Past Ride

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Sat Sep 14th 2019
Ride and Stride for Historic Churches 2019 2*
Steve Swanton
Start Time:
9:30 am
Start Location:
This Saturday sees the annual Oxfordshire Ride and Stride event in aid of the Oxfordshire Historic Churches Trust (further details can be found at: ).

On the day over 500 churches and chapels in Oxfordshire are open to welcome visitors and the idea is to either stride or ride (awheel or ahoof) to visit as many as you like. It is a great opportunity to visit some of our local historic churches, some of which are rarely open to the public Many provide refreshments. Having ridden with friends for a number of years, Gareth and I decided to run it as a club ride last year. It was great fun with a highlight for Steve and Eddie of climbing over the bells to reach the roof of the church tower at Shrivenham!

So the plan is for an all-day ride at 2* pace with (obviously) a lot of stops. Some will be brief and some longer depending on particular points of interest and the temptation of refreshments. We plan to start as per usual at 9:30 from OMH and head eastwards. Our route will take us to Wallingford for lunch and on to Dorchester Abbey which has a wonderful volunteer-run tearoom. Overall we are hoping to visit up to 31 churches starting in Lockinge. We'll be using quite a few stretches of easy off-road, which will be fun (this includes a bridleway across the meadows from Dorchester to Days Lock) It's not compulsory to do the whole ride and we can advise on routes home. For those who fancy the whole day, we expect to reach our last church (probably Drayton or Steventon) just before 6pm. And we'll expect to be back in Grove before 7pm - but lights recommended.

Although participants are encouraged to seek sponsorship, we normally make a donation. This is split between the OHCT and a church you can nominate.

Please contact Steve (07857 527990) or Gareth (07817 701644) for more information.

It's an interesting and fun day out and a very social day awheel. Do join us for some or all of the day.
Steve came up with an excellent route for the ride and the weather was also just right - a sunny day with little wind. The aim to be to visit as many churches as practical within the time window of the 'Ride and Stride' event (10:00 to 18:00). Five riders turned up for the day's activities. After some chat at the start we reached the first church in Lockinge at 10am. From there we worked our way through the Hendreds (using some track) and out via Chilton and had lunch in Hagbourne. We made the planned target of Wallingford early afternoon - with a chance to visit many churches there. Then on to Dorchester - successfully getting to the Abbey tea rooms before closure. Our final church stop was at Applepeford - where we arrived pretty much bang on 6pm. As the person there had only seen two other riders there during the entire day we felt pleased to boost the numbers. Following that it was a steady ride back to Grove for 7-ish.
With 27 churches visited, many offering biscuits and a couple even having cake for the riders, it was a very enjoyable tour with frequent interesting stops.
Gareth Smith
74.03 km (46.00 mi)
Proposed Route:"
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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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