Nº 276 · Oct - Dec 2017 · £1.00 CTC Suffolk / We Are Cycling UK
End to End of Ireland
Anna Brennan Cycled the Irish End to End P27
Car Assist from Eye P28
Touring Tips P29
New Rides Lists
My Favourite Ride
And lots more besides!
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Main Photo on Front Cover & the 2 Above: read Anna Brennan’s Account of Riding the Irish “End to End” on
Photo above: See Paul Remblance’s letter on “Holland Nostalgia” on
Photo above: This Year’s President’s Picnic. Read about it on
Some great photos came in for this issue
Contents Editorial President’s Piece Secretary’s Notes Social Secretary What I do when not on a bike From the Archives: 1965 Tour Letters to the Editor Netherlands Nostalgia Gazetteer Rides Lists Sunday Rides Thursday Rides Copdock Audax End to End - in Ireland Car Assist from Eye What to Take on Tour Suffolk & Norfolk Tour Recommended Rides President’s Picnic Sex & Cycling: the Similarities My Favourite Ride Hedgewatcher Last Word
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4 5 6 7 8 9 17 18 19 21 22 24 26 27 28 29 33 36 37 39 40 41 42
and it is a real shame not to include them all, but the choice was either to change some to black and white as it is only the outer “wrapper” (which makes up the front and rear cover and the other sides of those 2 pages) which are in colour.
So if you are disappointed that your photo(s) didn’t make it this time round, please don’t feel upset! They are in the queue for the next issue.
With some of the photos came another excellent story of a bike tour. I’m not going to give you more information than that, but leave you in suspense waiting for the next issue to arrive!
EDITOR: Richard Atkins 17 Meadow Crescent, Ipswich, IP3 8GD T: (01473) 726454 E: email@example.com Contributions can be Word documents or hand written. Photos can be JPG or GIF. Send SAE if “real” photos are sent in & you want them back. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the Group or CTC. The right to edit for reasons of space, clarity & libel, is reserved. Copyright CTC Suffolk and contributors.
Winged Wheel is published quarterly. Single issue price is £1 or £4 per year plus £2.00 p.a. if posted. Cheques to “CTC Suffolk”. Contact: Philip Hancock, 82 Hatfield Road, Ipswich IP3 9AG T: 01473 402055 E: firstname.lastname@example.org Cheques payable to “CTC Suffolk”.
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encourage others to do
riders would agree that
the same, whether for
they can always learn
the first time, or to
from others, as well as
venture out again - and,
enjoy hearing other
I hope, tell readers of
their experiences in future issues. Richard Atkins I have been absolutely delighted with the contributions for this issue with a range of stories and recollections of touring and have already had another for the next issue. While I am a relative newcomer to the CTC, and joined to be able to go on rides locally, the stories of tours and touring that I have read in Winged Wheel have inspired me to do the same and I hope that these articles will
Talking of very experienced riders, we
We remain, after all, the
are about to lose one of
Cyclists Touring Club,
them as rides
although I personally
coordinator, so thanks to
feel that we are more
John Bryant for his work
likely to have a voice on
on the Thursday rides. If
cycling issues locally,
you think you can step
nationally & even
in, there is a huge
reward of having your
“Cycling UK”. But I really photo published on the don’t want to inflame
rides page each issue!
passions over the branding issue!
We also need a new social secretary & our
Whatever you feel about thanks go to Susan the branding, please
Page for her work over
share your experiences
many a winter month for
about touring. I imagine
putting together a social
that even some of our
Maurie Parish Hi everybody Having just arrived home from the Birthday rides in the Cotswolds my thoughts turn to what next. Your committee will meet in October (If you have any issues you would like to share please contacts us) then there is the AGM in November. On the subject of the AGM I am mindful that whilst I would like to continue to serve as your President I may not be elected. My thoughts then turned to what could I do if not elected as President. What would I do to serve this club that has given me so much over the last 50 or so years? Having thought along these lines, it occurred to me that perhaps I should appeal to others to consider what they could do to assist the club and share the workload in some small way. Every long journey starts with a single step, or should I say turn of the pedals! Volunteer Whilst clearly the club needs more volunteers to take on committee posts, we also need ride leaders, please consider how you can help. One thing I would say is “just because it’s always been done in a particular way it does not mean it can’t be done differently” Some club members have offered to help those unsure about organising and leading, but there is no reason why you should not team up with a friend and jointly organise/lead a ride. If you are thinking someone has done such a good job I can’t follow that! Please don’t, the club needs fresh approaches to avoid becoming set in its ways and boring.
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Presidents Tea By the time you read this there will have been two “Presidents Tea’s”, both of which I believe were enjoyed by all who attended. Since I ride with both Sunday and Thursday groups I hosted the two events at my place in Woodbridge, leaving just a short ride back to Ipswich, to cycle off the cake. This was my way of introducing some variety to this event while maintaining the feature in the cycling programme. Hedges Some of you may have seen some press coverage about hedges. I am sure this will become of increasing interest to others, not just Cyclists. While I was at the Birthday rides I conducted a survey, and it is clear that it is not just Suffolk where this problem occurs. Thanks Many thanks to all those who have supported my presidency during the past year. I believe we have achieved some significant progress towards greater efficiency, standardisation and smoother transitions between volunteers which will strengthen the club and this can only be good for the future. I am particularly pleased that we now have transferable emails, so successor volunteers can see what has gone before and can pick up on current issues. I am pleased we are putting together Job Descriptions for each of the volunteer positions, which will serve to show the size & parameters of tasks to potential volunteers. We have made it easier for member to report potholes and hedge issues by including links on the web site (Under Club stuff-Campaigns), the idea being to report as much as we can to keep pressure on those responsible for road safety. (In the future perhaps a right to ride volunteer might organise a rota of reporters?) This area of the web site will also be used to inform those who are interested in progress on the various campaigns. Regards and Safe Cycling
Judith Hedges What a fantastic summer our club has enjoyed. Our programme of Thursday and Sunday rides has been more varied than ever. We have been to Anne Scott’s Railway Garden, we have used the ferries at Reedham and over the River Colne from Rowhedge to Wivenhoe and have been spoilt rotten by community teas at Brandeston, Ashfield and Raydon. Rides have gone over the borders into Norfolk and Essex. A number of rides have had a cultural focus such as a museum visit, a church festival of flowers, a village open gardens, a working mill, medieval wall paintings. We have stopped alongside the field in Rendlesham which was quite possibly the site of Raedwald’s Mead Hall. In Felixstowe we cycled along the peaceful Gulpher Road & Ferry Road and paused to wonder why permission has been granted for 198 houses to be built on the surrounding farmland. Places of interest are always popular on a ride, long or short visits. I am sure I speak for all Thursday Riders when I say thank you so very much to John Bryant for being such a marvellous Thursday Ride Co ordinator; John is stepping down at the AGM in November. A new Thursday Ride Co ordinator will be needed; John is very happy to work alongside a new volunteer in the short or long term. The job could continue along the same lines or be split into different areas.
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I think we are getting better at leaving gaps between riders to enable cars to overtake us safely but there are times when we are so carried away with chattering that we seem to forget. Do read Dave Pauley’s ‘notes for riders’ on our website. I have heard of many amazing places that our members have toured to in 2017 and would like to start a yearly list of destinations, local destinations or far flung ones. Other members could maybe access the list for ideas or to ask for advice on cycling in a particular area. Email me at email@example.com. I cannot finish without mentioning two regular club riders, David Coupe and Andy Terry, for riding and completing the London to Edinburgh to London Audax. Do ask them about it, you will be amazed. They both look so normal and are so unassuming about their abilities and achievements. Big thanks are due to Andy for all the work he put in to organising the many Audaxes from the Mildenhall Festival in August on behalf of CTC Suffolk. Thanks in advance are also due to David for taking on the organisation of the popular Blaxhall 100km Audax on September 30th.Not to be missed! Happy Cycling Judith Hedges
In-House Training Day WANTED: Members who want to learn how to carry out roadside repairs: punctures, broken chain, cables or derailleurs,worn brake blocks etc. WANTED: Members to teach the above. VENUE: 36th Ipswich Scout Hall, Chantry. www.36thipswichscouts.co.uk Hot drinks & biscuits provided. Bring your own lunch
SAT 25th November 10.00-14.00 Please can you let me know as soon as possible if you are interested in being a student or a teacher.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Social Secretary’s Report As I am not standing for re-election can I begin by thanking everyone who has spoken at our social evenings over the last three years. Members have also contributed well to the photographic competitions. My last event is the 2017 Photographic competition that will be held on the 7th October. The AGM will follow on the 11th November. Both events will be held at the Odd Fellows Hall 37 High Street, Ipswich at 7:30pm. If you would like to know what is involved in being Social Secretary please contact me before the AGM.
2017 Photographic Competition. Just a reminder that you can enter the DA photographic competition to be held on the 7th October. The classes are: ● Suffolk sea and river scenes. ● Cycling events . ● World tourist. ● Wild creatures of the British Isles. Digital images need to be greater than 750Kb in size. Email your entries to Susan email@example.com.
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What do YOU do when not on a bike?
