|Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club|
Dear fellow members and friends
As Ian is away on holiday, it's fallen to me to send out this fortnight's newsletter. As well as details of the next rides and a report of the one yesterday, there is also an item entitled Jim's Thoughts, where he has proposed some future rides involving slightly longer journeys. Send your thoughts back to Jim, or to Ian. Also the good news (gleaned from the Bricycles website) is that Shoreham Tollbridge has been saved! I'd like to think it was all due to our fundraising efforts, but I expect they had some help from other quarters. Don't forget too that it's Car-Free Day on the 23 September. Our council has laid on all kinds of entertainment for us in the Lanes. Give it your support!
And a Happy Birthday Sheila!
The Next Rides
Sunday 30 September 2007
No it's not the Palace Pier to the West Pier! That would be too easy! It's Brighton Pier to Worthing Pier. An ideal starter's ride or for someone trying to get back into the saddle. It's 100% flat and mostly on cycle lanes. The only bit on roads is at Shoreham where we cut across using quiet suburban streets. We'll head down the seafront to Carat's Cafe at Shoreham Harbour, then over the lock gates, and into Southwick, across the Shoreham footbridge (not the tollbridge) then on to Widewater Lagoon, then it's cycle lanes all the way. Lunch at the Denton Cafe on the pier itself (which served Harvey's when I did a recce) with bracing views of Brighton across the bay. We return the same way. If 12 miles is enough you can jump ship here, or carry on to Lancing or Shoreham where the stations are not far from our route.
Start at 11am at the Palace Pier (which someone has renamed Brighton Pier). We can pick up Hoveites at Marocco's cafe.
14 October: Haywards Heath to Hassocks via Henfield (Roger's ride)
4 November (note 3 weeks later): Hassocks to Shoreham via Fulking (Jim's ride)
18 November: To be advised
The last ride - report by Sue
Sunday 16 September
Jim, Fred, Tessa, Jeffrey, Sue and a new recruit, Debbie, set out from Three Bridges station. Jim guided us along the route of the old 3 Bridges to East Grinstead railway line, now a cycle/walkway called Worth Way.
Jeff, Debbie, Tessa, Sue Fred and Jim
Encounter with horse
Admiring the view
Into the Guard's van
Posing in front of 'Eddystone' (not our loco)
Outside Horstead Keynes
The bench at Ardingly
Sue also put in a plea for a tea stop (any excuse to get off the bike) and he valiantly explored the possibilities - Tessa did a recce in Ardingly while the rest of us sat on a bench recovering from the hill climb - but no teashop appeared. Even the Lemon Tree at Hayward Heath station was closed. Just as well Tessa took the precaution of having a Mars bar after lunch. However, we had had a long and interesting stop at the Bluebell and returned home tired and satisfied - although minus Jeff. He nobly chose to miss our train to hand in some lost property left on the station, just as our train drew in.
Jim and Jeff pose by the Ardingly sign
Fixing Sue's chain
Sue P (written under protest, as a forfeit for listening to the Archers on the way out)
Additional photos by Jim
On the train (3rd class)
After lunch, at Horsted Keynes station
On the bridge in Copyhold Lane
Tessa foraging for blackberries
I have a couple of ideas for future rides based on comments on rides we have done in the past, but would like people's comments before proceeding to plan them, as they involve some longer-than-usual, and correspondingly more expensive, train rides..
Firstly, after the Downs Link ride in July, several people expressed an interest in doing the other half of it, namely from Chilworth or Guildford to Christ's Hospital. This section is about the same length as the southern half (about 20 miles) but the train journeys from Brighton would be more complicated. I would suggest going from Brighton to Guildford (this being easier than Chilworth, although Chilworth is nearer to the Downs Link) and coming back from Christ's Hospital. There is actually a direct train to Guildford at 9.40 (journey time 1 hr 17 min) but as it's a Virgin, I'd have to investigate the cycle carriage policy. Alternatively we could get the 10.16 and change at Gatwick (journey time 1 hr 31 min to Chilworth). The return journey from Christ's Hospital would be 1 hr 12 min with a change at Three Bridges.
