|Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club|
Dear fellow members and friends
Good to see such a good turn out for the last few rides – with new participants joining us as well as many of the 'usual suspects'. Nice to see John who'd ridden down from Tunbridge Wells and incorporated a bit of pottering with us into his much more testing schedule.
Our route goes north for a while, by Hurstpierpoint College then round the lanes to just by the motel off the A23, crosses (on a bridge!) to Hickstead and then takes Bob's Lane across to Wineham (possible lunch stop at pub). Then down the lane and track through Shermanbury which I have checked out – much better than that Abbot's Wood stretch on the Cuckoo Trail ride in August. After that there's short unavoidable bit of A281 with another possible pub stop (which I hope to check out before the ride) and then down the B2116 as far as Blackstone Lane; down that and across and round by Bramlands, joining A281 for just a short spell before Shaves Wood and back to Hurstpierpoint and Hassock via the aptly-named Bedlam Street (or near it). It's about 19 miles and pretty flat mostly.
Neil, John, Mei, Suzanne, Ian and Roger at Berwick station
Ian led the way along the gently undulating foot (or more like, big toe) of the Downs to join the Cuckoo Trail just south of Hailsham. John, Neil, Fred, Roger, Suzanne and Mei gratefully followed. Look out for possible imminent Bank Holiday congestion charging on local trails. This one was packed with walkers, ramblers, strollers and dog exercisers, not to mention the full range of cyclists from men on mountain bikes to tots in trailers.
Neil, Mei, Roger and Suzanne
Sustrans 'chuggers' accosting passing cyclists on the Cuckoo Trail
The dappled shade of the Cuckoo Trail
The May Garland at Hailsham
At lunch – it was a carvery, but Neil and Fred negotiated a veggie version!
Neil, John, Fred, Ian, Mei and Roger
John parted company with us to cycle (what appeared to the rest of us) the punishing two hours to get back home to Tunbridge Wells. Now we were six and ready for the graceful slide back down the hill to Berwick.
Outside Farley Farm – note blue plaque on the left
The Berwick Inn for tea
This we found in the pub at Berwick Station. No need to look at our watches to check the time of the train. As the barriers started to come down over the level crossing the remaining five Southern Trains-borne cyclists wandered over the road and on to the platform, in perfect time to board the train at the end of a perfect day.