HERMAN RAMSEY Herman lives in
Volunteer on a
How about letting us
Wrabness & is a
know what YOU do for
the next issue?
For thousands of years many woodlands
Most of the maintenance work is done
have been coppiced to provide small
from September to March so does not
diameter timber for construction, furniture,
interfere with the cycling season. Tasks
tools and fuel. Over the last hundred years
will vary according to the site but may
the demand for timber dropped and, though
include clearing scrub, repairing fences
there was a revival during the second
and bridges, or tree planting.
World War from aircraft frames to charcoal for gas masks, by 50 years ago under
Also there may be opportunities for
woodsmen who felled the timber and
monitoring wildlife or learning a traditional
wheelwrights and other craftsmen who
craft such as hedge laying.
used wood had become extinct species. If you would like to get involved in this Some woods have been returned to
work, contact Suffolk Wildlife Trust,
rotation by private owners but others have
telephone 01473 890089 or, for those
been taken over by wildlife organisations.
living to the West of Ipswich, the RSPB maintains three woods near Hadleigh;
Whilst tree felling and other tasks using
contact Shirley Sampson at RSPB Stour
powered tools and requiring a â€œticketâ€? are
Estuary Reserves on 01206 391153.
done by reserve staff or contractors, much of the hand work is done by volunteers.
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From the Archives This issue, it’s not from the Winged Wheel Archive, but Max Scott’s Record of His 1965 Cycling Tour with his brother Michael. Friday 25th June 1965: Luton to Peterborough - 65.7 miles Leaving Luton just after 7pm. I had a mainly back wind as I rode North to meet Michael at Fenstanton. I used the now fairly familiar route via Barton, the Gravenhursts, Campton, Shefford, Broom and Biggleswade. Then along B1040 through Potton, Gamlingay, Waresley, Eltisley. At Hilton I turned through the village to Fenstanton, where a cold Michael awaited me. A meeting photograph & a drink and we were on our way again via St. Ives, Pidley, Warboys. Bury and Ramsey, then north to Pondersbridge and Peterborough to arrive a little after midnight. th
Sat 26 June: to Darlington (rail) & Edmundbyers - 50.7 miles
University City. The castle was formerly the stronghold of the Bishops of Durham. Both castle and cathedral look down on the Wear between Frammellgate and Prebends Bridges. We wandered along the river and through the narrow streets of the extraordinarily congested town. There is the market place and the three medieval churches, the lovely old buildings used by the university. The gem is the Cathedral which is unlike any other I’ve seen in many respects. It looks chunky from the outside but is lovely within, with its long graceful nave, the intricately carved Neville Screen, the Cosin Font. The Bishop’s Throne is said to be the highest in Christendom. The Nine Altars Chapel has marvellous vaulting and the Choir Stalls are beautifully worked. The Cathedral contains the tomb of St Cuthbert and also the remains of the Venerable Bede. We breakfasted on welcome egg and bacon in the only café that appeared to be open, but the city very soon woke up and became a hive of activity.
After a cook up on the platform at Peterborough North Station we boarded the 1.22am train and travelled through via Grantham, Newark, Doncaster and York to Darlington which was quite lively when we arrived at 4.40am and the sun was beginning to emerge as we pedalled out into undulant meadowland to Great Stainton and Sedgefield.
From Durham we rode first NE then W into the gale to Finchale Priory, beautifully set in quiet greenery close by the Wear in its deep valley. The caravan site behind was thankfully fairly unobtrusive. We bought food at a strange little shop here and lunched in the gale-blown trees above the Wear.
Thence over hillier, colliery scarred countryside to Durham. Away to the west lay the smoking chimneys of Ferryhill. We dropped down into the valley of the Wear and climbed into Durham itself, a curious mixture of the old & charming and the grubbily new. The Cathedral is very fine and beautifully set above the Wear. The Castle looks impressive but the opening times restricted our viewing to the outside only. It is occupied by University College Durham and the city is very much a
The afternoon was a long hard plod westward through increasingly hilly scenery via Plawsworth and across the A1. We dropped down to Witton Gilbert and climbed gradually up the Browney River valley to Lanchester. We purchased food here and some tasty bottled shandy (the genuine stuff) before really climbing up through Newbiggin and below Castleside to a steep drop into the thickly wooded valley of Hisehope Burn, then steeply up again to lonely Muggleswick and into Edmundbyers.
Despite it being Saturday there were only six of us at the hostel: three chaps and three girls. The warden, a friendly middleaged woman, lived next door. The quietness was unexpected for Edmundbyers lies only a short distance from black, smoking Consett, which insisted on being visible from miles away in all directions. A delicious meal of tender fried liver and onions and new potatoes went down very well before going early to bed and a deep sleep. Sun 27th June: Edmundsbyers to Once Brewed 31.7 miles. We climbed immediately from Edmundbyers next morning and the wind came up too and stayed up. We followed the southern outline of the new and not yet completed Derwent Reservoir to pretty Blanchland, all of which seems to revolve around an unnamed hotel. Here we crossed the Derwent into Northumberland. We really climbed now out of Blanchland and north over the moors – after brewing coffee in as sheltered a spot as we could find – to Slaley. A couple of miles short of the village I had a spoke break and with a long struggle we eventually managed to force in another. All we had time for in Slaley was a drink and a quick crisps and chocolate snack before continuing northwards. A fierce winding drop into the pretty valley of the Devil’s Water, another climb and then freewheel into the market town of Hexham. We did not delay here but turned west into the wind to Warden and across the South Tyne. We followed the North Tyne branch – they divide a couple of miles west of Hexham – northward to Walwick and then along the course of Hadrian’s Wall to Once Brewed hostel. At Carrawbrough we paused to view the grass covered ramparts of the Roman fort of Brocolitia and the restored Temple of Mithras. Further west still along the undulating road we came to the well preserved fort at Housesteads. Its ramparts, gateways and other details are
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all extremely well preserved and the pattern of life here could well be imagined. After supper we walked northward a little towards Crag Lough and followed a lengthy and well preserved section of the wall, up high over the craggy cliffs and almost as far east as Crag Lough, one of three lakes north of the wall. Once Brewed hostel, wardened by an apparently widely known man known as Old Mac, with one short leg, was a charming little place, marvellously equipped, and only three Norwegian female cyclists in the place. Mon 28th June: Once Brewed to Ferniehurst Castle - 53.9 miles Today we crossed into Scotland. We left Once Brewed early and, with a following gale, really eastward over the humps to Tower Tie. Here we left our Sunday course and turned into the wind a bit as we rode northward to Simonburn and down to the swift flowing North Tyne again. We followed its wandering course via Wark (elevenses) and Bellingham. From here we climbed up over the windswept moors to Hareshaw Head & over the 1000ft mark. Eventually we dropped down into Otterburn just in time to purchase picnic food. This we ate, sheltering from the wind behind a stone wall. Nearby was a crude cross erected to mark the Battle of Otterburn in 1388 (the Percy Cross). Now came a gradual climb over sparsely populated terrain north westward up to Carter Bar, past the finger like Catleugh Reservoir, to the Scottish Border. Then we almost had to pedal downhill on the other side from 1371 ft. The Jed valley conveyed us north almost into Jedburgh, to our first Scottish hostel at Ferniehurst Castle with more people but was still nothing like full. Tue 29th June: Ferniehurst Castle to Wooler - 33.6 miles Ferniehurst Castle, wardened by a talkative single man, is a picturesque 16C castle above the River Jed. It has been a hostel for the last 20 years but once saw more warlike service as the stronghold of the Kers.
We were the only cyclists, but there were several motorised people present at this lovely old hostel, cosy despite its stone construction, built on arches. Last evening we walked along the river with high sandstone cliffs one side and thick trees on the other. Next day when the warden stopped chatting we rode into Jedburgh. Here we viewed our first of the four famous Border Abbeys. That at Jedburgh is set in a dominant position on the Tweed bank. This is the most complete of the four despite the efforts of many a desecrator. Founded in 1147 it displays a developing mixture of styles. In Queen Street we saw the house where Mary Queen of Scots stayed in 1566. We were wrongly timed to view. Robert Burns lived in the Canongate and Bonnie Prince Charlie passed through on his way to England in 1745. We bought some delicious crisp pastried meat pies and wholemeal scones, cider and such here and pedalled away eastward before eating in a quiet meadow in the warm all-day sunshine. We climbed out of Jedburgh and across above Oxnam, over the moorland hills to Hownam. Thence alongside the Kale Water almost into Morebattle and eastward again to Town and Kirk Yetholm, pretty twin villages one on each side of the Bowmont Water. A mile down the road we passed into England again, then first along the Bowmont Water and then the River Glen to Wooler, a grey old town of pubs and a few shops. The hostel is a charming hutment-type building, originally a Land Army hostel, above the main part of town. Wed 30th June: Wooler to Coldingham 49.4 miles We left Wooler just as it began to rain and we had to put our capes on after I had mended two punctures by the main street. I had changed to my spare tube on the previous day and it was Michael’s I now fitted. Both of our spares had punctures. It continued to rain as we rode eastwards through Chatton but it stopped at the fringe of Chatton Moor. After that we had a fine , windy and cool day, the wind this
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time being from the north. We dropped down to and crossed the A1 and continued over lower lying marshy country to Bamburgh with its enormous castle overlooking the lovely white sandy beach sheltered by the Farne Islands. Away to the north lay Holy Island. Bamburgh Castle dates from 1095 but became the first castle in England to succumb to gunfire. It was also allowed to fall into decay later , but Lord Armstrong – of Armstrong Whitworth etc. – bought it and spent no less than £1 million on its restoration. We were shown around the public rooms which contain some interesting treasures including Central Asian armour of great age and the beautifully remodelled Great Hall panelled and roofed in teak. Before going inside the castle, incidentally, we lunched in a café and were charged 9s.3d. each for a meagre portion of chicken, boiled potatoes and peas, followed by bilberry tart and cream, and coffee. By the time we reached Coldingham that evening we were ravenous and consumed a huge meal: corned beef fritters, chips and peas, preceded by soup and followed by a pancake & a steamed pudding each. Then we had some bread and honey! Time was short by the time we left Bamburgh, Michael having broken his chain just after leaving the castle, and we had to bash northward mainly on the A1, surprisingly no busier than many a lesser main road. We were able to follow lanes almost through to Buckton but it was A1 all the way then and into the wind to busy Berwick upon Tweed, with its picturesque bridges and old buildings. We barely stopped before pursuing our northward course along the A1 and by the craggycliffed seashore to Burnmouth. Now it was more steeply up and down and Devon-like via Eyemouth to Coldingham and its airy hostel directly overlooking Coldingham Bay, The warden, herself a one-time club cyclist, was very nice.
