|Brighton & Hove Clarion Cycling Club|
Dear fellow members and friends
In Ian's absence I am circulating details of the next ride. It will be on Sunday 14 October, starting and finishing at Burgess Hill station. Full details below. (There was mention in a previous circular of it starting at Haywards Heath but that would have made it too long and hilly so please note, we meet at BURGESS HILL!)
If you have tried to visit the Brighton and Hove Clarion website recently you will know that it has not been working. Ian and Fred were aware of the problem and hope to have it solved shortly.
Hope to see you soon.
The next ride
Sunday 14 October 2007
Burgess Hill has not featured as a starting point for many Clarion rides but it does have some attractions, such as three Brighton trains an hour and plenty of places for a cup of tea near the station. There are also lots of pleasant, quiet lanes nearby.
We will head west out of town past the impressive church of St John the Evangelist, on a route much of which is very cyclist-friendly thanks to the new ring-road. Then Job's Lane, Bob's Lane and the like take us over the A23 at Hicksted and on to Shermanbury where we will go “off road” for a short distance to see some of the local sights.
The track runs along the side of the river Adur past a small-scale alternative energy scheme to the tiny and remote church of St Giles. A short walk then takes us to an impressive gatehouse, all that remains of the 14th century Ewhurst Manor.
On to Parson's Green to join the Downs Link for a couple of miles into Henfield. We can have a simple lunch at the Old Railway Tavern, or go to the Plough in the High Street, which offers a more extensive menu.
After crossing Henfield Common we will follow the A258 for a mile or so to Woodmancote and then back into quiet lanes for the homeward run through Blackstone and Godards Green.
Practicalities: take the 10am train from Brighton to meet at Burgess Hill Station at 10:13. Those coming by car may find there is a £2 charge for the station car park. For the return journey there are Southern services from Burgess Hill to Brighton at 34 minutes past the hour and First Capital Connect services at 9 and 38 minutes past.
The last ride
30 September 2007
This one was planned by Fred. We met at the Palace Pier, we being Fred, Alice (on her first Clarion ride), Jeff, Suzanne, Roger and Amanda, a friend of Fred's from London (and originally Auckland, NZ). As we set off westward the sun started to appear and warm things up a bit.
Amanda, Nick, Fred, Suzanne, Alice, Jeff and Roger outside Marocco's
At Marocco's café in Hove we were caught by Nick, another of Fred's friends, who had been chasing us ever since the Palace Pier. After the statutory group photo we were off.
Suzanne surveys the view of Shoreham across the river
At Shoreham we crossed via the foot bridge to Shoreham Beach and paused for another group photo on the Gaudiesque concrete seat, complete with its embedded Barbie Doll remains!
Barcelona in Shoreham Beach
Next stop, the loos at the eastern end of the Widewater Lagoon. This particular stop would not have deserved a mention had not Amanda dismounted from her smart new Dahon folding bike and collapsed in a heap in the thistles at the side of the cycle path. She was quickly helped to her feet and appeared to be suffering from nothing more serious than embarrassment. It would perhaps have been more polite for us not to laugh so loudly, not to photograph the incident and not to mention it in the report. [No, I can't bring myself to include the photo - Fred]
The start of the lagoon cycle path with vigilante notice
The changing colours of the cycle path
A quick breather at the end of the Lancing section
The cycle path along the 1,200 metre man-made lagoon continues all the way into the centre of Worthing, where we arrived just in time for lunch. The Denton Lounge was the chosen venue, a splendid building, opened in 1959 at the shore end of the Pier, commanding fine sea views through its huge windows.
Veggie Sunday roast at the Denton Lounge
The menu looked promising, and the bar served Harvey's which is why Fred chose it. How was he to know that most of the meals would take anything up to 40 minutes to arrive, and then only after polite reminders. However, the waitress did chase up the missing Yorkshire puddings and satisfy Fred's craving for extra gravy.
On Worthing Pier with a view towards Brighton
Then Sue and Terry arrived. They had left Brighton rather later than the main group but had made good time. While they waited for their meals someone suggested a stroll down the pier, an idea that lost its appeal once we discovered that the sun was rapidly disappearing, and, worse, the wind was getting up from the east.
Terry and Sue tuck in al fresco
So we set off homeward into the wind, leaving Sue and Terry tucking into plates full of prawns – they soon caught us up on the route back, which took us through Shoreham airport (yes we did stop for tea and in some cases, cake and pudding).
Leaving Shoreham Airport
The airport was busy: planes were taking off every couple of minutes. The flag flew at half mast for the pilot who had died in a crash during a display at the recent air show.
Over the rickety Toll Bridge
It was a pleasure to ride over the increasingly rickety Toll Bridge, knowing that its future is now assured, thanks to the efforts of Clarion members, amongst many others.
Finishing where we started
We took the inland route most of the way home, to avoid the worst of the head wind, and arrived back in Brighton after 24 miles of very enjoyable cycling.
Thanks Fred for a good day out!