|Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club|
16 July 2004
Dear fellow members and friends
As some of you will know already, Sheila was taken to hospital with suspected pneumonia at the end of last week. Those of us on last Sunday's ride sent her a 'Get Well' card via Joyce who was visiting her that evening and we all hope to see her out on her bike again as soon as possible. Since then I have received this message from Joyce:
'Sheila is very much better – walking around – chatting. Whatever it was (they still have not given a definitive diagnosis), seems to be receding.'
That's really good to hear.
The Last Ride
Chris, Joyce, Sharen and Richard and me set out from Lewes station on Sunday under a rather leaden sky with occasional drizzle. Sharen had a very bad cold and she and Richard decided to do a shorter ride by heading straight down to the Anchor Inn after going through Barcombe. The rain came down in earnest soon after we split up, but it was dry enough when we reached Piltdown Pond for the remaining three of us to eat our sandwiches in reasonable comfort. I caused some hilarity by falling spectacularly into a sea of mud on the bridleway out of Isfield but failed to capitalise on the situation by singing a chorus of 'Mud, mud, glorious mud'. Tea at the Anchor restored us, and in spite of the dodgy weather we didn't get too wet and had an enjoyable day.
[As explained last time we are going to have rides for two consecutive weeks and then revert to the normal fortnightly arrangement.]
Catch the usual 10.14 train from Brighton station or meet at Berwick station at
Sunday 1 August
Sensing a general preference – which I share – for the flatter sorts of terrain I have been trying to work out as many hill-free runs as possible – which is not that easy with the South Downs and the Forest Ridge one or the other (or both) of which have the habit of getting in the way.
We've done Chichester Harbour (none flatter!) and the Pevensey Levels, which are the obvious ones this side of Romney Marsh (let's save that for when Sheila is better) but I think this one which explores some of the area at the back of the Downs between Brighton and Lewes, will fit the bill pretty well. We can look at the Downs a lot without having to venture over them. It's only 20 miles at most – but it includes three or four miles on bridleway tracks to East Chiltington – Streat and Ditchling including the one that skirts part of Plumpton racecourse. Pubs we might stop at for refreshment include the Jolly Sportsman at East Chiltington and the Jack and Jill at Clayton (overlooking the tunnel entrance).
Catch the 9.40 from Brighton station or meet at Hassocks station at 9.55.
Anyone like to take on organising the rides on 15 or 29 August? Thanks to Chris for volunteering to organise the ride on 12 September.
Cycle issues and events in Brighton and Hove
Our (pretty minimal) constitution provides for the possibility of convening General Meetings of members to decide issues whenever people want that. By the way, I started off sending everyone a copy, but if you didn’t get one and would like one, just ask. We shall have to have an AGM early in the New Year anyway, and I suspect most of us prefer to keep meetings to the minimum. That said – having appealed for others to volunteer – I have found myself representing you at two meetings recently. I don’t think I've supported anything you would regard as controversial, but if such issues arise be assured that, depending on which you prefer. I will either call a meeting to discuss it or ask you to register a vote on the issue in question by e mail and consider myself mandated accordingly. Here's my report. If you'd like to see the full version – Roger Simmons's list of action points I will forward it to you.
8 July Cycling Representatives' meeting
This is a regular meeting of local cycling organisations with the B&H Cycling and Walking Officer. The next one will be towards the end of September. Please suggest items you'd like raised. [I shall ask for a volunteer to attend when I know the date holding myself in reserve.]
There were only 4 of us – representing Sustrans, Cycle Training South East, the English Regional Cycling Development team, and the Clarion CC – plus Roger Simmons the C&W Officer but there were some useful discussions.
1. I asked about the possibility of there being occasional consultation meetings involving all kinds of road-user. This generated a lively discussion – apparently there was some such arrangement some time ago and it is pretty standard in other local authorities. Watch this space… but don’t hold your breath.
2. It was agreed that future agendas should have as a standing item 'Issues relating to the five key cycle routes' (These routes are identified in the Cycling Strategy as South Coast Cycle Route, NCR2; London Rd corridor, NCR20; Lewes Rd Corridor RR90; Hangleton to Hove, RR82; and the Dyke Rd corridor) If you have any thoughts on any of these please let me know
3. A city cycle route map will be available soon.
4. An item on dangerous parking in the cycle lane at Coombe Terrace (Lewes Road) had been put on the agenda by the representative of the Brighton University bike-users’ group who unfortunately was not able to attend. One useful piece of information nevertheless resulted. Vehicles parked or loading illegally in cycle lanes can be reported on:
- Brighton Parking Information Centre 293225,
I suggest we make a practice of always complaining to both the relevant local authority centre and NCP (who are enforcing parking restrictions in the city) on every occasion when we come across such situations. It can only help.
5. Heather James, Community Liaison & Communications Coordinator for the
6. We welcomed the motion that’s going before the City Council complaining about the policy adopted by Southern Railways on the day of the London to Brighton ride
16 July 'City Cycling Meeting'
This is a sub-group of the B&H Active Living Task Force and as a result of attending I have put our contact details on the community database (which can be accessed via www.activeforlife.org.uk).
It was under this umbrella that the local bike week activities, including the 'Breakfast ride' which, Joyce, Mark, Tim, Chris and myself all participated in – at least a bit! The next project is to promote Wednesdays as '‘Leave Your Car at Home Day'. Especially but not exclusively on 22 September, the national 'In Town Without My Car' day.
At both meetings we were reminded about the two events in September. I shall be on holiday and miss these along with Chris’s ride on the Sunday. But if you can do try and 'assist' in the French sense at one or both. On Saturday 11 September there is a national trail-blazing ride to the Eden Project in Cornwall which will be starting off at 10 15 a m at the West Pier. If you can get along to cheer them on their way that would be welcome
But more especially please, if you can participate in all or some of the Shoreham to Newhaven Opening Ride the day before (Friday 10 September) along this stretch of the National Cycle Network please do. Sustrans are appealing for local cyclists (us) to join them. Here’s the details: you’re welcome to join (and leave!) at any point.
10.15 for 10.30 start Civic Centre, Shoreham (near the station)
11.30 meeting with B&H councillors on Seafront opposite Kings House
1 pm lunch at the White Horse, Rottingdean then on to Newhaven
Sounds our sort of speed!
For more details contact Liz Beth on 766656 or Lizb@sustrans.org.uk.
I think that’s all for now. Except what do you think about us entering next years London-Brighton as a group? Think about it and let me know.