Past Ride

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Sun Feb 19th 2017
Tour de Swindon 2017 3*
Nick Stokell
Start Time:
9:15 am
Start Location:
Monthly 80-100km (50-65 miles) all-day touring ride, lunch and possibly tea stop en route, at a riding pace of 18-22km/h (11-14mph). Not suitable for irregular riders. Climbing almost inevitable.

This is a slightly modified version of a ride I led last March which proved popular. It's mostly on quiet country lanes with a few hills in the first 25 km but not too many afterwards. It is however quite a long ride for this early in the year.
This time I wanted to avoid the stretch up through Blunsdon so we will take a slightly longer route through Ewen and Cotswold Water Park and then Highworth on the return leg.
Meeting place is the free public car park at Shrivenham on the left off the Highworth Road. Entrance is on Martens Road ( SU 2363 8886 ). There are no toilets there but we will programme in an early coffee stop at Chiseldon (3 Trees Farm Shop) (15 km). Then westward through Broad Hinton, Clyffe Pypard, Dauntsey, Little Somerford to Malmesbury, looping through the town to avoid the A429 for lunch probably at the Summer Cafe (51 km).
Usual 3* touring pace (11-14 mph) with re-grouping at the top of hills.
Some of the lanes are likely to be a little muddy/gravelly and there has been hedge trimming going on, so bring a spare inner tube, as well as lights in case of poor visibility or delays.
I would be grateful if you could let me know if you intend to ride (text on 07582483315, or email on
David Talboys
Hugh Falkner
Jon Townsin
Katherine Boyce
Nick Dunton
Nick Stokell
Pete Wrench
Sharon Bedford
Riders = 8

white cloud
Five of the 3* regulars were joined by newcomer Pete Wrench at Shrivenham. Katherine and Sharon joined us a few miles down the route at Hinton Parva, Katherine having decided that maybe 2 wheels were necessary after all! Dave then incurred the wrath of the local gods (well the farmer anyway) with his hedge stop and we set off up the hills towards a pleasant coffee stop at the 3 trees farm café at Chiseldon.

After the long climb out of Wroughton we turned off westwards at Broad Hinton into a slight headwind. It was on the steep descent at Clyffe Pipard that Dave hit some mud on the left hand edge of the road and crashed spectacularly. Fortunately his injuries were less severe than at first appeared – lots of bruises and a nasty looking cut near his eye – and he declared himself fit to continue. Not far behind Dave and perhaps distracted by the drama unfolding in front of him Jon also came off but escaped with a few bruises. Eventually the leader returned from the bottom of the hill (sweat) and we de-camped to a local driveway (see Hugh's photo). Attempts to repair Dave’s two flat tyres resulted in further burst inner tubes before we discovered that the rear tyre was gashed. As time was moving on half the group set off for the lunch stop. A tyre boot eventually resolved the problem and the second group, already feeling hunger pangs (time lost 52 minutes!), set off at speed for Malmesbury only to be further delayed by a further puncture (thorn) to Nick S’s tyre.

I think we all needed the hour long stop at the Summer Café and left there well fed and in better spirits. We followed wonderfully quiet lanes through Oaksey, Ewen and into South Cerney. Sadly time did not allow us the luxury of a tea stop at Cotswold Water Park, so we worked our way back through Down Ampney and Hannington to Highworth and the last leg to Shrivenham arriving back just before sunset.

Thank you to everybody for being such a great bunch and Dave in particular for staying in such good spirits despite the pain he must have been in. Newcomer Pete was unperturbed throughout -hope to see you again!

PS After a late night session at the JR, Dave was looking much better at the Ride Leaders’ meeting on Monday evening.
100.00 km (62.14 mi)
Ride Details:
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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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