunch

At elevenses Roger announced that Lynda would not be able to start leading the ride from Shepperton due to tendonitus in her leg and could we lead ourselves to Hampton Court to 5 on the bridge. Hence followed the debate the south side of the river route was rejected because of the previous days heavy rain, There were objections to the lower Sunbury route because of the narrow road and potholes. However with Dave leading Roger, Chris, Fuzz, Bill, Ron and another we took the Sunbury route with a detour after Halliford Road up Green Street, along Manor Road and back down French Street to join the Lower Hampton Road. We then took a left between the reservoirs and the filter beds at Thames Water Works and crossed the Upper Sunbury Road into Hampton via Kent's passage. On our way through the village Chris spotted a lady who appeared to have collapsed on the pavement in Ormond Avenue, the group stopped as one with mobiles ready to summon help while Chris approached the prostrate woman, he soon discovered that she was in fact quite happily lying down reading her water meter!! We remounted and made our way into Bushy Park via Duke's Head Passage and eventually to 5 on the bridge where we met Lynda and Sonia who had downed several lattes and cakes since 11.10 a.m. We continued under new leadership to the White Swan in Thames Ditton where we took lunch.
From David Salmon

Easy Riders after lunch

When the rest of the group arrived at 5 on the bridge; it was about 12.20pm. We continued on the cycle path to Thames Ditton and had lunch at The Swan. Some went home from there; and 4 of us made our way to Ewell Court Park cafe, taking back roads through Long Ditton, over the A3 bridge to Hook, Chessington and Ewell. We had tea and cake and made our way home before it got to lighting up time.


Saturday, November 13, 2010

10th November - B Group

Shepperton - Datchet - Lower Sunbury - not one of our longest rides but I felt it was far enough for this time of year! I did not expect such good weather when I planned the ride after swapping with Terry who was going to lead due to John Gould being unable to cycle after his accident - get well soon, John:)

Not such a good start for Frank, he had a 'flat' at Greenos but Irene very kindly stayed with F and F to lead them to Datchet whilst the rest of 'B' group got started. I had outlined the route to Terry who agreed to back mark (without words!!), thanks buddy!

We took the road to Chertsey and then through Thorpe to Egham, across the meads and on to Old Windsor. It was here that Terry went back for Ray who had a 'needs must' divert, but Ray arrived at lunch well before Terry! I understand they took different roads to Datchet! There were 22 riders plus Ron and Doreen at the Royal Stag where the food was excellent - as well as the service. It was later that I was told Terry had punctured as we left Datchet but said that we should carry on.

Our route to Lower Sunbury was via Horton, then a right to Wraysbury which I almost missed - guess what - I was talking!! At the far end of Lammas Park, Staines (or is it Staines on Thames), it was tow path all the way to Chertsey Bridge.

As we moved on to the road, the A group came storming past!! Oh no!!

Were they also heading for the same destination as us?! The last time both groups made it to the Walled Garden we had been asked to call in and warn the staff!! No problem, as Ed passed he mentioned the bakers at Shepperton!
Quite a few stopped for tea and quite a few continued on their way! One of them being a 'first timer' Peter Tiller, who shook my hand and thanked me, and explained that he will not be out next Wednesday as he has other commitments! We look forward to seeing you again, Peter.
Frank and Francoise asked me to say thank you to Irene and I wish to thank every rider for their company - great!


Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Group, 10 November

Sunninghill/dale and Shepperton
Welcome to Tony
After Tuesday’ deluge, it was sunshine, blue skies and a crisp nip in the air for Wednesday. The Greeno Centre was stretching its seams, as were one or two nameless others! We welcomed two newcomers, Peter from Esher and Tony from Brentford, Peter opting to try out the B group on his first outing and Tony going for the A group.

Ed was officer i/c A platoon and soon had us yomping beside the Thames at Chertsey, before making a courtesy call on Pam J (otherwise engaged) at Egham. We crossed the A30 for a path across the water meadows of Runnymede to Windsor Road. A left turn at the roundabout before Old Windsor caused some confusion among those anticipating the leader’s intent, when we turned our back on sea level to exercise our lungs up Priest Hill.

Next stop Savill Garden, where a quick spurt along Wicks Lane to turn smartly right into the garden car park was enough to sever head from tail. With the two parts reunited by the marvels of modern science and a lot of shouting, it was a spin along Rhododendron Ride beside the gunnera, now cut down in the shape of little tepees, to protect the growth buds from frost damage. Then the maze of Windsor Park, about which I cannot comment; I just follow the leader’s wheel.

On leaving the park, a strategic change of plan led us not into temptation or Fifield but to Sunninghill/dale and the Royal Oak, where our numbers proved too great for single handed Emma. We therefore split, with a second foraging party seeking out the Nag’s Head, where we were greeted with a warm fire and reasonably priced food.

Warmed, fed and watered we reassembled at the Royal Oak. Vic took command for the afternoon and led us via Sunningdale, across Chobham Common and beside the M3 to Chertsey. Here we gleefully passed the massed ranks of the B group, en route to Shepperton, a warm welcome and polystyrene tea at Watson’s Bakery. It was then each man and woman for him/herself in a futile race with lighting-up time.

Many thanks Ed and Vic for an enjoyable November ride.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Group 10th November

Another bright Autumn day for Ed's ride to Windsor Great Park, with lunch at Sunningdale and tea at Shepperton. 28.02 miles elevenses to tea, rolling average 12.7 mph and 1255 calories.

Lights on on the way home.


