Bury Cyclists' Touring Club

Last Updated 12/11/2016

Sunday 13 December 2009

 

Eight riders, including newcomer Julia, set off from Bury in dry conditions for the joint A and B ride to Roughlee. At Edenfield some ‘re-tuning’ to Julia’s bike was carried out by Nigel and we all continued through Rawtenstall and over Burnley summit. John left the ride early in the direction of Hapton and Accrington so Julia went with him as we did not want to risk her overdoing it on her first ride and being put off for life. She coped with the climbs out of Accrington and Ewood Bridge admirably. The rest of us took the direct route through Reedley Hallows and Fence to the Clarion Clubhouse. After lunch we avoided the steep climb to Newchurch by taking the recently surfaced track to outlying cottages then we took to the lanes to Sabden Heights before making a steep and rapid descent to Read. After Clayton-le-Moors we took the direct route home through Accrington and Haslingden.

It was a good winter day’s cycling for all.

Sunday 29 November 2009

 

The prospect of rain and high winds put off members from turning up for the planned ride to Red House Farm. A few members did brave going out for a solo ride.

Sunday 22 November 2009

 

Only five riders showed up on a dull day with wind and rain forecast. The planned ride to Delph was replaced with a ride to Haigh Hall. Setting of along Bolton Road and into Bolton, we joined the canal path which led to Lostock Junction. John left the group at Westhoughton for a ride home via Hindley and Atherton whilst the others continued through Standish to Haigh Hall. By the afternoon rain was falling and the direct route back to Bury was taken with about 40 miles covered.

Sunday 15 November 2009

 

Vera had a puncture even before we started the ride to Waddington on Sunday. Broken glass from Saturday night ‘revellers’ caused the delay on arriving in Bury. Phil mended it for her and then we all set off up Walmersley Road to Edenfield. We had a discussion here. Brian wanted to take a hillier route to our destination via Burnley. He was alone in this as the others preferred an easier ride via the traditional route through Whalley. On our way again we had to make a brief stop in Haslingden to take cover from a heavy shower. We continued in brightening conditions to complete our ride and for the rest of the day we enjoyed dry conditions.

Sunday 08 November 2009

 

After last week’s washout there was the prospect of reasonable weather for our ride to Tockholes. This is a short ride so we made it a bit testing by taking the roman road from Edgworth to Lower Darwen. We left Bury by the Woodhill cycle path to Brandlesholme where light rain began to fall prompting a stop to cape up. Then on to Hawkshaw and Edgworth where rain stopped. On one of the steep climbs from here Beryl’s chain came off whilst changing gear forcing her to dismount and walk. Once into Lower Darwen it was uphill again until we arrived at Tockholes cafe for lunch. Kevan had developed a slow puncture prior to arrival. He was joined in his misery on leaving the cafe by John who investigating his tyre and tube could find no fault. Pump and ride was required for the remainder of the journey home for both riders. This means pumping up the tyre, riding a few miles until it deflates and pumping again... and so on until home.

Sunday 25 October 2009


The clocks went back an hour on Saturday night so there was no excuse for a late start for the planned ride to Longton. In fact we changed the destination to Croston and we all set out together towards Belmont into a westerly wind. On arrival at Belmont reservoir, a small group including Mark and Nigel decided to go for a longer ride to Scorton. We all descended to Abbey Village but the 'B' group headed towards Brindle and Leyland to join the flat lanes into Croston.


Sunday 18 October 2009

 

Knutsford was the destination for this week’s club ‘B’ run. It turned out to be a joint ride with Mark riding with us through Agecroft and Eccles to cross the Ship Canal at Irlam. Eric was halted by a puncture, but we pressed on to Carrington Moss passing the Manchester United training ground with Brian not paying his usual homage as he had done so earlier. It was then onto quieter roads passing the Swan With Two Nicks pub and through Rostherne into Tatton Park. Phil and Nigel both suffered punctures due to thorns from newly cut hedges.

After our sandwiches were consumed in the busy cafe outdoor area of Tatton Park we split up. Nigel led a group further into Cheshire and Eric and John took a direct homeward route via Warburton Bridge for a tea stop at Astley. Brian, Phil and Vera took the even more direct route home through Sale Water Park and Manchester. A typical quiet autumn day made for a pleasant days cycling for all of between 50 and 60 miles.

 

Sunday 04 October 2009

 

Club runs have continued with good turnouts over the last three weeks with, alas, no one available to write reports. Sunday 20th September was to Marsden. Sunday 27th September took the B group in a westerly direction towards Eccleston and on Sunday 4th October north towards Barnoldswick. Favourable weather conditions were enjoyed on all rides days with a hint of Autumn in the air.

Three members set off for a short tour of the Coasts & Castles cycle route in the north east on Saturday 3rd October. A report will follow.

 

Sunday 13 September 2009

 

The recent short spell of good weather continued so a good turnout of riders made their way out of Bury on the ‘B’ ride to Longridge. Mark was with us as the scheduled ‘A’ ride to Knutsford held no appeal for him. Also with us was Alan Webb on one of the rare Sunday's he gets off work. The group split after passing through Haslingden with the main group taking the Roundhills road and the others headed towards Accrington and Whalley. After the fast descent off Roundhills, negotiating the Blackburn bypass and passing through Wilpshire the main group descended to Ribchester for a brief halt. Then it was on to Longridge and the Preston road for the lunch stop at the Sty tearoom in Spout Farm Garden Centre.

Sunday 06 September 2009

 

Only four members showed up for the planned ride to the Beard Cup Hill Climb which was held at Diggle in the afternoon. The group decided on a ride to Marsden instead. After passing through Rochdale, Milnrow and Newhey, we started the long climb towards Denshaw. Following the speedy descent into that village John diverted off towards Delph and Uppermill whilst for the main group it was on to the Buckstones Moss climb and down to Nont Sarahs pub before a right turn onto quiter roads to Marsden. Here the group met up with Phil and Vera on their way to the hill climb event. After lunch the homeward leg started with the long steady climb to Standedge into a strengthening westerly wind.

Sunday 30 August 2009

 

A dry start with rain promised later was the forecast as we made our way out of Bury towards Haslingden and the Roundhills on the ‘B’ ride to Catforth. A stop was made at Ribchester before we pressed on to Longridge and to the Lancashire Cycleway and over the A6 near Broughton. It was then on quite lanes to the lunch stop. The second part of the day took us through Avenham Park on the cycle path along the river Ribble to cut out Preston and then the familiar climb to Belmont in the now falling rain and we arrived home with just over 60 miles covered.

Sunday 16 August 2009


There was a good turnout for the ride to Croston with another new member, Gerard, joining us. The weather was very cloudy but a dry day had been promised by the weather forecasters. Led by Brian, we took the outward route through Bolton and then onto the well surfaced canal path all the way to Lostock Junction. Then it was back on the roads through Westhoughton and Aspull for a tea stop at Haigh Hall. Refreshed, we continued and swooped down the Red Rock descent where Stan took his leave of us for an early return. The main group continued up to Standish then took to the maze of lanes around Wrightington Bar and Mawdesley eventually arriving in Croston. The cafe we were looking for was in fact in Bretherton and we soon reached this. Here we ate our meals amongst a variety of antiques up for sale around the cafe.

 

The homeward ride saw us retrace some of our outward route to reach Charnock Richard and Coppull Moor to Adlington. Here some of the group took the direct route home whilst other took the road up to Rivington and a tea stop at the Chapel tea room. The last leg of the day’s ride was through Horwich and up the long hill before descending onto the Belmont road and home to Bury through Harwood. A great days riding without reaching 60 miles on our cycle computers.


Sunday 09 August 2009


The last few weeks have been the holiday period and although runs have gone ahead, the turnout has been variable and no runs reports have been forthcoming. This week still depleted with some members on holiday with some attending the Semaine Federale cyclotourist meeting in St Omer, France, we nevertheless had seven riders out including new member Phil and our youngest member Jordan back with us on his new Hewitt touring bike . A sunny day in prospect brought out Derek Berry for the first time in two years!  We decided on Dunsop Bridge as the destination as opposed to the publicised Slaidburn.

 

We set off through Edenfield and traversed Haslingden and Accrington to Whalley. It was then onto the lanes through Mitton, Bashall Eaves and Cowark where we met up with Steve Willetts and Elena on their tandem. We continued on the high road which drops steeply down into Whitewell and rode along the Hodder valley to our lunch destination – Puddleduck’s Cafe at Dunsop Bridge.

 

Beans and egg on toast consumed we had a brief chat with Steve and Elena near the bridge before setting off  back along the Hodder valley road through Whitewell and on to Chaigley back to Whalley. After a brief stop at the new bus station toilets we decided on taking the route over York hill and then over the Roundhills. The last part of the ride retraced our outward route through Haslingden and Ewood Bridge bringing us back into Bury with almost 70 miles covered after a beautiful days cycling.


Sunday 12 July 2009


It was a special club run this Sunday as we had three foreign visitors riding with us. Horst Reingruber from Schorndorf, Germany and Georges Augeraud and Marcel Vigneau from Angouleme, France. They were in Bury with a large contingent of people from those towns to celebrate anniversaries of Bury’s twinning with those towns. There was no cyclists present from Bury’s other twin towns Tulle, France and Woodbury, USA.

 

We all met at Whalley Abbey. Some, including the vistors and hosts came car assisted with others riding from Bury in the usual way. Seventeen riders in all – including Nigel’s grand daughter on a child seat. The weather was cloudy with the threat of rain, but the temperature was fine. After setting up the bikes and a photo call we set off for a 36 miles (58 km) circuit of the Ribble Valley and Bowland countryside. The route took us through Barrow, Chatburn and Sawley before a toilet stop at Bolton by Bowland. Then it was on to Holden and the first climb of the day. Here Marcel demonstrated his fitness by cycling back down to ride it all over again. Marcel seemed particularly keen on pushing Beryl up the hills!  The climb was rewarded with a swoop down into Slaiburn only slowing down to negotiate the hairpin bend near the bottom.

 

We took the quiet back road which climbs out of Slaidburn and eventually dropped down into Newton. From here we pressed on into Dunsop Bridge for a halt at Puddleducks cafe. We all managed to find a seat either inside or outdoors and an enjoyable time was had. On our bikes again we rode alongside the river Hodder to Whitewell in clearing skies with the sun breaking through. Just after the Inn at Whitewell the road was closed to cars. We dismounted and negotiated the mechanical digger and barriers before continuing on a now traffic free climb.

 

We then turned left and joined the roman road to Cow Ark before the descent to Bashall Eaves taking in a quiet back road on the way. Then it was the usual return to Whalley through Great Mitton arriving in good time to get Horst back to Bury in time to set off for his evening flight home. Georges and Marcel are in Bury until Wednesday.

 

We all enjoyed the day which can only be considered a success. Thanks to Kevan for lending one of his bikes to Horst. Georges and Marcel used bikes from MK Cycles.


Sunday 28 June 2009

 

This week the ‘A’ group destination was Glasson Dock, with the ‘B’s heading towards Yorksire, the destination being Sowerby Bridge. The warm weather continued and we looked forward to a great days cycling in the Pennine hills. First call was Rochdale and Milnrow before the long climb and descent to Denshaw. Then the Nant Sarah’s road before quiter lanes and a few steep hills into Sowerby Bridge. A rain shower was encountered on the homeward ride, but this was not too inconvenient and the warm weather meant that capes were not needed.

John had a solo ride to check out Dunsop Bridge prior to the Town Twinning ride which will take place on 12th July. Two riders from Angouleme and one from Schorndorf will be joining us on a 30 mile circuit starting and finishing in Whalley. He was concerned to find that the road out of Whitewell was closed due to pipe laying. However a bit of ducking under pipes and squeezing in between digging machines got him through. ‘Road Closed’ signs are usually seen as a challenge to cyclists who can usually find a way through.

Sunday 21 June 2009

 

Over the weekend of 19th - 21st two tandem couples, Steve and Elena plus Nigel and Mandy again with grand-daughter in tow, enjoyed the annual York Rally. On the Saturday Steve and Elena went on the 'D' ride to Thorp Arch covering a flattish route and arriving back at the racecourse just in time to shelter from a heavy shower and do some bargain hunting at the trade stands. Nigel and Mandy opted for the longer tandems only ride to Castle Howard which was a relatively easy 50-odd miles again on flattish roads. Evening entertainment was provided by The Foresters folk group on the Knavesmire.

An early start was needed on Sunday morning to attend the cyclist's service in the Minster and to explore York city centre then, in the afternoon, the cycle track along the old railway line to Selby was followed as far as Riccall. Elena enjoyed her first taste of camping despite the showers on Saturday and the cramped conditions in the tent!

Sunday 14 June 2009

 

Cheshire was the destination for this week’s club run. With Phil and Vera away and Brian still unfit (from his bug acquired whilst visiting his father in a Dorset hospital) we still had a decent turnout on a sunny morning – including Nigel and Mandy on tandem with granddaughter towed behind in a trailer. The outward route was through Little Lever, Little Hulton and Astley. After Leigh it was onto the road through open farmland around Glazebrook and a then a crossing of the Manchester Ship Canal over the Warburton toll bridge (free for cyclists) before the Cheshire lanes were at last encountered taking us to our lunch destination of Great Budworth.

Sunday 07 June 2009

 

The recent spell of good weather ended on Sunday and it was a dull but dry start to the ‘B’ run to Dunsop Bridge. Fewer members than of late showed up - no doubt due to the forecast being for heavy rain.  So we considered ourselves lucky it was dry as we rode out of Bury taking the usual route through Haslingden and Accrington to Whalley. Disaster! The Whalley public toilets were locked.  We pressed on regardless through Mitton and Bashall Eaves and on to Dunsop Bridge and Puddleducks cafe for lunch.  A good days cycling despite the cloudy weather.

Sunday 24 May 2009

 

A lovely day was in prospect as a large group of riders set off for Greenber Field Locks near Barnoldswick. The usual outward route through Rawtenstall and over Burnley summit was taken and at Nelson, after riding past the old toll house on the Blacko road, we took the right fork upwards towards Barnoldswick. This road was extremely pleasant to ride along in the sunny conditions and it brought us to the Fanny Grey Inn in Salterforth where we regrouped. Then it was a mainly downhill ride to the town of Barnoldswick and just beyond to our canalside lunch stop at Greenber Field Locks with some opting for a stop at a cafe in the town.

After lunch we all met up at the Locks and set off on the Lancashire Cycle Way to eventually arrive at Downham after an extreme roller coaster ride. From here we took the route to Worston and towards Whalley where we joined the bypass near Oakhill College for a stop at the tea caravan. It was then the direct route home through Accrington and Haslingden to round off a perfect if tiring days cycling.

 

Sunday 10 May 2009

 

A reasonable weather day was in prospect as we made our way out of Bury towards Haslingden and the Roundhills on the ‘B’ ride to Longridge. A stop was made at Ribchester before we pressed on to Longridge and the Preston road for our lunch stop at Spout Farm Garden Centre. The Sty tearoom is located here and we enjoyed a good lunch served speedily.

The second part of the day was to seek out the cycle path along the river Ribble to cut out Preston and after one false start involving retracing our wheel tracks for a few miles we found it. A short cut through a cemetery was taken first and then after the cycle track we joined the lanes to Houghton. It was then time to climb the familiar road to Belmont and we arrived home with just under 60 miles covered.

Sunday 26 April 2009

 

Another superb April day with a bit of a chill in the air but this time a rather poor turnout (compared to last week) of only eight riders for the ‘B’ ride. This included Nigel and Mandy on tandem, new member Vali out for half a day and Jill who is training for this year’s Manchester to Blackpool ride. She could have picked an easier day as the destination was Holmfirth. It was decided to change this to Marsden and we commenced on one of Brian’s magical mystery tours.

We left Bury by Heap Brow and on to Birch and Slattocks where we joined some rough stuff. Fortunately conditions were dry and this was enjoyed all the way to Royton. Then it was into the back streets and a series of climbs rewarded by spectacular views on this clear day and a long descent to Delph. It was then onwards and upwards to Standedge and the long descent on the back road to Marsden for lunch.

On leaving Marsden a bit of walking was needed to climb the sharp rise which eventually led to the main Nant Sarah’s road. It was then homeward through Denshaw, Milnrow and Rochdale. Compared to today the Manchester to Blackpool ride should be a doddle.

The ‘A riders had a long day in the saddle to Wray.

 

Sunday 19 April 2009

 

On a superb April day with a bit of a chill in the air but a perfectly blue sky we had a really big turnout for the ride to Dones Green in Cheshire. There must have been twenty riders including Nigel and Mandy with grand daughter in a trailer behind their tandem. Some newcomers too including Vali. As luck would have it a Bury Times photographer showed up to take a picture of our departure. We picked up three more riders at the Ainsworth Arms so it was a group similar in size to those in the 1950s – the perceived halcyon days of club cycling – that snaked down Bradley Fold Road towards Little Lever. We took the route through Tyldesley, Astley and Leigh to Glazebrook and Warburton Bridge.

A brief stop was made at High Legh Garden Centre where a decision was made to head for Great Budworth - a cafe more suitable for our size of group. Here an al fresco lunch was enjoyed prior to the return ride through the little lanes around Antrobus and into Lymm where the group was split by a long delay at road works traffic signals never to see each other again. It turned out that one group returned home via the outward route over Warburton Bridge, whilst the other took the route through Eccles and Agecroft back to Bury. This did not spoil a very enjoable day of cycling in almost perfect conditions with just under 60 miles covered.

