12 January 2018

10 January 2018

Dear All

Thanks to Sikka and Tessa we have a ride scheduled for 21 January. So,  any offers for 4 February?  Quite a lot to report this time.


There are teething problems with the new online membership system and so far there are a number of people who haven’t yet managed to renew their membership – only 23 have so far, so please check. Julian will be sending out a reminder once things have been sorted out

The 2018 AGM

We’ll have our AGM sometime in March (but see also below). In the last newsletter I wrote

If anyone, preferably someone living fairly centrally,would like to host the AGM please let me know.  We’ll try and sort out the best day of the week nearer the time.

I will wait until the end of this month before making a final decision. I’ve had no offers – but that was before Christmas when it’s difficult to think beyond the end of the year.  Obviously, it’s best if it doesn’t always take place at the same venue.  Roger and Suzanne hosted it last year. Sue and I are happy to take it on this time if no one else wants to.

STOP PRESS: Mick and Anne have kindly volunteered to host the AGM

The Easter Meet – Nominations and Motions

We have until 10 February to propose motions and make nominations for the national AGM at the Easter Meet. I propose to nominate Bob Harber for Standing Orders Secretary – a role he’s performed very effectively for several years now.  This is subject of course to his approval  – and  to no-one objecting.  I will wait until the end of this month before going ahead.

I have no motions to suggest but if anyone else has we can have a meeting before 10 February to debate this.  Let me know ASAP if you have any proposals to make. In the meantime, I’m attaching the motions being proposed by National Committee. We can decide our view of these at the AGM

Last year only Sue and I were at Chester to represent B&H Clarion. We may not be able to make it this year due to family commitments.  But I hope our section will be adequately represented.  Please read on!

The Easter Meet – Message from Alan Kiddle of London Clarion

Dear all,

I hope you had a great Christmas break?

It’s now just 85 days until Easter so please can I ask that you let your members know about the forthcoming Easter Meet? It’s the one weekend in the year when Clarion members from across the UK have been meeting up for over 100 years to socialise and cycle together.

London Clarion has been working hard to organise an Easter Weekend where there are lots for everyone to enjoy regardless of age or cycling ability. There is a pump track at Hadleigh Park which will be great for those bringing children as well as the Adventure Island amusement park and the longest pier in the World. For those who like Mountain Biking there will be the chance to try the 2012 Olympic course at Hadleigh Park. There will also be a 10-mile time trial on Easter Sunday.

To book accommodation at the Park Inn Hotel in Southend (which will be the HQ for the weekend) members just need to call the hotel Tel 01702455155 and mention National Clarion Easter Meet 2018.

The following special prices have been negotiated:

  • £60 Bed/Breakfast Twin / Double Room (per room per night)
  • £55 Bed/Breakfast Single Room (per room per night)
  • £90 family room including breakfast (per room per night)

It is a £10 Extra per room per night for a sea view.

Once you have booked your accommodation, don’t forget to buy your tickets for the weekend. Tickets are available for the whole weekend or either the Saturday or Sunday. Tickets need to be booked using Eventbrite

For more details about the Easter Weekend please visit the National Clarion website or visit the Events section of the National Clarion Facebook group

Looking forward to seeing everyone at Easter if not before!

Talk on Suzanne’s book

Brighton and Hove National Trust Association.

22 January 2018,  7.30pm at BHASVIC

“Sketches of Brighton 1827” by Suzanne Hinton.

In 1827 a French nobleman came to Brighton for the very first time. Suzanne relates some of his experiences and thoughts.

Hope I haven’t forgotten anything – let me know if I have and I’ll send it out as a supplement!




News, Xmas lunch and AGM

15 December 2017

Cool Yule edition

Dear All

2017 has been a very good year for me on many ways – but not cycling-wise. Since I broke my ankle two years ago and had to lay off the bike for 3 months I have found it difficult to get back into a regular rhythm and since the summer my habitual back problem has started to turn into occasional leg problems. But I’m determined to be OK for the little ‘brunch ride’ on 2 January and I hope after that to gradually get back to where I can come out on a Clarion ride from time to time.

