The Next Ride: Jim’s Bath-Bristol weekend

22 August 2018

The Next Ride is Jim’s Bath-Bristol weekend.

Jim writes ‘if anyone else wants to come they’re welcome, but (a) they must find their own accommodation and (b) they must let me know ASAP because of numbers for the meals.’ If you want to come, email Jim by clicking here.

Advertisements

The Last Ride: Sunday 19 August 2018 – Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

22 August 2018

Hove Park Cafe was the location for a leisurely start to Graham’s ride. Sitting outside the cafe with cups of coffee in warmish and overcast weather was good preparation for the planned 20 miles of cycling.

The six participants for Sunday’s ride were: Graham, Angela, David, Sikka, Jim & Nick (no group photo available, sadly).  Very soon after leaving Hove Park, it became apparent that the blackberry season had begun. As well as sampling the blackberries, this was the first photo opportunity of the day.

August 19, 2018: Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

The gentle ride upwards on the Dyke railway trail was a great way to approach the South Downs, without exerting too much energy.

August 19, 2018: Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

It didn’t take too long to arrive at the first stop of the day, the WildFlour Cafe. My previous visits to this cafe have been when rambling over the South Downs. Sunday’s visit was probably the busiest I have ever seen the cafe, mainly due to the arrival of a large cycling group from Horsham, who were easily identifiable in their matching cycling tops.

August 19, 2018: Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

After leaving the WildFlour Cafe, it was a downhill ride through Poynings and Fulking. The assent along Clappers Lane was where the first major incident of the day took place.

David was aware that something was seriously wrong with his bike and had to stop for an emergency pit stop outside Clappers House. Closer inspection of David’s bike revealed that his derailleur gears had sheared from the bike frame and it wouldn’t be possible for him to continue with the ride.

August 19, 2018: Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

David phoned his wife, Terri, who agreed to set out in her car and rescue him. Jim pointed out that the OS map showed we were near to a place called Terry’s Cross and it was highly likely Terri might be cross too.

August 19, 2018: Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

Whilst attending to David’s bike, the automatic gates outside Clappers House opened, causing Angela and Sikka’s bikes to fall over. We suspect this was a malevolent anti-cyclist act from the residents of Clappers House, although we have no hard evidence to back up this theory. We had to reach our lunch stop at 1.45pm, so were forced to abandon David by the roadside (first time anyone has been abandoned on a Clarion ride?) and continue with the ride. And then there were five…

August 19, 2018: Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

I chose the gourmet chips for cyclists option (with parsley garnish)  in The Fox pub for lunch, but the nut roast and stuffed marrow options looked good too.

Veganism, the controversial Arundel bypass and body image objectification had already been discussed by the time Sikka’s prune (or was it plum?) and rice pudding dessert arrived, which she very kindly offered to share with some of us.

It was good to see the recently rescued David join us for lunch with Terri, but his bike was still not roadworthy and it was just the five of us who completed Graham’s route after lunch.

August 19, 2018: Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

It was a brisk and exhilarating cycle ride down Smugglers Lane, across the river Adur and our final stop at Shoreham station. The day’s ride was a route I had never cycled along before, so thanks to Graham for organising such an excellent day out.

NIck


News

22 August 2018

Dear All

I am going to be away early to mid September, so from now on please send anything you would like included in this newsletter, including the ride reports from Jim’s Bath-Bristol weekend and the 16 September ride to Roger at hinton@clara.net. Please copy it to me as well so I can get up to date with what’s happening when I get back.

I’ve still had no response to my query about whether people not taking part in Jim’s Bath-Bristol expedition want to have a local ride on 2 September – always assuming anyone wants to offer one. If there is a last minute offer I’ll send that out separately. Otherwise the September are taken care of (see Future Rides).

BHF London to Brighton ride
Its a long time till next summer so I’m repeating this message from Alan of London Clarion and their Bike Ride Team

In 2019 London Clarion have decided to enter a team for the British Heart Foundation London to Brighton ride. We already have a few signed up. I have just emailed Bob the details I wondered if you could let your other members know and tell them they would be more than welcome to join us. We will end up getting at least a dozen.

You can join their team via this link https://www.bhf.org.uk/how-you-can-help/events/bike-rides/london-to-brighton-bike-ride-2019/join-a-team-registration?t=London+Clarion+Cycle+Club.

Alternatively, if the link does not work, your can search for the team name on the sign up form. 
Best wishes
The London to Brighton Bike Ride Team.

That sounds like a great idea – at least for the fitter and more energetic! I haven’t managed it this century though I enjoyed doing it several times in the 1990s and can recommend the experience.

The Latest on Julian
I spoke to him briefly on the phone on Monday. He has been discharged from the stroke unit but is less mobile than at any time since the initial stroke last year.

Ian


Clarion History – 7 The Clarion and Labour Leader

22 August 2018

The foundation of the Clarion at the very end of 1891 coincided with – and indeed was part of – an upsurge in radicalism centred on working-class struggles – like the long-running strike at Manningham Mills in Bradford. By 1893, as we have seen it had led to the election in 1892 – for as it turned out only until 1895 – of Keir Hardie as an ‘Independent Labour’ MP and then of the formation of the Independent Labour Party (ILP).