 

Sunday 12 April 2009

 

Easter Tour time and after arrival by car at Bridges Long Mynd Youth Hostel in the Shropshire Hills on Good Friday (some rode down and arrived later) the early part of the afternoon was spent in the local pub sheltering from a rainstorm. However the weather brightened sufficiently for us to take a short ride to Bishops Castle to get a taster of the countryside to be injoyed over the next three days. In the brightening weather we had chance for a short walk around the town after a stop at the Poppy Cafe where we were served by our friendly Latvian hostess.

Saturday dawned bright and we eagerly set up our bikes. There was an A and B group and the B group rode off for an anti-clockwise circular tour of the quite lanes which always involved long climbs followed by descents. Most of these were on single track roads. A few of these roads were double arrowed on the maps so walking had to be resorted to on more than one occasion. At some points we entered Wales with only the dual language signing indicating this.

The lunch stop was at the pretty village of Clun. A cafe by the narrow road bridge was patronised. It was then back on the road towards Clunton where the group split with Beryl and Sandra taking a more direct route back. Most of us took the steep uphill in the direction of Craven Arms with the back roads being taken to Church Stretton including at one point a stretch of rough stuff. By this time our map reader and leader Brian Richards had acquired a new nickname from Derek – “Brian the Torturer” – having seemingly deliberately sought out the hilliest roads. In reality the hilly roads are unavoidable here unless using the busy main roads. After a cafe stop at Church Stretton it was the big one – the climb over Long Mynd. Parts of this had to be walked but the descent down to the Youth Hostel was exhilerating. 48 miles on our computers didn't do justice to the hard riding done this day.

Sunday’s ride for the B group was to local landmark Stiperstones, again in glorious weather. The A riders had their opportunity to ride over the Long Mynd setting off directly from the hostel. Having reached the summit they took the ridge road to continue their day’s cycling.

Most opted for a walk on Monday morning prior to the drive home. Those riding home set off straight after breakfast. A third consecutive fine day contributed to a very enjoyable tour.

 

Sunday 05 April 2009

 

Surprisingly only four riders set off for the ‘B’ ride to Slaidburn in good weather taking the usual outward route to Whalley and then, after a brief tea stop at the Abbey cafe, into the lanes through Mitton, Bashall Eaves and Cowark. Here we turned right on to the Marl Hill road. On the long straight descent Eric’s cap flew off so instead of being able to enjoy the resulting freewheel uphill the other side he had to turn back to retrieve his cap. At the crossroads with the Newton Fell road we regrouped then went straight across on to the scenic Easington Fell road before descending into Slaidburn for lunch. The cafe was full of motorcyclists so we ate what we had in our saddlebags before pressing on.

We retraced our route uphill out of Slaidburn around the sharp hairpin then turned right for the long climb and descent to Grindleton. Here we took the route through Waddington to return to Whalley Abbey for long awaited refreshments. The last leg of the ride was the route through Accrington and up ‘Accy Brew’ to Haslingden and home. A very enjoyable day’s cycling with 69 miles covered.

 

Sunday 22 March 2009

 

Six riders showed up for the ‘B’ ride to Sowerby Bridge on a dry but breezy day. Nigel had unfortunately injured himself in a cycling spill at work so although he showed up he only rode part way as the others, after passing through Rochdale, Milnrow and Newhey, started the long climb towards Denshaw. The strengthening wind was behind us, but its effects could be felt on the following climb to Buckstones Moss making it difficult. Here at the bleak summit the group split up with Terry and John taking the long descent to Greetland. It was difficult to stay upright with the strong crosswind and especially difficult crossing the bridge high above the M62. Once in Greetland it was onto Elland and into Sowerby Bridge fighting a strong headwind.

After a stop for a banana and sandwich Terry decided to await the other riders who would be arriving after taking a more indirect route, whilst John, in view of the windy conditions, decided to climb up to the main Halifax to Hebden Bridge valley road to avoid the stiff climb to Blackstone Edge. Although busy with traffic the ride through Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden and Littleborough was enjoyable and the final leg to Rochdale and back to Bury completed a ride of 56 miles.  

 

Sunday 15 March 2009

 

Considering the fine weather for the start and a good day in prospect it was a poor turnout of six riders for the proposed 'B' ride to Catforth. A pleasant outward route was taken via Edgworth and Belmont with Terry joining us midway. Onwards to the fast descent to Abbey Villageto and then the back lanes to the cafe at Walton le Dale. Here a split was made as some decided on different routes for the afternoon ride home.

Sunday 08 March 2009

 

Today was the 50km and 100km Charlie Westlake Sportive Bike Rides. See separate report on this website.

Sunday 01 March 2009

 

Today's destination was Wycoller. As nine riders made their way out of Bury towards Edenfield it soon became apparent that there was a big difference in riders enthusiasm for climbing. So it was that I hatched a plan to take the climbers on a little detour. As we entered Rawtenstall the non-climbing members: Kevin, Brian, Eric and John took the relatively flat valley road through to Waterfoot, rising a mere 200 feet in 3.5 miles. The climbers: (new members) Mike, Neil, Jordan and myself joined the Lancaster cycleway route 91 to add an extra 100 feet of climbing before rejoining the group on Burnley road. The fast descent off Deerplay moor split the group once more and as the faster descenders waited for the group to re-form a mighty bang was heard, resulting in a stampede of sheep. This was no angry farmer or member of the green welly brigade firing a shot gun but Neil’s rim collapsing and his tyre exploding. With the excellent Dine café just round the corner and a mobile phone to call for assistance we did not feel too guilty leaving Neil to continue on our way, the original group of nine now reduced to seven.

We continued on the challenging route 91 but as we climbed out of Lane Bottom another split was attempted. This time the steady group turned down Robin House Lane for a theoretical saving of a mile and crossing of two fords, but as Jordan, Mike and me turned onto Shelfield Lane to rejoin the group they were nowhere in sight. We pressed on to our lunch time destination of Wycoller but we had finished eating before Eric appeared at the café window closely followed by Brian and Kevin. A wrong turn had been taken and the short cut had turned into a mountainous and lengthy detour.

After lunch and with only six members left the group split in half once more to take two very different routes home. Brian, Kevin and Eric taking the tried and tested route through the heart of East Lancashire and the climb of Burnley summit while Mike, Jordan and me headed for Oxenhope moor and Cragg Vale.

Nigel Hood

Sunday 22 February 2009

 

A large group set off on the ‘B’ ride to the popular cafe at Tockholes.  As this is not of any great distance we decided to take a longer route. We set off through Tottington and climbed towards Walves.We pressed on to Edgworth and over the reservoir bridge and up to the Strawbury Duck pub where two damsels in distress were encountered. They had been thrown off the train due to a fares misunderstanding and wanted to know how to get to Blackburn on foot!  We gave them the bad news that it was too far and Mike let them have use of his phone.

Moving on, the brief stretch of rough path took us onto the Chapeltown / Belmont road. We rode to Belmont reservoir into a strengthening wind – much to the distress of Nigel’s grand daughter seated on the child seat. At the summit of the Belmont road we turned right towards Tockholes and our destination. The group split up for the homeward ride each taking different routes.

Sunday 15 February 2009


With drizzly weather and a destination South of Manchester I was fully expecting to end up riding on my own so it was no surprise when Phil and Vera announced that they were heading else where. Fortunately our new member, Jordan, was up for keeping me company for the day and John Butterworth came with us for his normal half-day ride.

I had loaded up the route into my GPS unit but had brought along a few maps just in case. The clubs usual route towards Styal was used to get south of Manchester then the GPS and google maps were set free. The number of other cyclists we saw on our route was an indication we were on the right roads. John continued towards Prestbury as Jordan and I turned towards Pott Shrigley. Most people will have heard tails of lorries getting stuck down narrow country lanes that their GPS units have told them to use as a short cut so finding ourselves riding down a road sign posted as a dead end was no surprise. Fortunately, there was only a short muddy section along oakenbank lane before we re-emerged onto proper tarmac a few hundred yards up the hill from Rainow. Having failed to find a suitable eating house in Rainow we set off back up the hill and on towards Disley but before we had travelled far a sign was spotted for Common Barn Farm, bed and breakfast and tearoom.  Half a mile up a hill in the wrong direction with low lying cloud reducing visibility to less than 50 yards and I was starting to lose faith but fortunately we found it before we gave up and a superb farm house breakfast was consumed.

After lunch the weather was starting to improve and with the GPS picking out the shortest route some excellent roads were found most notable the network of bridleways at the back of Compstall.

By the time I got home 71 miles had been covered and Jordan and I agreed that it was well worth the effort and can not wait for the longer days of summer and the opportunity to explore more of these quite Cheshire Lanes.

Nigel Hood

 


Sunday 09 February 2009

 

Another bitter cold day with the temperature on the clock tower registering minus 5 degrees C did not deter seven members for meeting up for the proposed ride to Dunsop Bridge. Once again due to the weather we decided on a shorter run to the newly discovered cafe at Cliviger. At least this week the wind was negligible so we took the long route through Haslingden and the fast cold descent to Accrington where we turned right towards Hapton. Approaching Burnley we made a right turn to the stiff climb to the Burnley Summit road crossroads.  Roadworks and Stop Go signs were negotiated before we descended to the Burnley Todmorden road and crossed to our cafe.

The Dine Cafe is to be recommended. Good value, great service and good food.  Fully refreshed and warmed up, we headed out into the cold again. Riding down to Cliviger we then climbed to Cliviger summit before enjoying the long descent into Todmorden. Then the group split with some wishing to take the direct route home through Littleborough and Rochdale. Nigel led John and Terry up towards Sharneyford. The lack of wind and dry conditions combined with the snowy landscape made the climb almost enjoyable. After the descent to Bacup we were diverted off the Rawtenstall road by Nigel’s desire to climb more hills. At the mini roundabout we forked right to take the cycleway route which is undulating to say the least. On descending into Rawtenstall it was straight across the main road for the climb past Ski Rossendale for the second week in succesion. After dropping to Haslingden we made our own direct way back home with snow flurries in the air. Another fine winter’s day cycling completed

 

Sunday 01 February 2009

 

Only five riders including our new junior cyclist Jordan braved the bitter cold and strong east wind to show up for the planned ‘B’ ride to Great Budworth. In view of the conditions a shorter ride was decided upon so we headed up Walmersley Road towards the East Lancashire Railway cafe at Rawtenstall station. We only usually visit this venue in very bad weather as it is so close to home. After our hot drinks had been consumed we set off through Rawtenstall to tackle the climb up past Ski Rossendale. The climb was made a lot easier with a fierce tailwind and we were soon at the summit and descending into Haslingden. We then headed for Holcombe Moor via Helmshore. After the fast descent from Holcombe Village the group split up in Holcombe Brook as we each decided on our own way of extending the ride home from there.

Sunday 25 January 2009

 

We don’t know if anyone turned up for the ambitious ‘A’ ride to Pateley Bridge, but there was a good turnout for the ‘B’ run to Walton-le Dale including new rider Jordan. It was dry and there was even some sunshine as we set off. Some riders decided on a shorter ride to Tockholes cafe, whilst the others took the more circuitous scenic route to Walton le Dale. This first took the riders up to Walshaw and then the climb to Affetside warmed us up and prepared us for the many short hills we were to come across. From Affetside it was down to Walves and on to Edgworth and then a left turn took us up to the Strawbury Duck pub where a short stretch of rough stuff brought us onto the road out of Chapeltown. We climbed to the A666 and thankfully it was only a short distance on this road before we forked right onto the quiet lanes which wound all the way to Belmont. Then it was the stiff climb to the summit before a very fast descent towards Rivington. We turned right before Rivington halfway down the decent and dropped to Anglezarke Reservoir before a right turn had us hitting the Granny gear for the 14% climb to another summit. Then it was along undulating lanes to White Coppice, Lower Copthurst and Brindle before the drop to our destination – the greasy spoon cafe. A great days cycling only spoilt by a headwind on the homeward ride.

Sunday 18 January 2009

 

Sorry for the delay in bringing you runs reports for the new year, but at last we can start. Ony three riders showed up for the ‘B’ ride to New Mills – and this was delayed as John punctured on the way to meeting at Bury. Eventually on our way in dry but cold conditions we headed out of Bury via Heap Bank and Birtle and on to Victoria Avenue to Hollinwood. Then it was through the charming Daisy Nook and on into Ashton. Nigel and Brian continued on through Dukinfield and Hyde, whilst John turned towards Stalybridge and rode through Mossley, Uppermill and in Delph tackled the stiff climb to Grains Bar. After a fast descent to Shaw the homeward route continued through Milnrow and Rochdale.

Sunday 21 December 2008


We had a good turnout of over 20 members attending the Christmas lunch at the Shepherd’s Rest Inn at Lumbutts above Todmorden. Most rode out from Bury in the gloomy but mild weather with a welcome tailwind. We took the direct route through Rochdale towards Littleborough before which we forked left to take the high road over Calderbrook.  This road is closed to motor traffic so made for a contrast to the main road we had just left. We dropped down, bunny hopping the rut in the road that had closed it to cars, to rejoin the valley road on which we made fast progress until taking the right fork on to the narrow road up to our destination. The steepness was made easier by the strong tailwind and we were soon at the pub door. Halfway up the hill we passed a farm with free range turkeys running around totally oblivious to their forthcoming fate.  Brian, Phil and Stan’s group arrived at the pub a few minutes before our group and we took our places at our tables enjoying with panoramic views over the valley. Steve Willets and Elena arrived soon after by car.

 

Or return route was a retrace of our outward ride with the headwind in the valley not too bad and the threatened rain making only a brief appearance in Rochdale.


Sunday 30 November 2008

 

Seven brave souls showed up in Bury in sub zero temperature for the ride to Red House Farm. Brian was absent as it was City v United kicking off at 1.30 and as a season ticket holder at City this was one he couldn’t miss. Setting off down Manchester Road and through Prestwich, the right turn to Agecroft with its chilling descent was taken. Having passed the site of the old coal mines the sharp climb to the traffic lights helped in some way to warm us up. On past Hope Hospital and over Barton bridge and over familiar roads to Irlam locks where a brief rest was taken to try and get the circulation back into our cold toes. Then it was on to Carrington and our destination of Red House Farm was soon reached. This is the venue for our forthcoming ride on the Sunday between Christmas and New Year and is a pleasant stop with its adjacent farm shop.  The return ride was over the Warburton bridge and through Glazebrook and Leigh.

Sunday 23 November 2008

 

Due to the poor weather and forecast there was no ride today.  We are looking for ride participants to volunteer to write a report of the day’s ride and send to Steve Willetts. Apologies for the lack of reports for the last few weeks. Normal service will be resumed soon.

Sunday 02 November 2008

 

A chilly but dry day made us optimistic for a good days winter cycling even though a north wind was blowing. Mark and Terry took on the ‘A’ ride to Settle while nine riders left Bury on the ‘B’ ride to Hurst Green. The ‘B’ group took an outward route through Haslingden and over the Roundhills to join the Blackburn ring road and then through Wilpshire. We all enjoyed the descent to the bridge over the river Ribble and before Ribchester we turned right onto Gallows Lane for the stiff climb to the main road into Hurst Green. A brief stop was made in the village and then we decided to carry on to Whalley for our lunch. We took the road through the impressive grounds of Stonyhurst College and then through Mitton to Whalley Abbey. After lunch the group split with two taking the direct route home through Accrington and the remainder going via Padiham, Burnley summit and Rawtenstall. Most were home by mid afternoon having covered over 50 miles.

Sunday 19 October 2008

 

Only Mark decided on going on to the ‘A’ group ride to Marsden. The planned ‘B’ ride to Knutsford was changed with the threat of bad weather for the afternoon, so instead of Knutsford a large group of riders set off for the cafe at Tockholes.  As this is not of any great distance we decided to take a longer route. We set off through Walshaw and climbed to Affetside where once at the summit our new female member suffered a puncture. Kevan was to the rescue and it it was quickly fixed and we pressed on to Edgworth and over the reservoir bridge and up to the Strawberry Duck pub where a brief stretch of rouigh path took us onto the Chapeltown / Belmont road. On reaching the A666 it was discovered that we had lost a rider so Nigel, this week on his solo cycle, retraced the route to find him. A damaged wheel due to the rider hitting a pot hole near the Strawberry Duck had caused his delay. All together again we rode to Belmont reservoir and at the summit of the Belmont road turned right towards Tockholes. Only 18 miles had been covered on arrival at the cafe but a strengthening wind made the stop all the more welcome.

This a fine cafe and much recommended. On completion of our refreshments we continued towards Blackburn where just before Lower Darwen the group split with some opting for a return home via the long steady climb on the A666 and back through Chapeltown, and the others continued down to Lower Darwen and a return via Roundhills. Both groups were home before the predicted rain started after an enjoyable sociable ride of under 40 miles.

 

Sunday 12 October 2008

 

No report for 5th October but a sunny day was most welcome. So for the second Sunday in succession we had fine weather - better than that experienced in rainy August! A group of eight ‘B’ group riders, including Nigel and his grand daughter in a child seat, set off in a northerly direction to Accrington and Whalley to the days destination of Longridge. We also had the company of two prospective new members. An early tea stop was made at Whalley Abbey before the lanes around Stoneyhurst College and Longridge Fell were tackled. We met Steve and Elana on their tandem en route and arranged to meet them in Longridge. The ride over the fell and along the ridge was enjoyed in the almost wind free weather.

On arrival in Longridge we proceeded to the Somerfield supermarket cafe but it had closed down so we pressed on to Spout Farm Garden Centre on the Preston road. As a result of this change in plan we did not meet up with the tandem pair. After lunch our long sleeve tops were put in the saddle bags and the group split up with some opting to returning via the direct route over Belmont in the unseasonably warm weather. 

