The Next Ride Sunday 26th September

9 September 2021

Peace Statue to East Worthing via Shoreham Fort Pollinator Cafe

Postponed from 12th September

Meet at the Peace Statue at 10.30 am.

We ride westwards along the seafront, turning left onto Basin Road South, cross the harbour at the locks and follow the usual route from Southwick to Shoreham. We then cross the river via the new bridge to Shoreham Beach, and turn back eastwards to the fort and the Pollinator Café.

After visiting the Pollinator Café, we will ride westwards through Shoreham Beach, skirt the airport and cross the A27 into Coombes Road. This road takes us up towards Steyning and passes two churches – at Coombes and Botolphs. I’d recommend visiting at least Botolphs church, if not Coombes as well – the last time I was there we noticed a bird’s nest in the bolt hole! I wonder if it’s still there.

We climb Bostal Road (most of us will have to walk this bit) and go round the rim of the striking geological feature that is Steyning Bowl. After admiring the views from the top of the Downs, we whizz down Titch Hill to a third church – St Mary’s at Sompting, famous for its “Rhenish Helm” tower. It may not actually be open but at least we can have a look.

From Sompting it’s a short ride to East Worthing station for the train back (trains are running). Anyone wishing to avoid trains can ride back along the seafront.

Distances Peace Statue to Pollinator 6 Miles from the Pollinator to East Worthing is 14 miles.

Leaders Nick and Jim


The Last Ride Portslade – August 8, 2021

14 August 2021

Those smart enough to look at the weather forecast for Sunday had already made their apologies and didn’t turn up for Dave’s Portslade ride. When I arrived at Portslade station, Dave said he had considered cancelling when he saw the predicted wind and rain weather conditions for the day.

It had indeed started to rain, but we both agreed that it would be good to attempt some sort of cycle ride. We took a route towards Devil’s Dyke, which was familiar to me from the recent BHT bike ride.

When the torrential rain persisted, and the puddles at the side of the road we were cycling on turned into mini floods, we decided to abandon the ride. It was outside Dyke Road’s Hilltop Cafe where we headed back to Brighton, after a 10-mile ride in distinctly unappealing weather.

August 8, 2021: Portslade ride



Although it’s likely climate change will produce similar extreme weather in the future, it would be good to have another attempt at Dave’s Portslade ride in drier conditions.

Nick


The Next Ride Sunday 8th August

24 July 2021

Dave Churchill’s Portslade ride

This will start at Portslade station at 10.30 and head up past Sainsbury’s in the Benfield valley,
then up to north Hangleton to the Dyke Railway Path past Egbert the emu, (could be Edwina!)
then down through the Dyke on a bridleway.
There are options at this stage:
Repeat the famous Chattri Ride by joining Ride 1 route at the Wild Flour Café at Saddlescombe or
Poynings Crossroads thence to Pyecombe etc.
Do the Ride 1 route in reverse to Preston Park
Do Ride 1 route in reverse to Sweethill and then up Mill Road on off road cycle path to Dyke Road
and drop down to various locations.
These options can be decided on the day so route will vary but the longest route, being past the
Chattri, will be no more than about 15 miles


The Last Ride Sunday the 18th July Chattri Circular

24 July 2021

Ride report: Chattri circular, July 18th, 2021 by Nick & Sikka

The day before the government launched its idiotic July 19th Covid ‘freedom day’ celebration, five of us (Angela C, Doris, Sikka, Dave & Nick) gathered in Preston Park for Dave’s off-road Chattri circular ride across the South Downs.
The twelve-mile cycle ride didn’t seem too much of an ordeal on paper, but the warmest day of the year did make it more of a challenge than I had envisaged.

Sikka describes the alternative route, devised with Angela & Doris, which they planned to take:

‘Thanks to Dave for leading this ride yesterday. And to Nick for great photos. I believe we all enjoyed a wonderful day. Nick and Dave on an outdoor adventure trail and Doris, Angela and myself on a leisurely on-road reduced length cycle ending with coffee in Hove Park cafe.’

July 18, 2021: Chattri Circular bike ride

The plan was for Dave & myself to meet the rest of the group at the Wildflower Cafe, when we had cycled over the Downs. My newly refurbished bike (thanks G-Whizz Cycles!) coped admirably with most of the uphill paths, although there was one steep stretch which was too overgrown for cycling.

July 18, 2021: Chattri Circular bike ride

The five of us did eventually meet outside Wildflower Cafe. We were surprised to see the cafe had closed for a few days for a summer break. We found time to use the drinking water tap & heard about Angela’s conversion to electric bikes.

July 18, 2021: Chattri Circular bike ride

Dave & myself cycled to Pycombe Churchyard for an afternoon picnic. The Chattri memorial was only a few minutes away, then it was downhill all the way (hurrah!) to Brighton.

Thanks to Dave for an exhilarating day out in the July heat. Covid third wave permitting, it would be good to do something similar soon.