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Thu 1st July: Coldingham to Melrose - Having rushed over these points we now pressed on along the Tweed to Melrose 54.4 miles itself and the large mansion- building hostel. A school party, some pony trekking, Next morning after a good breakfast and made this attractive hostel noisier than we some photos, we began by climbing west had encountered up to now and it was rather than going reasonably easily south quite full. west. It was two miles of climbing before we realised our mistake and we now Fri 2nd July: Melrose to Edinburgh - 43.7 freewheeled back down to Reston, miles. stopping for a flock of sheep en route. We were back on course now by way of This morning after leaving the hostel we Auchencrow, Preston and Duns. We did made directly across to the abbey, where not buy food here but made for fair-sizedSt Cuthbert started his life as a monk. The looking Polwarth to find it no more than 2 building shows English influences and is or 3 cottages and a letter box. This after a very beautiful in its detail. long climb which continued almost into Greenlaw, where we did manage to buy The former Commendator’s House is picnic food. This we ate and I brewed relatively intact and used as a museum of coffee behind a dry-stone wall north of monastic remains from several abbeys etc. Hume before we continued to Hume We had elevenses in American infested Castle, a fine viewpoint accessible by Melrose before continuing west along the means of a great iron key obtained from Tweed to Abbotsford the charming house the Post Office. of Sir Walter Scott, who lies buried at Dryburgh Abbey. It was downhill now through Stichhill to Kelso, grouped around its large square With its fine collection of weapons and with the ruined Abbey prominent. The tower, little more than which remains, gives armour, the entrance hall evokes the atmosphere of Ivanhoe and the great a massive idea of the whole, but the red sandstone has weathered badly. This was romances and lyric poems. Incorporated into the fabric of the house by Scott are the oldest and once most powerful of the Border Abbeys and it is tragic that it is now items salvaged from famous and historic buildings such as Roslin Castle, Linlithgow the most decayed. Palace and the old Edinburgh Tolbooth. This stately home fitted Scott’s character We bought provisions here and plodded beautifully and it is a fine memorial to its into the wind along the humpy road that builder. We looked around and admired follows the Tweed to St. Boswells where the finely austere study, the beautifully we crossed the river and climbed to Dryburgh Abbey, most beautifully set of all stocked library, the drawing and dining rooms, and the entrance hall. four Border Abbeys. Dryburgh may lack the richness of architectural detail Then via industrial Galashiels, resplendent possessed by Melrose, and less remains here than either Melrose or Jedburgh but it with flags for visiting royalty, and up the relatively quiet and only gently climbing A7 is beautifully sited and built in lovely to Edinburgh. Another cyclist passed us in mellow stone. In plan this abbey was Galashiels, near where we lunched, and similar to both Jedburgh and Melrose. we saw him later at Hailes hostel. He was It was very dull at Dryburgh and it was cold a Bristol DA member. The A7 took us up the Gala Water via Stow, flowing too in the wind when we climbed up to agricultural countryside with the rounded Scott’s View, high above a bend in the Moorfoots behind and into the unsightly Tweed and with the Eildon Hills away urban sprawl south of Edinburgh: behind. A beautiful spot even on this dark Gorbridge, Newbattle, Dalkeith and into the sombre evening. grey city itself. We approached from the
south and the hostel lies some 5-6 miles SW of the centre. We had a long ride out after buying food during which I rode the wrong way down a one-way street. Sat 3rd July: Edinburgh - 12.4 miles. Today we left our luggage at the hostel and thundered off into the city. The weather began brightly but deteriorated, quite heavy showers developing and no sun. We tried to get my wheel repaired but no one was able to do it. We gave up and went in the castle where I enjoyed the Scottish United Services Museum, St Margarets Chapel (connected with Brent Eleigh), 15C Mons Meg, and the Scottish National War Memorial, the Great Hall with its fine woodwork and collection of weapons, the Scottish Regalia and the rooms of Mary Queen of Scots. Because it was raining, we also looked around the Museum of the Royal Scots, the historic 1st of Foot. After a meagre lunch we walked along the Royal Mile to Holyrood House, closed perhaps because the Queen was in residence, encountering two cursing drunken men & a drunken old woman. We climbed up the steep side of Salisbury Crags for a fine view of the city and the Firth of Forth to the north. We afterwards climbed up the hill where the Burns and Nelson Monuments overlook Princes Street and the old town. In so doing we passed Queen Mary’s Bath. Then a walk along Princes Street for a view of the Floral Clock. We broke off, however, to check our cycles and to view Greyfriars Bobby and his Inn. We climbed high above the city to the top of the black, craggy Scott Monument and enjoyed the marvellous view, if not the wind. American tourists were all over it. A tasty cooked meal and back to the hostel in a shower. Sun 4th : Edinburgh to Barns 32.6 miles We skirted the SW of the city via Colinton to Fairmilehead, then south to Pentland
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and SW along the southern edge of the Pentland Hills via Carlops to West Linton where we turned south and descended, but before going too far we heated and ate our meat pie and coffee lunch. Thence via pretty Romanno Bridge and past the curious and apparently inexplicable Romanno Terraces, terraces in the grassy hillside. We now dropped down by the Lyne Water and past Lyne Church to Niedpath Castle, one of the best preserved of the distinctive Border Castles. From a strong position it and we gazed down upon the wandering Tweed and the distant buildings of Peebles. The castle has 11ft. thick walls and dates from the 15C. Originally possessed by the Frasers, but later by the Earls of Tweedale and Dukes of Queensberry. It is now owned by the Earl of Wemyss and March. Then a short distance to Barns hostel, a bow-fronted Tweedside mansion with, in the grounds, the 15C tower of the Burnetts, scene of John Buchan’s “John Burnett of Barns” Mon 5th Jul: To Broadmeadow 32.7 m We spent a long time in delightfully set Peebles, the birthplace of Robert and William Chambers and of Professor Veitch. In the High Street is the Chambers Institution, formerly the town house of the Dukes of Queensberry. 7 Northgate was once the residence of Mungo Park. From Peebles we rode SE to Innerleithen Burns was associated with this grey little tweed-making town - lunching in a meadow by the main road whilst the wind blew up strongly from the west. It came over wet-looking but didn’t rain. We rode south to Traquair House, claimed to be the oldest inhabited house in Scotland and is a lovely old house rich in history, home since 1491 of the family of Stuart. An English-accented guide showed us around the principal rooms, tastefully decorated and furnished in 17C style. The Drawing Room with its just revealed original painted beams and panels and delightful furniture. In the King’s Room
pride of place is taken by the magnificent State Bed, with yellow hangings, said to have been used by Mary Queen of Scots at Terreglos House, from whence it came. A low door from the King’s Room gives access to the narrow steep Secret Stair, which runs through the oldest part of the house. It has various sizes of step to confuse pursuers. On the second floor is an interesting museum, contained in a room whose plaster walls are remarkable for the remains of painted mural decorations dating from about 1600. This work is comparatively rare in Scotland. The room contains some treasures of the house, relics of Mary Queen of Scots, and some illuminated Psalters of the 14C among them. The Chapel contains twelve lovely 16c carved wood panels of Flemish style. Across the courtyard in the south wing is the dining room containing the finest of the family portraits, with the table set for a Jacobite meal and boasting a remarkable barometer of 1778. Beneath the chapel lies the Brew House, where a local ale was being brewed for sale on the premises. Another fortnight and we could have had a bottle. The Earls of Traquair were great Jacobite supporters & plotters and there are several legends surrounding the closing of the main Bear Gates, conjecturally awaiting the return of a Stuart to the throne. From Traquair we rode along a narrow, extremely quiet and wooded road on the opposite bank of the Tweed to that followed by A72 eventually joining the main road and crossing the river, and entering ancient Selkirk where food was bought before riding W to Broadmeadows, past the impressive ruin of Newark Castle guarding the defile of the Yarrow. In “Marmion” Newark is the scene of splendid courtly pageantry. An old chap in Selkirk tried to tell us about the Common Riding and the local newspaper office had pictures of this Flodden based equestrian event. Sir Walter Scott was Sheriff at Selkirk and Andrew Lang was born here.