 

Sunday 28 September 2008

 

After a cool start to the day things began to warm up as we made our way out of Bury towards Bolton and once through the centre we made our way onto the cyclepath between the river and the railway as far as Lostock Junction where we met Mark's dad, Len.

Back on the road through Westhoughton we turned for Aspull and then had a break at Haigh Hall. Riding on through the grounds we enjoyed a cool descent through the trees before emerging onto the A49. Busy roads were then followed to Shevington and Appley Bridge where we found our way onto a delightful country lane almost devoid of traffic. After Parbold we entered onto a network of lanes reminiscent of a maze in which it is easy to get lost. However, our navigator knew the way and we were soon in Great Eccleston and our destination of Wright's garden centre and tea rooms.

Refreshed by good food at reasonable prices and more tea than was good for us we began our homeward journey through Coppull before threading through more lanes to Adlington from where the A673 was followed back to Bolton and then our outward route back to Bury.

 

Sunday 21 September 2008

 

The first day of autumn started cool but with clear blue skies and sunshine promising a good day and better than many in August. So it was that 15 members turned out including four ladies and Nigel's grand-daughter Olivia in a child seat. Our outward route took us through Walkden, Tyldesley and Leigh before we crossed Chat Moss and then the Manchester Ship Canal via the Warburton Bridge. We stopped at Willow Pool garden centre for a look around before continuing through the Cheshire lanes to our destination of Great Budworth.

We enjoyed lunch in a farm tea room and sampled their home made ice creams in many different flavours. Photographs were taken to prove that the sun does shine in England before we set off for home! More Cheshire lanes were followed through Antrobus and Stretton to Lymm and from Warburton we re-traced the morning route. Afternoon tea was taken at Astley Hall and on the climb back to Walkden a broken spoke was suffered by Phil. The miles were now taking their toll as we rode through Farnworth and Little Lever back to Bury with around 70 miles covered.

Runs for Sunday 28th September meet Wilkinson's, The Rock: "A" Scorton, 09:00 "B" Eccleston, 09:00

Sunday 14 September 2008

 

With a chill in the air but a good weather day predicted it was a group of eight riders who set off for the ride to Rufford.  As the Tour of Britain was in the region we decided first of all to head for Tarleton to see the race. The outward route was through Ainsworth and Egerton to Belmont reservoir and down to Abbey Village where we turned left for Nigel to lead us through quite lanes to Brinscall and Whittle le Woods.  After further lanes were traversed we joined the main A59 and at a suitable viewing point stopped in readiness to view the race. We decidecd to go on to Croston later rather than Rufford. We ate our sandwiches and a good time was spent generally chatting and putting the world to rights as the wait ended up close to an hour.

 

Once the race had sped past us on its way to Southport and then to the finish in Liverpool (nobody was able to spot Danilo di Luca) we retraced our route down the A59 for a few yards before turning right into lanes near Bretherton to eventually reach Croston for a lunch stop at what was the Memory Lane cafe (the new name escapes me). Then it was back on to the lanes around Mawdesley and Charnock Richard to Coppull and Adlington then to Rivington for a final cafe stop.  After this the direct route home to Bury was taken to conclude a very enjoyable days cycling with around 65 miles covered.

 

Sunday 07 September 2008

 

The ‘B’ group rode to the annual Beard Cup Hill Climb in Diggle, Saddleworth, where an entry from Bury riders was expected. The ‘A’s rode to the Lancaster area. Unfortunately we do not have a report writer out on rides these days, but we hope that normal service can be resumed soon.

 

Sunday 31 August 2008

 

A large group of ‘B’ riders, including new member Rick, set off in reasonable weather conditions with the ever present threat of rain. The destination was that engineering wonder - the Anderton Boat Lift in Cheshire. The route took us through Little Lever, Astley and over Chat Moss for a bit of rough stuff and some quite lanes. Then over the Manchester Ship Canal and on to Carrington passing Manchester United’s training ground where Brian Richards made his traditional comfort stop. Then it was on to our destination.

 

Sunday 24 August 2008

 

Only Mark set off on the 'A' ride to Burnsall . Four 'B' riders decided on Waddington as their destination. The usual showers accompanied the riders in the early part of the day which meant that capes were on and off due to the hot sunny spells in between. The weather improved a later on in the day. The holiday season is still with us with Brian and Beryl away at the Mildenhall Rally and Phil and Vera just returned from the Semaine Federale in France. Steve Willetts and his wife have just purchased a new tandem so they were off on their own giving that a test ride.

 

Sunday 17 August 2008


Once again most members did their own thing on another poor weather day.  Hopefully club runs will resume next week.

 

Sunday 10 August 2008


Again most members are on holiday but full club runs should resume next week.



Sunday 03 August 2008


The holiday season and members away on cycle tours, including that to Tulle and Angouleme and to the Semaine Federale also in France, has meant poorly attended club runs recently.  Things should be back to normal soon.  Those riders who were at home went out for their Sunday rides but each made their own arrangements.



Sunday 06 July 2008

 

Five 'A' riders braved the unpromising weather for the proposed ride to Holmfirth. A rainy start is never too pleasant but the change to bright intervals between the rain made for a better than expected morning. The group rode out through Rochdale and Milnrow before the long climb and descent to Denshaw.  Taking the Delph road the bunch soon split with Nigel leading Mark and Terry turning left and upwards, whilst John and Alan getting a last Sunday ride in before departure for their tour to Tulle and Angouleme headed down into Delph then turned left for the climb to Globe Farm. A sharp right was taken for the descent to Uppermill where Alan suffered a rear puncture. Puncture repaired, the two proceeded to Greenfield and on to Mossley, Stalybridge and Ashton before a pleasant run through Daisy Nook, Woodhouses and Clayton. The remaining part of the ride was through the suburbs of Moston and Blackley before Heaton Park and home through Radcliffe.

Due to the inclement July weather no 'B' riders were at the start for their proposed run to Eccleston.

Runs for Sunday 13th July meet Wilkinson's, The Rock: "A" Gargrave, 09:00 "B" Trough of Bowland, 09:00

Sunday 29 June 2008

 

Four riders set off for the 'A' ride to Glasson Dock last Sunday. The outward route via Edenfield, Accrington and Whalley was taken prior to joining country lanes to Cow Ark, Whitewell and Dunsop Bridge. Then the Trough of Bowland was tackled with rain in the air. The rain didn't set in though and the long descent and ride through the countryside south of Lancaster was enjoyed before crossing the A6 at Galgate and arriving at Glasson Dock. The popular cafe was almost full with motorcyclists and other day trippers, but we managed to find seats at different tables to enjoy the good food served here.

We then pressed on to reach Cockerham, Pilling and Great Eccleston where we paid our 10p each toll to cross the bridge. The lanes through Elswick and Roseacre were ridden prior to a further tea stop at the craft shop in Catforth. Then it was the usual homeward route through Avenham Park and over Belmont in increasingly improving weather to bring us back to Bury with 100 miles recorded.

Runs for Sunday 6th July meet Wilkinson's, The Rock: "A" Holmfirth, 09:00 "B" Eccleston, 09:00

 

Sunday 22 June 2008

 

What a weekend - heavy rain on Saturday, high winds on Sunday! Our members visited the annual CTC York Rally over the weekend, either camping or visiting for the day. The high winds and rain were not conducive to much cycling on the Saturday with the campers resorting to buying food in the cafe marquees instead of cooking their own outdoors. The cycling sales were visited with many bargains being found. Sunday was at least dry and the Cyclist's service in York Minster was attended. At least five members ventured out along the Sustrans route towards Selby on the trackbed of the former East Coast Main Line where trains used to pass by at up to 100mph. Our progress was gentler but was wind assisted on the way back to York.

Sunday 15 June 2008

 

A cool but bright and promising start at 7.30 am for the 'A' ride to Hawes last Sunday, and five members met for what would be a long day in the saddle with a likely distance of 120 miles. The outward route was via Burnley and at Colne John diverted off for a ride over Cowling to Keighley before tackling the climb of Oxenhope Moor with loaded panniers.  The main group proceeded through Gargrave and past Kilnsley Cragg before arriving at Kettlewell.  From here the climb of Fleet Moss was next on the list and this is a very scenic ride, at first alongside the river and then ever upwards.  The reward was a long descent to Hawes for lunch.

 

The afternoon return ride was to the Ribblehead viaduct and then down to Settle. The direct route through Rathmell and Bolton by Bowland was taken to Whalley before the final miles through Accrington back to Bury.

 

The 'B' riders went on a more leisurely ride to Rufford.

 

 

Sunday 08 June 2008

 

Ideal cycling weather at last for Sunday's rides. The 'A' ride was to Salter Fell which only Mark and Nigel attempted. Alan and John, in training for their tour to France, decided to forego the rough stuff for a ride to the Fylde and Blackpool. The four riders rode out together with Alan and John turning off to go over the Roundhills towards Blackburn. Just before Wilpshire a left turn was taken to Mellor, Salmesbury and Walton le Dale. After stopping at the brand new toilet facilities in Avenham Park we proceeded to the lanes beyond Preston and had a delightful run through Catforth, Inskip, Elswick and Singleton prior to arriving on Blackpool promenade.  We rode past Blackpool Tower down the 'Golden Mile' to Lythan St Annes where a refreshment stop was made at a popular park.

 

After this, a speedy run down the Preston road through Freckleton before again passing through Avenham Park. Then we took the quieter alternative to the main Belmont road arriving just outside Brindle before riding towards Blackburn and taking the Tockholes road where the heat on the climb could really be felt.  Approaching Tockholes Alan got a slow puncture.  After pumping up the tyre we managed to limp to the cafe, but surprisingly it was closed. However the puncture was mended and the direct route home via Belmont reservoir, Egerton and Harwood put a total of 98 miles on the clock for the day.

 

The 'B' group had a ride to Scorton.

 

 

 

Sunday 01 June 2008

 

Back to British weather for the proposed 'A' ride to Horton-in -Ribblesdale.  Only Mark showed up and went to Gargrave instead and came back through Malham, Settle, Waddington and Whalley. For Mark it started raining in Earby and didn’t stop until about a mile from home.

Other members had solo rides as a full day wasn't really on the cards.  John rode to Southport as the weather should have been dryer towards the west - and it was at first.  An early start meant sandwiches were eaten on Southport promenade before 10am.  With ever darkening skies he rode on towards Croston and well before arriving there it began lashing down with rain.  The direct route through Chorley made for a quicker ride home arriving in the early afternoon with 72 miles covered and a major drying out exercise required.

 

Sunday 25th May 2008


Sorry, no report submitted again.  On the Saturday John Butterworth and Alan Webb rode out at 6am to meet Duncan Limbert in Manchester prior to a ride out to Lymm where we met his colleague Bob.  The four of us then did a scenic 50 miles circuit around the Cheshire lanes stopping for refreshments in Tatton Park. Although a dry and sunny day, a strong east wind had to be coped with.  Due to the early start we were home early with 100 miles recorded on our cycle computers.

I'm sure all club members send best wishes to Duncan who will marry his girlfriend Anna on June 7th.

Sunday 18 May 2008


No report submitted.

Sunday 11 May 2008

 

At last we enjoyed some dry and hot weather for one of our Sunday clubruns! Our "B" Section made it's way south with Brian Richards using his knowledge of quiet routes to the full. We headed out through Little Lever and Farnworth before crossing Chat Moss where we crossed the Liverpool and Manchester railway at a level crossing where the gates are usually closed to motor vehicles, there being far more trains around! At Irlam we followed the Manchester Ship Canal before passing into Cheshire lanes around Dunham Massey. The flat landscape was made up for by almost deserted lanes and we were soon at our destination of Tatton Park.

Lunch in the courtyard was taken in the blazing heat of the sun and after a long rest we split into two groups, one going via Sale Water Park and the other via Warburton Bridge. It was a pleasant afternoon going through Glazebrook and Culcheth to Leigh but near Farnworth the rumblings of thunder heralded a deluge which we sheltered from under a railway bridge for 1/2 an hour while Steve Willetts mended a puncture. By Little Lever the rain had stopped and we dried out on the way home with around 65 miles covered.

The “A” Section also enjoyed the hot weather on their ride to Clapham which took in the climbs of Bowland Knotts and Tatham Fell.

Runs for Sunday 18th May meet Wilkinson's, The Rock:  "A" Littondale, 08:00   "B" Sowerby Bridge, 09:00

 

Sunday 04 May 2008

 

May began as April had ended on Sunday morning as heavy rain led to the cancellation of our planned "A" ride to Lytham. 

Members are reminded that the next club meeting is on Monday 12th May at 8pm at the Trackside, off Bolton Street

 

Sunday 27 April 2008

 

April has not been a good month for our activities weather wise and so it proved again on Sunday. Our planned run to Wray was abandoned and the low turnout opted to visit our foul weather standby destination of the Clarion Clubhouse at Roughlee. Persistent rain on the way turned heavier in Burnley and we continued along main roads through Nelson and Barrowford to Blacko. Turning on to the lanes through Roughlee we opted to visit the shop at Noggarth Top for very reasonably priced pie and peas before making our way to our destination. Pints of tea were downed as we dried out wet clothes in front of the roaring coal fire and chatted to the volunteers and other visitors who, due to the inclement weather, were thin on the ground.

As we lingered the conditions began to dry up and we decided to extend our ride in the afternoon. There was still mist over Pendle as we climbed to Annel Cross and a fast descent brought us to Twiston and we continued on quiet lanes to Downham and Worston. After a brief stop at Whalley we headed for Billington and more lanes to Old Langho and Dinckley. At the De Tabley Arms the climbing began to Salesbury and Wilpshire and after the Blackburn ring road we took to the moors over Roundhills where it began to rain once again. we arrived home with 60 miles covered and the hope that May will bring better weather.

Sunday 20 April 2008

 

Cloud and a cold east wind greeted the riders as they left their homes to meet in Bury. A good turnout of 'A' riders set off for their ride to Burnsall.  The six strong 'B' group decided on a visit to Red House Farm at Dunham Massey as Terry and Brian were due at the Manchester City game at 4pm.  We set off with the wind on our backs through Little Lever, Tyldesley and across Chat Moss where after the unmanned railway crossing was safely traversed we hit the rough stuff.  We then crossed the Manchester Ship Canal - just getting through before the lock gates were opened for a pleasure boat.  A  little further on John suffered a front wheel puncture mainly due to his deteriorating tyre only noticed at the start of the ride.  A repair was made and some silver paper from Terry's butties inserted to strengthen the tyre fabric at its weakest point. This held out for the rest of the ride - a useful tip learnt.

 

Continuing on past Manchester United's training ground in Carrington some rather expensive looking vehicles passed us in the opposite direction. Their tinted windows meant recognising famous players was impossible.  Then there was more rough stuff until the open country roads leading to our destination were reached. By this time the rain was pretty steady so a lunch stop was welcome.

 

The rain had eased a little by the time we set off on the return route around Altrincham which eventually took us on to a perimeter path around Manchester Airport where we watched a succession of planes take off and land. We pressed on to a comfort stop at Sale Water Park. Here Terry and Brian left us to continue on a cycle path on their way to Eastlands for the 4pm kick off. For the others it was onto suburban roads through Chorlton and Whalley Range and onto Deansgate then a direct route home up Bury New Road.  An eventful day with 53 miles covered.

 

 

Sunday 13 April 2008

 

The planned 'A' ride to Holmfirth was abandoned due to the promise of rain over the Pennines. The weather forecast was more favourable for the west so instead six riders headed north through Edenfield and Haslingden before turning west to go over the Roundhills. From the Blackburn bypass we turned right to begin the climb up the York road. At the summit we joined the Lancashire Cycleway for a very undulating but scenic ride through narrow lanes which culminated in a stop at the cafe near Bamber Bridge.

 

We continued to a track on the banks of the River Ribble and then on a succession of cycle paths that only Nigel Hood could know about. Back on normal roads with Nigel still leading we passed through Lower Penwortham and Hoole at a brisk pace until we arrived at the antique shop / cafe just outside Croston Village for a late lunch. This is proving to be a popular venue as we were here only two weeks ago. 

 

Leaving Croston we once again joined the Lancashire Cycleway for another succession of lanes taking us towards Whittle le Woods before making our way back to Bury via Horwich with around 80 miles covered.

 

 

 

Sunday 06 April 2008

 

Our members were greeted by an overnight snowfall on Sunday morning but clear skies and a light wind made for good progress for Mark and Nigel on their run to Gargrave. Six 'B' group riders headed out of Bury through Accrington before making a tea stop at Whalley. They then continued on to Bolton by Bowland.

Conditions deteriorated later in the day but with the weather on our backs a we enjoyed a brisk return to Bury.

Sunday 30 March 2008


A chilly spring morning greeted us for the start of our clubrun to Croston in West Lancashire. Steady progress was made against a brisk westerly wind as we climbed to Ainsworth before passing through Bradshaw, Bromley Cross and Belmont. A  fast descent to Riley Green brought us onto the undulating lanes around Brindle before making our way through Leyland and onto flat roads to Bretherton. Here we tried the new (to us) venue of Billy's Tea Rooms surrounded by antiques of all shapes and sizes. After Croston we threaded through the lanes to Heskin Green before joining the A49 near Charnock Richard. At Coppull Moor we turned onto quiet lanes once more. A short stretch on the A5106 brought us to Adlington where we turned for Rivington and the Chapel Tea Rooms. The afternoon had warmed up and with the wind behind us we had made good progress. A flat route home was chosen along Chorley New Road into Bolton and Bury was reached with some 65 miles covered .

 

Sunday 23 March 2008


Easter tour to Betws-y-Coed in North Wales. A mixture of sunshine, rain, snow, hail and windy conditions topped off with a cold temperature and steep hills.  The Youth Hostel accommodation was first class within the Swallow Falls Hotel. A full report is to follow (perhaps).

