Touring Road Ride to Littlehampton – 6 August 2013

We’re quite lucky in Cycle Seahaven as we have a national cycle route going through our area as well as a ferry port on our doorstep. Cycling past the iconic East Beach Cafe at Littlehampton_800This means we can easily cycle to London or Paris using the newly signposted Avenue Verte route or cycle along the south coast on Route 2 (The South Coast Cycle Route).

So, with this in mind, four of us met up at the Martello Tower at 8.30 am. It was a beautiful morning – sunny, a gentle onshore breeze, calm sea and the ferry was in. Shame we didn’t have our passports! A ride to Paris will have to wait until another day!

Never mind, the cycle route to Littlehampton is great, being virtually flat and largely traffic-free although the section between Newhaven and Peacehaven is a disaster; the problems will be well known to Cycle Seahaven members.

After managing to get through Newhaven it was plain sailing from Peacehaven onwards. We followed the cycle route signs through some back roads, crossed over the A259 near the Smugglers Rest, then cycled along a shared cycle/foot path for a short distance before going down to the undercliff pass just before Saltdean. We soon passed Brighton Marina, a short incline there, then along Madeira Drive towards Brighton Pier. It wasn’t long before we were pedalling along the cycle path adjacent to Kings Rd, reaching the Peace Statue at Hove by 10.00 am where a fifth member of Cycle Seahaven joined us.

After that we cycled through Portslade, crossed over some locks at Shoram Harbour, diverted through Shoram due to some repairs to a bridge, then along the promenades of South Lancing and Worthing where we had a café stop by the beach. The next section, between Goring-by-Sea and Rustington entailed cycling on some fairly quiet roads before returning to the coast to cycle into Littlehampton along the promenade. (It’s legal to cycle along these promenades; why not at Seaford)?

It was 1.00 pm and time for a leisurely lunch which we decided to have on the Climping side of the River Arun at The West Beach Cafe. Good spot. The return journey was back along the same route, reaching Seaford just after 6.00 pm. That may sound like a long time but it was a round trip of 75 miles conducted at touring pace, slower along the promenades, and included four refreshment stops.

It had been a superb cycle ride; good company, perfect weather conditions and excellent route, apart from the ‘Newhaven to Peacehaven’ bit.

Must remember to take my passport next time!

Happy cycling,

Clive Aberdour