At this time the only other explicitly socialist paper operating nationally was Justice – like the Clarion a weekly paper. Justice was edited by Harry Quelch, one of those remarkable late Victorian autodidacts who somehow overcame a more or less non-existent formal education to acquire all the skills necessary to edit a very literate paper. It is said that he taught himself both French and German in order to be able to put the rest of the international socialist movement right at international conferences. Justice was the paper of the Social-Democratic Federation (SDF) and had been hard at work spreading the word for the previous decade. Relations between Justice and the Clarion, and between the SDF’s leading figure Henry Hyndman and Blatchford, were pretty good. You may recall from the second of these little pieces on Clarion history Blatchford saying that ‘I got the idea of collective ownership from H.M. Hyndman’ But the two papers were very different publications.

While Justice was very much the organ if the SDF and largely concerned with its campaigns and internal debates, the Clarion sought – and obtained – a much wider role as a socialist paper independent of any party. Yet in 1893 it had often seemed to speak for the new ILP. That was to change the following year, 1894, when Keir Hardie started his own paper – Labour Leader. Although the Leader was as much an independent paper speaking for Hardie as the Clarion was for Blatchford from the start it was seen as the official organ of the ILP. Such is the power of parliamentary politics in this country. It would eventually – in the early 20th century – be taken over by the ILP when the party bought it from Hardie.

There is little if any doubt that Blatchford and Co resented Hardie’s new paper whose very existence they tended to see as a criticism of the adequacy of the Clarion. That said, they didn’t think much of Hardie’s paper which they regarded as pretty boring and pedestrian. Whatever the rights and wrongs of all this the papers became rival mouthpieces for those involved in disputes within the ILP. As we shall see in later episodes time after time the Clarion would take up the cause of ‘dissident’ groupings in the ILP. If Hardie and Labour Leader were the ILP ‘establishment’, the Clarion was, among many other things, the bolt-hole of its rebels.

Partly this was a matter of the very different personalities of Blatchford and Hardie. To Blatchford and many around the Clarion, Hardie was too earnest and self-important. To those on Hardie’s side Blatchford was too frivolous and lacked the patience to pursue a sustained campaign. I think there was a large element of truth on both sides.

But there was also a philosophical or ideological difference. As his latter career would demonstrate – more than any other single individual he was responsible for the creation of the Labour Party – Hardie was firmly focussed on practical politics – especially winning or at least trying to win elections, Blatchford was not against this but it had a much lower priority in his scheme of things. For him the key task was ‘making socialists’ – something he was supremely good at as I showed in the last episode about Merrie England. For Blatchford the practicalities of the election of MPs and local councillors could be more or less left to happen spontaneously. Spending too much time on such things was both diverting from the real task of converting public opinion and had the tendency to be mundanely boring .

Ian

Next Time – the very beginning of the Clarion Cycling Club


The Next Ride

6 August 2018

Sunday 19 August 2018

Hove Park to Shoreham via Small Dole

Starting at Hove Park Cafe this route makes a three quarter loop round the downs via Dyke Golf Club, Saddlescomb, Poynings, Fulking, Woods Mill, SmallDole, Upper Beeding, Bramber and back to Shoreham Station.

From the Dyke onwards the route is mostly wooded with shade, the first part of the route is uphill but spread over 4 miles so nothing difficult.

Leaving the cafe after an opportunity for an early morning coffee and loo stop we pass Hove Engineerium and ride gently upwards through Hangleton to the Dyke railway trail and beyond.

At the end of the trail we rejoin the road and from the peak at the golf club take the exhilarating run down to Saddlescome and the delightful Wild Flour Cafe for our tea stop.

From Saddlescombe its down hill again and we go left through Poynings and then Fulking and onto the lovely wooded Clappers Lane which takes us 2.5 miles north towards Woodmancote.

Before reaching the A281 we turn left and take a lane brings us out onto the A2037 at Woods Mill with the chance of a quick look around and a loo stop.

A mile further on is our lunch stop at The Fox in Small Dole.

Leaving the Fox we travel a mile further south on the A2037 before making a right turn at Upper Horton Farm and going off road down the aptly named Smugglers Lane round the north of Upper Beeding rejoining the road in Bramber at the crossing over the Adur.

It is then a short distance to Bramber Castle where we join the Downslink towards Shoreham. We leave the Downslink at The Amsterdam Pub and take a back road to Shoreham Station

Length: 20 Miles approx to Shoreham Station. Duration about 7 hours.

Starting Point: Hove Park Cafe , BN3 7BF at 10am. ( 0.5 ml north of Hove station in the bottom half of Hove Park between Goldstone Crescent and Park View Road and Just NW of tennis courts)

There are no parking restrictions around Hove Park on a Sunday

End Point: Shoreham Station (North Side). Return trains every 20-30 mins or ride back via the seafront.

