Do YOU Have Something to Say..?

 

We’re looking for budding authors for both

the CycleSeahaven Newsletters and Website Blogs.

It could be a one off or a series of articles:
something you’ve done to do with cycling, or with (an official) CSH outing – maybe even without your bike!
It could be how cycling or CSH has helped you in whatever way.
You can be one of the original members or one of the newest,
the youngest member of the club or the oldest.
Whoever you may be, I bet YOU have something to say that others will find interesting!

As long as it’s legal (!) and relevant send it to the webmaster email address to see your words published.

If you’re not happy with putting something together yourself,
drop a line to the webmaster email address and we’ll happily help 🙂

 

 

Winter Touring Rides: Change of Start Arrangements

During the winter months of December, January and February our Sunday morning touring rides will start at 9.00 am, same as last winter. This will commence next Sunday, 2nd December.

Also, these rides will start at the entrance to Friston Car Park, ie the same start point as for most of our Tuesday and Thursday touring rides. We won’t be starting at the Martello Tower unless a ride goes westwards towards Brighton.

Our first touring ride of winter will be this Sunday, 2nd December, which will include a refreshment stop at Chilley Farm Café. Details are on the Rides Calendar.

Happy cycling

Clive Aberdour

Channel Hopping

Touring cyclists on Seaford Promenade

Seven tourers met at the Martello Tower this morning; five were going to Horam but the other two decided to head for Newhaven ferry port and hop across The Channel to Dieppe to do a short tour of Upper Normandy. The sea was like a mill pond so they should have had a smooth crossing. I wrote about channel hopping to Dieppe in the latest issue of the Cycle Seahaven newsletter (seahaven cyclist). We are fortunate to have a ferry port on our doorstep; Dieppe is only four hours away. Next year Phoenix-CTC is aiming to have several cycling trips to France using the Newhaven-Dieppe ferry starting with a Dieppe Channel Hopper over the May Day bank holiday weekend.

As for the other five, we had a very pleasant ride to Horam using a slightly modified route to the norm. The touring ride next Sunday will be to Heathfield. I wonder if anyone will hop across the Channel instead!

Happy cycling and channel hopping,

Clive

Last of the Summer Touring Rides

Cyclists outside the De La Warr Pavilion at Bexhill

Autumn was suspended for a few days this week; summer returned! The weather was warm and dry with virtually no wind; superb conditions for cycling. In fact, the lack of wind meant the cycling was easier than usual and we were in danger of exceeding our average touring speed of 12 mph! (We could have promoted ourselves to the Intermediates)!

On Tuesday we cycled to the Old Loom Mill café on the Cuckoo Trail at Summerhill where we basked in the sunshine as we had our elevenses.

It was even hotter on Thursday. Nine of us rode to Bexhill; a round trip of 44 miles which is mostly reasonably flat, apart from Chapel Hill so makes for quite a relaxed ride. The good weather certainly attracted plenty of cyclists onto the roads; it would be no exaggeration to say there were more cyclists than cars on the stretch between Pevensey and Bexhill.

We couldn’t resist a photoshoot outside Bexhill’s iconic art deco building, the De La Warr Pavilion, before commencing our return journey. A final café stop at the Arlington Tea Gardens (24 degrees by now) before returning back across Chapel Hill to finish our ride at Friston Car Park.

All in all this had been a terrific ride to Bexhill: great company, superb weather and a nice route. It’ll be back to autumn for our ride next Sunday which will be to Horam.

Happy cycling,

Clive

Horses and Cyclists: A Video

Cycling UK in conjunction with the British Horse Society has issued a short video guide on how cyclists should pass horses. It’s worth watching. Please CLICK HERE to see the video.

A post on this subject, Horses and Cyclists, was issued on 21st August.

Safe and happy cycling,

Clive Aberdour

Horses and Cyclists (Updated)

This is an updated version of a post issued a couple of months ago. Since then some research has been carried out on this topic.

Horses are a common sight on many of the country roads and trails in the Cycle Seahaven area. They are usually very well ridden, the riders are friendly and there’s rarely a problem. Here are a few tips which should allow you to pass safely.

  • Remember a horse is a “prey” animal, it will view anything moving behind it as a potential threat.
  • On bridleways, it is important that cyclists give way to horse riders (the Countryside Act 1968 gave cyclists the right to use bridleways but stated that they must give way to horse riders and walkers).
  • Let horses and riders know you’re there. A horse is unlikely to see or hear you, especially if you are approaching quietly from behind. Calling out ‘hello’ to equestrians is welcome and important in alerting horses and riders that you are there.
  • Never ring your bell when near a horse. If you do, then it could startle the horse.
  • When approaching a horse from the rear ask the horse rider if it’s OK to pass. Speak in a calm voice, never shout.
  • Don’t pass until they say so; sometimes they will tell you to wait.
  • Pass wide and on the right. Most horses are used to traffic passing them on the right so pass them as you would anyone else; don’t cut inside, and allow plenty of room in case the horse is surprised or startled.
  • Large groups of cyclists are very scary for horses. Passing in small groups of no more than four or five will really help. If you are in a large group, make your presence known so that equestrians can try to find somewhere safe.
  • Always pass a horse at a moderate, steady pace, i.e. not too fast. You’ll probably need to slow down but there’s no need to stop unless the horse looks agitated in which case the rider may tell you what to do.
  • When you pass a horse from the rear tell the rider how many cyclists are following you if you’re the first cyclist to overtake.
  • When approaching a horse from the front switch off a flashing front light if you’re using one.
  • Talk to the rider as you pass to demonstrate to the horse that you’re friendly.
  • Never cross a level crossing if a horse is already on the crossing or about to cross it. Horses can get a shock if they touch a rail which could be nasty if a horse bolted. (That’s why some level crossings have posts for the horse rider to touch for discharging any static).
  • If you come across a horse that looks unsettled, always keep a good distance from it and wait. Usually, the horse rider will signal to pass when they have the horse under control or will pull the horse off the road and into a field.
  • Above all, never do anything to startle or frighten a horse.

