News Dieppe Raid 2019 27th June to 2nd July  

11 July 2019

Graham reports

This year only three cyclists made the journey, David, Prudence and I plus David’s wife Terri, having hired a lovely house in Dieppe conveniently on the cycle route out of Town about half a mile from the town centre.

Leon, Joyce plus John and Jo Clinton had booked just to attend the event meal on the Sunday. We would have met up but sadly none were able to travel.

Our outward journey on the Thursday was marred by unplanned sickness so David and Terri caught the 9am ferry as planned, while Prudence and I rebooked onto the evening crossing arriving at the house a little after 11pm having successfully negotiated the Dieppe streets at night.

On Friday we discovered the weather was set to become increasingly hot. We settled in and David and I made an out of town cycle trip to the Local shopping centre for some essentials but otherwise it was a rest day.

Saturday

With Prudence improving David, Prudence and I we were able to make a short 7 mile ride in the morning to Arques-la-Bataille before the temperature climbed too high and spent some of the afternoon exploring the market until temperature reached an unbearable 35 deg, returning to the house then back into town later for an excellent meal out.

Dieppe Raid 2019Dieppe Harbour

Sunday

We were promised a return to English weather and dutifully turned up at the Salle Paul Eluard for registration at 8:30. Clutching our raffle tickets we returned to the house for essentials and set off on the 30km route arriving at the provided tea stop on the Avenue Verte 7 miles later where we met other clarion cyclists but not London Clarion.

Dieppe Raid 2019

Setting off again we extended the ride further down the Avenue Verte to a cafe at Saint Vaast d’Equiqueville.

Dieppe Raid 2019

To our dismay and despite on line research only coffee was available as it was apparently out of season. We then retraced our route to rejoin the 30km route returning to Dieppe but not before David insisted on stopping for a snackette of chips, which strangely seemed to have a Burger attached, and Salle Paul Eluard after a satisfying 26 miles at 9mph. Checking our raffle tickets Prudence had won a prize . Supposedly a scarf which was mysteriously missing but after some bartering and trying on of t-shirts, an excellent blue water bottle was chosen.

Later David and Terri briefly came across the London Clarion in a bar exhausted but they were gone when Prudence and I cycled into town.

Monday

Again the weather was cool and we set off at 9:30am on a planned trip southwest along the Véloroute du Lin (Linen Route) railway trail and having made a steep climb out of Dieppe we headed for the village of Luneray about 14 miles away.

Dieppe Raid 2019

This had once been a hilly railway running between Hautot-sur-Mer, near Dieppe, to Fécamp with two 300ft climbs along just our section of the route. We were diverted on the way in search of coffee but everywhere was closed on a Monday, however arriving in Luneray about 12am, we were delighted to find an open cafe in the town square, where David ordered what he again described as a snackette. It looked more like Ham and Chips.

Dieppe Raid 2019A Snackette

 

Dieppe Raid 2019

On the return Journey we took the railway trail all the way to the coast at Pourville-sur-Mer for our first real sight of the sea since arriving then followed the coast into Dieppe and along the promenade arriving after an excellent trip to do a little shopping have a well earned beer and a good meal out. 34 miles altogether at 8.8mph

Dieppe Raid 2019David fights Burger

Tuesday

Our return trip, arriving in Newhaven around 2:30pm we were struck by the contrast of a neat and lively Dieppe and the view of the dockside scrap yard in Newhaven.

French Railway Cycle Trails

Forgot to say that the French railway trails are a wonder to behold. 3m wide perfect tarmac stretching for mile after mile with standardised road crossing points and old railway buildings intact. No odd deviations round bits that are sold off or bridges demolished. In comparison the Downslink is just rubbish.

Dieppe Raid 2019Crossing

Also the French car drivers are so careful and patient with cyclists.

Conclusion

Despite a shaky start a great trip with great company and hopefully an experience to be repeated.