After that, at the moment, there is nothing planned. If anyone wants to take on 7 or 21 January let me know and I’ll pass the message on so no one else will spend time planning for the same date. And I’ll include it in the brief reminder I’m planning to send out sometime between Boxing Day and New Year.

The First New Year Brunch Ride
Until recently we always had our short New Year ride to Carats café on New Year’s Day. But eventually the place got more and more popular so we switched to 2nd January (or 3rd Jan this year because 2nd was a bank holiday). Here’s the report that appeared after the first one in 2006. Some of the names will be familiar, but – to my shame – I can’t remember Mei who wrote the report. Anyone remember? Joyce?

The Last Ride – Sunday 1 January . New Year’s Day Brunch Ride to Carats Café – Mei’s Report.

The city seemed still asleep that morning after the previous night’s celebration of the New Year. Clarion riders gathered by the Palace Pier for the first ride in 2006.

Ian wasn’t sure who would be coming. Fred, Sheila and myself were waiting to see if there would be others. Luckily, Jim and Annie came toward us, then Anna, Lucy and Stuart. Finally there was Joyce.

As usual, Fred took a group photo by the Palace Pier then we set off to the Carats Cafe. The clouds were thick and grey. Seagulls appeared and disappeared in the gloomy sky.

Around noon we arrived at Carats Cafe. It had already lots of people inside so, despite the cold wind, we sat outside. Everyone introduced himself/herself again and we had a relaxing talk. Stuart mentioned that, he had seen a line of cars with their wing mirrors smashed, presumably as part of the New Year’s Eve ‘celebrations.’

Also, Sheila asked where the “Boots and Spurs” came from and Ian explained its history to us. After the food and chat, we set off home all looking forward to the next ride. Joyce, Sheila and Fred cycled to the end of the Carats café area. Ian thought they would came back so we could cycle back together to the pier. However, they still didn’t reappear after ten minutes or more. So Ian and I decided to leave. On the way home, more and more people seemed to have appeared on seafront on that windy New Year’s Day.


< Some photos of this ride can be found on the old website – scroll down… – Fred>

The 2018 AGM
Just to remind you, some years ago we altered our constitution to allow for the AGM to be held a lot later than had most often been the case prevously. Now we can have it anytime for 1 January to 31 March. There are advantages to holding it a little later – among other things it will make it easier for us to take a collective position on at least some of the things that may be proposed at the national AGM at the Easter Meet. So I’m proposing to call it for a date sometime in March.

When it does take place one thing we will have to decide is whether to reinstate (or increase) our £1 p a local sub for 2019 or leave it suspended. (In order to make life a bit easier when it comes to collecting the subs – so that we know right at the start of the year how much we need to pay – we adopted the system of deciding it a year in advance.)

If anyone, preferably someone living fairly centrally, would like to host the AGM please let me know. We’ll try and sort out the best day of the week nearer the time.

B&H Clarion Xmas lunch at Shoreham aerodrome Wednesday 13th December 2017

The Christmas Lunch
It wasn’t the most inviting start weatherwise yesterday but it did clear up nicely and quite surprisingly and after the meal when Sue, Jim, Angela and me visited the Old Toll Bridge whose fund-raising rides for restoration we took part in some years ago, the sun was shining on the river and the downs so wonderfully in a way that made it difficult to remember how the day had begun with such unpromising weather. We went to the bridge to have a look at the memorial to those killed in the terrible Shoreham air show disaster.

But the miserable weather around lunchtime made it more impressive that Jenny and Fred arrived at the Humingbird by bike. [If anyone else did that I failed to register let me know and I’ll record your feat next time!]

