MTB Trail Sabotage

Cycle Seahaven have been made aware of fishing line being strung across the trails at Paradise MTB, Eastbourne.  There have also been reports of intentional damage on some of the popular tracks in Friston Forest, with logs being pulled across the trail.

This appalling behaviour has been reported by BBC News and Eastbourne Herald and our local police are taking this very seriously.

If you come across similar incidents then please let us know by using our contact page and we will share the information with members, police, newspapers and other cycling groups.

 

Fishing line between trees in Paradise Woods

Fishing line between trees in Paradise Woods

 

Trail blockages in Friston Forest

Trail blockages in Friston Forest

 

 

Cycling to Paris

2014-06-07 Notre DameThree of us,  all members of Cycle Seahaven,  recently cycled to Paris along the Avenue Verte. We were part of a group of nine cyclists from the Phoenix Cycling Club whose aim was to follow this signposted route between the British and French capital cities. The signposting had been completed in 2012,  just in time for the London Olympics.

A few of us started in London,  at the London Eye and were joined two days later by the others at Newhaven. The distance was 99 miles.

In France we took three days to cycle from Dieppe to Paris,  a distance of 148 miles which included overnight stops in Dieppe,  Gournay-en-Bray and Cergy. The finishing point in Paris was Notre Dame. We could have done it in two days but decided to take a more leisurely pace,  ie our usual touring pace with lengthy café stops.

I would like to have said that the entire Avenue Verte from the London Eye to Notre Dame had proved to be a good cycle route but that would have been untrue. Certainly,  the first 90 miles in France,  between Dieppe and Chaussy were great. The route was well signposted,  there were no busy roads and the scenery was superb.

In sharp contrast the first 40 miles in England,  between the London Eye and the start of Worth Way,  just outside Crawley,  left much to be desired. Sometimes we were on busy roads,  at other times on dirt tracks and much of the route was poorly signposted. I won’t go into detail here but suffice to say that I’ll never do that part of the Avenue Verte again!

The section from Worth Way to Newhaven was much better with the Cuckoo Trail being the best part of the route that day. However,  it fell a long way short of the first 90 miles in France.

After a rest day in Paris we cycled back to Dieppe on a largely different route with overnight stops at Chantilly and Gournay-en-Bray.

Each cyclist had a copy of the Official Guide to the Avenue Verte which I reviewed in March. It proved to be a great help,  especially when we found ourselves off-route which was on numerous occasions when leaving London and also on the entry to Paris.

It had been a largely enjoyable ride and although some parts of the Avenue Verte couldn’t be described as cycling friendly,  we had had some great times,  both on and off the bikes. And, of course,  a ‘chill out’ day in Paris was a bonus.

I’ll be writing a review of the Avenue Verte which will be posted to the Cycle Seahaven Blog soon. It should make for interesting reading for anyone contemplating cycling to Paris.

Southease to Rodmell Opening Celebration

Saturday 7th June

The weather forecast for rain did not deter the 50 walkers,  horse riders and cyclists who attended the official opening of the Southease to Rodmell section of Egrets Way. This latest section to be completed (also called Phase 2, Phase 1 being the Kingston to Lewes section) starts at a wide gate near Southease bridge, and a lovely all-weather surface follows the river bank before turing left to Rodmell. There is an unmade section in the middle,  but we hope this will be rectified soon. Once at Rodmell you can visit Monks House,  and a little further up the road is the Abergavenny Arms. You can get to the Southease end by train. Visitors to Monks House or the Pub can use their carparks.

Cycle Seahaven were in attendance with their regular ‘Dr. Bike’  tent and three volunteer mechanics – plenty of ‘shed bikes’  were working much better after free air,  oil and a bit of knowledge-sharing on how to tweak a bike. The local policing team were there too, applying security markings to bikes – also free. Abergavenny Arms donated 100 cupcakes (yes, one hundred) to give to the hungry crowds – my favourite being the ones with salt caramel icing. Refreshments were further complemented by the Ouse Valley Cycle Network team who laid on free fruit juice.

The sun soon came out and the day became wonderfully sunny, making the most of the gardens at Monks House (National Trust), which were opened for free to those attending the celebrations. The South Downs National Park Authority were also in attendance, with a huge map and information on how the National Park is being run and developed. Did I mention the price for attending this celebration? Yup, all free.

For those looking to explore this section of Egrets Way here’s a link to Google Map http://goo.gl/maps/obyJX

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Click HERE for more Cycle Seahaven info on Egrets Way and go to http://egretsway.org.uk where you can sign up to support this amazing project.

Another write up http://disabledramblers.co.uk/2014/06/08/egrets-way-opening/

 

 

Shared Seafront Queries

Segregated Marking to join or leave the seafront

A few Seaford residents have been in touch with Cycle Seahaven for clarification on the design of the shared cycling scheme on Seaford seafront between the Martello Tower and Edinburgh Road. The floor-painted markings at the Martello and Edinburgh Road ends were installed by East Sussex County Council to guide walkers and cyclists on and off the seafront, and are not intended to suggest any form of further segregation along the route. Seaford Seafront is a Shared Route, and not segregated. Segregation for this flat secion is only at the start and finish.

 

The blue circular signs along the lower seafront depict a bicycle above some pedestrians, further clarifying the fully shared nature of the route (sign 956).

shared use sign

shared use sign 956

 

A segregated route, on the other hand,  (like the one on Brighton seafront or over Bonningstedt Parade between Edinburgh Road and the Sailing Club) would have a painted line along its entire length, and the circular blue signs would show a cycle on one side and pedestrians on the other, separated by a vertical line (sign 957).

Segregated 957

Segregated 957

 

The other question we are asked is ‘why are cyclists not segregated?’.

Segregation of cyclists has been shown to foster a ‘them and us’ attitude to safety. Also it does not give guidance for other users, such as dogs, scooters, wheelchairs (motorised or not), runners and skaters. A dedicated cycle lane would encourage cyclists to ride faster, similar to the way a road cyclists would attain relatively high speed on a dedicated cycle lane in the road. A fully shared route (without lines) is indeed cheaper but, more importantly, the assumed respect for others and lack of inferred ‘rights’ has been shown to be safer for everyone. As the yellow signs say – Share with Care.

ShareWithcare

 

 

Change in markings at Bonningstedt Parade

Segregation markings at Bonningstedt Parade