Sunday 27 May Rides to The Victoria West Marden

After earlier forecasts of thunderstorms all day the weather today ended up as dry, mainly sunny and warm with temperatures reaching  23C inland and quite humid.

There were 2 rides today meeting up for lunch at West Marden. Harvey led the short ride starting at 10.00 from Chichester Cross and taking a direct route and with 3 out being Harvey, Gill and Andy. I led the long ride from Chichester Cross at 9.00 taking a more roundabout route and I was joined by Sam, Russell and Bob so 7 out in all. We could very possibly count Chris who said hello at the start and met up with us very briefly at lunch as we were leaving.

I led the long ride out via Clay Lane, Woodmancote and Westbourne, Then it was on via Rowlands Castle into Hampshire and on to Horndean to the Cafe at the Garden Centre. This has recently been taken over by the owners of the Rowlands Castle Cafe improving the quality.

We then retraced our steps briefly before turning off on Woodhouse Lane and then a sharp wooded descent to the lane south of Chalton. Then it was on still slightly downhill to Finchdean where we headed left passing Ibsworth Church sitting alone on a hill. Then it was a long gradual climb over to Compton and on down the valley to join the short riders for lunch at The Victoria, West Marden.

We rode back as a combined group first heading down the valley passing through an especially nice area between woods,

Then it was over a short hill to Funtington and a right onto Watery Lane and down to the Pond at West Ashling for a brief break.

While there some geese on a property adjoining the pond took exception to our presence and came marching towards us making a considerable racket. Luckily they were behind a fence so I was able to get a picture without getting pecked.

We continued back on the usual lanes before turning off and down to Fishbourne Roman Palace Cafe for tea.

As we returned via the railway bridge Arthur and Lynn caught up with us having done their own afternoon ride after being kept from joining the ride by a late departing guest.

Mileage from and back to Chichester was 34 miles. My mileage from Pagham was 45.

I have taken a few other pictures during the week. On Tuesday evening I went to the Evening Cycle Racing at Goodwood Motor Race Circuit. They do 10 events starting in April with just the next 2 Tuesdays left. The picture was taken with a 250mm lens.

Yesterday I rode to Earnley Butterflies and Gardens and one of the shots taken with a macro lens was of 3 butterflies gorging on a rotten Banana.

For more details and a larger picture see


Ride to Tangmere Aviation Museum Café Saturday 26th May 2018

The weather dawned breezy and sultry for a ride to Tangmere Aviation Museum Café. Eight cyclists gathered at Chichester Library, including Julia, a newcomer.

The group set off from the library heading north towards North Walls, before turning east towards St Richard’s Hospital.  Fortunately, no one wanted to visit the A & E Department (!), so everyone carried on in a north-easterly direction through the Swanfield Housing Estate, using a cycle path to come out near the Bunnings roundabout.

Having crossed over the roundabout, the group continued along Stane Street, which was originally a Roman road and the route of the A27.  At Maudlin, the cyclists veered off to the right along a cycle path signposted to Tangmere.  The route continued for a short way alongside the A27 before everyone diverted into the village.  The group arrived at the café at 2.50 pm.

We had a photo opportunity outside the Museum

Following tea, the group made their way back to Chichester via Tangmere Road and Drayton Lane, to pick up the A259 cycle path towards Chichester.  On arriving at the A27, everyone went over the footbridge and carried on down Quarry Lane, through the industrial estate, to Whyke Road, taking a left and then a right hand turn to go down Kingsham Avenue.  On reaching Stockbridge Road, the group crossed over the railway line and took the cycle path which runs in front of the Westgate Leisure Centre and Chichester College.  At Westgate, the remaining cyclists headed east back into the city, arriving in the town about 4.30 pm.


Thursday 24 May Evening Ride to The Ship and Anchor Ford

During the day there was a long period of heavy rain but by late afternoon it had cleared away to the north leaving us with a warm dry evening with light winds. John was the leader and 8 of us in all met at Felpham Leisure Centre including newcomer Martin. Julian joined us at the Pub.

Harvey recommended that we avoid the Barnham path as it was quite muddy after the days rain. I had heard of people cycling on some of the tarmaced parts of the partly completed cyclepath to Littlehampton so suggested to John that we try it out from Flansham to Comet Corner. We headed out that way taking the usual very convoluted route via various estate roads..

