Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club  




Dear fellow members and friends

14 December 2009

See you next weekend, I hope, at the:

Christmas Lunch and Cycling Quiz
Sunday 20 December 2009

Thanks to all those who have said you're coming. If you haven't said yet, you can still turn up on the day.

Meet at the Open House Pub, Springfield Road, Brighton
(immediately next to the London Road Station)
Noon    In the function room for the quiz. On arrival come upstairs and take a seat at the team table with your name on – if you don't see your name just choose any team that looks like it needs help; if you don't like the team you've been put in, you can appeal to the Clarion national committee.
1.15pm  Lunch:   Roasts about £8.00, Deserts about £4.50
Supplement for use of function room £2.00 (payable to Suzanne).

There will be an interval before the announcement of the quiz results for you to order food from the bar; ask for your meal to be brought upstairs.
Suzanne e-mail:   phone (01273) 321794

Volunteers Still Needed

I'm grateful to Roger who has volunteered to take on the 10 January ride, first ride of 2010 apart from the New Year's Day extravaganza. More offers are welcome – particularly for the dates in March

Future Rides

Friday 1 January New Year's Day Brunch Ride to Carats Café. Then Sundays 10 (Roger), 24 January; 7, 21 February and 7, 21 March. I can't make either of the March dates.

Initial Arrangements for 2010 - AGM and Subs

Details of the New Year Brunch Ride are below. Members will be getting details of the 2010 AGM (Tuesday 26 January at Roger and Suzanne's - 39 Regency Square).

Last year's AGM made three changes that have altered the way we will collect subscriptions this year. We decided to reinstate the £1 p a local subscription, open a section bank account, and we elected Jim as our treasurer. But as last year we'd like to get the subs sorted by the end of January. The procedure we've agreed is as follows:

To renew your membership for 2010 – and I trust everyone will want to – send £7 (£6 national subscription plus our £1 fee) – to Jim Grozier, 92a Springfield Road, Brighton BN1 6DE. Make your cheque (or P O) out to Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club.

Jim will then be able to send a single cheque for £6 x the number of renewing members to the national membership secretary at the end of January.

Jim has already received a few renewal subs for 2010 –and is happy to have more! Don't delay!

In this connection can I remind all members to let me know of any changes of address (or email address) Thanks to Leon and Ken who have already done so recently.

New Members?

We have currently about 40 members but it is still true that the majority of people on our 3 general circulation lists are not – or not yet – members. We remain quite relaxed about this, you're very welcome on our rides whether you join or not – but if anyone not already a member would like to join us here's what to do.

Go to the bottom of the homepage and print out a membership form
Fill it in and sign it and send it to Jim with your sub

All the details are on the form and the website

[If it doesn't work let me know and I'll send you a form by snail-mail.]

* * * *

The Origins of the Clarion Cycling Club and cycling in the 1890s latest episode is as usual, at the end of the circular.

Best wishes for Christmas and the New Year… and Boots!


The Next Rides

Please be clear that while all are welcome to join us we each take part in rides at our own risk.

Friday 1 January 2010

Carat's is a popular venue on New Year's Day and it's not possible to book (I've asked). The weather wasn't so good in 2008 time, and we made the mistake of sitting outside last year, but in 2007 year it really was nice to sit outside in the sun! (Deference to Adam prevents me of making any association with global warming.) We've been lucky in the past - partly because we manage to get there before the rush peaks - so a prompt start, please. But there'll be a (car-bound) advance guard whose mission will be to try to secure enough space - inside or outside if warm enough - for us before our arrival.

As on previous occasions I'm hoping that this easiest of starts to the year may tempt out some of those we seldom see - or even have yet to see.

Meet by the Palace Pier at 10.30 a m - or along the route at e g Maroccos. Only about 9 miles – plus from home and back to the Pier.

Ian's mobile number is 07770743287

Sunday 10 January 2010
The Villages of the Lower Ouse Valley

First, a new suggestion for Clarion rides: if you're coming, but not catching the train at Brighton, call the ride leader to let them know. Two reasons: so we don't leave without you and so the leader can warn you if there's a problem.

