The Next Ride: November 24th 2019: Westbourne and the Ems Valley

15 November 2019

Emsworth – Westbourne – Walderton – Stoughton – East Marden – Compton – Idsworth – Finchdean – Rowlands Castle – Westbourne – Emsworth

Impress your friends! Tell them you are going to cycle along the river
Ems, but omit to mention that you are referring not to the 231-mile
Dutch-German river, but a slightly shorter one in West Sussex.

This is basically my Warblington circular that Julian and I did four years
ago with four members of Gosport Clarion, but transplanted to Emsworth
because (a) it has more trains, (b) it cuts out (most of) the horrible
Emsworth Common Road, and (c) it enables us to have a coffee/ second-breakfast stop at the delightful Westbourne Café in the delightful village of Westbourne. (The café ladies have promised me scones if I pre-order. Any other requests?)

We ride past Racton Monument, a ruined 18th-century folly that is said to
be haunted. We’ll visit East Marden, with its unusual thatched well, then
on to our lunch stop at the Coach and Horses at Compton.

This is a hybrid ride, in which a slightly different route is available for
anyone wanting to cycle further and faster. If a different route is not
required, duplicate ride directions will be given to anyone wishing to avoid
frequent stops – in the event of such stops, they can cycle on and meet
us later, possibly at lunch.

After lunch we’ll continue westwards until we reach the Waterloo to
Portsmouth railway line at Idsworth, where St Hubert’s church (1053) has 14th century wall paintings and also a 20th century one. Riding south
alongside the railway, we reach Rowlands Castle where we can have tea
at the Bumblebee café, then back to Emsworth, once again via Westbourne.

Distance: 22 miles for the wanderers, a bit more for the speedsters. Anyone wanting to retire early can get the train from Rowlands Castle
(change at Havant), saving four miles.

Duration: about 6 hours including stops. Sun sets at 4pm.

Start: Emsworth station at 10:15am, westbound platform exit.

Terrain: All hard surfaces, mostly quiet lanes.

Undulations: Remarkably few, considering that we are basically in the
foothills of the South Downs, albeit the “dip” side. There is one short hill
of about 1 in 10 gradient, in a quiet lane, which we can walk up in 10
minutes. From a starting height of 15m, we never go above 115m in a 22
mile ride – so about the same height range/distance range as a return trip on the Cuckoo Trail.

Getting there: Take the 09:00 Portsmouth train from Brighton, arriving
at Emsworth at 10:07.

Getting home: Trains to Brighton leave Emsworth at 16 and 38 minutes
past each hour.

Jim.

 


The Last Ride: Sunday 10 November 2019: Gatwick Circular via Leigh

15 November 2019

Nick’s Report

Just beyond WH Smith and the International Arrivals area, there are lifts enabling passengers and cyclists to leave Gatwick Airport. It was a team of four Clarionistas (Tessa, Doris, Jim & Nick) who pushed their bikes past armed police, uniformed plane crews and confused plane passengers to find the lifts to leave the airport.

November 10, 2019: Gatwick Circular via Leigh

Before locating the exit lifts, we gathered on the Gatwick Airport concourse for a brief photo opp in front of WH Smith and took the opportunity to visit the airport’s luxurious loos. Sunday’s bike ride was particularly memorable for the backdrop of trees and autumn sunshine which accompanied visits to Riverside Garden Park, Hammonds Copse Nature Reserve, an intriguing bus stop and some eco protest solidarity.

November 10, 2019: Gatwick Circular via Leigh

Riverside Garden Park is a very short bike ride from Gatwick Airport. The Garden Park lake, surrounded by vivid autumn tree colours, was worthy of a brief stop to take a few photos. We then followed Cycle Route 21, Surrey Cycleway Link and assorted twists and turns in a nine mile journey to the Plough pub lunch stop in Leigh

While waiting for our lunch in the Plough we all agreed that cycling in the morning, with low sunlight and autumn leaves, had been picturesque and enjoyable. My lunch consisted of a plate of chips and pint of lime & soda. Other food options were available though.

Tessa handed out flyers over lunch to remind us that she would be busy with her artists’ Open House from late November to early December. I must try and go along.