At Flansham we picked up the cyclepath after negotiation of a barrier across it meant to stop people like us from using it. The path in this section is nice and wide with a verge separating us from traffic. We negotiated a few more barriers before getting round a mini digger at Comet Corner. There follows a sequence of pictures showing our Christening Ride on the path.

John then led us on the back road up to and through Yapton. Then a nice loop to add some miles taking in Lake Lane to Barnham and then the Barnham Walberton Cyclepath to Walberton. Then it was Yapton Lane back into the North End of Yapton, again, before turning off on Ford Lane to the Pub

As we got ready to leave a picture with flash showed up our reflective cycle gear nicely.

We took a direct return via Ford Lane, Yapton and into Middleton and back to Felpham. Ride distance for the evening from and back to Felpham was 16.5 miles.


Sunday 20 May Ride to Hooksway


Due to engineering works the very  long train assisted ride was cancelled and amended and notified to members by email to be a ride starting at Chichester Cross to The Royal Oak, Hooksway. The day started cloudy and cool but the sun came out after an hour and it stayed warm and sunny up to 15C. Jeff was the leader and was joined by myself, Mike, Sam and Tim

Jeff took us on a fairly convoluted route out of Chichester taking estate roads north from West Street to link up with Broyle Road. Then we turned off onto Brandy Hole Lane which is pleasantly quiet between trees, Sam stopped to add a coat which coincided with a group on horses coming out of a field.

Then on to West Stoke and a left turn on a not much used Lye Lane and on via East Ashling trying to find a route through the village between the potholes. We turned off on Southbrook Road to West Ashling and then round via the wet Watery Lane to Funtington. Then it was a more familiar road over the hill to Racton and onto the B-Road north up the valley. Jeff turned off on a favourite Colin loop via Locksash Lane and some hills. I was into hill avoidance and went straight up the valley to save us a table at Compton for elevenses. After elevenses a lot of interest was taken in a quite old car.

After a brief way north we took a right turn on a narrow lane across country with a lot of cyclists coming the other way on an event and a few steep hills added in.

While the others headed on a route via Up Marden Stoughton and East Marden I took a more direct route via North Marden and a stop for Sandwiches at the 12th Century North Marden Church with a long bench overlooking green fields. We met up at the Royal Oak pub, Hooksway which is in a beautiful hollow with the way out being back up the hill save for tracks up to the ridge of the Downs.

Back up the hill after lunch we stopped to regroup at the top.

Then it was on to Chilgrove and a left turn on a lane with 3 hills and a brief break at the final hill.

Then it was down to West Dean turning off onto the top end of the Centurion Way cyclepath.

Then on down with a brief break on the trail near Lavant.

We headed for a tea stop (ice creams) at the Chichester Canal Basin.

Mileage from and back to Chichester for the main group was 35. Including my ride home my mileage was 43.

Meanwhile on the short ride to East Wittering Harvey led Ray Gould and Andrew with a route down the Salterns Way and Piggery Hall Lane to lunch at The Boulevard Cafe.


Sunday 13 May Ride to The Hamilton Arms, Stedham

Although a lot cooler than last weekend It was still a pleasant dry and sunny day with temperatures up to 15C and a westerly wind.

Just 3 of us met at Chichester Cross, myself as leader plus Bob and Keith Dodman. Chris joined us for lunch after bell ringing.

We headed out via West Street and then the South Coast Cycleroute lanes before turning off for West Ashling and on to Watery Lane which lived up to its name with a strong stream running alongside. Then on to Funtington and over the hill to Racton before heading up the B-Road via West Marden to stop for an early elevenses at Compton, we were joined there for a chat by Greg Newton who both I and Keith know from Time Trialling.

Then it was on towards Harting with a gradual climb from the south side passing woods with bluebells and wild Garlic. After a sharp descent into South Harting we took a lane to Nyewood before turning east on the very narrow Dumpford Lane negotiating at one point sand plus more than the usual potholes. Then on via Elsted Marsh and straight to The Hamilton Arms, Stedham for lunch. Here we were joined by 3 from Arun Adur led by Richard Boulton as they had a late change of destination.

Keith and Chris headed back their own ways as they were going more east. Bob and I headed back direct towards Chichester via lanes to Bepton and Cocking Hill. We stopped for tea at the Weald and Downland Museum new Cafe and spent a while there in the warm sunshine. Bob did another selfie, the last being on a ride 6 weeks back.