Sunday 16 March 2008

 

Windy but dry was the forecast for Sunday's rides - and so it turned out. Mark and Nigel headed for Scorton whilst the four other 'A' group riders opted for a ride out into the wind towards Rochdale so as to take advantage of a tailwind on the return.  After Littleborough we headed for the Blackstone Edge climb. We decided to take the old road to take advantage of shelter from the houses. This went to plan - until there were no more houses.  We soon rejoined the main road and climbed into the wind, but we were forced to dismount near the summit due to the strong gusts. We walked the last few hundred yards to the welcoming shelter of the walls of the White House pub. It was then on to the Cragg Vale road wher we struggled into the wind at the start of the long descent to Mytholmroyd. A group of cyclists climbing in the opposite direction went passed us descenders at a faster speed!  At Mytholmroyd we joined the valley road to a stop at Ken's Cafe in Hebden Bridge for a welcome brew.

 

After lunch, aided by a tailwind, we sped along the valley road to Todmorden before turning right for the Cliviger Gorge climb via Portsmouth. Then the steep little Lancashire Cycleway road was taken to bring us up onto the Crown Point road. At the summit we turned right for the long descent to Waterfoot and on to Rawtenstall for a final cafe stop at the railway station before the return home.  A very bracing 50 odd miles were covered.

 

This Sunday we are off to Betwys-y-Coed in North Wales for our Easter tour.

 

Sunday 09 March 2008

 

The Charlie Westlake Invitation Sportive Rides proved to be popular last Sunday with a good entry for both the 50k and 100k events. The latter was boosted by a group of 9 riders from Stockport. The early morning showers had mostly been blown away by the time the riders got under way and there were severe tests of climbing on the 50k from Lower Darwen to Guide and over the Roundhills while on the 100k the climb from Downham to Annel Cross and then Towneley to Deerplay tested the riders. Both events had a sting in the tail with the climb from Edenfield to the finish at Owd Betts. However, all participants successfully completed the rides within the time limits and will receive certificates in due course. Hopefully two of the riders from Tottington may now try our "B" rides. 

At least £125 has been raised for Bury Hospice from entry fees and donations made on the day.


 

Sunday 02 March 2008

 

Very windy conditions did not deter our members for the ride along the Lancashire Cycleway on Sunday 2nd March. From Rawtenstall we followed the Rossendale Valley to Waterfoot and from Water we climbed to Deerplay before a fast descent to Burnley cooled us down. Main roads were followed with the wind behind us to Colne and Foulridge where we turned onto quiet lanes with good views across the Pennines as we passed the Fanny Grey pub.

Lunch was taken in Barnoldswick after which we turned straight into the wind to Middop and the gated road to Downham. At least the conditions were keeping the roads quiet as followed a twisting lane to Worston and at Whalley we stopped for a well earned pot of tea. As the wind was still strong we decided to take a direct route home through Accrington and we got back to Bury in daylight with some 70-odd miles covered.

 

 

Sunday 24 February 2008

 

A dry start soon turned to heavy rain for the proposed run to Downham. We got as far as Rawtenstall station cafe where a halt for an early tea was decided upon. Hoping the rain would abate was to no avail and after our brew we started out on a shorter local run. We were just approaching Haslingden when Eric had a front wheel puncture. Mended, the rain eased a little as we headed for the Roundhills road before turning left at the Britannia crossroads continuing through Lower Darwen and a couple of steep climbs before arriving at Tockholes for a cafe stop at the walkers' cafe.

We had an early meal here and later,in drying conditions, rode to the Belmont road and turned off at the resevoir and took the hilly road eventually leading to Chapeltown. A bit of rough stuff to the Strawberry Duck pub and back on solid tarmac for the descent to the resrvoir and the climb to Edgworth. It was then only a short way home after an enjoyable mornings cycling.

Sunday 17 February 2008

 

It was a hardy group who assembled in Bury for the clubrun to Catforth on Sunday. Overnight temperatures were below zero and a chilly start with windchill on any descent made for an uncomfortable beginning to the day. Climbing up Ainsworth Road warmed us up and further climbing around Bromley Cross to Belmont generated more heat. The long descent through Abbey Village to Riley Green chilled fingers and toes and from here we stuck to the main road to Preston having decided that it was more likely to be ice free than nearby lanes. We followed the banks of the Ribble through Avenham Park before heading for Ashton-on-Ribble. Entering the flat area of the Fylde we were soon at our destination of Billington's Tea Rooms where we were glad of hot food and tea.

After lunch and with temperatures rising we followed the lanes to Broughton where we crossed the A6 and made for Goosnargh. Longridge soon passed beneath our wheels and we took a brief stop at Ribchester before climbing Barker Brow to Salesbury and Wilpshire. After the Blackburn ring road we re grouped for the climb over Roundhills and from Haslingden we covered the last few miles back to Bury in dropping temperatures as the sun set in the west.

 

Sunday 10 February 2008

 

Sunday 10th was easily the best day of the year so far. With blue sky and sunshine all day after a crisp and frosty start the day gradually warmed up to a near perfect temperature for cycling.

So it was that we set out from Bury northwards through Accrington to Whalley where we took to quiet lanes to Worston and Sawley. From Copy Nook we took the long drag of a climb to Greaves from where there were good views forward to Stocks Reservoir and Bowland Knotts and backwards to Pendle Hill. A fast descent and steep ascent brought us to Tosside where a left turn took us down a deserted single track road with magnificent views of Ingleborough, Pen-y-Ghent and Fountains Fell. Next came the gated road to Wham where, if anything, the views were even better with not only the aforementioned Fells in view but also Settle and the fells beyond Scaleber and the Ribble Valley around Hellifield. Descending to Giggleswick we made our way to Settle for lunch and met up with other members who had made their own way to our destination.

Back on the road we made our way across the valley to Rathmell and after Wigglesworth we turned for Dunhazzles and then Bolton-by-Bowland. After a brief stop here some of our members re-traced our morning route whilst others went to Grindleton and Waddington. Re-grouping at Whalley Abbey we took more refreshments and, with the sun now setting and the temperature dropping, some returned by York village and the Roundhills while others took the direct route back through Accrington. We reached Bury after dark with some 90-odd miles covered, not a bad total for February.

 

Sunday 03 February 2008

 

A worsening forecast did not deter our members on Sunday's clubrun to the new venue of Beacon Fell Country Park. A tail wind greatly aided progress as we went out to Haslingden and over the Roundhills, then following the Blackburn ring road to Brownhills. we soon crossed the River Ribble by the De Tabley Arms where we saw evidence of how high the river has been in recent weeks. After a short stop at Ribchester we carried on to Longridge where we took to quiet lanes with our destination visible above us. we followed the one way system around the fell to the cafe at our destination, enjoying panoramic views all around.

After lunch we picked our way through the lanes again to Grimsargh, Ribbleton and Brindle. Progress was slower due to the headwind which we were now battling into so it was a great relief to stop at the Chapel Tearooms in Rivington for more refreshment. From here we took the line of least resistance through Horwich, Bolton and back to Bury.

 

Sunday 27 January 2008

 

At last we had a dry Sunday for our rides! But the wind which was supposed to have blown itself out in the early hours of Saturday morning was still with us as we set out on Sunday morning.

We headed west towards Bolton and instead of the usual route we took a traffic free Sustrans cycleway which runs alongside the railway line parallel with Chorley New Road to Lostock Junction. We then went across a golf course which brought us to Middlebrook Way after which we rejoined the roads to Blackrod and Aspull. Passing Haigh Hall we descended to Red Rock and climbed to Standish before Stan had a puncture at Wrightington. At Dangerous Corner we turned onto quiet lanes which avoided Parbold hill and then threaded our way to Croston using Martin's hand drawn map.

Lunch was taken in the Rendezvous Cafe in Croston after which we took a direct route to Euxton and Chorley, then following the A6 to Adlington. At Rivington a circuit was followed to extend our mileage. At Anglezarke we were delayed as the police and mountain rescue cleared the road and adjacent car park to allow the air ambulance to pick up a casualty. From White Coppice we went to Botany Bay, Cowling, Limbrick and back to Anglezarke before climbing over to Belmont. This roller coaster ride carried on to Chapeltown and Edgeworth, returning home with some 70 odd miles covered.

 

Sunday 20 January 2008

 

Heavy rain and high winds put off all but the most hardy of our members for Sunday's run to Sowerby Bridge. We cycled eastwards to Rochdale and Newhey where the climbing started in earnest as we went over by the Moorcock (no longer a pub) to Denshaw. After passing New Year's Day reservoir we climbed onto desolate moorland where we were totally exposed to the winds as we crossed Buckstones. There are normally good views across West Yorkshire from this high vantage point but today the clouds were down and we were more concerned about getting off the moors. A long descent followed into the Calder Valley by way of Barkisland and Norland to Sowerby Bridge where we had lunch in the usual cafe while we dried out a little.

Here the group split up with half taking the direct route through Triangle to Blackstone Edge whilst others took the West Yorkshire cycleway up to Sowerby and Cragg Vale before also going over the summit of Blackstone Edge followed by a direct route through Rochdale to Bury. Mark described the run as "a bit wet and quite breezy", quite an understatement.

 

 

Sunday 13th January 2008

 

Despite a poor weather forecast a hardy group assembled in Bury for Sunday's run to Catforth. The outward route took us through Ainsworth and Bromley Cross to Belmont where a fast pace was maintained alongside the reservoir and through Abbey Village to Riley Green. At Houghton we took to quiet lanes and on the approach to Preston we turned into Avenham Park. From Ashton-on-Ribble we headed straight to our destination for shelter and hot food.

The weather turned out to be better than the forecast so, after lunch, we made our way to Broughton and then along country lanes to Longridge and Ribchester. After a refreshment here we followed the usual route home through Wilpshire and over the Roundhills to Haslingden returning to Bury in Gathering gloom with around 75 miles covered.

 

Sunday 06 January 2008

 

Our 'A' group members made the most of Sunday's good weather on the clubrun to Cracoe with the only rain of the day being a heavy shower on the way up to Edenfield. Good progress was made through Burnley to Colne where we opted for the climb over Skipton Old Road followed by a steep and fast descent to Broughton. This roller coaster ride continued through drumlin country to Gargrave, Hetton and our destination.

After lunch we made our way through the lanes to Airton, Bell Busk and Hellifield. Crossing two usually busy main roads here we continued on quiet lanes to Halton West and Bolton-by-Bowland. We stopped at Whalley Abbey for refreshments before taking the York and Roundhills route home.

 

Sunday 30 December 2007

 

The last Sunday of the year was dry and quite mild and we made good progress through Accrington to Whalley. We knew that the Abbey Coffee Shop was closed so we carried on to Great Mitton where we encountered a large number of runners en route to Clitheroe. We chose to continue in the opposite direction to them and at Bashall Eaves we took a minor lane through the woods and past outlying farms to Waddington where we stopped for lunch in the cafe. Afterwards we carried on to Grindleton and Chatburn before climbing to Downham where we engaged with a steeper and longer climb under the shoulder of Pendle Hill to Annel cross. A swift descent to Barley was followed by a steep ascent to Newchurch-in-Pendle, our roller coaster ride then taking us through Spen Brook, Fence and Reedley Hallows. From Burnley there followed the 2 1/2 mile climb to Burnley summit after which we reeled the miles off back to Bury arriving in twilight with some 65 miles covered.

Sunday 23 December 2007

 

Sunday morning was damp, misty and very cold as we set out on our Christmas lunch ride to the Shepherd's Rest at Lumbutts. The main group went through Rochdale and Calderbrook before joining the road which runs parallel to the railway and canal as far as Walsden. Here we turned for Knowl Wood and began the long drag of a climb to our destination. Nigel led a group through country lanes around Milnrow (some of which had been blocked off and redeveloped as part of a new industrial estate resulting in cyclo-cross skills being required) followed by a ride along the shore of Hollingworth Lake before dropping to Littleborough. Another group assembled at Edenfield and went via Rawtenstall and the Cliviger Gorge to Todmorden whilst Mark Cranshaw took in Burnley, Colne, Wycollar and Widdop Moor closing in on an annual mileage of 11,500. Lunch was taken with a panoramic view of the Calder Valley and Stoodley Pike after which, with the sun and the temperature rapidly dropping, we all took a direct route back to Bury before dark.

 

 

Sunday 16 December 2007

 

The sub zero temperature overnight did not deter our members on Sunday and there was a good turnout for the "A" run. From Rawtenstall we took the Bacup road and at Waterfoot we turned for Water and the climb to Crown Point which warmed us up but the following descent to Burnley had our fingers and toes tingling. From Duke Bar we crossed the valley to Fence where a puncture delayed our progress and so we reconsidered our destination and headed for the Pendle Heritage centre in Barrowford.

After thawing out with hot food and tea we decided on a more direct route home and made our way through Nelson to Burnley and, finding that the temperature had risen slightly, we carried on through Hapton to Accrington. The climb to Baxenden made us generate some heat but with the sun now dipping we headed for home with around 50 miles covered.

The "B" group had what must have been one of the earliest tea stops in the club's history when we stopped at Rawtenstall railway station cafe for a warming brew after only 9 miles covered. It was then out into the cold again for the climb of Waterfoot to Crown Point and, following in the wheel tracks of the "A" group, the cold descent to Townley Hall followed by a walk and ride through the park.

Sunday 09 December 2007

 

Sunday morning started cold and damp so it was a hardy bunch who turned out for the clubrun to Roughlee. Good progress was made through Rawtenstall and Crawshawbooth and over Burnley summit although the misty conditions did not afford us any good views. From Burnley we made for Reedley Hallows and a fast descent was followed by a long drag up the side of the valley to Fence. We then enjoyed a traverse along to Noggarth Top before making our way up Jinny Lane to the Clarion Clubhouse at Roughlee. Here we were joined by Nigel and Steve who had made their own way to our lunch stop. As we enjoyed pints of tea patches of blue sky could be seen and the clouds miraculously disappeared to give a sunny afternoon.

Back on the road the main group went to Barley and climbed under the shoulder of Pendle Hill but Nigel and Alan opted for a sterner test taking the very steep Stang Top Lane and Black Moss Lane. We re-grouped at Annel Cross and then took the steep descent to Twiston before following a flooded road to Downham. From Worston we took to lanes parallel to the Clitheroe by-pass and at Barrow a puncture delayed us but at Whalley Abbey we took more refreshments and discussed our route home. At Wilpshire we suffered another puncture and as we crossed the Roundhills we had to light up in the gathering gloom. The last few miles to Bury were covered in darkness and we reached home with around 65 miles covered, not bad after an unpromising start!

 

Sunday 02 December 2007

 

December is here and heavy and persistent rain led to the abandonment  of this week’s clubruns. The only good news of the week is that we got a full column on the Clubs page in the Bury Times for our new monthly report. Look out for it on the last Friday of each month.

Sunday 25 November 2007

 

On a typical November day, cool damp and dull, a hardy group set out for Catforth. We chose a different outward route going first to Rawtenstall and by the Ski slope to Haslingden. From Guide we dropped to Lower Darwen and then tackled the steep climb and descent to Feniscowles. Turning for Pleasington there was no obvious onward route to our destination but Nigel took us along a farm a decent track which then became a bit rough and eventually turned into a quagmire! At first it was easier to walk through the field instead of along the track but a bridge had to be crossed after which the lane was flooded. There was nothing for it but to ride through the water trusting that there were no hidden potholes below.

Back on tarmac at Houghton a fast ride into Preston and out through Ashton followed. Lunch was taken at Billington's tea rooms after which we split into two groups one going south to Coppull and Rivington, the other going east along the Lancashire Cycleway to Longridge. A brief stop was made at Ribchester before tackling the Roundhills and making a damp return to Bury with around 75 miles covered.

 

Sunday 18 November 2007

 

A rainy day in prospect didn't put off a group of  'A' riders who headed north to Gargrave. On arrival the Dalesman cafe was closed which is unheard of. Pressing on to Long Preston they found the cafe there too was closed. With no reporter out on the ride this is about all that can be said of the day's cycling.

Sunday 11 November 2007

 

Another cool start did not deter our members who turned out in force for the "A" run to Haworth.  A fast pace was maintained through Rochdale and Calderbrook before a split saw some taking the direct route to Todmorden and Hebden Bridge whilst others climbed around Lumbutts before a sharp descent back to the main road. The long drag through Pecket Wells saw us spread out along the climb before another swooping descent brought us to Oxenhope where we re-grouped for the run in to Haworth.  We made our way cautiously up the cobbled main street to our favoured cafe for food and hot tea, lingering in the warmth and contemplating our route home.  There was more climbing to come to Stanbury and then onto the moors past the Herders Inn before another long and steep descent brought us to Laneshawbridge and some less severe roads at last. Colne, Nelson and Burnley passed beneath our wheels before we tackled the long climb to Burnley summit and, with the sun now dipping in the sky, we made a brisk dash for home as the temperature began to drop.

Members are reminded that it is the Manchester DA AGM at the Friends Meeting House, Peter Street, Manchester at 1.30pm on Saturday 17th November where a proposed name change will be discussed.

Sunday 04 November 2007

 

On the coolest Sunday morning of the season so far there was a good turnout for the "A" run to Dunsop Bridge.With virtually no wind and the sun breaking through conditions were virtually ideal as we took the direct route through Accrington. Most of us carried on to Whalley but Nigel, Mark and Alan decided that it was a good idea to add a few miles via Great Harwood and York Village. From Whalley we took to the lanes through Mitton to Bashall Eaves and there was another split at Cow Ark with the main group going via Whitewell with the three breakaways going over Easington fell to Newton before meeting the rest at our destination.