Graham

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News

14 June 2019

Downs Link Pop-Up Ride 2-3rd June

On the 2nd Chris and John (David’s neighbour) cycled from Shoreham up to Guildford on the Downs Link and myself, David and Prudence travelled up by train to meet for our overnight stop at the local Premier Inn

In the evening we had an excellent meal out at the local Red Rose Indian Restaurant followed by pints of Hogs Back TEA beer at the Row Barge pub on the banks of the Wey (until 11.30pm!).

Downslink Ride 3rd June 2019

We started out from the hotel in Guildford at 9.45am after a full English breakfast, and found ourselves on the river Wey towpath at the start of the Downs Link10 minutes later, when one of our group decided that she wanted to see the cobbled High Street with a tour of Guildford.

Downslink Ride 3rd June 2019

Having completed our tour which involved cycling the wrong way down a steep cobbled one way street (A bit like the Hovis Ad) Chris guided us down the river and onto the railway part of the Downs Link south of Shalford.

Our planned first stop at The Milk Churn at Rudgwick was a disappointment as it is closed on Mondays, so we headed for Christ’s Hospital after a diversion to inspect and discuss the Double Bridge. So it was that 20 miles down the trail we discovered the delightful Bax Castle pub, and enjoyed its sunny garden, bouncy castle, cheesy chips and Ringwood Brewery Boon Doggle.

Downslink Ride 3rd June 2019

Downslink Ride 3rd June 2019

Pedalling on we stopped at West Grinstead Station for a half hour rest, where we also discovered a new stop for a future ride, the Orchard Garden and its restaurant. Arriving at Stan’s Bike Shack we found that was also closed so we continued on to the Red Lion Inn, Shoreham at the end of our ride, where we enjoyed well earned pints of Greene King Yardbird in the garden on arriving at around 5 pm.

So the 38 mile journey took seven and a quarter hours at an average speed of 5.25 mph, cycling for 4 hours 15 minutes at 8.9 mph (a speed all of us can easily do on the flat), with more than three hours for discovery, food and drinks, rest, toilet stops, photography and discussion.

Graham and David (Most of the words)

What I thought would have been quite a challenge turned out to be the best and most enjoyable Clarion ride that I have ever been on. Such was the feeling of esprit de corps and joie de vivre that en route I found myself behaving like a child on a bouncy castle. The next morning I even had energy for tennis and a full day of activities.

I’m already looking forward to the next ride along the length of the Downs Link, perhaps in the other direction?

David


News

30 May 2019

Brighton Cycle Challenge 19 May 2019

 

BHT 30 Mile loop Report (David and Graham)

Start at Brighton Velodrome

David

Graham and I survived a gruelling ride around the ‘short’ 30 mile Devil’s Dyke Loop in the rain, there was a refreshment stop at Woods Mill and a cafe stop in Shoreham by which time the rain had stopped.

Arriving back we were rather disappointing to find only Roger and Suzanne had been doing laps of the velodrome for such a worthwhile cause.

I don’t know whether it was just the effect of the intense thirst that we had built up during the ride, but the Bedlam SMaSH craft beer at The Hare and Hounds after the ride was the best beer that I’ve had for years; a delicious blend of Golden Promise malt and Mosaic hops that explodes the tastebuds and aroma with tropical fruit, citrus, peaches, and apricot.

We could have stayed there all afternoon. The chips weren’t half bad too!

Graham

This year the 30 mile ride had a lot more riders maybe 30 or so all of the Lycra clad variety. We made it round in four and a half hours at a respectable 10mph ride speed, noting that the Lycra clad one’s are happy to just get wet.

As David says the level of Clarion support this year for this local cause was very disappointing. The 30 mile route is really not that hard (not gruelling) and surely well within most members capability, although the 9am start is early. Everyone should at least be doing laps of the velodrome.