We will start this ride in Lewes and follow the road on the west side of the river Ouse down to Newhaven, visiting most of the villages along the way. The first and largest is Kingston, look out for the view back towards Lewes Castle and the 13th century bells in the village church.

A little way further down the road is Ifield; we enter it past an up-market horse riding establishment and leave it past an imposing barn (full of grain when I did the trial ride), the countryside at play and work.

Next up is Rodmell, possibly the most famous of the bunch, certainly amongst literary types. It was here that Virginia Woolf lived with her husband Leonard in Monks House. It was also from here that she set out one day in 1941 to walk down to the river to drown herself. Leonard stayed on in the house until 1969. It is now owned by the National Trust, but unfortunately will not be open for visits when we pass by.

On past Rodmell church to Southease, well known to train travellers as a halt on the line between Lewes and Newhaven. We will make contact with the river itself here as we digress briefly to see the old swing bridge, which is Grade 2 listed and is due shortly to be re-furbished to take vehicles of up to 20 tons. Look out for the church's round tower, one of only three in Sussex! The last 100 yards or so up out of Southease will be a good opportunity for a walk.

Our final village visit will be Piddinghoe. Look out for the bottle shaped brick kiln, the only one remaining in the country. Also the church, which has another of those rare, round towers.

From Piddinghoe it is only a short hop into Newhaven where we will cycle alongside the harbour for lunch at the Hope Inn near the harbour entrance.

The final stage of the ride is entirely without villages. It takes us along the splendid National Cycle Network route 2 to Seaford where we can enjoy a cup of something at the Coffee Shop in Broad Street (closes at 4pm) or just jump straight on the train back to Brighton


NB This is not a circular ride – it starts at Lewes and ends at Seaford.
Distance About 14 miles.
Meet Outside Lewes Station at 10:25
Getting there Take the 10:09 from Brighton - be at the station by 9:45 for a chance of a group-save ticket. Buy a return to Seaford but get out at Lewes! Possible suggestion for if you're coming by car: park at Seaford and catch the 9:53 train to Lewes for the start of the ride.
Hills A few ups and downs, but nothing too serious.
Traffic We will use the Lewes to Newhaven road which can be fairly busy, but we will divert onto parallel routes where possible.
Off road Mostly on roads or well surfaced cycle paths, but we will take one or two short tracks which may be muddy if the weather has been wet.
Catering Lunch at the Hope Inn at Newhaven (British style menu) and possibly tea at the Coffee Shop in Broad Street, Seaford (closes at 4pm).
Getting home Trains leave Seaford for Brighton at 28 (direct) and 53 (change at Lewes) minutes past each hour.
My mobile 0789 985 1172 Please let me know if you're planning to meet at Lewes rather than catch the 10:09 from Brighton.


The Last Ride - Roger's Report

Sunday 13 December 2009
Berwick Circular

It was a cold morning with the promise of some rain but, even so, ten Clarion stalwarts met at Berwick station, all appropriately attired: Alice, Anne, Ian, Joyce, Mick, Richard, Roger, Suzanne and two welcome visitors from the London section, Joan and PJ.

1. Berwick station 13.12.09 bis.JPG

There was little by way of incident to report about our journey along the quiet Sussex lanes. I think everyone was focused on keeping warm and getting to the pub. It was sunny as we left Berwick; drizzle settled in after the first few miles but it didn't dampen our spirits as we sped towards the Yew Tree Inn at Chalvington.

3. After lunch Yew Tree pub.JPG

A welcoming landlord, an open fire, a table big enough for ten and a varied menu, what more could you want? Butternut squash was the reply from one or two people when they learnt that Alice had ordered the last remaining portion, but there were other non-meat options.

4 Anne after lunch Yew Tree pub.JPG

Lunchtime conversation ranged from hiring a Christmas tree in Hove to preventing nuclear proliferation in the Middle East, with something for everyone in between. Ian outlined his plans for our section's contribution to the Clarion Easter meet, which were heartily endorsed. And then it was out into the cold again for the short push back to Berwick, just in time for an early train home.

Many thanks to Ian for an enjoyable finale to another good year of Clarion cycling!