As we left the Plough after lunch, we noticed an ornate and distinguished looking wooden bus stop on the village green. We didn’t see anyone waiting for a bus, so perhaps this was another rural location without a Sunday bus service.

November 10, 2019: Gatwick Circular via Leigh

It was Remembrance Sunday and we saw quite a few outsized poppies attached to traffic signs, as we started the post-lunch leg of the day’s cycle ride.

November 10, 2019: Gatwick Circular via Leigh

Dramatic autumnal colours were on display as we cycled through Hammonds Copse Nature Reserve. The muddy conditions caused by the recent heavy rain weren’t particularly welcome, but the waterlogged path we found ourselves on didn’t last for very long.

It was a delight to meet two activists from the Horse Hill anti-fracking camp on our way back to Gatwick Airport. Jim was given a big hug when he explained that we were part of a socialist cycling group which had been founded more than a hundred years ago.

We were given leaflets on drilling, acidisation & fracking in the South East, which Surrey County Council has encouraged. I tended to agree with the Horse Hill campaigner who said the recent moratorium on fracking from the current Tory government was nothing more than an election ploy.

After our brief spell of Horse Hill eco-warrior activism, it was time to cycle back to Gatwick Airport train station. Thanks to Jim for a perfectly planned and rather glorious autumn cycle ride.

Nick


Clarion Latest

15 November 2019

Dear All

I had hoped to be able to offer a – nice and short – ride for 8 December but my efforts to ‘get back on the bike’ have been rather uneven recently though I certainly am making some progress and have real hopes for next year. But for now I’d better operate on the basis of discretion being the better part of valour.

Which is a very convoluted way of asking ‘does anyone want to take on 8 December?’

National Clarion Survey

The questionaire for the national survey has been sent to everyone individually. Mine arrived on 30 October, which should help anyone who hasn’t already filled it in to find it in the inbox . If you haven’t yet responded you still have up to the end of this month. Quite a few people certainly have taken part already including some from our club/section.

A few days after I completed and returned it I chaired a meeting of the national committee in Nottingham– on 2 November – at which it was reported that up to then over 300 members had taken part. This is an encouraging start – but we have more than 2,000 members so it’s to be hoped that the numbers will continue to grow.

Please give it a go,

Proposed Rides for 2020

Last year, around this time, I suggested a ride schedule. Various people then made suggestions to change some of the dates – which we did. That seems to me a sensible way of doing things, many heads being better than one, so I propose to do the same with regard to the 2020 dates.

In working out a schedule I tried to avoid the beginning (especially) and end of BST (29 March and 25 October) the London Brighton Bike Ride (21 June) and the Sunday of Brighton Pride Weekend (2 August) and – somewhat to my own amazement – managed to miss them all. But there may be other dates we should avoid – let me know if you think there are

So, here are my proposed dates for our fortnightly rides (‘extras’ can of course also be offered any time).

January      February          March           April             May           June

2 Jan

(New Year

brunch ride)

12, 26            9, 23              8 , 22            5, 19      3,17, 31          14, 28

July          August       Sept.        Oct         Nov          Dec

12, 26      9, 23          6, 20       4, 18    1, 15, 29       13

Clarion Christmas Lunch – Message from Sean

Due to circumstances one of our number now cannot join us on the 21st December Luncheon.

Therefore, if anyone could cover the placement please get in touch with me to confirm.

Boots

Sean

 

ust to remind you, the Xmas Lunch will be at The Walrus, Ship Street, Brighton, Saturday 21 December, midday. Contact Sean at seangburke1962@gmail.com if you can take up the spare place

 

Message from Jim

‘I have now put two “oven-ready” ride files on my cycling web page – these are files which contain all you need to know about a ride – description AND directions. One is for the Bindley Heath ride (Three Bridges Circular via Lingfield) – the one Leon liked. The other is a Horley ride which features Redhill Common, which was the subject of a conversation on the ride yesterday.’

———————-

Charlotte’s Problem

I don’t know whether anyone had any useful suggestions to make in response to the email I’d had about getting help with her daughter learning to ride a bike which I included in the last newsletter.

I mentioned it at the national committee meeting I touched on earlier and Ian Clarke had what I think is very probably a possible solution which was to contact Cycling UK’s GoRide scheme. I emailed her with this suggestion.

 

Please also read the message from Julian that follows if you haven’t yet renewed.