As well as the aforementioned the lunch was attended by Richard, Charlotte, Jim, Joyce, Leon, Anne, Suzanne, Roger, Angela (C) – who had organised the feast – and Sue and myself. That made 13 altogether but anyone with undeclared superstitious tendencies must have breathed a sigh of relief when Mick turned up having successfully survived an earlier visit to the dentist. The food was fine but some of the jokes in the crackers were almost as feeble as the sort I’ve been known to tell. For example:

‘What do Santa’s little helpers learn at school? The elf-abet.’ (Groan!)

The party poppers were more impressive and Leon, in particular, demonstrated how they could be deployed to the best effect. Roger made a little speech thanking Angela (and me – quite undeservedly).

So all the best for Christmas and the New Year and thanks again to Angela for arranging the lunch.



29 November 2017

Dear All

No one has pointed out any problems with my proposed dates for rides in 2018 that appeared in the last edition so I assume they are OK.

I’ve had a number of messages via email since the last newsletter. I don’t think I have forgotten anyone but if I’ve left anyone out please remind me and I’ll put out a special supplement.

From one of our long-time friends
Peter Roscoe of Bury Clarion has been mentioned in this newsletter from time to time. He has long been on our mailing list and has often said in the past how much he enjoys our newsletters – above all the ride reports. Here’s the latest message I had from him after the last edition which, you will remember, featured a ride report by Wendy plus a short additional piece by Leon. Peter wrote:

What talented writers you have.

I’m experiencing the ride in my mind.


It’s always good to hear from Peter who is not the only newsletter reader to appreciate the excellent ride reports we so often feature.

Message from Angela

Just a reminder, that the Clarion Xmas Lunch is at the Hummingbird Restaurant, Shoreham Airport, on Wed 13th December, 12.30 for 1pm.

Look forward to seeing everyone who has booked.

Love – Angela xx

And from Bob Harber
Not only a Clarion member Bob also chairs Brighton Excelsior. I will forward his message complete with flyer. Bob suggests that we might use our 21 January date to take in an opportunity to meet up with other cyclists at Washington [NOT DC!] village hall. I’m a bit doubtful about the practicalities – particular since we are invited for ‘elevenses’ between 10 15 and 11 45. But at the moment we have no volunteers for our January rides and you never know. In any case it’s always nice to be asked.  Thanks Bob.

Dave Churchill and riding on footpaths
Dave has emailed me expressing serious concerns about riding on footpaths. I suggested that rather than try and use these fortnightly newsletters to discuss this it would be much better to employ the Google group which would allow for much more rapid responses. I believe Dave is going to do this. And it may be a good opportunity to remind everyone how you can join the group.

Our Google Group
If you look at our website there’s a button top right called Google Group… this gives the Long explanation – at the end it says:

If you want to join the Google Group you can email Jim Grozier at or you can visit the group’s web page at!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.



17 November 2017

Dear All

Thanks to Angela (D) and Wendy – as well of course as Julia – we now have both remaining dates for 2017 covered. So we can start thinking about next year.

2018 Rides
It’s quite diffiucult to work out a fortnightly schedule that avoids certain dates – the main ones being the those of the London-
Brighton Bike Ride when trains are impossible and the start and finish of BST. This year I took the view that given the difficulty of avoiding BST Sundays at both ends it was better to have a ride at the end when clocks go back and if you forget it’s just a matter of turning up to the start point an hour early. Better than being an hour later when BST starts. Same next year.
So, the dates I’m proposing for next year are – after our usual New Year Brunch ride on 2 January – as follows:-

Jan 7, 21 Feb,4, 18. Mar 4,18. April, 1, 15, 29 May 13, 27 June 10, 24. July 8.22. Aug. 5,19, Sept. 2,16, 30 Oct.14, 28 Nov.11, 25 Dec. 9

If no-one spots any problems with this within the next fortnight I’ll assume we agree and put the first few dates in the Future Rides list.

