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