Wednesday, October 06, 2021

An A annual lunch ride - from Cobham to Tolworth

Recommencing our elevenses at Cobham Royal British Legion after 18months felt at last that things were returning to normal. We'll welcome the indoors as mornings get colder.

First away was Janice's group.

Eight from the first A group to be off scattered themselves between the RBL and The Bakery. When it was time to leave we swapped in Mark as substitute for Steve W who was running slightly late, to make us 9. 

We had plenty of time to cover the 18.5 miles to lunch and so I said we’d set an easy pace and I was glad I’d done so when I turned into the full force of the headwind! 

The road travelling past Notre Dame school was new to many and seemed idyllic compared to the busy road we’d just left. Astonishingly though we witnessed road rage between 2 car drivers with much beeping and aggressive driving, fortunately well away from us. 

We loitered a while at the end but with no breaks in the fast moving traffic we ended up cycling up the empty pavement to arrive at the very lovely Whiteley Village. I’d memorised a few facts about it but could hear the group already chatting away about the history. 

The rest of the ride passed without incident although we particularly enjoyed a fast pace at the side of the reservoirs. We’d suddenly all become superfit, or maybe the wind was now behind us? 

After all our lockdown small group rides we mostly cycled in groups of 4/5 and occasionally 3 groups of 3 on busy sections. 

We arrived at our lunch venue by 12 and after a short time basking in the warm sunshine, made our way indoors to enjoy the Prosecco kindly supplied by Mark. Thank you Mark and congratulations on the 3 awards that you won, well deserved! (It may be necessary to hire a transit van to transport them home). 

Thanks to Simon for back marking, my group for such an enjoyable ride and lunch and Ged for devising such a cunning route to avoid as many main roads as possible. 

My group of 10 safely navigated the tricky right-handers into Convent Lane - riding along the swollen River Mole, and then into Whiteley Village*, posing for a photo.

Whiteley Retirement Village, (not quite yet for us active cyclists) - waiting at the bus stop.
We rode at a leisurely pace, careful not to catch-up with the first group, and arrived at Sorrento's as Mark was pouring very welcoming glasses of fizz. Thanks Mark. Also thanks to John Bassett for sharing a delightful bottle of Barbera del Piemonte red wine around our table. Congratulations to those As at the back of the restaurant sweeping-up the awards!

An easy day in the saddle - for a change. Thanks to Mike Barrett for dutiful back-marking as ever, and for Janice for sub-leading the first group.

* for a potted history


Terry said...

Dave Jarvis, a former member was cycling along Seven Hills Road a few years ago when a police car stopped him. I understand the conversation went something like this:
'Why are you cycling on the road?'
'Because you would nick me if I rode on the pavement.'
This was from a senior policeman (don't know his name), who some time later cycled along the pavement with Dave.
After hearing of this welcome approval, I and a few others now use that pavement and have never had a problem. Occasionally you see a pedestrian/runner but there is room for all if you're careful.

Ged Lawrenson said...

Thanks Terry. (Smart cycling from Janice to lead her group on the pavement - I'll know next time!).