Graham


The Last Ride. Jim ‘s Report

6 August 2018

Oldland Mill: 5 August 2018

Brighton station was in chaos; there were barriers everywhere, and Nick, Sikka and I only just made it onto the train ahead of a crowd of homegoing Pride revellers. At Hassocks we met our ride leader, Helen, who had travelled by road along with Angela C. Then Martin arrived, having cycled from Brighton.

August 5, 2018: Hassocks circular

L-R: Sikka, Helen, Jim, Angela, Martin, Nick

Helen’s ride leadership strategy oscillated between “leading from the front” and “leading from the back”. The latter was a bold innovation, but didn’t work too well when she wanted to vary the route, as everyone had shot past the turning by the time she caught up. Undaunted, she tried another variation in Streat Lane, searching for a bridleway that promised to take us past Elmgrove Farm, under the railway, and deliver us straight to the coffee stop at the Plough. However it was not to be found, and eventually Helen enlisted the help of the farmer, who told us that the bridleway was on the other side of a fence, which made things a bit tricky, so we went back to the road. Earlier, at Streat Church, we had discovered an extremely rare thing … a phone box with a phone in it, and no sign of any books!

August 5, 2018: Hassocks circular

At the Plough, Helen held a vote on whether we should ditch the Plumpton leg of the ride and go straight to the lunch stop. In a report of an earlier incarnation of this ride, in May 2015, I had described the route as “a bit like three triangles joined together, or a figure of 8 with an extra loop”, and even uploaded a sketch of such a figure, which has sadly now disappeared due to some unknown glitch in Flickr, so you will just have to imagine it. The vote was about whether to leave out the easternmost triangle, formed by the Plough, Plumpton Lane, Novington Lane and a concrete farm track through North Barnes Farm; in view of the heat, the time spent searching for the bridleway, and the approaching lunch booking, it was not surprising that the vote was a unanimous “yes”; this shortened the ride to 17 miles. As a reward for voting the right way, Helen allowed us to get a drink from the bar. Then off we sped to the Cock at Wivelsfield Green, where we found a “secret garden” that allowed us to sit outside without getting roasted.

After lunch we made for Ditchling via Hundred Acre Lane, at the south end of which we saw a man riding a penny farthing bicycle! When asked “is that hard?” he replied “No, easy!” He was followed by a man on an old black conventional bicycle which, he shouted as he sped past, had been made in 1902. Nick tried to get a photograph but they didn’t stop. He had had better luck with his camera earlier, when a Speckled Wood butterfly obligingly settled on his bike at Streat Place.

August 5, 2018: Hassocks circular

And so to Oldland Mill. We normally expect mud on the path going up to it, but today the mud was baked hard and the ride was a bit like a switchback. Nick and I went in to see the works, and I bought a bag of flour, made in a recent milling run which was stopped in order to carry out regular maintenance of the sweeps.

August 5, 2018: Hassocks circular

We spoke to the volunteer at the gate, who told us that the Trust can arrange private tours for groups on days when the mill is not normally open. This might be a solution to the problem of having to arrange a ride for the first Sunday of the month – when the mill is open to the public – despite it also being Pride weekend, when we really shouldn’t be venturing out on trains.

Thanks to Helen for another lovely Oldland ride. If I get round to it, I’ll convert some of the flour into scones for the next ride!

Jim

August 5, 2018: Hassocks circular


News

6 August 2018

6 August 2018

Dear All

I’ve still had no response to my query about whether people not taking part in Jim’s Bath-Bristol expedition want to have a local ride on 2 September – always assuming anyone wants to offer one.   I’ll wait to see if anyone does – otherwise the September rides will be on 16th and 30th.   Any offers for any of them?

If you’re not too familiar with the cafe in Hove Park – the starting point for the next ride – check out the blog https://brightonandhoveclarion.wordpress.com where you will find a little map Graham that has supplied.

Jim tells me there are people who actually want to join us – and pay their subs(!) There is now just one way we do this – which is a lot easier than in the past. The link needed is the membership mojo at https://membermojo.co.uk/brightonandhove-clarion-cycling-club

BHF London to Brighton ride

I’ve recently received this message from Alan of London Clarion and their Bike Ride Team

In 2019 London Clarion have decided to enter a team for the British Heart Foundation London to Brighton ride. We already have a few signed up. I have just emailed Bob the details I wondered if you could let your other members know and tell them they would be more than welcome to join us. We will end up getting at least a dozen.

You can join their team via this link the registration link.

Alternatively, if the link does not work, your can search for the team name on the sign up form.

Best wishes

The London to Brighton Bike Ride Team

That sounds like a great idea – at least for the fitter and more energetic!

The Latest on Julian and Leon

I’ve spoken to both of them on the phone in the last few days. Julian is waiting for a brain scan this week and has, he feels, been able to make little progress since the last time I reported – but he remains hopeful. Leon is also coping and feels optimistic about the way his treatment is progressing. We are thinking of them both.

Ian