Then on via the gradual descent of the Centurion Way Path. The only disadvantage of the weather is more people on the path. Mileage from and back to Chichester was about 38, My mileage from Pagham was 52.

My latest picture was a close up of Oilseed Rape taken on Thursday near Shripney.

For a larger picture and more details see


Saturday Ride – Bognor Library to Arundel

The weather forecast predicted heavy rain this afternoon but despite that it wasn’t actually raining when the ride set out from the library.

To that extent the famous Cycle Bognor “no rain Guarantee” kicked in, even though the exclusions state it isn’t valid at weekends or on any weekday ending in a “Y”.

10 of us met at Bognor library, Kathryn, Maureen, Carol, Steve , Steve, Alan, David, Dave and Lucy.

I led the group round the back of Bognor to Felpham and the golf club where we took the route through the new estate to join the Barnham track at Flansham. The rain had started by now but it was light and with little wind the riding was easy.

From Barnham we continued to Walberton, then back lanes to Binsted and past the Black Horse to the Madonna pond where the tarmac runs out .

The Madonna herself was not visible today due to foliage growth and the unmade road was in the worst condition i have ever known it in some 30 years of using this route. Large muddy puddles, deep ruts from 4-wheel drive vehicles and huge potholes filled with sharp broken bricks make for uncomfortable riding and after heavy rain this route will be unusable. Such a pity for what is an ideal quiet cross country cycle route.

However we pressed on without incident to re join the tarmac, then via the cut through to Torton Hill, dropping down under the A27 and into central Arundel.

By this stage the rain had become steadier and it became evident that the weather had had an effect on trading in Arundel shops especially when we arrived at a deserted Putting Green Cafe to find it had closed early.

Reversing our tracks we went to the Riverside Cafe. Again closed early.

Onwards to Gaskyns where the proprietor was taking the boards in and just locking up.However with his mind focused on the till he offered to stay open and serve our party. As it turned out we did not have the place to ourselves as others walked in after us. So a good decision by our host.

When it was time to leave we found the rain had got heavier and we were now riding into it.

The return route was straightforward down Ford Road to Ford, then Ford Lane to Yapton, Bilsham, Comet Corner and Middleton.

Although not everyone had brought full wet weather gear, the main weather issue was not the rainfall per se, but the huge puddles along all our poorly drained roads which soaked footwear and legs. We all made it back in one piece however, and as is customary on these occasions, it stopped raining as soon as the ride was over.

This is one of our longer Saturday afternoon rides which took an hour and a half or so to get there and about an hour back by a straighter but busier route.

The start to finish mileage was exactly 23.


Thursday 3rd May Evening Ride to The Black Horse Climping

It was a pleasant sunny evening  bring a good turnout of 12 at the start at  Arun Leisure Centre with 2 more joining us at the Pub. The Group included 3 newcomers being Chris and Val plus Scott

Steve was the Leader and he took us down the cyclepath  towards Butlins where we turned left and made our way down Limmer lane. Then it was on to the Cycle Path through King Georges Park.

Then  along Middleton Road out to Comet Corner where we crossed the busy A259 and made our way to Yapton. There it was a right into Burndell Road and Yapton Road with a brief stop at the edge of the village to switch on lights. We continued to the A259 where we turned on to a path which when we get round to it will be part of the new cyclepath. Here then is a picture to answer the many motorists who argue on Facebook that the new path is a waste of money, will be little used by cyclists who will keep using the road anyway.

After crossing the Road we headed straight up a lane to stop at the Black Horse Inn where we headed indoors to get out of the evening chill and were served by a French barman. Russell and Julian soon joined us coming from Littlehampton.

I discussed with Russell and Steve and we decided to split the group in 2 for the return to make less of an obstruction for motorists. I led the 2nd group and kept a suitable distance from Group 1. We headed directly back on the main road which is usually a lot quieter in the evening. We could see the new cyclepath on the north side which looked in the light from cars to be fairly well advanced and is due to be finished by early next month.

We returned from Comet Corner via Middleton. Mileage for the ride was about 11. My mileage from home at Pagham was 20.7. For the first time as a test I recorded my mileage on my Smartphone using Stava and the map of the route is below. This includes my ride from home.