Past Ride

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Sun Jul 7th 2013
Wallingford Cycle Ride and Picnic 1*
Robin Tucker
Start Time:
9:30 am
Start Location:
Wallingford Market Place
This ride will be more gentle and spread out than usual, as we follow the Benson Veteran Cycle Club rally. The main route is about 20 miles as described below. This is likely to be more ad hoc and flexible than normal rides, so I'll check with people first how they'd best like to spend the day.

IMPORTANT: Please bring a picnic, plenty to drink, and sunscreen!

We will set off from Wallingford Market Place at 9:30am and ride 3 miles to Benson to arrive at the Sunnyside playing fields just before the 10am start of the rally. The rally is an impressive collection of pre-1928 cycles in working condition, and in this case actually working! Once the rally is under way, we can follow it in small groups and chat with each other and the rally riders. The route is well signed and marshalled, and I'll bring some maps to share around so no one gets lost.

The rally heads towards Ewelme, then at the start of the village turns right and up to the air base. It bends left and tunrs left back down to Ewelme. The first rally stop - for beer - is here, and I'm told we will be welcome to partake.

We then head north past the Shepherd's Hut pub, via Cottesmore Lane, to Chalgrove. At one of the pubs here is the lunch stop for the rally. However as there will be 100+ riders queuing for food and ale, we will break out our own picnics here.

After our picnic, we'll head back towards Benson, via Berrick Salome. The rally riders gather again at the playing fields for prizes, the buying and selling of old bike bits, etc. I'll guide people back to Wallingford as and when you wish to go - probably around 3pm.

If you prefer a longer ride linked to this, I will bring maps and will help out with any routing or technical issues. The 'Chiltern Hills' leaflet on the Wallingford website is a good place to start.
Alice Robson
Robin Tucker
Riders = 2

A wonderful day for a different kind of ride. We set off to Benson to follow the Benson Veteran Cycle Club rally on its gentle meandering through the Southeast Oxfordshire countryside - and we weren't disappointed.

6 of us set off on 5 bikes. The tandemists were Richard and Louise from Stoke Row. Also John, Patrick, Alice, and me.

An easy 3 miles to Benson and the Rally started riding at 1030, not 1000 so we had plenty of time. It took about half an hour for them all 150 or so to get off, then we followed them on. Up past the airbase we past several – not surprising given the lack of gears and surfeit of weight on many of the old bikes. Then it was back down into Ewelme where we stopped for a beer (or juice) and chat with the veterans.

After a good long stop we went on another 5 miles to Chalgrove, again riding with and chatting with veteran riders along the way. The main traffic on this section was a veteran car rally coming the other way! We next stopped at Chalgrove, Richard and Louise had to head for home at this point. We sat on on the Lamb pub lawn with our picnics, and the sun shone, and the band played! (The Roke and Benson brass band).

We had a leisurely lunch before the final section, setting off in the middle of the veterans just before 2pm. Fairly soon we were back in Benson. There Alice was offered a ride on a penny-farthing (or as I believe it should be called an 'Ordinary';). She jumped at the change and was soon helped up and managed to stay up for a reasonable number of tens of yards (I like metric, but metres would be the wrong units for this!)

Once most of the riders were back in, we set back off for Wallingford. Alice and John peeled off in Crowmarsh and Patrick and I completed the full, not very strenuous 20 miles. Last week I rode 200 miles in 24 hours and a bigger contrast would be hard to imagine. But it was all enjoyable, and that really shows the glorious diversity of cycling!
32.19 km (20.00 mi)
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Ride Filter
Start Locations
Wantage Market Place
Old Mill Hall, Grove
1* - Suitable for irregular, social, beginner or family riders, pace will match the slower riders. Not hilly or long. Expect rides up to 3 hours. Gentle exercise.
2* - Suitable for regular riders who prefer to cover some distance but at a more relaxed pace. Likely to be half-day rides. Solid exercise.
3* - Suitable for experienced riders, may be hilly, long, quick, or any combination! Likely to be half or full-day rides. Challenging exercise.
4* - Suitable for athletic riders who can ride safely above the 3* standard. Quick rides for the fit.
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