Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club  




Dear fellow members and friends

15 June 2009

I know that several people, me included, have been wondering about how things are going with Jim's toe. So , I asked him for a brief report and here it is:

There's not much to say really – I am still using the crutches for going out, and still wearing the special shoe. I have an appointment on 1st July when hopefully I will be 'signed off' and can then walk around normally. Not sure about cycling though – after the appt I will (assuming the doc says it's OK) try a short spin round the park, and hopefully if all goes well I will be able to do at least the shorter version of the Shipley ride on the 12th.

Toll Bridge – Sunday 5 July

Efforts to check start times etc have so far failed – neither organiser being at the other end of the phone – and the promised 'starter packs' are yet to arrive. When they do I'll send out a 'special' on our own suggested arrangements for the day.

If you still need a form emails are and And/or phone 01273 885994 or 01273 462233. If you aren't doing it yourself – and haven't already donated - why not sponsor Joyce? She's at

Stop press: I've now managed to contact one of the organisers. Unlike in the past there is no set start time. I was told 'any time after 9 am' to which was added that 10 am would be a good time to aim for.  
That's a bit early for us, I think,  though I'm quite happy to be told otherwise. I said this and was told that it would of course be OK to start later – there'll be organisers at Ricardo's (the start/finish point) until 3 pm. I suggest we aim for 10.30. That should give those of us doing the 16/20 mile ride plenty of time to get to and from the Wiston tea-rooms as well as having a leisurely lunch there.  Not sure whether it will suit Allen. Please let me know.
Assuming we agree on 10.30, if you going to the start by train the best bet looks to be:-
9.48 from Brighton arriving Shoreham at 10.03.
[There is a 10.12 arriving at 10.25 but – apart from being a bit late for a 10.30 start – it involves a change at Hove.]
The best way from the station to the start is to follow the route we usually use for
(e g) the Upper Beeding run. [Go across the level crossing and turn immediately left and then proceed in a more or less straight line via Hebe Road, Swiss Gardens, and Connaught Avenue which brings you out onto the Old Shoreham Road just a few yards from the traffic island on your left. Go down and round that to the right, get on the pavement and take the left over the Toll Bridge and a few yards on to the start. Quicker than going via the High Street and less traffic. ]
I'm told that the starter packs are due to be sent out by the end of the coming week.
I've lost track of who is doing the ride this year. If you are could you please email me and tell me (or in some cases remind me) so  we can wait for anyone who is a bit late ? [I will have my mobile on the day 077 7074 3287 if – for example – you end up on the later train.] You can also suggest an alternative time to meet if you don't like the 10.30 suggestion and I'll see what the general feeling is.
Oh, and will someone bring a camera – mine is on the blink again.

Future rides

With Roger having done yesterday's ride and Leon taking on the next 3 – the middle one was going to be Jim before toe-trouble intervened – I'm taking a sabbatical. Which is great – takes a lot of the pressure off me. But it's still only the 'usual suspects' - surely there are one or two others – and they definitely don't need to be blokes – who are willing to offer a ride? Needn't become a regular habit. We had 17 people on our best attended ride. If each participant organised one ride that would just leave 7 or 8 'spare' over a year. What about it?

Apart from those of us doing the Toll Bridge ride on Sunday 5 July the rides for the rest of the year will be on Sundays 12 (Leon), 26 (Leon) July, 9, 23 August, 6, 20 September*, 4 (Roger), 18 October, 1, 15, 29 November, 13 December.

As always I'd welcome offers to organise/lead on any of the dates above that have so far not been 'claimed'. But the one marked * I definitely can't do. Make sure to let me know at least 3 weeks before – and to let me have full details at least 2 weeks before the date of the ride.

As usual you'll find the latest episode of the Origins of the Clarion Cycling Club and cycling in the 1890s at the end of this circular. But Fred spotted an interesting piece from the same period in the CTC's e-bulletin. In case you missed it, here it is. Don't know who 'I' is.

I thought I'd take a look back in the 1899 Gazette, the name of CTC's 
magazine at that time. 'The Ladies Page' for June includes some 
advice on the problem of what to wear in hot weather.

Most ladies solve it by riding without their coats, regardless of the fact that the view from behind of light shirt, waistband, bit of skirt and saddle is far from becoming … to me it seems a better plan to substitute in summer a cotton coat for the usual tweed, and to make the underclothing as light as possible. White piqué or drill is best for country riders and brown Holland for Londoners and economists.