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Selkirk also is home of the delicious Selkirk Bannock. Nearer Broadmeadows is Foulshiels, birthplace of Mungo Park explorer of the Niger. We had intended to reach Snoot hostel today but we finished up several miles short at Broadmeadows, the SYHA’s first ever hostel, which, with a temporary warden, had gone to the dogs. A simple hostel it opened on 2nd May 1931, well off any road and overlooking the romantic wooded Yarrow valley. Tue 6th To Kielder - 41.9 miles. Next morning, after cleaning up the hostel and the queer little attic where we slept, we prepared to leave. A flick at a fly, however, and the left-hand lens fell out of my glasses. A Selkirk optician soon replaced it for me and, after buying some lunch food, we were on our way again. Almost without stopping we bashed down to Hawick with the shops closing as we arrived. I found one open and we rode just outside the town to eat our lunch in a field near a gull-pestered rubbish tip. It rained a little while we sat eating. Hawick is a biggish grey-stone town, one of the chief manufacturing towns of South Scotland noted for tweeds and hosiery. We left the A7 at Hawick and turned east and then south east via little Kirkton to Bonchester Bridge. Here, at a strange little shop (1 room of a house), we obtained food and were watched & discussed with awe by some rather sadistic local children. Thence via pretty Hobkirk and sharply up to Cleuchhead and south over the hills, up to 1250 ft. at Note-o-the-Gate, through the dull dampish Wanchope Forest. Away to the east were the peaks of Carter Fell and Carter Bar, crossed on the way north. Now we were heading south again and we crossed into England at Deadwater which once possessed a bath house & spa. And so on about three miles to Kielder hostel.
Oct - Dec 2017
Before we leave Max Scott’s delightful account of his and Mike’s 1965 bike tour, the remainder of which will be in the next issue, Mike has also found Max’s notes on what to pack for the “expedition”. Do you think he was taking too much or was there something important left out?
Oct - Dec 2017
We ARE the
Cyclists TOURING Club! The heritage of the CTC is as a club for touring cyclists. This is not an attempt to reignite the debate over the Cycling UK branding, but a request to all members to provide more stories about cycle touring for Winged Wheel. As a rough guide, around 600 words are 1 page, so 1200 words are 2 pages & so on. Please think about writing for YOUR magazine.
Oct - Dec 2017
Letters to the Editor Re: E-Bikes
Re: Singling Out
I read on Maurieâ€™s page about e bikes, over here in Holland there are many e bikes.
This has always been a problem even before White van man,. It really is basic common sense if riders are disciplined. Unfortunately some are not. This involves singling out when safe to do so. As many leaders are aware I will inform them if I am unhappy with members on the ride and leave to make my own way.
It is mainly the older generation who ride them as it keeps them riding when they find it too much to ride a conventional bike. I can understand the worry of having ebikes on club runs as out here they do not tend to ride with clubs which are only for the riders of light weight machines, but having bought one to help me get back into riding again after heart surgery I find you can adjust the machine to the speed of the people I am riding with. As to recharging the battery en route the Dutch and Germans have charging points along the way for those machines where the battery is part of the bike. For bikes like mine where the battery is removed for charging, if you take your charger with you when you stop at a cafĂŠ, you can ask them to charge it for you - some places charge you a few euros but most think it is part of their service to you, but I cannot see that ever happening in the UK. I have a good friend who sells second hand e-bikes who found the bike for me: it is a Giant open frame with 7 speed hub gear with all the normal Dutch fittings of lights, lock, and carrier. Being an e-bike it is very heavy. The battery is taken off for charging. They say it will do about 40 kilometres to a charge but that depends on what setting you use: it has 3 settings of eco, normal, and sport. I use it on normal most of the time, sport for heading into a Dutch wind or uphill and eco for downhill and a tail wind. I thought this may be of some interest to the club. Regards, Vera Staines
If I am leading and become aware of incidents I would have dealt with them. Now I have to consider Pat with her eye problem and that is why we no longer ride from the East because of this fact that we cannot safely ride because of some membersâ€™ actions. We do ride with the West Suffolk group when we can as all members are courteous to vehicle drivers and group members alike. As with a small group that we ride with from East Suffolk we are not afraid to use common sense on narrow roads and wait until it is safe to get a vehicle past even if it means pulling off the road to get that vehicle past. This means that we can continue our chatting and enjoyable cycling much more quickly. The people who do not single out when safe to do so are either being awkward towards motorists, and yes we have some of those, or are genuinely deaf, a good shout often helps here from the rider behind, or they are too engrossed in their own conversations ante totally oblivious to others needs. The latter are often guilty of not waiting on corners if they are at the rear of the first section of a split group. The groups I ride with do all the above but you have to trust in your fellow riders. Unfortunately you cannot provide rules that some people will blatantly disregard. Common sense should prevail. Sadly the message being passed up the line regarding upcoming vehicles or down regarding dangers does not happen. Regards, Peter
Oct - Dec 2017
Holland Nostalgia David Kemp has described his tour that took in the Hoge Veluwa Park last summer. I put WW down and found the photo album that contains the pictures printed in this magazine. Susan and I were there in his company on the 26th June 2002!
We also had two elected councillors with us. John Kelso the county councillor for Kesgrave and Brayn Hall the Suffolk Coastal councillor for Wickham Market. The group photo is copyright, Mr Hall.
As this is 15 years ago as I write I hope this counts as nostalgia. There are more links to David’s recent article. Over a dozen took part in that tour including other Suffolk CC colleagues linked to the Cycling Team that David mentioned, including two who readers may know, Anthony Wright and John Soame.
I cannot praise the Kroller Muller Museum enough as an art collection. The mix of modern painting, and Dutch old masters were well displayed in subdued galleries. Sculpture was displayed in a park outside without barriers and ‘don’t touch’ signs. David G was an ‘organised’ man. The main group had arrived in Appeldoorn from East Anglia for the five night tour by ferry and an assortment of trains the day before, provided with to the minute timings. Susan and I had come out a day sooner on the much missed Harwich - Hook sea cat service. We rode the whole undertaking door to door enjoying extra days at the end of the tour too.
The tour was organised by an SCC colleague David Gibbs who some members may recognise as a figure seen speeding in to the centre of Ipswich to work along the cycleways from Kesgrave to Ipswich each morning on a sit up Dutch style bike. On this tour he was able to introduce a mixed group of cyclists to the pleasures of cycling in Holland that David K has described.
Oct - Dec 2017
We Are Cycling UK - Suffolk Gazette Club Officials President*
Sunday Rides Coordinator*
Thursday Rides Coordinator*
Publicity & Promotion Officer*
Registration Officer* Glen Smith
www.ctcsuffolk.org.uk * Denotes Committee Member
Oct - Dec 2017
Be an Ambassador for your Club! If you are out and about and see some other cyclists out there, why not tell them of the pleasures of riding with the club? It isnâ€™t just companionship, itâ€™s a great way to discover some great, quiet lanes around Suffolk (and sometimes beyond), often taking routes that you may not previously been aware of.
We are Cycling UK, the Cyclists Touring Club, or CTC. Find us online at ctcsuffolk.org.uk
Oct - Dec 2017
CTC Suffolk Rides Lists July - September 2017
Rides from Colchester Thursday evenings
Start at 7:00 pm
Meet at Superbowl at 7:00 pm or around 8:30 pm at destination (usually a pub)
For details contact:
Rides from Melton with Wolsey RC Saturday mornings
Start at 08:30 am
Melton Traffic Lights
Meet at Melton Traffic Lights for an 8:30 am start
For details contact:
01473 420328 firstname.lastname@example.org
Rides from Diss with Diss CTC Sunday mornings
Meet at 9:30 a.m.
Angel CafĂŠ, Fair Green
For details contact:
Other Cycling Events Blaxhall Audax: 30 Sep
Book via AUKweb.net before 28th Sep
If you are aware of cycling events of interest to fellow members, please let the editor know. Thank you.
Oct - Dec 2017
CTC Suffolk Sunday Rides from Ipswich START: The Sunday Rides leave St Margaretâ€™s Green, Ipswich at 09:30 sharp unless otherwise shown. If you canâ€™t get to the start by then, phone the ride leader of the day to find a point where you could meet, or join the elevenses stop. The leader can give an indication of the distance between stops. Pick-Up Points: These are a guide based on a 9:30 start. If the ride passes earlier, they will NOT be expected to stop!