News

16 May 2019

Dear All

After quite a long period when we’ve had lots of offers for rides we are now running out. Anyone like to take on 9 June or 23 June – especially the former? Haven’t yet had any response to my appeal, but it’s early days. If we do get a volunteer I’ll let everyone know as usual.

The ‘target date’ for the next newsletter is Tuesday 28 May. But it’s also the day I am going on holiday – which makes things a bit awkward. Roger has kindly agreed to stand in for me, as he has often done in the past. So from now on please send reports, ride offers, and anything else you’d like in the newsletter both to me at I.bullock@ntlworld.com

and to Roger at hinton@clara.net.

I will be in the process of putting the newsletter together until I go away but if you send things to both of us that will make sure nothing gets left out

July Picnic

As you’ll see from the Future Rides grid Graham is proposing to revive our old tradition of a summer picnic. It will probably be at Pevensey Castle with a ride to the venue but also accessible by car or train. Watch this space!

Brighton Festival – Artists Open Houses Message from Tessa

This year a change of venue!  I am taking a break from my May Festival Open House in Lorna Road.

Instead I am invited to show my work at ‘Art in Bloom’  also part of the Hove Arts Trail.

Karen Hollis would love to welcome  you to her beautiful home and garden where six artists will be showing their work. If you would like to join us at our Private View on Friday 4th May  please email me for invitation  details.

tessa@wolfemurrayceramics


News

1 May 2019

Dear All

In the last newsletter I asked if anyone wanted to offer a local ride as as an alternative to the ‘Late Spring Break’. David and Chris quickly responded – see the details below. Thanks. I’m assuming that those taking part in the ‘Break’ have all made their arrangements. I hope there will a report -or reports -on it in either the next newsletter or the one following.

We’ve got a lot of things to report in this issue including Jim’s message about Emergency Contact lists, Angela’s report on the Transport Hustings, as well as a report on the Easter Meet in York. I’m also including a final outing for Roger’s message about the Cycle Challenge. On this, Roger has passed on to me this message from Andy Winter

Brighton Housing Trust is seeking to borrow an adult tricycle to be used on the Preston Park Velodrome on 19th May as part of BHT’s Around the World Cycle Challenge. Any offers, please, to andy.winter@bht.org.uk and for further information about the event, please see http://www.bht.org.uk

Please contact Andy of you can help. For my adventures – or misadventures – at the Easter Meet see Sue’s report below.

Ian

Emergency Contact List

Included in the Clarion membership list is a field where members can fill in contact details for a close friend or relative to be contacted in the event of an emergency. Not all members have filled this in, but some have.

We all hope, of course, that this information will never be needed; nevertheless, we should be prepared in case it is. Therefore I have made copies of this section of the membership list and put them in sealed envelopes, which I will post to ride leaders. Because the information contained in the list may be sensitive, the envelopes should only be opened in an emergency. Anyone who leads a ride and hence receives such an envelope should ensure they take it on the ride, and then keep it in a safe place for the next ride they lead.

If the information is updated, I will issue a new list to all relevant people.

Jim Grozier Acting Assistant Membership Secretary.”

Transport Hustings,Thursday 25 April 2019 – Angela (D) ‘s Report,

An event organised by Bricycles, Brighton and Hove Friends of the Earth, Community Works and Brighton and Hove Clarion. Brenda Pollack was in the chair, and four political parties were represented: Conservatives – Lee Wares Labour – Daniel Yates Greens – Pete West Lib Dems – Christian Chadwick

Brenda introduced Stephen Joseph, who was CEO of the Campaign for Better Transport for 30 years. In his keynote speech Stephen made some excellent points about transport. He said we should be asking people ‘What kind of world do you want?’ He noted the trend for young people to be driving less and buying fewer cars and for rail to be overtaking cars as a means of commuting. He outlined the challenges we are facing where individual demands for personal car journeys are going to become impossible and are anyway not desirable. Transport is now the biggest source of greenhouse gas and needs to change; electric cars are not the answer – he referred to a report by Friends of the Earth: https://policy.friendsoftheearth.uk/publications/more-electric-cars

New housing estates are being built without public transport, cycle lanes or even basic pavements for walking – developers can get away with this by claiming it is not viable. http://www.transportfornewhomes.org.uk/

Stephen said nationally we spend money on roads, not on walking, cycling, buses or maintenance for roads. This is also an issue for social justice; people are left isolated and unable to get to basic facilities such as shops, or able to take up work opportunities.