So there you have it, 'ladies', if you are feeling a bit hot when you cycle, the trick is not to wear a tweed coat!

If anyone is doing the London-Brighton next Sunday do send us a report for the next Circular



The Next Ride

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

Sunday 28 June 2009
Burgess Hill circular ride via Newick.

Meet at Brighton station to join the 10.17 fast train to Burgess Hill.
Arrive at Brighton station by 09.50 to ensure group four saver.
Or meet at Burgess Hill station West Side at 10.27. Car parking is available close by on each side of the station.

The ride heads east out of Burgess Hill via town roads to Ditchling Common and on to lanes leading to South Chailey and Newick, this section is about 1 hour 30 minutes. Lunch at the Royal Oak, Newick. I have made a preliminary booking.

The return trip is northward out of Newick and passing over the old dismantled railway line south of Sheffield Park. Then east to Scanes Hill where we join the Lewes road for one mile, heading toward Haywards Heath.

Back to the lanes, Slugwash lane for two miles to Wivelsfield, then a slightly busier road leading back to Burgess Hill via Jane's Lane to Worlds End and Junction Road to Burgess Hill station.

The return section is about 2 hours.

Distance: 20 miles.
Hills: A few small hills that are easy to ride.
Off road: One short track section (good surface) near South Chailey to avoid a main road.
Traffic: Some urban traffic at the start then the usual lanes traffic to Newick.
One section of main road from Scanes Hill to Slugwash Lane (about a mile)
Catering: Lunch at the Royal Oak, Newick. We have used this pub before.

Trains back to Brighton: Burgess Hill station 15.41 15.44 16.12 16.41

Leon's mobile phone number: 07596927757

The Last Ride - Anne's Report

Sunday 14 June 2009
Barnham to Bognor and back, with barn owl bonus

[More photos on Flickr]
Today's ride clashed with the 4th World Naked Bike Ride so we knew Leon, Joyce and Fred would be enthusiastically there and that numbers would be diminished. Racing for the groupsave time of 9.45, I ran an amber pelican crossing, just as an elderly lady with a stick struck out early along the crossing. Fortunately I gave her quite a wide berth, but both of us were a bit shocked. Still got to the station before Mick, who'd had to return up our hill for his forgotten bike keys. Only Roger at the station and so no chance of groupsave anyway. As we boarded the Portsmouth train we met friend Fran with her bike. She was going to Shoreham, then cycling up Downslink to Henfield Arts and Gardens Day, with its tea and cakes – maybe we can try to do this another year.
Tessa and friend Linda got on at Hove as the station master anounced that those wishing to travel faster could change to the faster train on platform 2. Bit of a poser but remembering Angelica's unfortunate incident while attempting to change train on a previous ride, where she got stranded, between the two, we stuck fast to our carriages, making mental note to maybe start from Hove sometimes. Arrived at pretty Barnham station to meet Ian. Angela had been hoping to join us there too, but, couldn't. So we were 6.

14.6.9 Clarion Barbham to Bognor + other bits 006

The landlady of the pub opposite the station agreed to take our photo and I asked her to put the pub in the photo, out of gratitude for the photography. Regretted it afterwards as the station itself was picturesque and said Barnham on it – thus labelling the ride [or not thus, as it turned out]; my fault as my camera was the only one available. Landlady keen for us all to have a drink, but we were all keen to get going on the ride; as we did.
Heading north to Walberton we soon circled a large pond with pendant willows and I could have taken a tranquil photo, but daren't as didn't want to stall our progress. Commenting on my new Lidl cycling leggings [modestly covered with a short skirt],  Ian remarked that he hadn't seen knickers like that since he went out with Jane Austen. I should have told him that these leggings are all the fashion now for us gels and that fashions come in cycles. Passing lavish homes and gorgeous gardens, we left the roads and entered the footpaths.

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Entering Nyton Spinney we were cocooned in green branches and surrounded by swaying grasses. The girls joined in choral singing of 'Underneath the Arches' and the birds provided Messiaen-like accompaniment.  A truly peaceful, sylvan ride along field edges ensued. You had to keep your wits about you and  react to the track [footpath] and not take your eyes off to the views of the distant Downs, or you'd come a cropper, but nobody did.

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We crossed the first of several little bridges over clear, tranquil streams and came out onto roads again. After crossing a level crossing, with our leader, Roger, over and 5 left while express train rushed through, Roger joked that he had toyed with the idea of dashing off and abandoning his charges, but that would not be the Clarion way, for 'fellowship is life'. 