A St Augustines Ch. 09:45
B Bourne Bridge 09:40
BR Bramford Picnic Site 09:50
C - Chantry Park, Hadleigh Rd entrance 09:40
S - Sproughton Wild Man 09:45
W - Washbrook, bus stop top of old A12. 10:00
WH - Whitton Church Lane, at Old Norwich Rd. 09:45
TRR - Tuddenham Rd roundabout. 09:35
You are advised to carry FOOD & DRINK as this is not assured at lunch stops
Oct - Dec 2017
CTC Suffolk Sunday Rides from Ipswich Ride Type
Ride Explanation (NB: Hills & Headwinds excepted in average speeds)
EASY: Leisurely rides suited to newcomers & those preferring a gentle non-exerting pace. Up to 50 miles for the day. Typical speed 10-12 mph average.
MEDIUM TOURING: Suited to club members with some experience preferring a longer ride but at a leisurely pace. 50-70 miles for the day, depending on time of year. Typical speed: 11-13 mph average.
MEDIUM PLUS: Suited to experienced club riders preferring a longer ride at a slightly brisker pace in order to cover longer rides than MT. 50-70 miles for the day. Typical speed: 12-15 mph.
LONG: Suited to experienced club riders wishing to tour further from Ipswich & at a consistent pace. 70-100 miles for the day. Typical speed 15-18 mph average.
Oct - Dec 2017
CTC Suffolk Thursday Rides from Ipswich & Woodbridge Coordinator
START: The Thursday Rides start at 09:30 unless otherwise shown. If you can’t get to the start by then, phone the ride leader of the day to find a point where you could meet, or join the elevenses stop. Will all leaders please notify their venues of our visit and expected numbers. Leader A should notify the 11’s stop and leader B the 11’s stop and the lunch stop.
The two leaders should coordinate their rides so that the arrival times of their groups at common venues are staggered.
John Bryant 01473 231530
Ride leaders are requested to pass a list of those participating in a ride to the rides coordinator
Oct - Dec 2017
CTC Suffolk Thursday Rides from Ipswich & Woodbridge
Oct - Dec 2017
Copdock Circuit 2018
Put the Date in Your Diary Now For the 5th Copdock Circuit
If anyone is able to help with parking at the start, then they will be offered a free ride. Anyone who doesn't feel up to the ride is welcome to join us at the start or help at a control. It is always a very friendly event and only a quarter of the past rides have taken place in Arctic Conditions!
Oct - Dec 2017
End to End - in Ireland Anna Brennan takes on a different “End to End” 2017 brings me a birthday with a nought, so I thought I would set myself a challenge. I’d considered - and dismissed – LeJog, on the basis that it exceeds my definition of “a challenge. ” David Barton helpfully suggested I sign on for the end to end of Ireland, so I did. (And only occasionally during the week’s trip did I bitterly think that, next time, David can keep his helpful suggestions to himself.) The guidance laid out a 10 week training programme, comprising x3 shorter rides per week and a longer distance at the weekend. Truth be told, I peaked at x2 per week with the longer weekends, but in June both David and I did a compulsory 3 days in a row of cycling to get ourselves fit. The group of 14 cyclists from all over the country assembled in Cork, and were then bussed down to Schull for an overnight before the Sunday morning off from Mizen Head. We had 2 organisers who rode, but after the first morning we had settled into smaller groups We soon fell into a steady rhythm of up early, breakfast of porridge and potato bread, pack the luggage into the van, ride 25 miles of stunning countryside, a quick roadside snack from the van, another 25 miles, roadside lunch, and a final 25 miles before reaching that night’s hotel. All our accommodation was pre-booked and was of an excellent standard. Most nights, people headed out to local restaurants but usually all met in the bar to catch up on how everyone was faring. The camaraderie was excellent. The route followed much of the Wild Atlantic Way – as beautiful as it sounds. Through Bantry, Kenmare, the ring of Kerry, Muckross, Limerick, Kinvara, Galway, Castlebar, Bundoran, Letterkenny,
the entertainingly named Muff, arriving into Malin Head 7 days and 500 miles after we set off. We were very fortunate with the weather; one short burst of rain on one afternoon but then a full on deluge during the final hour’s ride up to Mizen Head. Sadly, this put paid to our planned team photo of us all in our finishers’ jerseys, as we were wrapped up in waterproofs. The car drivers were wonderfully considerate, perhaps due in part to the frequent TV public information adverts about how road users should respect each other. The road surfaces were mostly very rough, but encouragingly, we encountered a number of roadblocks where surfaces were being re-tarmacked. Of the miles we covered, there were no punctures and only one extremely unlucky spill where a farm dog came chasing out and got wrapped up between Gill’s wheels. The dog came away unscathed but Gill was carted off for patching up at a local GP surgery. She was back on the bike in the afternoon and swore blind that the evening Guinness was medicinal. I found the cycling tough but was encouraged by the beauty of the scenery, the friendliness of the people and the thought that this was only half LeJoG. So, if you’ve a week spare and are looking for a challenge, try Mizen Head to Malin Head. Great criack, as they say.
Oct - Dec 2017
Car Assist from Eye Sunday May 7th rides list included a
solo. He told me later that he was
car assist from Eye. Intrigued, I
training to undertake a cross Europe
wrangled the keys of my small car
audax type ride, so maybe a 26 mile
from our younger son, and having
morning spin was a mere not too
successfully taken off the front
stretching ride for him.
wheel, put the backseat down put the bike – plus front wheel!- in, I felt
Paul lead us along part of the
exhausted. Think putting up
Waveney valley, and over to St
Olaves for lunch at a pub, before back and stopping at the Broken Egg
Luckily, arriving at the car park in
café in Harleston for afternoon tea. A
Eye, I was greeted by Ceri who
lovely restaurant/ cafe if you’ve never
swiftly reassembled my bike. Paul
Fenton lead a group of 5 of us, setting off lick smart at 9.30, into
We all agreed it had been a
what felt like a bit of a head wind to
tremendous day out. Although there
Loddon. 26 miles at a goodly pace.
is a bit off faff involved in a car-assist,
Graham Cole was tickled to be
it does mean cycling in less
passing back past his house. At the
frequently visited territory.
infamous Rosie’s café, we were joined by Colin Clarke- fresh from a local time trial, and Malcolm who unfortunately had been waiting at a different car park in Eye at 9.30am, so had made the trip to elevensies
Oct - Dec 2017
What to Take on Tour
John Thompson Gives His Ideas In response to Richard's request for advice on what to take on tour, perhaps my 14 years as a tour leader and being an 'old school' tourist qualify me. I call myself an 'old-school' tourist because I am still into non-assisted moving-on tours. From Winged Wheel it seems many Suffolk CTC members are also into it. However, there is much less of it nowadays. Many tours are fixed centres and/or vehicle supported. Obviously you don't need to carry so much on those tours. My advice will be for unassisted moving-on tours with panniers. I am not a technical person so wont comment on things like”disk brakes or not?” and “drive belt instead of a chain?” Perhaps I can however comment on the best type of frame. To do so, I start on a general point. If you want to do serious 'old school' touring 'in full comfort' you have to accept carrying things that are going to slow you. It seems to me a lot of riders nowadays can't cope with the 'psychology' of that. On my tours I had no few who didn't bring things, like spare clothing for bad weather, and got caught out. The 'buzz' I got was that they could not cope with the thought they would not be riding as fast as they are capable of, particularly when climbing and being caught by people who would not normally. There are a number of reasons why many don't go on unassisted moving-on tours nowadays but I'm sure one of them is because the thought of carrying 'so much' is daunting. That leads to choosing a
frame. While up to a point you can weigh it – no pun intended - with the type of touring you anticipate doing and how often, lightness should not be the prime consideration. You need a robust frame that can withstand a lot. I am pleased with my Thorn Audax steel frame. As one person said, “They're not a fast frame but can take anything you throw at them.” Regarding what to take on tour, I am a 'credit card tourer.' Generally however, I think my guidance for hotel / b&b tours applies to breakfast provided hostel tours. While I am somewhat out of touch about hostels, I believe sleeping bags are now provided as a matter of course. but as far as I know you still need to carry a towel and soap. I can't advise about cycle-camping as I have never done it. That said, my Thorn Audax has bosses on the front forks for panniers so perhaps is appropriate for cycle camping but that is as far as I can go. What you take partly depends on how long you are going for. I will base advice around a 'standard' two-week holiday. I find a pair of 'medium' size panniers, with the addition of a seat pillar bag for tools, adequate. When I chose my current Altura panniers I thought they looked a bit small at first but with zip pockets at the top and side pockets they are fine. A piece of advice I offer is to avoid panniers with perforated side pockets. From experience, they easily tear, especially on airport runners. Handlebar bags are quite popular but I could never get on with them. Maybe that was me but with a seat pillar bag for tools I'm okay without one. The map viewer on handlebar bags is useful – if not a total Garmin person - but I take a map holder. Valuables I keep with me if away from the bike, although I take the point a handlebar
bag can make some things easier to carry away from the bike. Clothing is the major weight issue. With regard to riding clothes, I take one pair of longs and if going to a warm climate I 'risk' taking just one long-sleeve top, otherwise two and two of shorts, short-sleeve tops, under-vests, and socks, i.e. wearing one of each with one spare (in warm climates you may not be wearing an under-vest but carrying two is not heavy). Previously I carried Travel Wash, nowadays Life Venture. Provided I wash the clothes I have worn quickly after reaching the digs they are dry two days later, while the others worn the next day are drying . Socks take a while to dry so I wear one pair for one week and the other pair the second week. Provided I wash my feet every day it is fine! Life Venture travel soap, which I get from Millets, is good as it is dual purpose, i.e. can be used for washing clothes and hands after a puncture or mechanical. For 'off the bike (civvy)' clothes, I expect most know this anyway, but jeans and trainers are heavy and take up a lot of room. Also, in warm weather jeans are not comfortable. Like almost, probably, everyone, I take light summer trousers and a pair of light casual shoes. Even if you have bad weather, you are only wearing 'civvy' trousers for sitting around the digs, 'off the bike' sight-seeing' and of course sitting in the pubs/bars! For many years I only carried one pair of trousers until I suffered a mishap. During a tour of Spain the flies broke! In saying I managed to hide it, I mean the fact the flies were broken! When buying trousers for cycling trips I now go for button flies! I also now take two pairs – one pair can get grubby anyway and mishaps can happen like the time I had to wash chain grease off - but an extra pair of lightweight trousers is okay. Some bring non-cycling shorts in addition to trousers. To me they are an unnecessary thing to carry as lightweight trousers are comfortable enough.