Cycle Forum Meeting report

[I should have included this in the last circular. Our regular rep is of course Roger, but he couldn't make the last meeting and I deputised. Ian]

Quadrant and Undercliff 
Arising from the previous meeting it was reported that the right turn from North Street in to Queens Road for cyclists has been banned on safety ground because of fears that cyclists would be vulnerable to buses and taxis, that audit results on the Undercliff Path are still awaited while no approach to the Forum has been made by the auditors, but this will be pursued. The Council's Traffic Regulation Orders web site is being upgraded
Terms of Reference
With some minor amendments the Terms of Reference for the Forum were agreed.

Representation on Civic bodies 
The Forum will be invited to join the Traffic Partnership and Tony Green - or a substitute - will attend to represent us. Tony also represented us at the Cycling Town Project Board meeting. Most aspects of the project seem to be going well.

Cycling Issues Database
The Cycling Issues database looks as though it may be much more effective than similar initiatives in the past because of the provision to review the issues on a six monthly basis. We shall see.

Update on the 20mph review
The demand for 20 mph speed limit zones has been led by local resident and a general limit is under consideration. The Forum will take whatever opportunities it can to give evidence about saving.

Woodingdean, Lewes Road, UoS
Issues resolved or on the way to being so via consultation include the Advance Stop line at the Coombe Road/Lewes Road junction and improvements at Woodingdean crossroads. There has been large-scale support from residents for 20 mph speed limits and the Council is looking at the issue seriously. There will be opportunities for the Forum to give evidence. There is concern about the cycle route near Sussex University with the changes to road layout underway there. Steve Reeves who has the key responsibility will be invited to the next meeting.
Meeting dates were agreed for Tuesday 12 January at Prestermex and Tuesday 9 March at Hove Town Hall.


The Origins of the Clarion Cycling Club and cycling in the 1890s

49. Blatchford prepares for the Meet - continued - Thursday to Monday

Thursday - Same as Wednesday – only more so.

Friday - too stiff to walk downstairs. Had the cycle up into the sitting room and swore at it

Sunday - Went out in the morning. Mounted the animal boldly in the High Street and road about six miles!

I don't think I broke any records, as I lost a lot of time carrying the monster up and down hills. This is a hilly place.

Found it better to mount on the flat, because when you mount uphill the thing always turns round and tries to bite his tail.

As for mounting downhill, I only tried it once.

I don't know what happened, but I found myself under a hedge with the machine in my lap.

I noticed at this time that the nettles were growing very nicely.

This is a nature note, On Monday I shall make my will and start for Shanklin.

* * * *

Monday - I now know. You should never travel without sticking-plaster and bandages.

This morning I rose as one clothed in confidence and I said "Let Dangle creep thro' Surrey lanes with two men to hold him on his machine; I will ride to Sea View and back by dinner time. I am a roadster".

I rode. The way hereabouts is hilly, and somewhat too lavishly decorated with rough stones. But I rode – and walked – to Sea View, and after admiring the beauty of the place set out on the return journey. I was proud of myself. I was doing a twelve mile run.

Pride goeth before a fall. I was galloping along a roached-backed road near St Helens when the right handle came off the machine !!!!!!!!!!!!

There were many thorns in that hedge, but I collected them all. I didn't miss a thorn,

More than that, I did not miss a great blably, gnarly, knotty elm root. I hit it fair and square with my cheek bone and ********

Soon after a good-tempered labourer came by. He took me to a spring he knew off and stanched the blood for me.

One good turn – just so . We called at a tavern at St Helens, where I slaked the thirst of the spade-man and borrowed some stamp edging from the landlady. Then I road home – with one lovely black eye.

These are pain and unvarnished facts. When I got home I made a few graphic remarks.

* * * *

But 'tis an ill wind etc. I am now in a position to offer a few hints to the young cyclist.

Firstly - Don't have a machine with loose handles.

Secondly - when indulging in such healthy exercise as taking headers, don't choose a sot where an elm root stands in the way of your face. Elm roots are harder than the hearts of the wicked or the cheek of the righteous. When you want a header choose a sand heap or a nice mossy bank.

* * * *

Perhaps the wisest plan of all is to travel on foot - lend your machine to some other fool. I have said,

Next time – More on the first Easter Meet

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