14 April 2019
Easter is always difficult with pubs and cafes full to overflowing and difficult to ‘book’ unless you can be 100% accurate about numbers. Hence the longer than usual gap between the April rides. We’re still very well set-up for the next 3 rides but if anyone wants to offer an alternative ride on 12 May for ‘stay-at-homes’ not signed up for the Late Spring break please let me have details ASAP. Likewise for either of the June rides.
We’ve always encouraged as many people as possible to volunteer to lead a ride. A problem that has arisen is that this necessitates sending the mailing list to every ride leader in case they have to cancel, typically because of a really bad weather forecast.
So we’re trying a new system. The cancellation message has always said that I can be phoned on the Saturday afternoon if the ride leader has trouble sending out the cancellation message. The problem with this is that I can’t guarantee to be available every Saturday For example, the day before the ride on 24 March I was in London hobbling down Whitehall on the shorter version of the People’s Vote march. And sometimes I’m going to be away. Roger usually covers for me on these occasions.
So if you need to cancel a ride please phone me well before 5 pm on the Saturday prior to your ride . If you get no answer try any of the following – Roger, Jim,or Graham – all of whom will have the mailing list . It seems extremely unlikely that all four ‘custodians of the list’ will be unavailable at the same time though we will keep things under review. I will give the phone numbers in the cancellation message I send to ride leaders, though, clearly, this won’t be necessary in the case where the ride leader already has the mailing list.
This new system will reduce the number of people who have access to the mailing list and ensure that messages are always sent out blind copied to protect the addresses of those on the list.
Insurance cover and ride leaders
At our AGM last month Graham asked whether our existing insurance covered ride leaders. (see 5.2 of the minutes). I was fairly sure that the answer to the question was ‘yes’, but at the time couldn’t completely recall the message I had received from the national secretary just before Christmas which dealt with the matter. I have now checked it. The relevant part reads as follows:
I have been speaking to our insurance providers regarding insurance cover for ride leaders and club officials and volunteers.
From our brokers at Butterworth Spengler they have said that they “can confirm that all Organisers, Officials and Ride Leaders of the Clarion and your events, will be covered for Third Party Liability insurance under this policy, provided they are members of the Clarion.”
Ian Clarke ended the message by underlining the importance of having third party insurance cover – a very good reason to be a Clarion member.
I recently heard a story whereby a non-Clarion rider rode into the back of a Tesla by accident and was sued for damages of £15,000…so it does and can happen.
Potholes – a frightening statistic
If, like me, you first joined in 1954 you still tend to think of Cycling UK as the CTC. The latest edition of its magazine Cycle has a small item which begins with a frightening statistic – and ends with something we should all support, and when we spot potholes, use. It goes like this:
At least 431 cyclists have been killed or seriously injured on British roads since 2007 because of road defects. That’s why on 3 March Cycling UK launched the UK’s first Pothole Watch to shine a light on the human cost of our crumbling local road networks. We called on Government to fix the roads everyone uses first – the UK’s local roads- before building new motorways and trunk roads. Over the course of one week ,625 potholes were reported via our pothole reporting tool http://www.fillthathole.org.uk
Message from Angela (D)
There will be a hustings in Brighthelm centre to discuss transport issues on Thursday 25 April 7pm for 7.30 start. Candidates for local elections from all parties will speak for 3 minutes only and then there will be questions from the floor. Lots of issues around cycling we might want to raise, so hope to see Clarionistas there.
Message from Roger
We all love a challenge (I hope)
Slotted neatly between Jim’s 12th May ride and the currently vacant 26th May, is the Greater Brighton Cycle Challenge.
I must of course declare an interest. I’m a trustee of Brighton Housing Trust (BHT) which organises the event. As a result, I’ve had a chance to learn about the work that this wonderful organisation does and to meet some of the people it has been able to help.
It is not just a social landlord. Much of its work is about supporting people who are coping with addiction and mental health problems, and the threat of homelessness that they create.
The Cycle Challenge is an opportunity to raise funds for BHT or for any other charity you choose. I know that some Clarion members have already signed up for one of the longer rides. If you’re not wanting to do 30 or 60 miles, why not join me for a few laps at the Preston Park Velodrome as part of the Around the World Challenge.
Every lap you complete will be counted and will contribute to the target of 66,792 which, if achieved, would get us all the way round the world. Last year, on a pretty hot day, I managed 30 laps. Apparently, we got as far as southern Australia!
You can do as many laps as you like, with as many breaks as you want for tea etc. It starts at 8am and finishes at 5pm. If you can round up some sponsors then you can donate the proceedings to BHT or any other charity of your choice.
You can register on-line. It costs £15 (concessions £5) or £25 for a family. I’ll see you on the way round!