Oct - Dec 2017
As ladies wear trousers nowadays I think the same applies, although they might prefer skirts/dresses to trousers – perhaps the men might too by which I mean worn by the ladies not themselves! I take two of shirts/t-shirts, socks and … err… underpants and change everything halfway through. As only wearing 'civy'' clothes mostly for a relatively short time each day it's fine. The Life Venture and a spare to change into are available if something unexpectedly gets grubby. I carry a light pullover as part of bad weather cycling gear, which 'doubles up' for 'civvy'' use if needed. It is the precautionary bad weather gear where some might feel I go over the top. I well know the sinking feeling as the weight of the pannier increases as you pack gear you probably won’t need. Nevertheless, regardless of where I am going and at what time of year I take everything: arm warmers, overshoes, light pullover, hat, gloves, old newspaper, waterproof (over-trousers can be optional). A sudden change in the weather can easily catch you out, particularly in mountainous areas. On my tour of Provence and the southern French Alps – which included Colin Kindred – we had good weather most of the time but it deteriorated for a couple of days. We had a foggy ride up the Col de la Bonette and it started raining. At the top I put on everything I listed above! It was only a short distance down the descent to our digs and about halfway there was a café. We dived in and stayed there for about four hours losing count of how many hot chocolates we had! In my view one of the great things about cycle touring is that even bad weather can be fun. That occasion is one of my fondest cycling memories being a laugh to look back on. It would not have been without the gear!!! For tools, I carry a comprehensive kit on all rides. The only things I carry on tour I don't otherwise, are freewheel remover and cable cutters and a pedal spanner if taking
Oct - Dec 2017
the bike on an aeroplane. I will leave it at that, except to say it amazes me how many don't carry a chain link extractor nowadays â€“ would a drive belt mean one less thing to carry? At the other extreme, I don't carry a hacksaw as one of my tour participants did. The person sharing his room advised he used it to cut off half his toothbrush handle to save weight!!!
Scotland I lost my flannel so bought one from Boots in Oban. As it is particularly light I keep it purely for cycling trips.
With regard spares it has to be accepted you can't cover every possibility. It is important to give the bike a 'health check' â€“ even though many things become apparent while riding - not too long before the tour but time enough for any 'surgery' needed. Not being a great mechanic I get the shop to do it. Particular things to keep an eye on are thickness of wheel rims and state of hubs, chainrings, freewheel, front and rear mechs and tyres. If taking the bike on a plane check the bike is easy to dismantle, particularly removing the pedals and moving the handlebars and especially if the dismantling will be at the airport. There is nothing worse than struggling to dismantle the bike with a 'big audience!'
My 'trick' now is to change the blade after the last shave before leaving, if it has not been changed recently anyway. Some might question whether it matters if the blade is blunt just for a few days. In my case, with a dark complexion any real sign of growth looks dirty. Obviously this advice is for those who wet-shave. However, I wonder if those who use electric shavers could wet shave just for a tour. It would surely be a bit less weight and room taken up in a pannier. Also, eliminating the possibility of an electric shaver going faulty, which I guess could happen.
The spares I carry are a number of correct length and gauge spokes, brake and gear cables (inner and outer), chain ring bolts,screws and nuts for mudguards & pannier carrier, brake blocks (unless replaced shortly before leaving) and rim tape (I carry 3 spare innertubes but regard them as part of the toolkit). I don't carry a spare tyre. I know it is something that can happen but provided tyres are checked before leaving and changed if necessary there should be no more possibility of it on tour than on any rides. If your mudguards have bridges, I suggest carrying a spare. Now toiletries, which can be different for ladies than men! I refrain from commenting on ladies specific items! Just to say ladies at least have the advantage of not having to carry shaving gear! There are some who don't bother to carry a flannel and men who don't carry shaving cream as soap is just as good . I understand it, two less things to carry, but I prefer to take them. Ironically, while touring
So my toilet kit is flannel, razor, tube of shaving cream, toothbrush, toothpaste. I used to carry a spare blade. However the razor tended to fall apart in the toilet bag causing confusion over which was which.
I think that is about it. I wont get into taking mobile phones, apps, garmins etc. as that is about personal preferences. I tend to not carry things like penknife, tin opener and plastic cutlery. The way I tour I don't feel I need them, although I got caught out one year when I had to buy a set of plastic spoons to eat a yoghurt! Little things like that are okay to learn from experience as we are not all the same.
I don't bother carrying a pen for postcards. I borrow one at the digs. There is one advantage being a 'baldy' on tour in that you don't have to carry a comb! Things like camera – if not on a mobile device - and a paperback (I take one when touring alone) – perhaps Kindle nowadays - and a notebook to keep a daily record of events are also personal choices In conclusion, I hope this is helpful to some. There might seem to be a lot of stating the obvious. However, I had no few on my tours who ignored my advice, got caught out and admitted they initially thought it was just a tour leader overworrying about covering himself. Just to say that for my tours in Scotland, which were four weeks plus, I took an extra spare set of cycling clothes an extra shirt/tshirt, an extra two pairs of underpants and extra socks (cycling and.'civy' ) but still just two pairs of trousers.
More Touring Stories
Oct - Dec 2017
This involved more washing so also some extra Life Venture and a few more tubes of shaving cream, That said, some of the shaving cream I bought as I went along. Not difficult to find chemist shops and I would have tolerated using soap if necessary. Oh yes, I take lights on tour as you never know when you might need them. However, the days of the wretched Ever Ready – nicknamed “Never Ready” by some – lights are thankfully past. Lights nowadays are far more reliable so I check them before leaving and don't bother with spares. A second “oh yes:” take a lock, even though you might sometimes upset people. Like the chap on the Isle of Tiree who said to me, “Hey mate, that's a waste of time. Nobody's going to pinch a bike on Tiree.” I know the island communities take pride in the lack of crime but it's not the locals you have to worry about.
We are the Cyclists TOURING club so
Has anybody had experience of riding a
do you agree that we should have more
bike with a Gates Carbon Belt? What are
touring stories, advice and
these things like. Harley Davidson motor
recommendations? Why not tell us your
bikes have started using them. Is that a
thoughts & memories of touring?
reference for cycling or not?
Oct - Dec 2017
Suffolk & Norfolk Tour
A SUFFOLK & NORFOLK TOUR WITH BIKES, TENT & BUS PASSES
erosion of people climbing up the steep banks. The remains of Thetford Priory are well preserved and the river frontage has pleasant cycle paths through woodland but the town itself seems rather run down.