Sunday, November 07, 2010


TANDEM - for friend of Brian Nixon. For further details contact Brian:

5 Landford Road Putney 020 8785 3303

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Easy Riders - Nov 3rd

A day to view the autumn colours, along Downside Common Road, across Bookham Common, through the nature reserve into Leatherhead where lunch was had at Wetherspoons, Cliff and David Aylett having raced ahead were just finishing as we arrived. After lunch Fuzz went for the train and we lost Roger but he turned up in time for tea. We crossed Ashtead Common and six (Linda, Roger, Chris, Ron, Beryl, Liz) finished to enjoy tea at Nonesuch Park, arriving just in time as they close at 3 pm mid week.


Nov 3rd - B Group

Not to be outdone by A Group and their liking for hills, especially with Mark as leader, I decided to throw in a big one for B Group on their way to Guildford for lunch. With amazingly mild and sunny weather, there was a good turn out at Cobham and it was a group of 19 which set off towards West Horsley. The gradient was fairly gentle up to this point but after crossing the A246 it increased dramatically as the road ahead disappeared into a mass of golden beech trees. This road, Shere Road, has two summits with a steep dip in the middle, so is a double challenge.

(Unfortunately, John Scott (nice to see you out, John) took a tumble on one of the steeper sections, drawing blood from a finger.) However, once up, the reward was a level stretch followed by the wonderful downhill run of Combe Bottom. From here we followed the A25 for a short distance before turning off on to the A248 which took us through Albury (tall chimneys) and Chilworth. Somewhere along this bit, Irene had a puncture, unknown to many of the group till she turned up a bit late at the pub.

At the far end of Chilworth, we turned right, and after crossing the railway line followed East Shalford Lane (another hill), Tilehouse Road (the outskirts of Guildford), left into Pilgrims Way, across the busy A281 and into Guildford on the cycle path. The Boatman is right on the path, beside the R. Wey - a delightful setting which half of the group could not resist and opted to sit outside to eat - is this a record for November?! Service was friendly and food arrived quickly given the numbers.

After lunch, our route was up Guildford High Street and out on the London Road. While trying to cross the road at the first major roundabout after Stoke Park, part of the group witnessed an accident between a car and a van, which caused a slight hold-up. At Burpham we turned left on to minor roads which brought us out at the path beside the A3 - the quick route to Ripley. With tea to be at the Medicine Garden in Cobham, we cut across Wisley Airstrip (little to be seen of the filming which had been taking place there) and approached Cobham via Plough Lane.

Eight of us partook of tea in dainty cups and saucers, with individual teapots, sitting outside (again!) in the courtyard - all very pleasant. As we set off for home at 4.00 p.m., lights were in readiness if not already on - the only sign of approaching winter on this mild day. Thanks, Terry, for being back-marker.

Gill Finlay

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Cogratulations Gill

A belated presentation by Terry to Gill Finlay today at Cobham of the Trophy for the greatest improvement in mileage from the previous year some 1900+ mls. Well done and also congratulations for being such a splendid rides leader in the past years and more despite all your commitments at home. Gill please keep up the good work we all appreciate it very much!
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A Group, 3 November

Betchworth and Banstead
Left or right?
The Dolphin and Pistachios

A Group 3rd November - The Autumn Canter

It was fairly sunny at Cobham, with a good turn-out of Wayfarers. Tea was courtesy of John Hammond, to celebrate his 94th birthday - Happy Birthday, John. A strong 'A' Group was ready to do battle with the Downs - Dave, John, Mike M, Neil, Pete B, Ray, Simon, Toni, Vic, Will and I set off South at about 1115. We played ourselves in gently at first, taking lanes across Downside Common and Bookham Common and through Great Bookham before climbing slowly and steadily up Chapel Lane. Speeding down towards West Humble there was no need to signal what came next - everyone assumed that we would be going over Ranmore Common, and we did.

Banter and joshing at the beginning of the hill, rather less to say as we progressed, but we were soon at the top in good form, and ready to see how fast we could go on the descent to Dorking. 36.7 mph, was the answer.

Through the town and out on the old Horsham Road, then up Spook Hill before turning left through the lanes to Brockham where we wanted to take a look at the bonfire. They're still working on it, but it's well developed and looks more or less ready to go.

Down Wheelers Lane to Wellhouse Lane and within fifteen minutes we were at the Dolphin. John was slightly delayed by a dropped chain at the bridge - easy enough to fix, as he said, though Andy Schleck may not agree. Ron and Doreen were there, sitting by the fire, and within a few minutes we were joined by Paul Kelly, back for his first ride after a lengthy spell of convalescence following his accident, and then by Jeff Tollerman. Jeff had collected the Arthur Jessop trophy at Cobham and had decided to take a detour via his house to put it away safely.

After lunch Vic, Pete and John made their separate ways home and the rest of us set off towards Reigate, through the tunnel, which improbably, was once the main road, and then to the second hill of the day, Wray Lane. Again, all up in good order, and Neil signed off at the top to start his journey home. The rest of us set off down Gatton Bottom - a very fast but rough stretch - and Toni showed his bike-handling skills by coming safely to a stop after a double puncture - front and rear. It was obviously going to take a few minutes to fix, so he said that we should carry on. This was kind - the light wasn't so good any more.

Up past Fanny's and down Castle Road - one way down, now, but a fierce hill-climb course in the past. Then the last hill of the day, Park Road, into Banstead, and tea and cakes in Pistachios overlooking the park - good bike parking and a friendly welcome. The outstanding advantage of Banstead, of course, is that it's downhill home for everyone.

Ray set off for home without tea, the rest of us talked about rides and riding and gradually a wild, but plausible, idea emerged. We could do the Hilly 50 as an A Group ride ... so we will, probably.

31.1 miles elevenses to tea, total ascent 2,376 feet, a rolling average of 11.6 mph and 1394 calories. Power output was 94 watts, which is pretty much smack-on the 'sustained average power of a well-trained touring cyclist' - or so the MIT says, anyway.