The Guardian view on socialism and cycling: fellow travellers

21 June 2021
The Guardian view on socialism and cycling: fellow travellers | Editorial

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/jun/16/the-guardian-view-on-socialism-and-cycling-fellow-travellers


The Last Ride Sunday the 23rd May Egrets Way Circular

30 May 2021

Following the recent easing of many Covid pandemic restrictions, it felt slightly strange to be joining the first Clarion ride of 2021. Jim had adapted Sikka & Tessa’s Egrets Way circular route with a similar cycling experience, which excluded pub stops & train travel.
The Clarionistas who gathered at Brighton’s Palace Pier for the circular ride along the Undercliff & Egrets Way were Angela D, Jim, Sally, Sikka, Doris, Graham, Chris, Dave & Nick.
Jim suggested that the nine cyclists could be represented by the report writer in a Lord of the Rings narrative style. As I’ve not read the book, or seen the films, I didn’t really know what Jim was talking about. There will be no further Lord of the Rings references in this ride report, although I hope to find time to mention Ben & Jerry’s new peace pop ice cream.
It was overcast for most of the day. Apart from a couple of brief showers, none of the forecast stormy weather materialised. This was a relief to all of us.

May 23, 2021: Palace Pier circular via Peacehaven, Southease, Telscombe & Saltdean


We set off along Madeira Drive, next to the impressive, but unfinished, new cycle lane. It would be good to return to Brighton’s latest Covid cycle lane when it’s finished.
There was a vague plan to stop for a coffee in Rottingdean. It was unfortunate that the seafront cafe was only offering a takeaway service, so we decided to continue with the ride. It was a good opportunity to stop & marvel at the majestic butterfly mural on Rottingdean’s public loo though.

May 23, 2021: Palace Pier circular via Peacehaven, Southease, Telscombe & Saltdean


Our first coffee stop of the day was at Yemeni Coffee in Peacehaven. All of us were impressed with the nine cups of coffee served. They offered us a completed loyalty card for our next visit, which was a very nice gesture. Although grateful, I don’t think we accepted the Yemeni Coffee freebie. I look forward to returning soon though.
It was great to leave the decidedly noisy South Coast Road in Peacehaven and head along the much quieter Egrets Way towards the proposed picnic stop, outside the church in Southease. Some of us also had a look at the nearby Southease youth hostel to investigate lunchtime cafe options for future rides.

May 23, 2021: Palace Pier circular via Peacehaven, Southease, Telscombe & Saltdean


The Southease church picnic stop was so calming and relaxing, I found myself nodding off on the grass after lunch. I’d like to suggest optional siestas on future Clarion rides and may pack an inflatable pillow for a future post-lunch snooze.
Sikka & Doris left us after lunch. They had a cycle route via Newhaven they wanted to investigate. The remaining seven cycled back to the Undercliff via Telscombe.
The afternoon tea stop was the busy Molly’s cafe on the Undercliff route. Graham & Chris had cycled ahead & were quite possibly already in Brighton by the time we reached the cafe. I was tempted with Ben & Jerry’s new cookie dough peace pop ice cream, but decided against it when finding out it wasn’t vegan.
An excellent day of cycling with plenty of coffee, tea & ice cream opportunities. Thanks to Jim for adapting Sikka & Tessa’s original route for our first post-lockdown ride. Let’s hope Covid doesn’t stop us from meeting again soon.


In between lock-downs 2020

23 February 2021

Early August 2020.  Ten Clarionistas assembled at the pier: Angela D, Doris, Joyce, Jim, Richard S, Sally, Sean B, and Wendy T, together with our joint leaders, Sikka and Tessa. Because of restrictions on numbers travelling together we were divided into two groups. Sikka took Group 1 (Doris, Richard, Sean and Wendy) while Tessa led the rest.

Group 2 left first, but confusingly arrived last at the picnic spot on the Egrets Way. We had a change of Angelas at Saltdean, with Angela C replacing Angela D who disappeared in the general direction of Newhaven. Angela C departed after lunch, along with Group 1. After a suitable delay the reduced Group 2 followed their speedier comrades to Telscombe and Saltdean, with wonderful views of the Downs and surrounding countryside; then back along the Undercliff to Brighton after a welcome tea stop at Rottingdean.

Thanks to Sikka and Tessa for a wonderful ride, the first for so long; let’s not wait too long for the next one!  

Richard and Jim.


Back in the saddle soon

9 February 2021

No ride reports at the moment — but we’ll be back.

Image courtesy of Royal Pavilion & Museums, Brighton and Hove

February 2021

9 February 2021

Ian Bullock, Secretary of the Brighton and Hove Clarion, writes in his February Update: 

“I’ve been chairing monthly National Committee meetings via Zoom for what is starting to seem like ever.  It’s now planned to have a National Conference on Zoom too. 

We and other sections can of course propose anything we like but it seems likely that the main business of the conference will be to consider the rule changes concerning the structure and functioning of the national committee that the committee will be proposing.  There will, of course, be elections (or re-elections) of officers.  I’m hoping to be able to stand down as chair so if anyone would like to propose themselves for the post do let me know! i.bullock@ntlworld.com Tel: 01273 682133”

The Brighton and Hove Clarion hope to run an AGM via Zoom in the near future.  We are seeking a new Secretary and a new Treasurer.  If you are interested in either of these posts, Ian Bullock (details above) will be pleased to explain what’s involved.


Lockdown blues

9 February 2021

Regular rides currently suspended … but watch this space.