Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Group photo for the London Parks Ride.

Somehow this did not appear in the last blog. Error rectified.

Day ride on the 18th April to London Parks.

  The day dawned chilly but sunny with an easterly breeze and after negotiating our way round the runners from the Park Run, and with the shouts of military fitness groups in Cheam Park ringing in our ears, a group of 12 riders set off to visit 10 Parks (eleven if you count Barnes Common).
  We crossed over St Helier open space and descended to the Wandle Trail in Ravensbury Park, following it down to Earlsfield where we avoided the difficult right turn by the station and climbed up to Wandsworth Common. This is always full of fitness fanatics on a Saturday morning and hundreds of children playing football, and the same was true of Clapham Common and Battersea Park when we got there for a short refreshments stop and cakes handed out by Lillian.
  Over Chelsea Bridge and onto the CS7 superhighway, we sped across Vauxhall Bridge crossing and turned up by the Tate Gallery, around St John's Smith Square, and through the maze of Georgian Town Houses to Dean's Yard, where we met a group of London Cyle Tourists also admiring the view of the Abbey. Crowds outside the Abbey were smaller than usual when we crossed over to join HorseGuards Parade and the Mall and the always impressive ride past Buckingham Palace.
  In Green Park we paused briefly to point out the recently erected Bomber Command Memorial and road works announcing the construction of the new West to East Cycle Superhighway and headed into Hyde Park along the Serpentine and myriads of rollerbladers. Kensington Gardens is less crowded and we went past the Palace and Embassy Row to Holland Park for the lunch stop.
 After this, we crossed behind Olympia and a traffic snarl up by Barons Court tube station to rejoin the Thames by Hammersmith, where David peeled off to get home for an evening engagement. Once over the Bridge we headed down suburban back streets full of flowering trees and shrubs to Barnes Common, where Lillian left us to catch a train home. Then up the long road to Richmond Park where we diverted into the less visited Palewell Common and entered the Park through the Sheen Gate.
Ride cohesion diluted at the Pen Ponds Cafe where some went off to make their own ways back and some stayed for a snack.
  Finally a small group of five headed to Raynes Park by the soon to be constructed route alongside the railway and the ride ended.
 A beautiful sunny, if rather windy day, with no flats or mechanicals. Thanks to Eddie for back marking.
The total distance was around 35 miles. Photos are of the group, Dean's Yard and the Japanese Garden in Holland Park.

Beginners Group Launch of Summer Rides

  This took place on the 11th April, when the Mayoress of Sutton attended to see off a summer of rides. This is a photo taken by Colin of the assembled group.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

London Parks ride on Saturday the 18th April

"The ride will leave Nonsuch Park at 10am and go via Ravensbury and
Morden Hall Parks to the Wandle trail at Merton Abbey Mills.
Thereafter through Wandsworth Common and Clapham Common to a comfort
break in Battersea Park. Then over Chelsea Bridge to Deans Yard, Horse
Guards Parade, Green Park and Hyde Park where we will pause again by
the Serpentine.
After this on through Kensington Gardens, Holland Park and Hammersmith
Bridge to Barnes and up to Richmond Park, finally dispersing at New
All in all, about 35 miles ending around 4pm. No hills of any significance

Friday, 10 April 2015

New bike stands at Molesey

  Riders to Five on the Bridge cafe in Molesey will be pleased to hear that 8 bike stands have been placed on the small green opposite the cafe. A welcome addition, so you can now admire your trusty bike while taking tea.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Rider profile Ron Weedon

  Ron is arguably the oldest regular rider with the Beginners, but probably not with the Easy Riders who meet on Wednesdays. He reports his age at 81, he is 5' 7" tall and weighs in at 12 stone. He usually sports a beard and a cap and rides a 2nd hand Pearson Tourer donated by a neighbour. He has been through several bikes over the years, usually donating them to his 7 grandchildren.
  Ron has been a member of the CTC off and on for 70 years as well as the YHA and has cycled in every county in England, Scotland and Wales. He has been coming to the Beginners for the last 9 years after giving up horse riding on Saturdays. He also does recreational rides using the Freedom Pass. He says that climbing hills is becoming more difficult and is now thinking about an Electric assisted bike.
  Ron has a fund of well recounted stories about his past and events during the 2nd World War and is unfailingly helpful on matters mechanical. We look forward to his company for many more years.