Make Hay while the Sun shines

Cyclists at the café in Muddles Green

Cyclists at the café in Muddles Green

We’re lucky to be having an Indian Summer at present as the weather is ideal for cycling being warm and dry with just a gentle breeze to keep you from getting too hot.

Last Sunday, on our touring ride to Horam, I observed plenty of cyclists on the roads taking advantage of the good weather and, this week, nine Cycle Seahaven cyclists turned up for our Tuesday morning touring ride; possibly a record turnout for a Tuesday touring ride.

The ride was to Muddles Green for a refreshment stop at Chiddingly Village Shop, one of our favourite café stops. It’s a community shop run by volunteers and we’ve been visiting the café ever since it started up several years ago. Our first visit was just a few days after it had opened and someone took a photo of us for use on their website; it’s still there:  http://www.chiddinglyshop.org

So, I took the opportunity of taking a similar photo on Tuesday; more cyclists this time!

Looks like the Indian Summer will continue through next weekend so perhaps I can encourage all members to get out on their bikes this Saturday or Sunday and make hay while the sun shines.

Happy cycling,

Clive

Bike Powered Cinema in the local press

The Sussex Express has an article on the outdoor cinema that Cycle Seahaven helped support. You can read the article in today’s paper (25th Sept 2015) or go online and read it here: http://www.sussexexpress.co.uk/news/county-news/first-cycle-powered-cinema-is-hailed-a-success-1-6975693

Thanks to Lesley, Jo and Dave  for running the bike trains from the Seahaven area, and to the organisers and other volunteers for putting on this great event.

Here’s where we posted the news of the event: http://cycleseahaven.org.uk/tbpc/

 

Avenue Verte is getting Popular

Cyclists on the the Avenue Verte near Dieppe

Cyclists on the the Avenue Verte near Dieppe

It’s great to see increasing numbers of British cyclists using the Avenue Verte between London and Paris. Ten years ago it was a rare occurrence to see a Brit cycling along the original 43 km (27 miles) section of the Avenue Verte between Dieppe and Forges-les-Eaux. However,  in 2012  a cycle route called the Avenue Verte,  which included the original section,  was signposted between the British and French capital cities. Perhaps not surprisingly,  this appears to have caused the surge in numbers.

Last week four of us from Cycle Seahaven,  Joe Hamilton,  David Tyler,  Derek Thorne and me cycled from Dieppe to Paris and back on a route loosely based on the Avenue Verte. We rode on the original section and I was amazed to see more British than French cyclists riding along it. Admittedly,  there was a charity ride on our return trip but there were still plenty of other British cyclists using it,  often in small groups like us. The Avenue Verte is certainly getting popular!

We chose to short-circuit the Avenue Verte about halfway to Paris to reduce the distance,  partly because we were travelling with panniers so inclines were hard work but also because I knew that some parts of the signposted route need improving.

Our trip started with an evening crossing on the ferry from Newhaven to Dieppe where we stayed overnight at the Hotel de la Plage. Next morning,  after a good breakfast,  we set off to cycle about 80 kms (50 miles) to Gournay-en-Bray almost entirely along the signposted Avenue Verte route.

In Gournay we stayed at the Hotel le Cygne (super evening meal and breakfast) and next morning set off to cycle a similar distance to Cergy Ham,  just south of but avoiding Cergy Pontoise. After a few miles of cycling we were surprised to come across a newly constructed section of the Avenue Verte. This is a shared use path along a disused railway line between Gournay and Beauvais and,  just like the original section to Forges-les-Eaux,  is several metres wide and has a tarmac surface which is as smooth as a billiard table! It’s good to see the Avenue Verte being improved;  I was quite critical about some parts of it in my Review of the Avenue Verte last year.

Cyclists near the Eiffel Tower

Cyclists near the Eiffel Tower

At Cergy Ham we stayed at the Hotel Au Week-End for two nights which meant that we could leave our panniers there whilst we spent the next day cycling to and from Paris,  a round trip of about 70 miles. We entered Paris via Versailles,  through Parc St Cloud and the Bois de Boulogne and made a beeline for the Eiffel Tower. (This is an entirely different route to the Avenue Verte which finishes at Notre Dame). We only spent a couple of hours in the centre of Paris but long enough to have an excellent lunch at the Café du Trocadero.

Our return route to Dieppe over the following two days was modified so as to include a large part of the new section of the Avenue Verte between Beauvais and Gournay. It’s superb;  must use it next year in a trip to Paris.

Now that the ferry has been saved,  more cycling trips to Paris are possible!

Cyclisme heureux

Clive Aberdour

Peacehaven Discovery Rides

This Autumn join a FREE guided Discovery Ride and discover the Downs on your doorstep! Rides are suitable for all levels of rider and are designed to get more people out  exploring and enjoying the South Downs by bike.

Rides start from Winchester, Shoreham, Peacehaven and Eastbourne and each route will give you an insight in to the South Downs National Park. Using leafy country lanes, bridleways and traffic free trails and connecting you to the Downland landscape and highlighting the special qualities,  it’s wildlife and hidden histories.

All the local (Peacehaven) rides have been entered onto our online Events Calendar so they are in the same place you look for club rides. All Peacehaven Discovery Rides start from Centenary Park, Piddinghoe Avenue, Peacehaven, BN10 8RH

For more details look at the South Downs National Park website here: https://www.southdowns.gov.uk/enjoy/explore/cycling/discoveryrides/

Click and Ride…Photography in the Downs – Weds Sept 9th at 5:30pm
Capture the special qualities of the Downs landscape through a lens or camera-phone with local photographer Carlotta Luke.
Easy – 2hrs Pedal Time

Discover farms on your doorstep – Sat Sept 12th at 11:00am
Explore the farm and meet the farmer and animals at Telscombe Stud Farm.
Easy – 1-2hrs Pedal Time

Discover Churches in the Downs – Sun Sept 13th at 12:00pm
Discover the unique history of Telscombe and Southease churches with local historian Ian Everest and enjoy a picnic by the River Ouse (bring a picnic).
Easy – 2hrs Pedal Time

Discover Wildlife in the Downs – Sat Sept 19th at 3:30pm
Explore the nature on your doorstep with a gentle ride along the Ouse Valley.
Easy – 2hrs Pedal Time

Women Only Bike Skills – Sun Sept 20th at 10:00 am
A relaxed and fun way to gain or improve cycle skills with like-minded individuals, finishing with a short bike ride.
Easy – 1-2hrs Pedal Time