Proposed “upgrading” of A27 – Beddingham to Polegate

A27 East of Lewes road improvement scheme

Preferred Route Announcement from Highways England

The preferred route is detailed in the linked document.  Briefly, there is a shared use path from Beddingham to Polegate for pedestrians and cyclists; there are small changes at Drusillas Junction and very small changes at Wilmington, together with changes at Polegate junction.

However, there are no changes proposed for Firle nor Selmeston, and no centre refuge at Wilmington, only a “ghost island” !  Guess who’s going to end up as ghosts!

See the document at Preferred Route document

Our original assessment of these proposals was posted on 21st Nov 2016, here: A27 East of Lewes – infrastructure schemes

5 Day Tour of Normandy September 2017

Whilst Clive was taking some Seahaven riders along the Loire Valley, four members from the Touring Section went on a five-day mini tour of Normandy in early September, the total distance cycled over the five days was 260 miles as a round trip from Seaford, utilising the Newhaven to Dieppe Ferry. The aim was to introduce new tourist members to unsupported cycle touring, avoiding busy roads and where possible riding some of the many “Voie Vertes” or green routes.

Day 1 Dieppe to St Valery en Caux 29.2 Miles (17 miles on car free cycle routes) 1368 ft of ascent.

A short ride from Dieppe took us to the Veloroute du Lin, a former railway route that has been converted to leisure use, similar to the Cuckoo Trail.  This just left a few short miles on quiet roads to St Valery en Caux.


Cifftop at Pourville Sur Mer

Veloroute du Lin
Day 2 St Valery en Caux to Honfleur 53.2 Miles 1647 Ft of Ascent. All on Roads.
 
A  quiet back lane route on the most part took us to Honfleur, highlight of the day was crossing the Pont de Normande by bicycle. Honfleur is a medieval port, with a fascinating history , it has a bustling centre with many with many bars and fish restaurants.

Pont de Normande

A well-earned Beer
Day 3 Honfleur to Evreux 58 Miles 2242 Ft of Ascent 26 Miles on Traffic Free Routes
Another disused railway cycle route (Eure 2 Voie Verte) took us off road from Pont Anthou to Evreux, through the heart of the Normandy Countryside.
Start of the Eure2 Voie Verte
Day 4 Evreux to Gornay en Bray 61.3 Miles 1851 Ft of Ascent 21 Miles on Traffic Free Cycle Routes.
It was time start heading back to the Channel, our destination town for the longest day of the trip,  Gornay en Bray,  familiar to those of you who have cycled the Paris -London route. Once over the River Seine river we cycled past the coach loads of tourists at Monet’s Garden, which looked pretty with the late summer roses in fine bloom.
We picked up the Eure 4 Voie Verte de La Vallee de La Epte another former railway line which merges with Avenue Vert at Bray et Lu. This particular route finishes at Gisors.

The Abbey at Gisors
Day 5 Gornay en Bray to Dieppe 47.5 Miles 951 Ft of Ascent 30 miles on Traffic Free Routes
We followed a route close to the Avenue Vert as far as Forges Les Eaux (Heathfield’s Twin Town), where we picked up the former railway line that drops all the way into Dieppe.
We stopped for refreshments at Neufchatel en Bray, in the former railway station that is now a café.

Cafe at Neufchatel en Bray
A thoroughly enjoyable five-day tour, not too many steep hills with most of them being gearable. France really has opened its countryside to Leisure cycling, and is experiencing a bit of a tourist bonus as a result. About 100 miles of the trip utilised traffic free tarmac surfaced former railway lines, the easy gradients being a welcome relief from some of the hills in Normandy. Nearly all of the rest was on quiet D or C class roads. A more detailed write up with routes is available from Dave Sutton who is contactable via the ride leaders page. It can also be downloaded from THIS LINK

I’m glad I Had.
Good company and a Garmin GPS with back up navigation methods.
 
Next time I Would
Choose a town centre hotel for Evreux.

Happy Cycling Dave
Photos Dave Sutton, Joe Hamilton, Phil Draude and John Buchan.

Cycle Touring in the Loire Valley

Cycle touring in France is always a pleasant experience and, as we live on the south coast of England, it makes sense to pop across the Channel now and again to indulge in our pleasurable pursuit on the right hand side of the road!

Three months ago four of us from Cycle Seahaven channel hopped to Dieppe for three days cycling in the Seine-Maritime department. We’ve now followed this up with a trip to one of the best regions in France for cycling, the Loire Valley. It’s reasonably flat, there are lots of signposted cycle routes, chateaux to admire, plenty of cafes, not to mention the fine wines of that region.

However, to get there by bike you have to cycle through Brittany or Normandy although for those who are used to cycle touring it all adds to the pleasure of cycling in France.

So, with that in mind, four of us from Cycle Seahaven joined eight other cyclists from Phoenix-CTC at Portsmouth ferry port recently to catch the night ferry to St Malo where our week-long cycle tour began.

We cycled through Brittany to Angers in the Loire Valley which included an overnight stop at Vitré in Brittany en route. Then, we had two full days of cycling in the Loire staying overnight at Chinon and Tours before heading back to the Channel through Normandy. This included hotel stops at Le Mans, Bagnoles de l’Orne and Ouistreham from where we caught the ferry back to Portsmouth.

It was a great seven days of cycling, 420 miles, not to mention the highly convivial evenings in the local restaurants. Our only disappointment was that it was over too soon. Perhaps next time we’ll spend longer in the Loire Valley!

Whilst we were on this trip four other Cycle Seahaven cyclists were also in France touring in Haute Normandie. Dave Sutton has added details and photos on the Cycle Seahaven Facebook page.

Time to start planning a return visit to France, I think!

Bon cyclisme,

Clive

Your views on the AGM

The Committee are looking to ‘tweak’ the format of the AGM and we’d welcome your input. Members have been sent a link inviting responses. If you didn’t receive it you can find it here. We look forward to your suggestions.