The National Rail website tells me that the fare from Brighton to Guildford would be £16.60 and from Christ's Hospital to Brighton is £8.40.
The other idea, prompted by a ride that took place last year (which I missed) and hopefully reinforced by our most recent venture, concerns the Forest Way, which extends the Worth Way from East Grinstead to Groombridge. Unfortunately, until they get their act together and re-open the Lewes-Uckfield rail link, the only way we can do this is to get the train to Eridge via East Croydon, then cycle from Eridge to Groombridge and all the way along the Forest and Worth Ways (these are both former railway lines, so mostly off-road) to Three Bridges; the outward train journey is 2 hours long, with changes at East Croydon and Oxted. The cheap day return fare to Eridge is £19.20, and this would also cover the 30 minute journey back from Three Bridges to Brighton.
Of course, all of the above depends on there being no engineering works on any of the relevant lines, so maybe it would not be possible anyway - but if it is, any takers? (I suppose that for a ride to be viable we only need 2 of us - that's me and one other person - but it would be nice to have more!)
Shoreham Tollbridge saved
[From the Bricycles website www.bricycles.org.uk]
Work includes replacing the main crossbeams carrying the decking and replacing the handrails. The cost of the work will be £533,000. Part of the funding has been secured from the Heritage Lottery Fund (£172,000) and West Sussex County Council (£56,000). The Old Shoreham Tollbridge Community Trust’s application to Viridor Credits has been successful in obtaining a grant of £50,000 and has also raised to date £40,000. The County Council has underwritten the remaining £175,000 to enable the work to start and which the Trust has to repay within four years.
Work is expected to last for 40 weeks. It has been agreed the bridge will be kept open for as much as possible during this time, but it may be necessary to close it for short periods. West Sussex Cabinet Member for Environment and Economy Louise Goldsmith said: 'A lot of people have put in a lot of hard work for this scheme to go ahead. Shoreham Tollbridge is a vital link for the town and has a lot of history surrounding it. I am delighted work can now commence to ensure its future.'
Chairman of the Old Shoreham Tollbridge Community Trust Liza McKinney said: 'The Trust is delighted that the start of the work has finally been agreed. Built in 1781 and until 1968 actually the A27, its importance today in respect of providing an alternative for getting to work on Shoreham Airport and the industrial complex at its west end has never been greater, not forgetting its constant use by walkers, cyclists and horse riders. The Community Trust will be continuing to fundraise for as long as is necessary to restore the bridge and continue the educational work associated with it.'
Anyone who would like to make a donation towards the Tollbridge restoration fund should contact the Community Trust; Liza McKinney on email email@example.com or Vera Tickler on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Car Free Day 2007 - Sunday 23 September 12-5pm - 'Streets for People'
The Lanes and New Road in Brighton will transform into a traffic free, pedestrian-friendly space for everyone to enjoy! Walk, cycle or take the bus to Streets for People and let the world be your pavement.
The 'Village Green'
Little East Street Bandstand
Solutions Inc – The Solutions inc stage in Brighton Place will be showcasing 10 bands from the Beat The Mix Chart from 12pm till 4pm.
Bartholomew Square will host stunt bike displays, weird and unsual cycles for you to try out plus a mobile travel clinic, free travel giveaways and information on healthwalks and countryside events.
Local children and performers will parade ten huge letters spelling out CAR FREE DAY through the streets to arrive at the bandstand on Little East Street at 1pm.
On the same day London will be hosting the London Hovis Freewheel [www.londonfreewheel.com]. 30,000 cyclists are expected to participate in one of the most spectacular cycling events that London has ever seen, a 10km London route will be made traffic-free allowing cyclists to enjoy some of London's most iconic sights including the London Eye, Westminster, St Paul's Cathedral and the Mall.
The Hovis Freewheel Festival will be at St James's Park. Highlights include a Hovis picnic, BMX, mountain and trial bike stunts, cycling acrobatics and a cycling circus creating a total cycling experience with a festival atmosphere.