After lunch we took the scenic lanes through Little Bowland where we were overtaken by about 10 members of the Morris 1000 club. From Chipping we went through Longridge to Ribchester where we sampled the new cafe and gathered our strength for the climbing to come over the Roundhills before returning to Bury with around 80 miles covered.

 

Sunday 28 October 2007



Sunday 21 October 2007

 

Sunday started crisp and dry with no wind for our clubrun to Long Preston. The direct route was taken through Accrington to Whalley where we took to lanes alongside the A59. At Bolton-by-Bowland we took the climb along Hellifield Road before dropping down to Halton West. Lunch was taken at Long Preston where we discussed our afternoon route. A "B" road was taken crossing the River Ribble before Wigglesworth and then a long drag of a climb to Tosside. From here the climbs and descents became longer and steeper as we made our way to Easington Fell. Here Nick Pickup suffered a broken spoke and his wheel needed truing which took some time. The descent to Cowark was followed by a fast run down to Whalley and the Cloisters coffee shop. With the sun now dropping and the chill returning we made our way via Wilpshire to the Roundhills and Haslingden, reaching Bury with 90-odd miles covered.


 

Sunday 14 October 2007

 

The early autumn weather has been better for cycling than most of the so called summer. Runs for Sunday 21st October meet Wilkinson's, The Rock: "A" Long Preston, 09:00 "B" Knutsford, 09:00

Sunday 07 October 2007

Sunday 30 September 2007

 

In spite of the cool autumnal morning there was a good turnout for Sundays run to Scorton. We rode due north through Accrington to Whalley where we took to the lanes of the Forest of Bowland. After Dunsop Bridge we entered the Trough of Bowland with a steep climb and descent before taking the Marshaw turning to our destination. Lunch was taken in the Priory before we took to the lanes to Longridge and Ribchester. After the climb of Barker Brow we followed the Blackburn ring road and the Roundhills to Haslingden before re-tracing our morning route back to Bury.

 

Sunday 23 September 2007

Sunday 16 September 2007

 

The autumnal feel to the morning and poor forecast did not deter our members form the clubrun to Wrae Green on Sunday. After warming up on the climb to Ainsworth we carried on to Belmont and on the descent to Riley Green the black clouds to the north looked uninviting. After a brief stop in Avenham Park, Preston we continued through Ashton-on Ribble and Treales to our destination. By now the wind had got up and we were thankful to rest for a while in Dizzy Ducks cafe.

Refreshed and with the wind now behind us we made good progress back to Preston where we followed a cyclepath along an old railway line to Bamber Bridge where a puncture briefly halted our progress. Skirting Chorley we took to lanes to Rivington and another stop at the Old Chapel tea rooms. With rain now beginning to fall we went through Bolton and returned to Bury with around 85 miles covered.

Runs for Sunday 23rd September meet Wilkinson's, The Rock:   "A" Grassington 08:30 (Edenfield 09:00)   "B" Bolton-by-Bowland 09:00 (Edenfield 09:30)

 

Sunday 09 September 2007

 

At last a dry day for the ride to Scorton last Sunday. Taking the outward route via Ribchester and then onto country lanes through Inglewhite and Garstang we halted for lunch at a newly discovered Scorton cafe. The return route took us over the Trough of Bowland and to Whalley for a tea stop prior to the direct route home through Accrington.
 
"B" group members rode to the Beard Cup Hill Climb event at Diggle. Mike Tattersall, just back from completing the Paris-Brest-Paris Audax event, was our best rider finishing in eighth place overall.

Sunday 02 September 2007

 

Many members are still away on holiday, so it was a very small group that set off for Ingleton last Sunday. Not only that, but the weather forecast was dire and after only half an hour on the road the rain came. The riders split up and did their own short rides with only Mark Cranshaw making a soggy day of it.

Sunday 26 August 2007

 

Sunday's run was to the new destination of Airton where a cafe has recently opened. We took the direct route through Accrington to Whalley and then followed the quiet lane alongside the A59. At Bolton-by-Bowland we took the long drag of a climb up Hellifield road where the A65 was choked with holiday traffic.Back in the lanes which were virtually traffic free we passed through a tranquil Otterburn and at Airton our cafe stop was full of cyclists, always a good sign.

The stiff climb of Scosthrop lane followed and from the summit we enjoyed good views of Pendle Hill, the Bowland Fells and the Dales around Settle. A fast run brought us back to Whalley and another refreshment stop and from here we retraced our steps reaching home with 90-odd miles covered.

"B" group members were away at the Mildenhall Rally in Suffolk.

Sunday 19 August 2007


It was a cool and damp start to Sundays clubrun to Croston. Good progress was made to Bromley Cross but at Belmont the clouds were down and the rain set in. After a cautious descent to Abbey Village we took to the lanes to Brindle and then skirted Leyland. At our destination we searched out a new cafe at Bryn Marina which proved to be excellent. Back on the road we headed for Coppull and Adlington before another refreshment stop at the Chapel Tea Rooms at Rivington. From here we returned through Horwich and Bolton with 70-odd miles covered.


Sunday 05 August 2007


A fine day last Sunday meant for an enjoyable ride north for members who turned out.  Many are away at the Semaine Federale international cyclists' gathering in France.

Sunday 29 July 2007


At last a dry Sunday and with some sunshine too.  With a chill in the air at first, the ‘B’ group set off through the cemetery and down Manchester Road for the ride to Knutsford.  Riding through Agecroft, Worsley and Irlam, the first stop was made at Irlam Locks overlooking the tranquil waters of the Manchester Ship Canal.  Here the group split with some taking an early return home, whilst the remainder continued through Carrington, passing the Manchester United training ground, before joining the country roads leading to Tatton Park.  A ride into the park led us to the café for our lunch stop.  The return route through Chorlton Water Park was taken.



Sunday 22 July 2007


A cool start on Sunday morning saw us set off at a brisk pace to Rawtenstall and Burnley. Here the rain began to fall and it became so heavy at Colne that we abandoned our destination of Otley and went to Wycoller instead.

We had the cafe to ourselves and we lingered as the rain became torrential but eventually it eased off and we made our way to Trawden. Even the high moorland roads were awash and from Worsthorne and Cliviger we climbed to Crown Point  where we turned for Waterfoot and then made our way back to Bury for an early finish with 60-odd miles covered.


Sunday 15 July 2007


Sunday started dry with little wind and the "A"group made good progress to Burnley and along the way we met Bolton Clarion at Edenfield and former member John Ashworth in Rawtenstall. We took the road through Fence to Barrowford and climbed to the Cross Gaits Inn before enjoying glorious views across to Foulridge and Earby from the Fanny Grey Inn before a steep descent into Barnoldswick and lunch.

After feeding the pigeons as well as ourselves we took to the Lancashire Cycleway which afforded another beautiful vista of the Three Peaks and the Bowland Fells. A roller coaster ride along an almost deserted gated road brought us to Downham and Worston and then minor lanes took us to Barrow and Whalley. At the Abbey we took more refreshments in the Cloisters Coffee Shop as the forecast rain began to fall. Undeterred we took the climb from Painter Wood to York village and then the Roundhills, noting that Pendle Hill was now in the clouds. At Haslingden we regrouped and made a damp return to Bury with a creditable 70- odd miles covered.



Sunday 08 July 2007

 

Another poor weather forecast made for a low turnout for the proposed ‘B’ ride to Eccleston.  This, combined with the lure of live Tour de France coverage on TV, meant that only two riders set out towards Holcombe Brook for an outward ride up to Holcombe Village and over Haslingden Grane at which summit the rain began to fall. A left turn was taken towards Edgworth and in drying conditions an undulating route through Chapeltown, Belmont Village and on to Rivington tested the legs.

 

After a brief stop the riders decided to return home via the long climb out of Horwich and taking the high road to descent back on to the Belmont road.  The remaining miles took us through Harwood and Ainsworth and home just before an almighty rainstorm started.

 

The 'A' group should have completed a ride to Hawes, but a report has not been posted.

 


Sunday 01 July 2007

 

This report is short because non of the usual writers were out riding. Last Sunday's 'A' ride to Knott End started out in dry weather but once again the rainy weather forecast proved correct and on more than one occasion we got a thorough soaking. The outward route was over Belmont.

The 'B' group destination was Southport which is a pleasant ride on a sunny day, but on this day rainwear was needed.  Riders are hoping for an improvement in the weather this weekend. 

 

 

Sunday 24th June 2007

 

With many members away at York Rally last weekend, there was still a good turn out for the ‘A’ ride to Otley.  With rain promised for later in the day it was an early start through Rochdale, Todmorden and Hebden Bridge followed by the long but scenic climb to Oxenhope Moor.  After descending to Keighley the group split, with one rider taking the homeward route via Cowling and Colne.  The main group continued with a stiff climb up the appropriately named Swine Lane then through East Morton and Menston to the lunch stop at Otley.

 

Refreshed, the return ride took us through Askwith, Ilkley and Skipton before hitting familiar roads in now wet weather through Colne, Nelson and Burnley arriving home with over ninety miles covered. In fact the route covered today was that of the club’s 150km Reliability Ride which used to take place annually.

 

 

Sunday 17th June 2007


Seventeen riders turned up in light drizzly conditions to take part in the Charlie Westlake Sportive Bike Rides last Sunday to raise money for Bury Hospice. This was an event open to all cyclists – and for the first time we had no female entrants.

It is a pity that so few started as the weather forecast proved correct in that it improved during the morning and was perfect by the afternoon. Eleven riders tackled the 100km route over hilly roads to Downham and back over Pendle Hill with the sting in the tail – an uphill finish to Owd Betts. The first group home, including Mark Cranshaw of Bury CTC, crossed the line at 5 hours 15 minutes. All finishers were comfortably within the 7 hours allowed.

It was a brave effort by Howard Marsh but cramp prevented him from finishing.  Three other riders also decided not to tackle the final climb.

Six riders took on the 50km route including 14 year olds Sam Hesketh and James Lester who finished in a very creditable time of 3 hours and 4 mins – well inside the 4 hours allowed.

Each checkpoint around both routes was manned by a volunteer. So far £55 has been raised for Bury Hospice.

Go to the ‘Charlie Westlake Bike Rides’ page to view a photograph taken just before the start as seen in the Bury Times.


Sunday 10th June 2007

 

On the hottest Sunday of the year so far so we left Bury early for the Bowland Fells. With riders away on Audax rides or opposed to the early start it was a different group to last week who decided to take on Tatham Fell after the planned ride to Langsett was changed.

 

The direct route out through Accrington to Whalley was followed by quiet lanes to Copy Nook and the climb to Greaves before a fast descent to Slaidburn. Refreshments were taken here as we knew what was to come. The Skaithe, Lamb Hill and Tatham Fell provide a big test of climbing ability at the best of times but the heat made it doubly difficult. A well earned rest was taken at the summit beside the socket stone of the Cross of Greet which has long since disappeared.

 

A fast descent brought us to the Lowgill turning and moorland lanes afforded us the best view of the Three Peaks that exists. Wray was quiet and we carried on to Bull Beck picnic site for lunch in the shade of a tree. With the major climbs now behind us we maintained a moderate pace creating our own cooling breeze as we carried on through the lanes to Caton, Quernmore and Scorton. Here triple scoop ice creams were enjoyed and water bottles re-filled.   

 

More country lanes brought us through Longridge and at Ribchester we had another refreshment stop before climbing Barker Brow to Wilpshire and then the Roundhills to Haslingden. With the temperature becoming a little more bearable we returned home with around 110 miles covered.

 

The well attended 'B' group including new member Sarah Collinge took to canal paths in the early part of the day on their ride to Rufford.  First it was the path from Bolton to Lostock. Then after a refreshment stop at Haigh Hall it was onto another canal path which took us to Appley Bridge. Most enjoyable in the warm sunshine.

 

 

Sunday 03 June 2007

 

The warmest Sunday of the year so far made for tough going on a hilly course. The direct route from Bury to Whalley through Accrington was taken, then gentle lanes to Cow Ark where the climbing began in earnest over Easington Fell with the reward of a 50 mph descent on the other side. Elevenses were taken at Slaidburn before the major climb of the day taking The Skaithe to Lamb Hill and Tatham Fell. At the summit only the socket stone remains of the Cross of Greet but there is a great panoramic view back to Pendle Hill and Lancashire and Forward to Ingleborough and the Yorkshire Dales with the Howgills and Cumbria beyond. Another fast descent brought us into the lanes around Mewith and Keasden and on to Clapham for lunch.

After Austwick and Lawkland we climbed onto the moors around Wham and Tosside before descending again to Bolton-by-Bowland and another cafe stop. Lanes through Grindleton and Waddington brought us back to Whalley from where we re-traced our outward route, arriving back in Bury with over 100 miles covered.

 

Sunday 27th May 2007


The cool and wet weather led the "A" section to change their destination on Sunday to Croston in West Lancashire. From Bradshaw we went to Belmont and then had a fast descent to Riley Green where we took to the lanes through Brindle. Skirting Leyland we took flat lanes to our destination where the rain stopped while we were in the cafe and started again as we departed! We threaded our way through the lanes to Coppul and Adlington and stopped at the Old Chapel Tea Rooms at Rivington before taking a direct route home through Horwich and Bolton with 70-odd miles covered.
 

Sunday 20th May 2007

 

After a cool start the weather steadily improved all day for our run to Littondale. After Whalley we took lanes to Chatburn and Wigglesworth stopping for lunch at Settle. From Stainforth we climbed the aptly named Goat Lane onto the moors under Pen-y-Ghent, mixing with riders in the Etape du Dales . Descending to Halton Gill we enjoyed riding the full length of the beautiful and quiet Littondale before stopping at Gargrave for refreshments. A direct route home through Burnley was chosen with over 100 miles covered.

Mark Cranshaw and Mike Tattersall rode overnight in the Halifax - Alston - Halifax 400km qualifier for this years Paris -Brest - Paris 1,200km Audax.


 

Sunday 13th May 2007

 

Due to the poor forecast on Sunday morning the "A" section opted for a shorter ride to Slaidburn. Our early start made for quiet roads through Accrington to Whalley and we followed minor roads to Sawley followed by a steady climb to Threap Green before swooping down to our destination for an early lunch. After a stiff climb out of the village we came to the centre of the UK at Dunsop Bridge and fast lanes from Cow Ark brought us to Whalley for refreshments. The steady climb to York village followed and a damp crossing of the Roundhills and back to Bury before the worst of the rain set in.

 

 

Sunday 6th May 2007

 

Some of our members attended the Kirkpatrick Macmillan Cycle Rally near Dumfries over the Bank Holiday weekend. We met friends old and new from all over the country and enjoyed rides to Dalry, Kirkcudbright, Mitchellslacks and New Abbey. There is a network of quiet country lanes in this area which make cycling very enjoyable and it is possible to take in views which motorists would miss. Evening meals and entertainment were laid on at Shawhead village hall and on the Sunday we enjoyed a breakfast laid on for us at Keir Mill village hall, the birthplace of Kirkpatrick Macmillan who invented and built the very first bicycle at his Blacksmith's forge.

Another group of members rode (and other went car assisted) to the Manchester DA Weekend based at Dalesbridge Outdoor Centre at Austwick, North Yorkshire where three days of cycling was enjoyed in the countryside around the Settle and Clapham.

 

Sunday 29th April 2007

 

With longer days and better weather our rides are going further afield and over 100 miles was covered on Sunday. The usual route was taken to Whalley and then on to the Trough of Bowland, this severe climb was made a little easier by a stiff tailwind and we flew down the other side and on to Abbeystead and Galgate. At Glasson Dock we loitered over lunch, gathering our strength for going into the wind on the way back. From Garstang we followed lanes to Longridge and Ribchester before a final test over the Roundhills to Haslingden and back to Bury.

Many members are away at cycle rallies in Austwick and Dumfries or doing an Audax qualifier over the bank holiday weekend, for anyone not away there are two rides: "A" Ingleton, "B" Impromptu, both meet at Wilkinson's, The Rock 09:00

 

Sunday 22nd April 2007

 

Sunday morning started with patchy light rain which persisted all day. The 'A' group headed north through Rawtenstall to Burnley and from Barrowford we took minor roads past the Fanny Grey Inn to Barnoldswick. From West Marton we went via Bank Newton to Gargrave but at Cracoe in heavier rain we found the cafe was closed and Steve Willetts suffered a snapped gear cable which left him with 3 gears for the rest of the day.

After lunch at Gargrave we took minor lanes to Nappa and Bolton-by-Bowland and stopped for tea at Whalley. From here a direct route was taken though Accrington back to Bury.

Mark Cranshaw and Mike Tattersall completed the Plains 310 km Audax from Poynton to Shropshire and back as a qualifier for this years 1200 km Paris - Brest - Paris Audax.

Sunday 15th April 2007

 

'A' group riders Mark Cranshaw and Mike Tattersall are in training for the grueling 1200km Paris-Brest-Paris Audax ride in August, so it made for a tough outing for the rest of us on the ride to Holmfirth. In warm sunshine we rode out of Bury for the hills around Denshaw and Delph before a cafe stop at Marsden . Before the first climb of the day out of Newhey, The day's leader Nigel Hood (who has ridden PBP in the past) took us on a detour passing Hollingworth Lake. The high pace meant the inevitable split of the group with some continuing beyond Holmfirth to Langsett and a return via Strines and the Snake Pass whilst the others took the more direct route home from Holmfirth via Saddleworth Moor.  The 'B' group had a more sedate ride to Dunsop Bridge. A great days cycling in perfect weather conditions was enjoyed by all.