An important message from Julian follows

Membership Subscriptions in 2018
The National CCC has been working on, and testing, a new national computer internet-based subscription system, and plans to introduce it nationally on 1 January 2018.
It is being designed to allow all members to join online and pay subscriptions online using credit cards, debit cards and Paypal.
Thus every member will need an email address and be able to enter their details online to the website.
The main benefits foreseen are that it will do away with paperwork, give more accurate data nationally, remove postage costs, not need cheques, and make the issue of membership cards faster, as well as the enrollment of new members. 
As soon as the NCCC let us have the full description of the new system, it will be circulated to you.
In the meantime please would Brighton & Hove Clarion cycle club members not make any subscription payment until the new system has become operational.

Halloween edition news

3 November 2017

Dear All

Well, special thanks to Julian for taking on yesterday’s ride after Jim had to drop out due to injury. Indeed, Julian is doing well beyond his fair share of ride leading. As I reported in the last newsletter the Seaford ride he was planning for 12 November was not ‘on’ because of the non-availablity of trains to get people back to Brighton. But, undeterred, he has adapted the ride to one that can be comfortably done. (See below). So, thanks again, Julian.

So, can we now have an offer for 26 November?

I have now managed to finish correcting and indexing and am trying to get back on my bike after a longish absence. I hope that before too long I’ll be up to coming out with the Clarion again without being too much of a liability (well, not more of one than I am anyway!)



20 October 2017

Dear All

I was hoping to be able to cover 12 November with Julian’s ride to Seaford. But unfortunately it’s one of those ‘bus service only’ days from there on 12th. So, any other suggestions?

This is as shorter and more hastily prepared newsletter than usual. So here’s the explanation. ‘The best-laid plans..’ Mr Burns got it right. I’d alerted my publisher about when we were planning to go on holiday and was assured that I would get the proofs of my ILP book in good time to check them and do the index before going away. But they only arrived a couple of days before we set off so now I’m having to try desperately to catch up if the book is to appear before the end of the year.

I’m forwarding a couple of messages from the National Club.

Nice piece on cycling in Brighton by Adam Trimingham (aka ‘The Sage of Sussex’) in today’s Argus.

From Alan Kiddle:

It’s the first time in a number of years the Easter Meet is being held in the South so it would be great to see a good attendance from B&H 🙂

We are delighted to announce that Maurice Burton will be our Guest Speaker for the National Clarion Annual Awards Dinner at the 2018 Easter Meet in Southend-on-Sea.

As a three-time British champion and someone who beat the legendary Eddy Merckx, Burton knows a thing or two about cycling.

Maurice Burton was the first black British champion in cycling. His first taste of success came when he won the Junior Sprint national title in 1973. He won the amateur scratch title the following year, raced over a 20 km distance. He went on to represent Britain at the 1974 Commonwealth Games, but was not selected for the Olympic squad in 1976.

Burton became frustrated by the racism pervasive in Britain at the time so moved to Belgium in 1977, basing himself in Ghent. He was described as the first coloured professional cyclist. Burton rode 56 professional Six Day events, and retired from competitive cycling after a serious racing accident at the Buenos Aires Six Day in 1984. His son Germain Burton is also a racing cyclist who has represented Great Britain on an international level as a junior and has just joined JLT Condor.

To reserve your place at Easter 2018:



2 October 2017

Dear All

Ian and Sue are away at the moment so I’m looking after this issue of the “Clarion Latest”.

Many thanks to Chris for a very prompt report on yesterday’s ride. My main recollection of the ride I led on a similar route some time ago is the breath-taking descent from Woodingdean down to Rottigdean. It’s hard to imagine that a suburb could be so exciting … on which subject, please do read the historical piece at the end of this issue … and then check your brakes!

The next ride will be led by Sikka and Tessa on October 15th (see below). We are still looking for someone to lead on 29th October, and dates thereafter. Please send details to Ian if you can make an offer (