There is an opportunity for better bus services with a new act of parliament that allows councils to run services. Stephen highlighted the good bus service we have in Brighton and Hove, but he did not mention some of the chiselling away of that service that is taking place. Stephen also talked about reopening railway lines– our local Lewes to Uckfield line is a case in point. He also talked about the success of mini Hollands in London, creating better walking and cycling facilities and designing ‘pocket parks’:https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/cycling/routes-and-maps/cycle-mini-hollands

Stephen talked about changing strategy – public transport policy currently assumes that anyone who has a car won’t use a bus – although he didn’t mention the success of the pensioners’ bus pass in getting passengers, even those with cars, onto buses. There are innovative ways of paying for public transport improvements – Nottingham has a levy on workplace parking which now has all party support. Money from this goes to trams, a fleet of electric buses and better stations and bus shelters.

He finished by recommending us to imagine the sort of city we wanted and then designing our city around that vision.

All the candidates talked for three minutes.

Lee Wares (Con) waffled about what citizens wanted and thought a review would be a good idea. He said what was done before might not be best for now.

Pete West (Green) talked about a turning point in history and used a lot of clichés, such as ‘last roll of dice’, ‘half-baked ideas’ and so on. However, he did offer a few concrete proposals about enforcing 20 mph and having a strategic bus network. He talked vaguely about ‘going Dutch’ but without offering any idea about finance.

Christian Chadwick (Lib Dem) talked about supporting Brighton and Hove buses with electrification and better infrastructure for electric cars. He also wanted to improve the cycle network and thought park and ride would reduce congestion, and he called for more maintenance of pavements and roads.

Daniel Yates (Lab) also managed to waffle about Brighton being stuck between sea and Downs and with old streets not designed for cars. He said we should concentrate on moving people, not vehicles but we need to change people’s mindset. However, he was pleased 60% of people in the city used sustainable transport to get to work.

The chair usefully pointed out that the speakers did not differentiate between their own views and that of their manifesto. None of them tackled the key issues facing transport in the city; they failed to look at funding, they did not address re-imagining people’s idea of a city and they did not address climate change. Little was said about a viable walking and cycling policy that would get people out of cars and on to their feet or their pedals.

Brenda then invited questions from the floor and also read out questions. One key question was whether the candidates supported the Valley Gardens project, which is strongly supported by Bricycles, Brighton and Hove Friends of the Earth, Community Works and Brighton and Hove Clarion Campaigns Officer. Tories don’t want it, Labour is fully committed, Lib Dems against and Greens support it.

I asked a question at the end ‘Would the candidates support digging up the seafront road and putting in two cycle lanes instead of having four lanes of traffic?’ I asked for a yes or no answer – Tories no, Lib Dems yes, Labour equivocated, Greens yes. Thanks to all the Clarion members who attended.

Angela Devas, Campaigns person, Brighton and Hove Clarion.

Easter Meet Report

We stayed with my brother in Nottingham the day before Good Friday so it didn’t take us long to get to York – even more crowded with sightseers than usual. We were staying near the impressive Mickelgate Bar so we climbed up onto the medieval wall and soon were able to spot the Railway Institute below, which was to be the site of all the ‘inside’ activities of the Meet.

The first of these was the annual conference which began there at 3 pm. Ian had already volunteered to chair the meeting – but then got carried away and when no-one else offered themselves as Chair for the following year he couldn’t resist agreeing to stand himself and was duly elected.