 

 

Sunday 8th April 2007

 

Easter tour to Melrose. Full report to follow (hopefully).

Sunday 1st April 2007


Sunday brought the best weather for a clubrun so far this year but there was still a brisk north-easterly wind keeping a cool edge on the temperature.  A good pace was maintained through Ainsworth and Bromley Cross but the descent from Belmont to Abbey Village was hampered as we were exposed to the wind. Turning to Brindle we now had the wind behind us and good progress was made through Leyland and out into the West Lancashire lanes to our destination of Croston. Following the Lancashire Cycleway we eventually got to Rivington for another break then climbed over Sheephouses and into the wind to Belmont. A hilly finish saw further climbs to Bedworth and Affetside and we returned to Bury with 70-odd miles covered.

The ‘B’ group rode to Lower Peover in Cheshire.

Three club members, Alan, Duncan and John, were part of a five man group who participated in a two day weekend tour in Northumberland. Starting from Amble we took the coasts and castles Sustrans route north to Alnmouth, before cutting inland to Alnwick, home to the Harry Potter castle, then headed north into the foothills of the Cheviots. The route took us past Chillingham, Chatton (where we stopped for a fine pub lunch) then north to Lowick before swinging back south and west to Wooler where our hotel was located.  Arriving early we deposited our panniers in our rooms and cycled westward towards Yetholm on a scenic (but testing) route as far as the Scottish border sign where we stopped for a photo before retracing back to Wooler.

Next day we headed north by a different road to Lowick then south on the roman road down to Chatton and east over a short sharp climb towards Belford halting at the summit to take in the panoramic views of the Cheviots to the west and the coastline to the east. We decended and continued to Bamburgh for a café stop before continuing via Craster on the Sustrans Route 1 back to Amble. 

The Easter weekend sees our Youth Hostel tour to Melrose in the Scottish Borders and there are no scheduled clubruns from Bury.

Sunday 25th March 2007

 

A strong north-easterly wind made for slow progress as made our way over Burnley summit and along to Colne. From here we formed two groups, one taking the busy but flat main road through Earby while the rest chose the long climb over Skipton Old Road before a fast descent to Broughton. After lunch in Gargrave we turned for Bell Busk and with the wind now behind us we made good progress to Hellifield and Bolton-by-Bowland. We followed quiet lanes to Waddington and a refreshment stop at Whalley before taking a direct route home through Accrington, arriving in Bury with 80 - odd miles covered.

The ‘B’ group also took the direct Burney road to Colne and on to Wycoller.

Runs for Sunday 1st April meet Wilkinson's, The Rock:   "A" Croston, 09:00   "B" Lower Peover, 09:30

 

Sunday 18th March 2007

 

Sunday morning arrived with high winds, rain and hail so it was an intrepid group who set off on a shortened 'A' run to Whalley. In Haslingden the roads were white with a covering of hailstones and we continued on the least exposed route through Accrington, arriving at Whalley Abbey at 11am.

We took a long time over our early lunch before going into the wind to Langho and Wilpshire. After Intack we turned onto the Roundhills and with the wind now behind us rapid progress was made over the moors back to Haslingden. We arrived back in Bury just as another hailstorm was starting for an early finish with 40 - 50 miles covered.

 

Sunday 11th March 2007

 

Eight 'A' group riders set out for the new destination of Hellifield. Trying to vary our routes from Burnley we went to Fence and took the old road to Barrowford where we followed lanes by the Fanny Grey Inn to Barnoldswick. After Horton we went by Paythorne and Halton West to Hellifield where we were disappointed to find the station cafe and the post office cafe at Long Preston both closed. We made our way to the Gardenmakers at Wigglesworth to be revived with hot puddings and tea. From Bolton-by-Bowland we followed the lanes through Waddington to Whalley and another tea stop before taking the direct route home through Accrington with 80-odd miles covered.

Sunday 4th March 2007

 

The bad forecast led to a low turnout and a shorter run for the 'A' group to the Clarion Clubhouse at Roughlee on Sunday. A direct route with a tailwind was taken through Rawtenstall to Burnley and from Fence we went along the ridge to Noggarth Top before a steep descent to Roughlee where we arrived early. While we were taking lunch the rain arrived with a vengeance so a short route home was decided on. Another ridge route was taken to Sabden Heights followed by a cautious descent to Read and Altham. We battled into the elements through Accrington and it was a soggy, early finish back in Bury.

Sunday 25th February 2007

 

Seven riders set off on Sundays "A" run into a cold north-westerly wind which, along with a puncture, hindered our progress over the Roundhills. After a brief stop at Ribchester we followed lanes to Whittingham before crossing the A6 and M6 and after Woodplumpton we stopped at Billington's tearooms at Catforth for lunch.

Skirting Preston we rode through Avenham Park before following a cyclepath along an old railway line to Bamber Bridge. A wet and muddy track was followed through Cuerden Valley Park and quiet roads brought us to Chorley. After Limbrick we skirted Anglezarke reservoir and called at the Chapel tearooms at Rivington. We returned to Bury via Horwich and Bolton with 70 - odd miles covered.

 

Sunday 18th February 2007

 

Six riders form the "A" Section set off on a perfect winters day for West Lancashire. Climbs to Ainsworth and Bromley Cross were followed by Belmont and a long descent to Riley Green. Skirting Leyland we took to the lanes to Croston but our lunch venue in Mawdesley proved unsuitable so we continued through Standish and Red Rock to Haigh Hall where we sat outside in the warm sunshine. From Little Scotland we continued to Rivington and another stop. The area was packed with people making the most of the best weekend so far this year. Seeking a flat route we returned to Bury through Horwich and Bolton with 70 - odd miles covered.

The "B" section visited Billington's Tearooms at Catforth.

Sunday 11th February 2007


Perhaps it was the rain which put our riders off but it was a select band who left Bury on Sunday morning. The rain became light until Whalley where it stopped and from Sawley we took unclassified roads to Wigglesworth, Rathmell and Settle, our destination. The Settle Down cafe was closed so we found ourselves in the Singing Kettle which seemed to have been taken over by cyclists and good food at a reasonable price was enjoyed while we warmed up and considered our afternoon route.

We rode out to Giggleswick into the wind and then followed the lanes to Eldroth then taking the Bowland Knotts road, our first climb over the Bowland Fells this year. This ascent is a series of short, sharp climbs punctuated by level stretches but the wind made things more difficult and on the north facing slopes near the summit there were pockets of snow where the sun had not  reached. A swift descent brought us to Stocks reservoir and after Copy Nook we went through Grindleton and Waddington to Whalley where we stopped for refreshments at the Abbey. From York village we dropped onto the Blackburn ring road where lights and waterproofs became necessary for the final miles back to Bury with 90 - 100 miles covered.

Only two riders turned up for the 'B' ride in early morning drizzle.  In view of the poor turnout, Terry, who was recovering from a very bad cold, decided not to continue so that left John Butterworth to ride a 45 miles circuit taking in Rochdale, Caldermoor (where the road was closed due to subsidence, but passable by cyclists), Todmorden (by which time the sky had cleared), Cliviger, Burnley Summit, Rawtenstall, Ewood Bridge and Edenfield.
 

Sunday 4th February 2007

 

Sunday was an almost perfect winter's day, dry, no wind, very cold and good visibility for our "A" run to Tootle Hall.

From Haslingden we took the Roundhills road taking care of icy patches in the gutter where the sun had not reached. On the Blackburn ring road we opted for the cycle path and from Salesbury a chilly descent brought us to Ribchester and a brief stop. After Longridge we took to quiet lanes all the way to our destination where we warmed up over hot food and tea. Back on the road we passed the former Post Office at Bleasdale and climbed to Beacon Fell from where we enjoyed panoramic views around the area including Calder Fell and Wolf Fell. A long descent brought us to the Derby Arms and from Thornley-with-Wheatley the Hodder valley was laid out beneath us. After a fast descent of Chaigley bank we took refreshments at Whalley Abbey before taking the busy route home through Accrington, arriving back in Bury in daylight with 70 odd miles covered.

The 'B' riders headed for Haigh Hall near Standish and enjoyed a nice easy ride in the winter sunshine. Vera and Phil were out, as was Beryl and Brian.  Also out was Stan, Nigel and John.  Mike Tattersall, who had started out late, joined the group on arrival at Haigh Hall where refreshments were taken.


Sunday 28th January 2007

 

Sunday was milder than of late but a strong westerly wind was the main weather feature of the day. Good progress was made to Rawtenstall but the exposed area around Burnley summit made for a cautious descent into the town. With the wind behind us we made good progress through Colne to Laneshawbridge where we turned into the lanes to Wycollar where we had lunch in the local cafe by a warm coal fire.

Back on the road we fought our way into the wind and up steep climbs around Trawden and drizzly rain added to the cold, clammy feeling of the afternoon. A brief stop was made at Worsthorne where we decided to take a short route back to Bury and so we battled against the wind over Crown Point before descending to Waterfoot and with the weather showing little sign of improving we returned home by 4:30pm with around 60 miles covered.

 

Sunday 21st January 2007

 

Poor weather conditions made for a poor turn out of 'A' riders for the planned ride to Sowerby Bridge.  Nobody turned up for the 'B' ride - although this may have something to do with the fact that Manchester City lost 3 - 0 the previous day ( leader Brian is well known for a no-show after a City defeat - so he doesn't ride out often). We all hope for better weather next week. 

Sunday 14th January 2007

 

For the first time in weeks a day without rain was forecast for last Sunday’s club runs. The down side was that there was a fresh westerly wind blowing. The route through Haslingden and over Roundhills was taken by the ‘A’ group as they made for their first stop at Ribchester. Alas the toilets were closed for refurbishment so after a brief break for a banana the ride continued to Longridge and onto a section of the Lancashire Cycleway to Broughton where the busy A6 was crossed. It was then quiet lanes all the way to the lunch stop at Billington’s Craft Centre in Catforth.

The return route through Avenham Park and Brindle was taken with a tea stop being made at Rivington chapel before the final miles back to Bury.

The ‘B’ group had a ride south to the countryside around Marple.

 

Sunday 7th January 2007

 

The damp and breezy conditions made for a change of destination on Sunday. After taking the usual route to Accrington we took to quiet lanes towards Padiham before taking a long steep climb to Sabden Heights before taking the ridge road to Noggarth Top, then dropping to the Clarion clubhouse at Roughlee.

Our return journey was into the wind, dropping from Fence into Burnley then passing Towneley Hall and taking the Todmorden road. With rain now falling we stopped for refreshments in Littleborough before resigning ourselves to a damp finish to the day all the way back to Bury.

The B group, comprising five riders, had a ride in a southerly direction to the newly discovered cafe at Dunham Massey. The outward route through Tyldesley and Astley was taken.

 

 

Sunday 24th / Wed 27th December 2006


Gloomy but dry and windless conditions continued for our Christmas Eve clubrun to Catforth. After the climb to Ainsworth we descended to Bradshaw and headed for Belmont. After the descent to Walton-le-Dale we took the cyclepath through Avenham Park and after Ashton-on-Ribble we took to country lanes to Billington's tearooms. The return journey took us over the canal at Brindle and threading through quiet lanes to Adlington and Rivington where we stopped at the Chapel tearooms. A direct route home was then taken through the centre of Bolton.

On Wednesday we had the annual Christmas lunch ride. Four members met for the ride out to the Shepherd's Rest pub in Lumbutts.  A pleasant calm morning ride with the sun breaking through on occasions was followed by a tasty lunch and a few pints of Black Sheep.  We were joined by Brian and Beryl who called in on their way home from Christmas in the Lake District and Steve Willetts with his new girlfriend who had travelled all the way from east of the Caspian Sea!

 Right on cue the rain started as we left the pub and it was a not very pleasant ride home in heavy traffic. 

 

Sunday 17th December 2006

 

After all the recent rain is was nice to set off in dry conditions on Sunday. A brief shower near Edenfield was the only rain we encountered but there were still many puddles on the road. We took the usual direct route through Accrington to Whalley after which we enjoyed views of the Bowland Fells in the crisp, clear conditions. We went along Back Ridge into Waddington where we spotted an early Father Christmas and enjoyed an early lunch.

Back on the road we followed a quiet lane to Edisford Bridge and then headed for Hurst Green. A swift descent of Gallows Lane brought us to the De Tabley Arms and the climb of Barker Brow to Wilpshire. After the Roundhills we headed for the tearoom at Irwell Vale Methodist Chapel only to find that they had already closed until the New Year. With temperatures now plummeting we headed for home with 60-odd miles covered.


 

Sunday 10th December 2006

 

The dire weather forecast did not put off our members for Sundays ride to Roughlee and so we set off in light rain and with a strong tailwind in a northerly direction to Rawtenstall and on through Crawshawbooth to Burnley. Main roads were followed to Nelson and then through Barrowford to Blacko where we turned for "the hidden valley" and we crawled into the wind up Jinny Lane to the Clarion Clubhouse. The assistance of the wind had made for an early arrival and so there were only a few hikers sharing the room with us.

Anxious not to be caught out in the worst of the predicted weather we ate our sandwiches and had reviving pints of tea and within 1/2 an hour we were ready to depart. The wind was already gathering strength as we made the stiff climbs to Newchurch-in-Pendle and out of Spen Brook. From Fence we descended to Reedley Hallows and in Burnley we split into two groups, one taking Bacup Road through Towneley the other climbing Manchester Road. The exposed part of the latter route between the Bull and Butcher and Loveclough was particularly gruelling with very low gears being used as we battled onwards into the now pouring rain. We re-grouped in Edenfield to end the day early at 3pm with a very creditable 50-odd miles covered on a testing day.

 

Sunday 3rd December 2006

 

Due to the high winds on Sunday most of our members opted not to risk going for a ride.

Sunday 26th November 2006

 

A south west wind kept the temperature reasonably mild on Sunday for the run to Elswick. Ainsworth and Bromley Cross were soon passed followed by the Belmont reservoirs. From the summit we saw a heavy shower passing in front of us but thankfully it had tracked away to the east as we descended through Gregson Lane to Bamber Bridge. After a brief stop in Avenham Park we skirted the centre of Preston and after Ashton-on-Ribble we passed onto the Fylde. At Elswick we enjoyed lunch in Billington's and were joined by Alan Webb and Mark Cranshaw who had taken a scenic route over Blacksnape and Earcroft. Making the most of the now sunny conditions we continued north to Inskip and along quiet lanes to St. Michael's-on-Wyre and Bilsborrow.

A steady pace was kept through Inglewhite and Longridge before climbing toThonley-with-Wheatley where we enjoyed good views of the Bowland Fells. A fast descent through Chaigley brought us to a tea stop at Whalley Abbey. Just as we were leaving Alan and Mark arrived having extended the ride to Bleasdale, Chipping, Little Bowland, Whitewell and Bashall Eaves. A direct route home was taken through Accrington and Haslingden as darkness fell with between 80 and 100 miles covered.  

Contact Mark for details of how you can retrace the 'A' ride on a GPS map.

The “B” group, consisting of eight riders including one newcomer, was led by Brian and Nigel on the run to Waddington. The route over Burnley Summit was taken before a drop into Padiham and a stiff climb to the ridge near Sabden was included.

 

Sunday 19th November 2006

 

Sunday provided the first icy blast heralding the coming winter and prompted our members to don thermals for the first time this season. Club officials made their way to the Manchester DA AGM at the Millcroft Tea Rooms at Norden. In order to make a ride of it we headed north to Rawtenstall before taking the valley road through the Glen to Bacup. Here we split onto two groups one going via Whitworth to Rochdale the other taking a more strenuous route over Sharneyford to Todmorden then over Summit to Littleborough.

At the meeting we had the chance to chat with friends who we had not seen for at least twelve months over a potato pie lunch. After the proceedings we were anxious to return home before dark and most members chose a direct route through Jericho but Steve Willetts made the ride up to 50 miles by going through Ashworth Valley to Owd Betts then to Rawtenstall and Road End before returning through Edenfield. The "A" section visited West Marton.

 

Sunday 12th November 2006


A cool but dry morning made the 9am start more acceptable for the 'A' group as they set off for Haworth. Their route took them through Rochdale, Littleborough, Todmorden and Hebden Bridge before the long climb to Oxenhope Moor via Cock Hill.  The 'B' group destination was a little nearer to home - Rivington.  John, missing the 9am start, decided on a solo ride taking the 'A' route to Hebden Bridge then returning by the long Cragg Vale climb.

However, a puncture before reaching Fairfield meant a delay to mend it. Then he discovered his pump had become useless. Stranded he decided to walk to Beryl and Brians' nearby house for assistance. Alas they were out on the 'B' run so it looked like a walk home. It was then that a good Samaritan saved the day - the man from number 14 shouted across "do you want to use my track pump?"  Tyre fully pumped up it was back on the road for a shortened ride returning home in time for lunch.

The more leisurely ride with the 'B'  group was to Rivington.  Leaving Bury the route went out via Bolton, Lostock and Aspull, taking a short break at Haigh Country Park for elevenses. The ride then continued through the lanes to Rivington for lunch. In the afternoon  pedalling resumed with the testing climb to Hordern Stoops, followed by the welcome descent into Belmont Village, at this point the rain had arrived, and so the intended scenic roads via the reservoirs and onto Edgworth was abandoned for a more direct  ride home through Harwood and Ainsworth.

Sunday 5th November 2006

 

A chilly but dry day brought quite a number of members out for the 'B' ride to Hurst Green. Unusually only one 'A' rider turned up so we had a joint ride. We were joined by two American visitors from Fresno in California who had come over to visit relatives in Bolton and had brought their folding tandem with them. We all set off through Haslingden and over Roundhills to the outskirts of Blackburn where we turned off the bypass to climb to York village.