 

Ian

 

Next Year’s Subs Message from Julian

 

Your Clarion subs for 2020 will be due on 1 January. The fee will be £15, as Brighton & Hove section agreed at its last AGM to a local sub of £3 to supplement the national fee of £12. It is some time since we had a local sub, but it is necessary to levy one every few years as our bank balance dwindles. (The £12 all goes straight to the national Clarion).

The £3 will contribute towards various costs such as website fees, together with providing a buffer in the event of an increase in national Clarion fees (last year we lost a substantial portion of our reserves following an unanticipated national fee rise). The subscription does NOT buy members any “services” other than third party insurance, which is covered by the national portion of the sub. All our rides and other events are organised by members, on a voluntary basis.

Membership details are held in an on-line database called “Membership Mojo”, to which you should have been given a unique login that does not require a password, and you can use this to update your details.  Membership Mojo has the facility to renew directly by making a payment to Paypal, but we have disabled this because we cannot access our Paypal account. Instead, you need to EITHER transfer £15 by BACS to our account at the Co-Operative Bank, sort code 08-92-99, account no. 65377325, with your name as the reference, OR send a cheque for £15, payable to Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club, to:

Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club
92a Springfield Road
Brighton BN1 6DE

Julian Arkell,

Treasurer


The Last Ride :Sunday 27 October Three Bridges to Wivelsfield

15 November 2019

Sunday 27 October Three Bridges to Wivelsfield

Sally’s Report

Six of us: Sikka, Doris, Angela D, Nick, Jim and Sally.

Fine autumnal day, blue skies, trees turning gold and red in patches.

Leaving Three Bridges station, we stopped to look at the blue plaque to
Caroline Haslett (1895-1957), electrical engineer. Then through Tilgate
Forest, where we had enjoyed vistas of bluebells in early May. Today, there
were oak trees, buzzards and lots of jays.

Parish Lane and Grouse Road took us west and then south to Hammerpond Road,
past two of them, turning east to Slaugham and Staplefield, where we lunched
at the Jolly Tanners – very nice, apart from Sikka’s rice pudding.

There were a few downs and ups on this ride, but they were worth it for the
varied views across fields and woodlands. We reached Wivelsfield Station
with 4 minutes to spare!

Sally


The Next Ride: Sunday 10 November 2019: Gatwick Circular via Leigh

3 November 2019

Gatwick – Horley – Meath Green – Woodhatch – Betchworth – Brockham – Dorking – Leigh – Norwood Hill – Hookwood – Horley – Gatwick

This ride appears not to have been done since 2008, which seems an eternity ago, so it’s well overdue. It was originally subtitled “Moles, Voles and Deer” – an allusion to, respectively, the river Mole, which we ride alongside on Lonesome Lane in the first part of the ride, and cross at Flanchford Bridge; an animal I spotted in the delightful (and unexpected if you haven’t been there) Riverside Garden Park located improbably near the airport; and the deer I saw in the lovely Hammonds Copse Nature Reserve, a site of Ancient Semi-Natural Woodland which been wooded for over 400 years.

It is now a hybrid ride which will hopefully meet the needs of both fast and slow riders. There will be a longer route for the faster contingent which will include most of the “slow” route to the lunch stop but also feature bits of a ride I found in a book, Lost Lanes by Jack Thurston. If the “tortoises” dawdle along at 5 mph and the “hares” sprint away at 10 mph, we will all end up at the Plough at Leigh for lunch at the same time. There is also a medium-length route which allows the hares to have a short rest. After lunch, we return to Gatwick by a different route, which includes the aforementioned nature reserve, either as one group or two.

There are possible coffee and tea stops in Horley on the way there and back.

Practicalities:

 “Slow” route: About 20 miles, mostly on tarmacked roads; some bridleway; some concrete. Hills: Hardly any.

“Fast” route: About 31 miles, similar surface, short section of A25 (“ride along the roadside if it’s too hostile on the road”)

Shortened “fast” route: Short cut to avoid A25. About 27 miles.

Start at Gatwick Airport station at 10:30. Catch the 09.57 Victoria train from Brighton. In case of stroppy Southern staff, there’s also a Thameslink train at 09:42 – if you get this, leave by the lift towards the south end of the platform and wait at the top, outside the lift or nearby on the airport concourse. (If travelling to Gatwick by other means, please contact me as it may be difficult to find the route).