Fortunately, from Ian’s point of view, there was nothing very contentious on the agenda. All the national committee’s motions were accepted without opposition. We had agreed at our AGM to oppose the North Cheshire proposals to abandon ‘hard ‘ versions of both membership cards and Boots and Spurs if they were to be the subject of motions. Instead there was a less formal discussion of both. On the issue of membership cards it was decided to consult the membership by means of a survey, while there was very little support for making the magazine available only as an e-book. During the discussion Ian repeated Jim’s point from our AGM concerning people who found screens difficult, or even impossible, to use for medical reasons.

There were the usual cycling events of both racing and leisure kinds on Saturday and Sunday. We saw the club run going off and Ian regretted that he had not been up to bringing his bike and taking part. Instead we did the usual tourist things – visiting the Minster, the Castle museum, walking some more of the walls, and taking a boat trip on the Ouse. We also revisited the National Railway Museum where, apart from other famous locomotives, we spotted ‘Gladstone’, resplendent in ‘Stroudley green’ (something like the colour of Dijon mustard) made at the Brighton Works in 1882. It reminded us how important being one of the first railway towns had been for Brighton’s development.

On Saturday evening we returned to the Railway Institute for a performance by its own very accomplished brass band which was greatly appreciated. The annual dinner also took place there on the Sunday – without the advertised guest speaker Ede Harrison, who we were told had ‘gone off on a long ride without us’ – presumably due to a misunderstanding about dates. The usual silverware was awarded to individual winners and sections, including the one we were awarded in our early days.

Ian and I didn’t return direct to Brighton but spent a day in Hawes, where we visited the well-known Wensleydale Creamery founded in the mid-1890s like the Clarion CC and another day in Beverley where the Easter Meet took place a few years ago. Ian reminded me that decades earlier he stayed at the youth hostel there on his ‘Victoria station to Hadrian’s Wall’ ride. Fred will be pleased to hear that we made sure to revisit Nellie’s, the gas lamp-lit pub.

Sue B.

I’ll circulate the minutes of the annual conference later Ian

Message from Roger

We all love a challenge (I hope)

Slotted neatly between the 12th May ride and 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!

Roger


News

15 April 2019

14 April 2019

Dear All

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.

Ride Cancellations

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

Ian

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!

Roger


News

26 March 2019

26 March 2019

Dear All

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 take on 26 May please let me know.

DENIS PYE MEMORIAL BENCH

I’ve recently received details of the plans to commemorate Denis Pye, author of Fellowship is Life. The Story of the Clarion Cycling Club. The plan is to unveil the Denis Pye Memorial Bench on Sunday 12 May at 2 pm at the Nelson ILP Clarion House, which, as Fred reminded us last month, featured in one of Portillo’s railway programmes recently. Most of the message is about a free coach from Bolton and other details of the day. I don’t anticipate many of us being able to attend although I’m sure we should send our best wishes. But I could be wrong about people not able to participate – won’t be the first time! – so if you would like me to forward the whole message I’ll be happy to do that.

A Bit of (our own) History

I will resume my Clarion History before too long. But in the meantime I have just stumbled on some early stuff from when we started in 2004 which somehow survived last year’s computer crash (though I lost much of the more up-to-date material – all very odd) I’ve put a bit of it at the end of this newsletter where the Clarion History usually is found.

The AGM

I’ll be circulating the minutes as soon as possible.

Ian

******************************

Joyce writes:

The Planning Application for Toads Hole Valley (BH2018/03633) is causing great concern and disappointment amongst those who look for environmental and social improvements in large-scale projects such as Toad’s Hole Valley and B&H Clarion support the objections from Friends of the Earth Brighton & Hove on the basis that the opportunity to take the needs of cyclists and pedestrians  have been ignored. To   add your individual objection/support for Friends of the Earth email maria.seale@brighton-hove.gov.uk

****************************

A MESSAGE FROM ROGER

We all love a challenge (I hope)

Slotted neatly between the 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!

Roger