Saturday, 28 November 2020

Tea for two with no queue?

This week Ken and I decided to cycle to Wimbledon Common leaving a little earlier to try to get home in the light. Unfortunately everyone else, be it pedestrian  or cyclist new and old, had made the same decision! We left Beddington Park to join the Wandle trail at the Hack Bridge and apart from a short detour at Collier's Wood, where we crossed a footbridge dedicated to Gam Bahadur Gurung, of the Queen's Gurkha Engineers, we followed the trail to Earlsfield then briefly joined Garratt Lane before turning left and taking the back streets to King George's Park.

                            Ken at the the footbridge dedicated to Gam Bahadur Gurung 

Turning left out of the park  we began the ascent or so I thought! Ken showing me the way now we were soon on Wimbledon Park Road but before long we were going downhill and were outside my grandsons primary school in Putney and I had no idea how we were going to get to the Common.  Ken reassured me as we went up more and more hills but he was on an electric bike!  When we turned right from Keevil Drive I finally recognised where we were.

Soon we were on the Common looking forward to tea, but it wasn't to be. With crowds queueing for takeaway tea and not dispersing we decided it would be dark before we would enjoy our beverages. I remembered a lovely cafe in Earlsfield so we retraced our steps, only to find it closed.  Thankfully a woman walked by carrying a takeaway drink and she directed us to The Eclectic Collection, an independent coffee shop/cafe that we must visit again when we can sit inside.

Very pleased to have finally had tea we set off back along the Wandle trail. But not long after 4pm it began to get dark. Morden Hall Park was eerie and I was relieved the gates weren't locked and we could get out.  We parted in Carshalton to make our separate ways home. Thank you Ken for showing me yet another route to Wimbledon Common .

Saturday, 21 November 2020

Tea for Two; Beddington Park ride 21 November '20

Ken and I decided to try to cycle to Chaldon Church today via Farthing Downs.  Two weeks ago the beautiful autumn sunshine meant that our planned route was curtailed at the top of the Farthing Downs climb by a roadblock of cars trying to get in to a full car park.  Not today, the cold and threatening rain was perfect for a clear ride.  We left Beddington park to cycle through the back streets of Wallington, waving to Ray as we passed his house.  

We crossed Foxley Lane and cycled down Millionaires Row to Woodcote Village Green where we stopped to put our lights on as it darkened and we were on the A237 down to Coulsdon.  Over the roundabout and we began the climb up Marlpit Lane before turning right and changing down several gears in my case slowly, in Ken's case rapidly on his electric bike, to ascend Ditches Lane.  At the top where the wind tried to send us into the ditches we continued past the car park as the road first became beautiful and leafy but deteriorated significantly to a wet, leaf strewn pot holed track at Chaldon church. We stopped to admire this Saxon church which was open for private prayer only. We'll visit the famous wall painting, dating from about 1200, and the earliest known English Wall painting, another time. 

                                                                     Chaldon Church

We turned back, admiring the Shard on the skyline, to descend Ditches Lane for tea in DD's in Coulsdon.  Or rather tea outside and across the road! 

                                                DD about to cross the road to serve tea!

The return ride started on Woodman Road where we crossed the railway line to tackle the second hill of the day, Grove Lane.

At the top we turned right to join The Bridleway through the golf course and then Meadow Hill.  Eventually we joined the A237 briefly before turning into the Woodcote Village Green and we retraced our 'wheels' back to Wallington.  A lovely afternoon and no rain !

Thursday, 5 November 2020

All club rides suspended

The Prime Minister’s announcement on 31 October forbids anyone meeting for exercise outdoors with more than one person from another household. This means we can only ride either with members of our own household, or alone with one member of another household. This became law on Wednesday night, making group cycling illegal in England from Thursday 5 November until 2 December.

Therefore, until further notice, all Sou’Wester club rides are suspended.