Trains back to Brighton leave Gatwick at 00, 10, 30, 40 minutes past the hour. Journey time 31-37 minutes.

By the way, Leigh is pronounced “lie” like the one in Kent.

Jim.

 


Clarion Latest

3 November 2019

Ride Cancellations – New System IMPORTANT. 

No one has objected to the proposal to change the system for ride cancellations made in the last two newsletters. So in future when it’s necessary to cancel a ride leaders will be do that via the google group. It will still be important if you are planning to go on a ride to check your emails at 5 pm the previous day.

The new system is a bit of a relief for me – and the other mailing list holders – I will still try and send any cancellation to you via the mailing list if I spot one in the google group emails. It’s always good to have another message in such cases – but it won’t be vital any more.

In case there is anyone – and we have some new members – who isn’t yet in the group I will repeat the details of how to join the google group

If you want to join the Google Group you can email Nick – hidern@gmail.com – and ask him to add you, or you can visit the group’s web page at https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/brighton-hove-clarion.

To join on-line, or to choose the “no emails” option, you will need to create a Google login if you don’t already have one.”

Clarion Christmas Lunch

I recall that last year there were a few complaints – perfectly reasonable ones – about the lunch being held on a weekday rather than at the weekend. So it’s good to see that Sean has been able to arrange things so that this is avoided this time.

 

As reported in the last newsletter Sean has taken over from Wendy and is now acting Social Secretary. I know everyone will agree that he has acted with exemplary speed in organising this year’s event.

I’ve already sent out a message with an attachment with the menu for the lunch at the Walrus but if you have trouble opening it please let me know and I’ll send it you inside an email .

Here’s the key info just in case you missed it. The Xmas Lunch will be at The Walrus, Ship Street, Brighton, Saturday 21 December, midday

If you intend to come please contact Sean at

seangburke1962@gmail.com if you haven’t already done so.

———————-

Any Ideas?

I’ve received the following email. If anyone has any helpful advice or can help in any way at all please contact Charlotte.  I’m going to take it to the national committee meeting on Saturday to see if we can give her problem wider publicity.

To Whom it May Concern

I suffer from Lupus, Fybromialiga, ME and have had 76 operations including 2 on my back and many other illnesses which prevent me from teaching Isobel to ride a bike. She is in Year 3 now and she’s on her second bike because she has grown, but she’s getting more and more scared of trying to ride as I can’t bend to hold onto her because of my back but she is also desperate to be able to ride.  She is a Great Ormond Street Hospital patient and she wants some normality in her life.  Please help.  I am on benefits so the cheapest but most suitable situation possible please.  I thank you in advance for your help with this matter.

Best wishes

Charlotte Eade
07841 900453
Charlie.eade@btinternet.com
8 Rowley Court
Caterham
Surrey
CR35AY

————————–

Please also read the message from Julian that follows

Ian

 

Next Year’s Subs Message from Julian

Your Clarion subs for 2020 will be due on 1 January. The fee will be £15, as Brighton & Hove section agreed at its last AGM to a local sub of £3 to supplement the national fee of £12. It is some time since we had a local sub, but it is necessary to levy one every few years as our bank balance dwindles. (The £12 all goes straight to the national Clarion).

The £3 will contribute towards various costs such as website fees, together with providing a buffer in the event of an increase in national Clarion fees (last year we lost a substantial portion of our reserves following an unanticipated national fee rise). The subscription does NOT buy members any “services” other than third party insurance, which is covered by the national portion of the sub. All our rides and other events are organised by members, on a voluntary basis.

Membership details are held in an on-line database called “Membership Mojo”, to which you should have been given a unique login that does not require a password, and you can use this to update your details.  Membership Mojo has the facility to renew directly by making a payment to Paypal, but we have disabled this because we cannot access our Paypal account. Instead, you need to EITHER transfer £15 by BACS to our account at the Co-Operative Bank, sort code 08-92-99, account no. 65377325, with your name as the reference, OR send a cheque for £15, payable to Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club, to:

Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club
92a Springfield Road
Brighton BN1 6DE

Julian Arkell

Treasurer