Instead of the usual descent to Whalley we turned left in the village and rode down a long hill to the river Ribble which we crossed by a suspension bridge after walking a narrow track to get there. 'No Cycling' signs abounded and angry locals didn't like the fact we had our cycles even though the terrain meant we were walking anyway. Aggressive shouts of "no mountain bikes" were responded to by our shouts of "these are road bikes". However the beauty of the view from the bridge more than made up for the hassle.

The rough track at last became tarmac and we rode on to arrive right in the centre of Hurst Green village. There is church hall tea room here but we decided to continue on to Whalley and our lunch stop at the Abbey cafe. Our American visitors took photographs before we departed for Padiham via the scenic route towards Sabden. Scenic but very hilly. Descending into Padiham we took the most direct route home which meant a long climb to Burnley Summitt and down to Rawtenstall. Arriving back in Bury with 55 miles covered, what we lacked in mileage was made up for in climbs and a very enjoyable days cycling.

Sunday 29th October 2006

 

We left Bury on Sunday morning in cool, crisp conditions with little wind, almost ideal for cycling. From Rochdale we headed for Newhey and the first climb of the day over by the Moorcock Inn to Denshaw where we re-grouped for the next climb over Buckstones. From the summit of this road we enjoyed beautiful views across the moors towards Wakefield. Turning onto lanes designated the Yorkshire Cycleway we enjoyed a switchback ride before a descent so steep that two of our riders got off and walked downhill! It was so mild and pleasant in Marsden that we enjoyed an alfresco lunch in the sun by the riverbank before taking tea in a local cafe.

Leaving Marsden we immediately began the climb to Standedge with more glorious views, this time of Saddleworth from the summit before swooping down to Delph. Another stiff climb brought us to Grains Bar and another fast descent brought us out just north of Shaw. From Rochdale we retraced our steps to Bury passing Bury Tandem club along the way.

The “B” group had a ride to Delph but our paths didn’t cross.

 

Sunday 22nd October 2006


With an autumnal feel to the weather and the promise of heavy rain later in the day our "A" section opted for a short ride to Roughlee on Sunday. A roaring tailwind made for a fast ride through Rawtenstall and over Burnley summit. Main roads were followed to Nelson and Barrowford where we turned onto Pasture Lane and a sharp climb and a fast descent into the hidden valley and Roughlee. Steve opted to climb out of the valley again for pie and peas at Noggarth Top before joining the rest in the Clarion Clubhouse on Jinny Lane. Usually this place is heaving with ramblers and cyclists but today it was strangely quiet.

Back on the road the steep climb to Newchurch-in-Pendle was tackled and a brief stop was taken to photograph the witches outside the Witches Galore souvenir shop. Taking the ridge road to Sabden Heights we made a steep descent to Simonstone where main roads were joined once more and followed through Accrington and back to Bury which was reached just as the rain started.

The "B" section also had a short ride to Rivington.
 
With the clocks going back over the weekend of 28th/29th October our season of shorter runs begins.
 

Sunday 15th October 2006

 

Sunday was a very mild October day which was very conducive to cycling and so we made the most of it!

We rode due North through Rawtenstall to Burnley then we carried on to Colne and Earby. At Broughton we turned into quiet lanes and entered Drumlin country which made for a gently switchback route through Gargrave to Malham. Over lunch we discussed our afternoon route and decided to take the less steep route towards Malham Tarn.

On the tops here there is usually a grand view of the surrounding hills but the eerily dull conditions robbed us of this pleasure. A very fast descent brought us to Langcliffe and a quiet lane to Settle. At Rathmell we split into two groups, one taking the direct route to Sawley the rest climbing Long Gill to Tosside then from Sawley going via Waddington to Whalley. Re-grouping at the Abbey for refreshments we gathered our strength for the climbs to come through Accrington and we reached home in daylight with around 100 miles covered.

The 'B' group had a more leisurely ride to Chipping.


 

Sunday 8th October 2006

 

Sunday began dry and cool and a strong tailwind made for a fast outbound run. We took the usual route out through Accrington and after a brief stop in Whalley we continued to Sawley and Wigglesworth. Choosing to avoid Settle we went through Giggleswick and then took Stainforth Lane on the west side of the River Ribble. Climbing steadily we eventually came to Helwith bridge where we crossed the Ribble to reach our destination of Horton-in-Ribblesdale.

After lunch in the very reasonably priced Blind Beck Tearooms we retraced our steps to the Austwick road with the wind now in our faces. After Paley Green we took a moorland gated road to the outlying farms of Rome and Wham before turning for Long Gill. Work on the laying of a new gas pipeline made for muddy roads which were slippery especially on the climbs. We rested awhile in the sun outside Tosside Village Hall and considered our route deciding to take the roller coaster road to Harrop Fold and Grindleton. In the Ribble valley once more we took gentler lanes back to Whalley and another tea stop.

Wishing to avoid our outward route we climbed to York Village and then crossed the Roundhills to Haslingden. Bury was reached in the gathering gloom of an autumn evening with over 110 miles covered, a distance unlikely to be repeated again this year.

The 'B' group had a more leisurely ride to Bolton by Bowland via Whalley and Waddington.

 

Sunday 1st October 2006

 

For the first time this autumn there was a chill in the air on Sunday morning which prompted our members to wear an extra top at the start of our clubrun to Scorton. At least the overnight rain had stopped by the time we gathered in Bury to ride due north through Accrington to Whalley. A brief stop here was long enough to remove some clothing as the day began to warm up. There was evidence of heavy overnight rain here with gravel and dead leaves having been washed across roads. The climb from Bashall Eaves to Cow Ark was followed by a swift descent to Whitewell before tackling the steep gully which forms the Trough of Bowland. Re-grouping at the summit we made a fast ride to our destination and the Priory cafe which is a Mecca for cyclists from all over the area.

In the afternoon we picked our way through the lanes avoiding Garstang on the way to Longridge. From here we chose a little used route for us which took us towards Jeffrey Hill with magnificent views of the Ribble Valley below. After the New Drop Inn we descended to Stonyhurst College and at Mitton we endured a heavy shower all the way to Whalley. After more tea here we chose an easy route through Langho which brought us to the Roundhills which we crossed with a tailwind in another shower. From Haslingden we retraced our outward route with another 90-odd miles covered.

Sunday 24th September 2006

 

Mixed weather affected Sundays clubrun to Grassington, at Edenfield blue sky and sunshine were above us and black storm clouds to the west. Undeterred we continued northwards through Rossendale and a chilly descent to Burnley. At Nelson the first puncture of the day delayed us but good progress was then made to Gargrave where a little drizzle began to fall. It was dry when we reached our destination but such is the draw of Grassington as a tourist destination that it took four attempts to find a cafe with space for a group of hungry and thirsty cyclists. Unfortunately, Eric succeeded in putting salt in his tea instead of sugar. He rapidly disposed of this and we hope that the plant survives!

Retracing our steps to Hetton we then took the roller coaster road to Airton which tested our bike handling skills to the limit. With the sun now having broken through it was pleasantly warm as we carried on to Hellifield and Halton West before another refreshment stop at Bolton-by-Bowland. A discussion about our route followed and we followed lanes which avoided the fast and busy A59 as much as possible to Whalley and then took the direct route home through Accrington with another 90-odd miles covered.

The 'B' ride only attracted three riders including new grandad Nigel Hood who celebrated with a ride to Bolton-by-Bowland.


 

Sunday 17th September 2006

 

With some members away on holiday and others riding the Fleet Moss Audax event it was a combined A and B Section which set out for Great Budworth with Brian and Beryl still jet lagged after arriving back from their Canadian tour two days previously.  It was initially cool as we passed through Bury cemetery and Goshen playing fields.  After descending Rainsough Brow we passed into Salford and threaded our way to Winton where we joined the A57 and crossed the Manchester Ship Canal at Irlam locks.  With the warm sun now making an appearance we used tracks and quiet roads through Carrington and out into the Cheshire lanes.

From Dunham Town careful navigation was required to reach our destination where we took lunch in the tea room and ice-cream parlour.  Distant views of Northwich were enjoyed on the way to Antrobus and then Winter Hill served as a beacon to guide our Northward progress through Lymm, Warburton and Culcheth to Leigh.  On main roads once more we returned to Bury through Farnworth and Little Lever with around 80 miles covered.

 

Sunday 10th September 2006

 

With Autumn just around the corner the warm, sunny weather brought our members out in force on Sunday. With the days becoming shorter now it was a cool ride into the centre of Bury but we soon warmed up on the climb to Ainsworth and the following roads to Belmont. We then enjoyed the swift descent to Abbey Village and Riley Green before turning into quiet roads to Gregson Lane. We then enjoyed a pleasant ride along the banks of the River Ribble through Avenham Park, just a stones throw from Preston centre. From Ashton-on-Ribble we passed onto the lanes of the Fylde and we were soon at our destination of Billington's Tea Rooms at Catforth.

Back on the road we enjoyed the warmth of the sun as we made for Broughton and Longridge. From here Mark Cranshaw chose a hard route over Jeffrey Hill and Birdy Brow while the rest of us took an easier route via Ribchester to Whalley. It was still only mid-afternoon so after a break at Whalley Abbey we chose the long drag from Painter's Wood through York Village before dropping onto the Blackburn ring road. It was hard going into a headwind over the Roundhills and we re-grouped in Haslingden for the final run in to Bury with some 80 - odd miles covered.

 

Sunday 3rd September 2006

 

Still in the holiday season and with some members away riding a North Yorkshire Audax event, there was a poor turnout last Sunday for the planned 'A' ride to Dunsop Bridge. As a result of this, combined with the threat of rain later in the morning, we decided on a shorter ride to the Clarion Clubhouse at Roughlee. The ride out through Rawtenstall was interrupted by a puncture caused by the inevitable glass in the road. It would be the cyclists' dream come true if all beer glasses and bottles were manufactured from indestructible plastic. It is cyclists who on a Sunday morning have to pay the price for the mess caused by drunken yobs just a few hours earlier.

However, back on the road we soon reached Burnely and then up on to the rural roads around Fence. The Clubhouse was as welcoming as usual - especially as it had now started to rain. Refreshed with pint mugs of tea it was out into the rain for a soggy ride home retracing the morning's route.

 

 

Sunday 27th August 2006

 

Many of our members were away at a CTC Rally in Mildenhall over the Bank Holiday weekend so it was a select group which left Bury on Sunday morning heading for the North Lancashire Cycleway. Heavy showers prompted us to have a tea stop at Whalley Abbey where an MG owners rally was gathering. Refreshed we followed quiet lanes under Pendle Hill to Worston and Downham. A switchback route on a gated road slowed our progress before we crossed the Blacko - Gisburn road where we should have enjoyed a view of the three peaks if they had not been in the clouds.

After lunch in the cafe in Barnoldswick we took the minor road past the Fanny Gray pub with good views across the valley towards Earby. At Foulridge we joined the main road busy with Bank Holiday traffic and the usual route back through Colne, Nelson and Burnley. The slog to Burnley summit was followed by a fast run down to Rawtenstall and an early finish with some 60 - odd miles covered.

Mike , John and Stan headed out towards Rochdale to do the Todmorden , Burnley, Rawtenstall circuit.  Before Littleborough the group forked left to take the high road which eventually drops down onto the main Todmorden road.  The showers eased off and the sun came out so a stop was made to remove our capes.  No sooner had this been done than the sky darkened again and the group were hit by another shower.  Caped up once again they rode through Todmorden and the climb up to Cliviger was tackled before descending into Burnley for the return climb of Burney Summit and the run down into Rawtenstall and home.

 

Sunday 20th August 2006

 

Sunday was a day of contrasts and mixed fortunes. The unsettled weather continued and we departed from a damp and cool Bury in a Northward direction to Whalley before turning east. In the Sawley area Eric suffered three punctures out of a total of five which the group sustained during the day. The delays for repairs led us to abandon our original destination of Clapham instead taking the Forest Becks road to Wigglesworth and on to Long Preston and the excellent Post Office Tea Rooms. Here we dried out and were revived by lunch and hot tea.

Retracing our tracks to Wigglesworth we then took the Tosside road then taking minor roads to Easington Fell. This route is sometimes used for hill climb events and we soon realised why!  From Cow Ark a fast approach to Whalley was made and more refreshments in the Cloisters Coffee Shop. The final few miles back to Bury were covered in bright sunshine with another 90-odd miles covered.

The 'B' ride to Longton only got as far as the Woodhill Cycleway before shelter from heavy rain had to be taken under the trees.  The planned ride was abandoned although Beryl and Brian were eager to get training miles in for their upcoming cycle tour to Canada in September. They will be hoping for better weather at next weekend's Mildenhall Rally which they are attending.  For the next few weeks the 'B' runs will be a lot quieter as they will be absent for four weeks. 

 

Sunday 13th August 2006

 

Sunday morning felt distinctly autumnal with the temperature in Bury a chilly 10C and rain falling in a North West wind. Undeterred we set off to Rawtenstall and at Burnley summit the rain stopped. A chilly descent into the wind was followed by good progress through Nelson and Colne but we left our waterproofs on for warmth. From Foulridge we passed into more rural surroundings and the poor weather seemed to have deterred many motorists on this usually busy route.

At Gargrave we lingered over lunch in the Dalesman cafe and afterwards we took the Airton road which was closed to motorists due to strengthening work on the Newfield bridge. It was pleasant to ride on deserted roads before turning for Bell Busk and Otterburn. With the wind now behind us we made good progress to Hellifield, Halton West and Bolton-by-Bowland where more bridge work deterred motor traffic. Lanes were followed through Grindleton and Waddington to Whalley for another refreshment stop at the Abbey. From here the direct route through Accrington was chosen to arrive home with some 90-odd miles covered.

Sunday 6th August 2006

 

The planned 'A' ride to Beeston Castle did not take place, as due to holidays many members are still away, so the 'A' riders who showed up joined with the 'B' group on their ride to Elswick on the Fylde. Beryl and Brian were out in training for their forthcoming cycling holiday to Canada. It was a cloudy start but very humid as the riders took the route via Bradshaw Chapel and Egerton to Belmont reservoir and then the long descent to Preston.  After a short cut along the banks of the River Ribble into Avenham Park we soon entered the maze of country lanes which is the attractive feature of this area. 

 

The cafe at Elswick used to be a favourite stop for cyclists but is now an expensive restaurant, so a stop was made for lunch at the Billington Craft Centre at Catforth.  The remainder of the afternoon was spent cycling the lanes before returning to Bury in time for tea.

 

Sunday 30th July 2006

 

Holidays and the CTC Birthday Rides in Dumfries, which some members were attending, meant that fewer than the usual numbers of riders were out for last Sunday's rides.  The 'A' ride was to Oakenclough with the usual outward route through Haslingden and over the Roundhills with a stop at Ribchester. 

 

The weather stayed dry for an enjoyable days cycling in the hills around Beacon Fell.

 

The next club meeting will take place at the Old Blue Bell on Bell Lane at 8pm this Monday 7th August.  Everyone welcome.  Bring details of any CTC clothing you wish to be ordered.

 

Sunday 23rd July 2006

 

It was a rainy start for last Sunday's 'A' group ride to Otley, but for once we knew it was guaranteed to brighten up and turn into a hot sunny day as the heatwave continued.  The route to Otley follows that which in the past was used for the club's annual 150km reliability ride. The valley roads to Todmorden and Hebden Bridge are taken before the long climb of Cock Hill and the fast descent down to Oxenhope then on to Keighley.  Then the appropriately named Swine Lane is climbed to East Morton before easier roads are taken into Otley.

Close to the cafe at Otley is the recently opened Ron Kitching Cycling Museum, but we didn't have time to visit as we had to be on our way over Ilkley Moor before our next tea stop at Skipton.  The homeward route from there was the often used roads via Thornton in Craven, Earby, Colne, Nelson and Burnley before the stiff climb to Burnley summit and on to Rawtenstall, Edenfield and Bury.

 

The 'B' group had a ride to Gargrave. 

 

 

Sunday 16th July 2006

 

Due to holidays it was a joint "A" & "B" run which set off under totally blue skies on Sunday morning. We headed north to Haslingden and took the Roundhills road to Blackburn before crossing the river Ribble for the first time near Ribchester. After a brief stop here we carried on in rising temperatures to Longridge and Inglewhite. At Claughton we turned off onto quiet lanes from where we got a glimpse of Blackpool tower. We soon arrived at the oasis of the Priory in Scorton which, as usual, had attracted cyclists from all directions.

We set out in the afternoon on the Marshaw road but, because of the scorching heat, we turned off for Harrisend Fell and at Oakenclough we were briefly entertained by a jazz band in the grounds of a country house. From the summit of High Moor we enjoyed a panoramic view stretching from Morecambe Bay to Southport before turning for Bleasdale. A designated Quiet Lane was taken by Windy Harbour to Chipping and after a fast descent of Chaigley bank we turned for Mitton and Whalley.

Usually it is nice to be able to sit outside in the Abbey grounds but it was so hot we chose to go inside for refreshments. The series of climbs through Accrington took their toll in the last few miles and we arrived home with 90-odd miles covered.

Sunday 9th July 2006

 

Despite the rain on Sunday morning our "A" section set off in the hope of better weather to come. Showers had dried up by the time we got to Whalley but then more persistent but light rain set in as we made our way into North Yorkshire but the usual views towards the three peaks were obscured by low clouds. From Rathmell we made our way across the flood plain of the river Ribble to our lunch stop in Settle where we lingered hoping for the rain to stop.

