Six riders met at the Berwick railway station: Joyce, Ann, Mick, Ian, Leon and Julian. We were pleased to see Joyce back on her bike following her recent ill-health. Ian had organised a virtually undulation-free ten mile ride, routing north out of Berwick village then north-west along Langtye Lane, turning up through the village of Ripe and along Ripe Lane, past the Deanwood caravan park to the A22.
From there we veered south-west on the straight road past various farms to The Yew Tree Inn just north of Chalvington, this last stretch in the mild rain. We passed many manor-size houses, barns and ponds and a tree sheltering a group of Collared Doves. The Inn kindly allowed us to take our bikes inside the rear covered area. Then, ducking under the low beams and nearly treading on two sleeping dogs, orders were made for soup, fish cakes and various meaty dishes enjoyed at our reserved table. None of us could recall Nelson Mandela’s middle name (Rolihlahla) or all three types of windmill (Smock, Tower and Post) that Leon tested us with.
Ann and Mick then left, putting the two bikes in their car, Mick’s being brand new, replacing the recently stolen one. The return south to Berwick Station for the remaining four of us, was quick and uneventful, with no-one’s bike sliding from under them as has happened on Clarion rides. While waiting for Joyce and Leon’s train we had an after-lunch cuppa at The Berwick Inn– and for one of us a tasty Banoffee Pie !