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As we approached Bognor we were able to use their cyclepath and Bognor CTC raced past us, without the exchange of pleasanteries we sometimes exchange with CTC. I noted curious orange patches on road and these later proclaimed themselves Home Zones with 20mph limits.

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Ariving at Bognor town and Bognor Pier, seemed to some like tripping back to the fifties, after booming Brighton. The pier was ludicrously short too, though Roger remarked that they held cycling off the pier contests annually. The web reveals that the pier is now only a third of its original length, bits being removed last year for safety reasons and that the annual Birdman Rally had been won for past 5 years by Ron Freeman who flew 270 feet. After a brief stop by Gypsy Rose Lee's fortune-telling caravan and the ladies loos, we proceeded East, past some fetching modern flats, even more covetable than Brighton's Van Allen Building in my view, past the vast Butlin's estate and Hotham Park, 'the people's park' – 20 acres of public space reopened in May 2009.We were heading for the beach at Felpham for our picnic. Mick and I [Anne] had a short swim in slightly choppy sea and dried off on the rocks. Sandwiches were swapped and the state of the Party discussed. We adjourned to the beach café and enjoyed 6 splendid mugs of great value tea, whilst money was donated to various sponsored charity events with which we were involved, like the forthcoming Tollbridge Ride. Ian's recent letter to The Guardian which topped their letters page was further debated. First rate café, but pity to see the 'Under Offer' sign which may mean changes.

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Fortified, we continued and came to the promised new cycle route, original inspiration from Fred for the ride. Surrounded by high banks of varied grasses, crossing more bridges [photos] enjoying Downland views, birdsong, windmills, varied horses, ponies, foals, nettles, ferns and trees with all habits [firs bending down] and leaves of all hues from red to green, with no other people around, we proceeded back to Barnham.

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It was a pity to leave all that loveliness, but the church at Barnham was still in an idyllic spot and when we got back to the pub and station, another treat was in store. There was half an hour to wait for the train so we went for a drink in the pub, where in the doorway stood a man with a barn owl on his arm. He was joined later by has wife with a boy barn owl [1 year old - photos]. He told us tales of the 2 there and the other two at home and the landlady was eager to advertise an imminent owl free-flying event at the pub. If anyone is interested please phone the pub.

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Trains were a bit delayed and only 3 carriages, but we all got on, apart from Ian, who drove home. Linda alighted at Aldrington, Tessa at Hove and all thanked Roger for a brilliant summer sea-side and serene country outing.


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

36. Arrangements for the first Easter Meet – and more Manchester runs.

More from Swiftsure's 'Cycling Notes' in The Clarion 23 March 1895

With the prospect of good roads and fine weather, no doubt most members of the Clarion Cycling Clubs will do their best to get into something like form for the meet at Ashbourne at Easter. The fifty, sixty or eighty miles which some will have to journey cannot be looked upon in the light of an afternoon's run.

Given fine weather it should prove a most enjoyable outing, and a means of further cementing those bonds which should unite the rapidly increasing band of Clarion cyclists.

The following letter will make known some of more particulars respecting the meet in addition to that published last week:-

Dear Sir

Birmingham Clarion C.C.

I am now able to give you more of our proposed plans for the Ashbourne meet. The Birmingham Club will arrive in Ashbourne on the Friday night. We propose to have an inter-club run on the Saturday morning, returning to Ashbourne for tea about five o'clock, and continuing the day with a smoking concert, at which it is hoped most of the clubs will be represented. On Sunday morning it is proposed, weather permitting, to walk to Dove Dale and having seen to the inner man, hold a conference at 1 o'clock at which the following items are down for discussion:-

A short description of the Birmingham Club and its objects. A resolution to form a National Clarion Cycling Club and the adoption of a National badge. The advisability of having a uniform code of rules for all Clarion Clubs. Discussion as to centre. Time and place of next meeting.

We hope to give full details as to accommodation in the first number of the Scout.

Yrs. fraternally

E. G. BROWNE Hon. Sec 30, Terrace Road, Handsworth, Birmingham


The Clarion C.C Manchester and District had two successful runs last Saturday and Sunday , over twenty members turning up for each run. Tomorrow the run is to Alderley. Meet at Fallowfield Station.

Next time. Clarion cycling continues to spread as the first Meet approaches

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