We hope these tips prove useful. If any horse riders are reading this then we’d very much welcome your comments, especially if you have further tips which would enhance the safe passing of horses by cyclists. Please leave a reply below.

Safe and happy cycling,

Clive Aberdour and Dave Sutton

(Touring Ride Leaders)

Horses and Cyclists

Horses are a common sight on many of the country roads where we cycle, especially in the Arlington, Ripe, Chalvington and Chiddingly areas. They are usually very well ridden, the riders are friendly and there’s rarely a problem. However, I’m aware that some cyclists are unsure what to do when they encounter horses so, as an experienced ride leader for road cyclists, I thought it might be helpful to suggest a few tips. So here goes: 

  • Never ring your bell when near a horse. If you do then it could startle the horse and you’re likely to be rebuked by the horse rider. 
  • Always talk to the horse rider in a calm voice, never shout. 
  • Always pass a horse at a moderate, steady pace, ie not too fast. You’ll probably need to slow down but there’s no need to stop unless the horse looks agitated in which case the rider may tell you what to do. 
  • Always give horses a wide berth when passing and only pass when it’s clearly safe to do so. 
  • When approaching a horse from the rear ask the horse rider if it’s OK to pass. Don’t pass until they say so; sometimes they will tell you to wait. 
  • When you pass a horse from the rear tell the rider how many cyclists are following you if you’re the first rider to overtake. 
  • When approaching a horse from the front switch off a flashing front light if you’re using one. 
  • Talk to the rider as you pass to demonstrate to the horse that you’re friendly. The weather is usually a good subject; riders usually appreciate this. 
  • Never cross a level crossing if a horse is already on the crossing or about to cross it. (Horses can get a shock if they touch a rail which could be nasty if a horse bolted. (That’s why some level crossings have posts for the horse rider to touch to discharge any static). 
  • Above all, never do anything to startle or frighten a horse. 

Please regard these tips as just suggestions rather than golden rules. They work for me and are based on my many years (decades, in fact) of cycling along country roads and passing horses as well as advice from horse riders. 

Just occasionally, I come across a horse that looks unsettled in which case I always keep a good distance from it and wait. Usually, the horse rider will signal to pass when they have the horse under control or will pull the horse off the road and into a field. 

I hope this is helpful advice. However, I’m always willing to learn so I’d very much welcome comments from any horse riders reading this. 

Happy cycling, 

Clive 

Summertime Cycling has arrived

Astronomers think that summer starts on the summer solstice (21st June) but meteorologists and cyclists know that it really starts on the first day of June. It’s now the 3rd June and the weather conditions for today’s Sunday morning cycle rides were perfect: warm, dry and virtually no wind. Yes. Summer has certainly arrived.

The three road cycling groups, the Tourers, Intermediates and Sportives met at the Martello Tower at 8.30am. The destination was Horam so the tourers took the direct route and headed northwards to Horam. However, the sportives went west and the intermediates went east but arrived at the Lakeside Café in Horam before the tourers! Perhaps that’s not surprising as the tourers like to chat and admire the countryside.

It was great to see so many other cyclists on the roads; it almost felt as if we were cycling in France although, of course, we were on the opposite side of the road.

There will be more such cycle rides during the summer so it’s worth keeping an eye on the Rides Calendar.

Incidentally, there are three touring rides each week, on Tuesday and Thursday as well as on Sunday. Our Tuesday touring rides now incorporate sections of shorter, flatter routes aimed at those wanting to get back into cycling. We call this ‘Easy Touring’ and the typical route distance is 11 miles. This Tuesday, we’ll be going to Ripe. Details are on the Rides Calendar.

Happy cycling,

Clive

Ripe’s Winged Wheel

The CTC Winged Wheel at Ripe

The Sunday touring ride to Arlington today went past the derelict pub, ‘The Lamb’ in Ripe. It looks an eyesore so wouldn’t normally be worthy of a photo except there is something intriguing about it to cyclists. Take a look at the photo and you’ll see, located high up on the outside wall of the pub, a CTC (Cyclists Touring Club) Winged Wheel plaque. These cast-iron plaques, two feet in diameter, were issued by the CTC about 120 years ago to approved inns and hotels. Clearly, The Lamb was such an establishment; shame it’s closed down. However, there is an excellent café just across the road.

The $64,000 question is what will happen to this plaque when the builders get to work on the old pub; it seems unlikely to continue as a pub. Hopefully it can be saved and put to good use.

There’s a website if you’d like to know more about these plaques at www.wingedwheels.info.

As for the one at Ripe, watch this space!

Happy cycling,

Clive