The next stop was at an excellent site on the It’s always nice to set off on a tour by outskirts of Swaffham with bike from home carrying all you need such a strong wi-fi signal that we could receive it in to be self sufficient until your return. our tent – how things have changed! With our camping trailer & Here our bikes stayed on site for 2 panniers packed for all days and our bus passes were put to eventualities, including a good use on the regular service portable solar panel to linking Norwich and Kings Lynn, recharge electrical stuff, we decided to head broadly towards the which then continues to Wisbech and north Norfolk coast and ‘play it by ear’ Peterborough. Back on the bikes we cycled towards the coast for a couple for 3 weeks in early July. No campsites were booked in advance – of nights at Burnham Deepdale, our well you never know if you’re going to least favourite, and most expensive encounter any difficulties or what the site, even after deducting the 10% weather’s going to be like do you? In ‘green traveller’ discount available to anyone arriving by bike or on foot. the event, we were blessed with mostly hot dry sunny weather and on Luckily, two other cycle campers told the odd occasions that it rained it did us about a lovely quiet site at Cley so at night. Our criteria for choosing which we subsequently used as a base for 5 nights. sites en route was that they should be reasonably small, have good Conveniently, it was only a 25 minute clean but basic facilities and, if at all possible be within walking distance of walk to the nearest bus stop for accessing the superb Coasthopper a village with a shop and a reasonably regular bus service. Time service for trips into Cromer and Wells. off the bikes was as important to us as time spent cycling from place to Other days were filled with local visits place or to explore places of interest on foot or by bike firstly to Binham within a few miles of any base. Priory, founded by William the Conqueror’s nephew, where we were Our first 2 nights were spent at the joined by Anne, a CTC member from campsite next to Banham Zoo, Woodbridge on the afternoon guided allowing us to cycle into Thetford unencumbered by luggage to explore tour. Next, the Cley 17 festival of modern art with a great variety of the birthplace of Thomas Paine. For works by over 60 artists displayed in some reason his statue shows him the church, on the beach and at other holding his most famous work, the Rights of Man on which the American locations was well worth a visit. constitution was possibly based, Our favourite place was the Natural upside down! The impressive castle Surroundings discovery centre about mound can be ascended by a long 3 miles from Cley recommended by a steel stairway, installed to reduce
fellow camper, a keen amateur video maker responsible for an excellent short video about the centre https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bf 8QLr8V9Q4. This 5 acre reserve (with excellent café!) includes wet meadows and wet woodland beside the River Glaven – an internationally important ‘chalk river’, as well as extensive gardens designed to attract a multitude of wildlife by the creation of mini-habitats – meadows, woodland gardens, butterfly and bee gardens, planted with wild flowers from Britain and further afield. Nearby, at Glandford, is a church rebuilt in the 19th century which has a working carillon of 12 bells playing a different hymn tune every 3 hours. Next to it is an amazing Shell Museum where we were thrilled to find a large tapestry by John Craske on display. Craske was a Norfolk fisherman struck by an unexplained illness, possibly untreated diabetes or ME, which frequently left him bedridden for months at a time. He took up painting, and later needlework which he completed using a specially constructed frame whilst lying in bed. His work was largely unrecognised until around 1930 and we knew nothing about him until attending a talk by author Julia Blackburn at Felixstowe Book Festival the day before leaving home. Julia’s lovingly researched book ‘Threads’ charts the life and work of John Craske so it was a real treat to see not only one of his paintings but also the amazing 16ft long by 14 inch wide tapestry depicting a ‘Panorama of the Norfolk Coast’ the only example of his needlework on display in this country.
Oct - Dec 2017
enjoyed locally made crab cakes, pork pies, quiches, fresh and smoked fish with samphire, unpasteurised Baron Bigod brie, venison steaks and a bottle of excellent Winbirri red wine produced by the world award winning winery at Surlingham, just outside Norwich.
Reluctantly, we started the journey back towards Suffolk with a couple of nights at Hevingham Lakes site, a few miles south of Aylsham. A very quiet, peaceful place but with the disadvantage of a 45 minute walk to catch a bus into Aylsham, a delightful and flourishing market town. We travelled on to Sheringham for an afternoon by the sea, then returned Food is always of particular interest via the fish and chip shop at Aylsham on holiday and, although we usually for supper. Next day we moved on to cook for ourselves on a small the Outney Meadows site at Bungay, camping stove, an abundance of excellent local ingredients made this a a mere 15 minutes walk to the shops simple task. Amongst other things we and bus stop for a day in Great
Yarmouth. The wonderful Fisher theatre has an excellent programme of events allowing us to join the locals one evening for a good film. Our last night at Bungay was marked by a spectacular storm with almost continuous thunder and lightning and torrential rain but this fortunately occurred between 3 and 5 a.m. when we were snug and dry inside our tent. By 6.30 a.m. the sun was out, and by 9.30 the tent was dry and packed for our onward journey. By basing ourselves at Leiston for the last 2 nights, I was able to attend the July meeting of the ‘Suffolk Local Access Forum’ which included a site visit to Aldhurst Farm with representatives of EDF, which has spent the last 2 years transforming a large area of former agricultural land into a mix of wetland and sandling to
Oct - Dec 2017
replace habitats that will be lost if Sizewell C goes ahead. For those of you that like facts and figures the total distance cycled was about 255 miles and furthest point reached was Wisbech (by bus from Swaffham). We stayed at 7 different campsites with rates varying from £11.50 per night to £21.60 and at a total cost a of £277. When fully loaded we find that anything over 45 miles can be really hard work, especially if cycling against the wind when our average speed can be as low as 7 mph. Maximum distance cycled on ‘moving on’ days was 38 miles but some moves were less than 30.
Margaret & Philip Hancock
Oct - Dec 2017
Recommended Rides I have done two day rides that I would thoroughly recommend. Firstly I took part in the Prudential Ride London 46 mile. The day was beautiful, the organisation second to none, the atmosphere tremendous. To ride along a totally traffic free Embankment, over the traffic free Thames bridges and then up The Mall was all I hoped it to be. One can try and enter the event by ballot as I did or via a charity. All the details are on the Ride London website. The other day out that I would like to recommend was along The River Stort with Sally Shave. Sally has now moved to Norwich but we met up in Bishops Stortford and cycled along The Stort to where it joins the River Lee in Hoddesdon. We had previously cycled The Lee from Hertford to where it joins The Thames and so The Stort had to be done. We had both spent a number of our formative years in the area of
The Lee and Stort so we enthralled each other of tales of derring-do as we pedaled along. In some places the towpath was less than poor but even I who hate off road stuff kept smiling. I even enjoyed helping a boat through a lock - see the photo below. The Stort flows past watermills, maltings and country houses. It is a real haven for nature with wildflowers along its banks and many species of wetland birds. The river meanders through the Herfordshire countryside, now just an area for relaxation so different to when it was used by barges full of grain. Judith Hedges
Oct - Dec 2017
President’s Picnic “If you go down to the words today…….”
The sun shone, and about 30 or more cyclists enjoyed a splendid afternoon
The President’s Picnic- 30 July 2017
relaxing and enjoying the camaraderie. It was a big wrench having to leave the
Instead of the annual President’s Picnic, in
tranquillity of the garden to pedal the 7
true Maurie style, he decided to ring the
miles back home.
changes. He and Alison kindly hosted a wonderful President’s Tea Ride.
See the photo inside the front cover.
At Ashfield Village Hall Maurie radioed ahead to give likely numbers. The weather
Very many thanks to Maurie and Alison for
was glorious. By the time we arrived at
hosting such a wonderful event.
Woodbridge, we were more than ready for a cuppa.
As we snaked our way through Maurie’s carport (rammed with bikes) we did wonder
how all 3 rides would fit in to the garden.
A child backed tandem, condition is immaterial as I can repair it. Size of bike to suit a tall adult 6' 2" and a small child 6 or 7 yrs old.
Well! What a fantastic sight greeted us round the corner. Maurie had laid out plenty of tables and chairs in the orchard. We were ushered through to the annex at the end of the garden, where there was coffee, tea, and a generous buffet of delicious cakes - more than rivalling Ashfield.
Kevin Ablitt email@example.com Tel 07887788972
Oct - Dec 2017
Wolsey Road Club As I write this, it’s August and the racing season is full on, with the Time Trialists riding all distances from 10 miles to 12 hours with personal bests and even club records. Steve Cave is in super form and dominating the short distance races, including a Fastest of the Year time of 55 minutes 44 seconds for 25 miles, which broke President Mick Pepper’s Veteran record set 41 years ago! Bob Quarton is recording excellent middle distance times, having now retired aged 60 year. Karen Eaton continues her lonely furrow as our only female racer this year with some excellent times. Speaking of Karen, reminds me that she is settling in fine as assistant to Newsletter Editor Mick, after Maureen bowed out at the start of the New Year. I see the latest edition is numbered 299, so another landmark is looming for this vital publication which keeps club members informed of club activities, although now read more on-line than in paper form. This year’s General Date Fixing Meeting and the A.G.M will see changes in officials. Colin Kindred is stepping down as organiser of the club’s commitment to the Ipswich & District Cycling Association evening T.T races after more years than anyone can discover, even Colin. Another post to change hands will be General Secretary, which Maureen
Nichols has held for 18 years. Let’s hope some new blood will step forward to replace these worthy servants of the Wolsey R.C. Saturday morning club rides are proving popular with a monthly café stop making the routes more interesting and sociable. Looking forward to reporting some excellent times in the next edition and hope to see you in the lanes somewhere. Ken Nichols
Presentation Lunch CTC Suffolk and Wolsey Road Club Prize Presentation Lunch. 28th January 2018 Fynn Valley Golf Club. Bookings to Trevor Roberts firstname.lastname@example.org 07892 715949 or Maureen Nichols email@example.com 01473 810132 Price & menu to be confirmed. Come and join your riding companions for an enjoyable lunch, a nice informal social occasion to applaud the club trophy winners for the year.
Oct - Dec 2017
Sex & Cycling: the Similarities Well, there’s a lot of upping and downing for a start, and frequently one gets out of breath! Of course there’s the common language of being ‘b***ed out’ when doing too much! But what else? Mmm….. You can do it at any age, but generally more accomplished after pubity. You can do it together or on your own – in mixed company or same. I’m not sure about the ‘more the better’. Partners are preferable, but, as with Clubrides in recent times, large groups can cause traffic congestion!
improve performance – and recovery time!.. There may be some similarities there, but I for one would never own up to having to go into training for sex, and I would not recommend applying any of those ‘Sportif’ lotions to your private parts ! When exercising with new company…how to put it… that one is not wholly familiar or confident with… it’s best to have a little helmet protection! You can be as young or as old as you like and still get a great deal of pleasure from the experience, and a great deal of respect from one’s associates if you can brag…“ I do it every day and can keep it up for hours !!”
If you have a recumbent – you can do both lying down — although probably not at the same time. If you have the right equipment you can do both indoors or out. When it’s wet and the mind wanders on to exercise…magazines have their On the less flippant side…. Both of place! course should be spiritual as well as physical experiences, - a Early mornings, or afternoons seem the best times to play. In the combination of the Eros and the Agape. When cycling with summer, the less clothes one wears the better, but you could get company, one needs to respect and arrested if too demonstrable out of pay heed to ones partner’s needs and encourage one another along doors! Testosterone in the male the ‘way’. Regular adventures has a large part to play in the together become little journeys of performance at both. discovery about yourselves and the places visited. One gets to know The accomplished slimmed down ‘Racing Snake’s of the Sportif’s can one’s partner in a kind of intimacy demonstrate how a good massage that nurtures and often move beyond just friendship. and rubbing-in of lotions can Both Cycling and Sex are meetings of minds desiring for a common journey, where the adventure of the travel, the little pleasures and discoveries along the way, are every bit of part of the joy as the arrival….Enjoy! Paul Fenton
Oct - Dec 2017
My Favourite Ride When Richard asked for more articles for winged wheel, I thought, I often comment to others while riding “this is one of my favourite little lanes”. When I have read previous articles, they have been about a ride, rather than isolated bits, so till now I have not attempted to write such an article. As you might guess there follows a list of short sections of lane which I like whenever possible to include in rides that I lead, or that I use when making my way out to meet a club run or making my way home to Woodbridge. The first section I’d like to share is the lane between Great Bealings Boot Street and Grundisburgh. The lane twists and turns, rises and falls and affords a pleasant ride together with a view of the rear of Grundisburgh Hall. Not too many miles away is “Hillbrow farm lane” between Larks hill Tuddenham and the Barley Mow at Witnesham. A narrow lane that passes the farm it takes its name from, and the former residence of Giles (of cartoon fame). This lane gives pleasant views over the Fynn valley only spoiled by the pylons. During my time doing the birthday rides I discovered a nice lane between Bruisyard and Rendham. This lane follows the river Alde on the north side and meanders giving views of standing willows, water meadows and wildlife, and as I discovered recently, the bonus of Juniper Barn tea room at the end. The lane between Creetingham and Debenham also featured in many of the “Birthday rides” the lane follows the River Deben and is always a pleasure to ride in either direction.
One of my regular rides when I am not with the club takes me out through Martlesham to Waldringfield and through Hemley, Newbourne, Kirton to Trimley for coffee at “Gosling farm shop” at Trimley. On the way I always enjoy the “By Road” to Waldringfield. This is a quiet lane that undulates and gives a view over the Deben. On leaving Waldringfield the road toward Hemley is again quiet and meanders its way to Newbourne. Continuing through Newbourne, presents the challenge of a steep climb after crossing Mill river, which incidentally run from sources on Purdis golf course and Foxhall stadium. Finally riding home takes me through levington and Nacton villages with view of the Orwell river valley and Orwell Park. As many Thursday riders know my favourite route home from the northWest is over Debach airfield and this includes a short lane between Debach Moat barn and Hasketon Highfield house. This lane is a pleasure any time of the year. Trees form a tunnel to ride through so you can imagine the new spring growth, dappled sunlight in summer, the autumn colour and the decoration of winter haw frosts. It gives a welcome shelter from wind and rain or the heat of a summer’s day. Why not share your favourites? Happy Cycling – Maurie.
Oct - Dec 2017
Over the Hedge Mrs. Hedgewatcher and I are planning to visit Yellowstone National Park this summer as part of a trip in which we hope to experience a total solar eclipse on August 21st. Although we experienced the total eclipse in Cornwall in 1999, the sun itself was hidden by cloud. It was still fantastic to watch the shadow of the Moon race towards us, feel the temperature drop, the breeze rise from nowhere and see the responses of the wildlife – some flowers closing and the waterfowl taking off to escape the darkness. Several people have pointed out that an eclipse may be the trigger for Yellowstone to “Go off”. Yellowstone National Park lies in a caldera – a crater formed by three enormous volcanic eruptions over the last two million years. Although the volcano is not active now, the park is above a mantle hotspot. A plume of hot magma is rising through the Earth’s crust and its effects can be seen by the many geothermal vents like the famous “Old Faithful Geyser”. The magma chamber below is estimated to be about 50 miles by 20 miles wide. This gives it the potential to become a supervolcano and were it to erupt, the consequences could be catastrophic. The last catastrophic eruption to affect the world and, curiously, to trigger our pastime was Mount Tambora on 10th April, 1815. It is hard for us to comprehend the scale of the consequences that followed the eruption but it continued for around three months and an estimated 100,000 people lost their lives as a result. Mount Tambora was in the Dutch East Indies or present day Indonesia on a small island. The immediate effects included an explosion heard 1600 miles away, ash falling as far as 800 miles away, lava flows of around 12 miles and two days complete darkness on the island. A tsunami about
4m high devastated the islands of Indonesia. Huge volumes of ash and gas were extruded 27 miles into the stratosphere. This was spread around the globe by winds causing climate change. In the short term, the cloud cooled the Earth and 1816 became known as the “Year with no summer”. Thereafter, the gases increased global warming. The combination of these two effects was global famine. In Canada, 12 inches of snow fell in Quebec in June 1816. In Ireland, potato crops failed and famine began, leading to mass emigration. Cholera and typhus epidemics raged in India. Heavy rain in the UK worsened the poor harvest. Ironically, the amazing coloured skies at sunset that year inspired a young JMW Turner in creating his own distinctive style of painting. Famine also spread across Europe. Oat harvests failed. As oat prices rose, farmers could afford less food for horses and in Germany, many horses were shot as a result. This inspired the eccentric Baron Karl von Drais de Sauerbron to create a mechanical horse: he could not imagine Germany without horsepower. His machine was revolutionary, placing two wheels in line on a wooden frame. It had a simple steering mechanism and was propelled by the rider sitting astride the frame and scooting along with their feet. Thus, the bicycle was invented in 1817 and was known as the “Draisine”.
Oct - Dec 2017
Last Word I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I did the story of Max &
In the next issue we will have the remainder of the Scott’s ride to Scotland
Michael Scott on their 1965 tour
and back, as well as another good ride
and also the list of things to take
story, this time from Bob Whitehouse. Will
including flashbulbs for a camera & the camera itself. How many things have been
one of your stories feature as well?! Please, keep the stories coming. It has
replaced by the mobile “phone” with all the
been enjoyable being “editor” and not
possible apps? I am both jealous of Anna
scribe for this issue - and I imagine that
Brennan’s Irish End to End and perhaps
pleases you as well as me!
relieved that I wasn’t on that long ride!
CYCLING SNIPPETS Not Snippets this time because of work pressures, but a poem from our poetry-minded secretary Judith, as there wasn’t space to put this in on “her” page.
Whatever the season cycling along our Suffolk lanes is a treat. Here is one of Cicely M Barker's poems celebrating autumn time.
It is one of the joys of riding with the CTC that there is such a wonderful range of interests and knowledge: we see some of it in Judith’s poems, more in the series of “What I do when not riding a bike”, and the “Hedge Watcher” series.
Hawthorn These thorny branches bore the May So many months ago, That when the scattered petals lay Like drifts of fallen snow, "This is the story's end," you said; But O, not half was told! For see, my haws are here instead, And hungry birdies shall be fed On these when days are cold.
If you have something to share, please don’t feel shy, send in your contributions!
Oct - Dec 2017
Margaret & Philip Hancock went cycle touring and camping in Suffolk & Norfolk. The photos show Philip’s bike & trailer and their tent including solar panels. Their story is on
Right: A poster seen by Keith Halton in the 'bike shop' at Beamish museum. Below. Keith asks: “What do you call this? I suppose it's a very primitive quad bike! It's pedal powered / motor assisted (or perhaps the other way round!), four wheeled with a passenger seat on the front, so it's almost got a bit of recumbent in it, too! It ran well.”
Blaxhall Suffolk Byways Audax
Saturday, 30th September 2017 at 9 a.m. Start at Blaxhall Village Hall. Finish there by 15:40. Organised by Suffolk CTC. Entry fee £6.50 (£7.00 using Paypal).
Book by 28th September at www.AUKweb.net Controls at Dunwich (Beach café), Framlingham and Westerfield, plus 2 information controls. Enjoy a 117km ride through the Sanderlings to the Suffolk Coast and historic beach at the vanished city of Dunwich before heading inland through rural countryside and back via Woodbridge. The route comprises several sections of charming minor roads, linked together with some busier roads. Don’t forget your hi-viz!
More info on: www.greenlivingcentre.org.uk/ctc/
Be QUICK - This Event Takes Place Very SOON!
CTC Suffolk Winged Wheel Oct-Nov-Dec 2017