It didn't and our return journey began straight into the wind and rain. Quiet lanes were taken on the series of stiff climbs to Wham and Tosside where we could see that the Bowland Fells were still shrouded in mist. A fast descent to Forest Becks brought us onto the undulating road to Waddington and a refreshment stop at Whalley. From here we retraced out outward route through Accrington to complete 86 miles on not the best of days.

 

Sunday 2nd July 2006

 

Sunday was the hottest day of the year so far and on days like these windchill works in our favour to keep us cool. There was a good turnout for the "B" run to Southport, we rode through Bolton and out along Chorley New Road before heading for Aspull and Haigh Hall. Here we had refreshments in the shade before riding through the grounds and heading for the towpath of the Leeds and Liverpool canal which we followed all the way to Appley Bridge where we found a quiet lane to Newburgh. From Scarisbrick we followed the busy main road into a bustling Southport for lunch alongside the Marine Lake.

Afterwards we followed the main Preston road to Mere Brow where we turned for Rufford and the lanes to Wrightington Bar. Here we suffered the second of three punctures which delayed our progress on the day. The heat was now taking it's toll and we were anxious to find a local shop, meanwhile we could hear distant rumbles of thunder and see storm clouds over the hills to the east. Around the Coppull area we began to ride on damp roads and in Adlington an off-licence supplied us with cold soft drinks. Between Horwich and Bolton we finally rode into the rain which seemed to be being generated over the hills so the final few miles back into Bury were wet but pleasantly cool.

Congratulations to Mike Tattersall who has earned a Super Randonee award from Audak UK for completing a series of 200, 300, 400 and 600 kilometre rides this year so far!

 

Sunday 25th June 2006

 

Several of our members enjoyed a day out at the CTC York Rally on Sunday. We drove to Rothwell near Leeds and then rode out into the countryside by way of Ledsham and Sherburn-in-Elmet. At Cawood we crossed there River Ouse for the first time and after Stillingfleet we joined a cyclepath on the old Selby to York railway line which in recent years has been tarmaced. Good progress was made along here and the nearer to York we got the more cyclists we met.

The rally takes place on the Knavesmire racecourse and before long we had met cycling friends from Lancaster, Workington, Glasgow and York itself. The £2.50 entrance fee was soon recouped in the bargains we had at the trade stands. After refreshments it was soon time to go and we followed a cyclepath to Tadcaster and after Towton we followed a B road across country to Garforth before re-tracing our steps to Rothwell.

 

Sunday 18th June 2006

 

Several members turned out for the long and very hilly ride to Langsett on Sunday.

We picked our way along quiet roads through Moston and Daisy Nook before the first climb of the day from Stalybridge to Mottram cutting. We stopped in Glossop for a brief rest and a snack before tackling the major climb of Snake Pass and just as we reached the summit rain started to fall. A fast descent brought us to Ladybower reservoir after which we turned off for Strines Moor where a series of valleys are crossed by means of steep, fast descents and equally steep but slow climbs on the other side. The climbing was now taking it's toll as we stopped at the roadside for another snack despite the drizzle. At Langsett we stopped at the cafe for more sustenance and hot tea while the rain stopped before crossing the moors and making the long descent to Holmfirth.

From here most members chose the Isle of Skye road, so called after a long defunct pub. Although not very steep this is a very long drag made worse on the day by a headwind. At the summit Steve Willetts had a puncture which enforced a stop here before swooping down to Greenfield. Mark Cranshaw chose an even hillier route via Meltham, Marsden and Standedge. We took another refreshment stop at Delph and then tackled the last climb of the day to Grains Bar. Caping up again for a shower in Rochdale we reached home with another 100 miles covered.

Sunday 11th June 2006

 

The Charlie Westlake Memorial Rides were well attended on Sunday with many CTC and Clarion members taking part. Most did the longer 100k ride and departed from Bury in warm sunshine with the long drag to Ainsworth splitting the riders up almost from the start but this climb was just the first of many on a demanding course. From Belmont we enjoyed a fast run through Tockholes to Lower Darwen where a steep climb soon had us sweating and from Intack there was another slog out onto the moors and on to York Village. The descent from here afforded magnificent views of the Ribble Valley around Whalley and Clitheroe which we then passed through en route to Downham and from here we tackled the steepest climb of the day in searing heat with no breath of wind to cool us. From Amel cross we turned for Roughlee and the Clarion clubhouse where we inspected Charlies seat, donated by the CTC and Clarion in his memory.

After descending into Burnley another long climb to Crown Point followed and after Rawtenstall the final climb of the day to Owd Betts was tackled with the thought of drinks and ice cream spurring us on.

 

Sunday 4th June 2006

 

Last Sunday's "B" group ride departed from the Rock heading towards Rochdale and was soon climbing Blackstone Edge. Once over the summit there was a short descent before turning right to ride the undulating narrow lanes which cross Rishworth Moor, to arrive at the destination Scammonden. There was a little disappointment here to find the intended watering hole closed, so a short but scenic ride around Scammonden Water brought the group to Nant Sarah's Inn approximately 1100 feet above sea level. Refreshed the wheels were turned for home, with a small detour to the village of Delph, followed by the final climb of the day to Grains Bar high above Oldham.

The "A" group went north into lime stone country for Ribble Head, with some deciding that Long Preston near Settle was far enough on the day.

 

Sunday 28th May 2006

 

Report to follow.

Sunday 21st May 2006

 

Paying heed to an awful weather forecast most of our members opted for a short ride of only fifty miles on Sunday. With the wind behind us good progress was made through Rawtenstall to Burnley and at Duke Bar we turned for Reedley Hallows and Fence. Now on country lanes we reached a road just below a ridge which offered brilliant views of the Lancashire Calder in the valley below. At Noggarth Top we stopped for cottage pie, mushy peas and gravy at a modest £2.

With rain beginning to fall we then headed for the Clarion Clubhouse at Roughlee which is always popular with hikers and cyclists, especially on days of inclement weather. With refurbishment ongoing and dependent donations we bought Clarion House badges to add to the funds. Rain was falling steadily as we left and after crossing Sabden Brook we followed another ridge road to Sabden Heights but now views were obscured by low cloud and driving rain. A cautious descent to Read and Altham followed and From Clayton-le-Moors familiar roads were taken through Accington, Haslingden and back to Bury.

Tomorrow (Fri 26th) five Bury cyclists including three from Bury CTC are setting off on a ride to Bury's twin town of Schorndorf in conjunction with the twinning association to reciprocate a visit made to Bury by Schorndorf cyclists in 2004. The route takes in part of the Vosges mountains and Black Forest and full details can be found on the Bury CTC website: www.cyclingburylancs.com

 

Sunday 14th May 2006

 

The weather forecast for Sunday was cloudy but dry and so we set off for the village of Wray near Lancaster, famous for its scarecrow festival. This was the longest run of the year so far for some of our members and so a steady pace was maintained to Whalley, Chipping, Bleasdale and Oakenclough. A brief roadside stop was made to help out a sheep in distress. Its horns were caught up in wire fencing, but Alan managed to free it and with a bleet of thanks the sheep ran off with its two lambs back into the fields.  Then we rode on to Quernmore and soon after we headed for the beautiful Lune valley at Caton.  On arrival in Wray we noted that a few scarecrows had survived from the May Day festival and we headed for Bridge House Farm Tea Rooms. Never having tried this establishment before we were pleased to sample the large portions of good food and hot tea, this is definitely an addition to our list!  But beware, it is not cheap.

So far we had skirted the Bowland Fells but now we headed straight into the middle of them along lanes we had never tried before. From White Moss on a clear day the Three Peaks, Howgills and much more can be seen but today the clouds were down and rain had started to fall steadily. From Lowgill we turned for Tatham Fell and noted that we had ridden for 8 miles without seeing a car! The summit was just above cloud level and brakes were tested before the long descent to Lamb Hill and Slaidburn. Then it was up again and down to the Copy Nook pub and through Sawley before arriving just in time for afternoon tea at Whalley Abbey. Afterwards, with the rain becoming heavier, we made a dash for home through Wilpshire, the Haslingden Grane road and Edgworth with over 100 miles covered.  Duncan, who lives in Salford, clocked up 124 miles!

The “B” group had a ride out to West Marton.

 

Sunday 7th May 2006

 

Once again it was a fragmented "A" group ride as various riders took their own routes in a northerly direction. The unpredictable weather made for a difficult choice of what to wear, but wet weather clothing and longs were the correct choice for the latter part of the day. It was a pleasant dry start though as the riders on the Ingleton ride took the usual route through Accrington to Whalley. It was then on to the lanes through Sawley before taking a left turn at Copy Nook and the climb and descent to Slaidburn which is entered after taking a continental style hairpin bend. It is just after this tranquil village is passed through that the hard work of the climb over Lythe Fell began. This was rewarded by the long descent to High Benthan and on to Ingleton for lunch.

Another group chose to continue on from Slaidburn to Dunsop Bridge and the views are spectacular on this stretch of road. The road continues to the Trough of Bowland. This is a poular route with cyclists and looking ahead up the road to the last part of the climb it was dotted with riders determined not to have to dismount. Having crested the summit, we were hit by a rain shower which made the descent dangerous, but the rain eased off by the time the left turn for Scorton was taken. Lunch was taken in Scorton prior to the afternoon ride in drizzly conditions through Garstang and the lanes to Inglewhite and Longridge. After a brief stop under a bus shelter in Ribchester for refreshments the series of climbs to Wilpshire were tackled, and after the Blackburn ring road, in worsening weather, the route over Grane Road was chosen with a final run in to Bury through Edgworth and Hawkshaw. Plenty of drying out was needed on arrival home with over 90 miles covered.

The "B" group had a ride to Widdop.

Rides for Sunday 14th May meet outside Wilkinsons, The Rock for "A" Wray 8.00am (Edenfield 8.30), "B" West Marton 9am 

Sunday 30th April 2006

 

Only two riders met at 8.30am this bank holiday Sunday for the ride to Glasson Dock. We set off into a chill northerly wind but with the promise of clear skies ahead, taking a direct route along main roads to Whalley. From here we followed familiar lanes through Great Mitton and Whitewell to Dunsop Bridge where we took the road through and over the tops of the Trough of Bowland with the sun warm on our backs (and the sweat dripping from our noses on the short but sharp 17% section of the climb !) At the top of Hawthornthwaite Fell we slowed to admire the view of Morecambe Bay in the sunshine before enjoying a high speed descent to Scorton where we had a chance encounter with another member who was out independently.

Having travelled without a map and being unsure of the route we then took in an unplanned loop of the busy A6 before eventually finding the road to Glasson Dock and arriving slightly later than planned. The Lantern O'er The Lune café was chock-a-block but worth the wait for the gigantic full breakfast and mugs of hot tea. With calories replenished we set off for home under ominously darkening skies, having first had to carry our bikes over the footbridge on the dock whilst two yachts used the lock.

Within 15 minutes the inevitable happened and the rain came. We caped up and pressed on for Ribchester where on arrival we found Nora's tea room closed for good. However a kindly local noticed our plight and directed us to St Winifreds church hall where the splendid ladies of Ribchester offered us refillable cups of tea and home made cakes for the princely sum of £1.50. Delightful ! Cyclists who read this will understand… From here we took the direct route back to Bury over The Roundhills, arriving home with well over 110 miles covered.

Here's a report from Steve Willetts, the rider mentioned above encountered at Scorton.

There was still a nip in the chilly North - westerly wind which was blowing on Sunday, enough to warrant the wearing of windproofs for a ride to Scorton. Good progress was made over the Roundhills to Blackburn where a new section of cyclepath on the ring road was tried out. After a brief stop at Ribchester we continued to Longridge where a local cyclist got into our slipstream almost to Garstang. Using country lanes to avoid the town centre we arrived in Scorton for an early lunch at the Priory cafe where Gethin Butler was recovering from riding tandem in a race earlier in the morning. Alan and Duncan were here too.

An almost deserted lane was taken to Lower Dolphinholme and after Abbeystead we turned south onto the trough road which was popular in the afternoon sun. Dunsop bridge proved to be popular with day trippers and after another brief stop we continued to Whitewell and Cow Ark. At Mitton it began to rain and we made a dash for the Cloisters coffee shop at Whalley Abbey where we met friends from the Lancashire Road Club and Bolton Clarion. We then faced several climbs through Clayton-le-Moors and Accrington in drizzly rain for a damp finish with 80 odd miles covered.

The "B" group took a more leisurely ride to Croston.

 

Sunday 23rd April 2006

 

Burnsall was the destination for a small “A” group last Sunday.  The low turnout was a surprise because the weather forecast was good and by afternoon it was warm enough for short sleeve jerseys and shorts on the best day of the year so far.  Not too enamoured by the thought of another northerly ride, one of the cyclists decided on a solo tour of west Lancashire.  The main group took the usual route via Burnley, Nelson and Colne before country roads were encountered for the rest of the ride to Burnsall located not too far from Bolton Abbey.  Burnsall is prettily situated by the River Wharfe.  In times past, a rough-stuff route was often taken from here to Grassington which involved a risky crossing of the river by stepping stones.  However, on this occasion, wheels were kept firmly on tarmac and we got to Grassington via a hilly up and down road.

 

The return route took us to Bolton by Bowland over more hills, and then a late afternoon stop was made at Whalley Abbey for rhubarb crumble and custard prior to the final leg of the ride back to Bury to complete another 100 miles plus ride

 

The “B” group had a ride to Barley at the foot of Pendle Hill.

 

 

 

 

Easter Tour Fri 14 to Mon 17 April

 

For "Winnie the Pooh and the Windy Day" read Bury CTC and the windy weekend as this was the main weather feature of our Easter tour to Dufton. Most members drove up on Good Friday but a hardy few rode from Bury. Familiar roads were followed to Settle and at Ribblehead we turned for Hawes and a late lunch. At Garsdale we turned North with Wild Boar Fell and Mallerstang Edge before us as we made for the Eden Valley. From Kirkby Stephen we took the roller coaster road through Soulby to Appleby then on to Dufton.

Mark Cranshaw made the ride even harder by going to Ingleton then over Kingsdale and Deepdale to Dentdale and then taking the Coal Road by Dent Station.

Saturday was probably the most strenuous day for all our members. We set off along country lanes under the great Pennine escarpment with Great Dun Fell and a snowy Cross Fell to the East. At Melmerby we turned straight for the fells and the five mile climb to Hartside Top (1900 feet), regrouping in the cafe at the summit. Before departing a group photograph was taken at the summit sign.

A long descent on the Alston road followed before we turned off for Garrigill and the South Tynedale Road.

Hereabouts we were no longer looking up at the fells but across to them. Then began the long descent into Teesdale and Langdon Beck where barren moorland gave way to rural pastures. At Middleton-in-Teesdale we had another late lunch before heading for Lunesdale and another Pennine crossing. From the summit we had a superb view of the Pennines, Howgills, Eden Valley and a backdrop of the Lakeland fells before a swooping descent to Brough where we took to the lanes back to Dufton.

Mark took Duncan on an even more strenuous route to Alston, Nenthead and St. John's Chapel.

Sunday saw us take to the lanes west of Appleby, visiting Rutter Force and the delightful village of Crosby Ravensworth. A tough climb from here took us to Shap village and a well earned pub lunch. An easier route was taken in the afternoon skirting Lowther Park then through Cliburn to Kirkby Thore and back through the lanes skirting the high Fells.

Mark chose a longer ride to Port Carlisle.

On Monday most members either rode or drove straight home while others chose a short morning ride before driving home in the afternoon. Going south to Murton and Hilton we entered the danger zone surrounding Warcop military camp. Never before had we passed the burned out shells of tanks and armoured personnel carriers on a clubrun! When we arrived in Warcop village we could hear shooting as a military exercise began in the area we had just crossed!

Another roller coaster road was taken through Bleatarn to Appleby and back to Dufton.

 

Sunday 9th April 2006

 

The weather forecast on Sunday morning was less than encouraging and it was certainly cold enough for a return to thermal clothing with slush on the roads around Bury.

The "A" Section set off for the North, taking a direct line through Accrington and then a circuitous route to Great Harwood and Sunnybank before a long descent to York Village and Whalley with magnificent views of the Ribble Valley. It was cold enough to warrant a tea stop at the Abbey before setting off for Hodder Bridge and the steep ascent of Birdy Brow. Once under the shoulder of Longridge Fell we enjoyed a high level run across the opposite side of the Ribble Valley as far as the Newdrop Inn where we turned onto the moorland road over Jeffrey Hill and from the summit the Bowland Fells were laid out before us with our destination of Chipping beneath them.

After a prolonged lunch stop we took a meandering route through the lanes past the Wild Boar Park to Little Bowland, Burholme Bridge and Whitewell. Between here and Cow Ark we were caught in a hail shower which fortunately passed over by the time we reached Bashall Eaves. At Whalley we enjoyed a brief stop at the picnic area before retracing out outward route home with 70 odd miles covered.

The "B" section headed south to Tatton Park in Cheshire.  A bigger group was out than in recent weeks in order to get some miles in prior to next week’s Easter tour.  On arrival at Tatton Park, the sun broke through and it was warm enough to eat sandwiches outdoors.  For a complete contrast the riders were caught in a heavy hailstorm on the homeward route which covered the ground in a layer of white.

 

Sunday 2nd April 2006

 

The weather forecast was not good for last Sunday, but three optimistic cyclists determined not to miss a Sunday’s cycling before the Bury to Schorndorf bike ride at the end of May hoped for more sunshine than showers. Alas it was raining as we set off through Ainsworth towards Belmont. On the tops a pleasant respite from the rain gave us renewed hope of a full day out, but on the descent to Preston the heavens opened again - this time acconpanied by a completely grey sky. 

 

We made a stop for shelter in Avenham Park alongside the swollen River Ribble and made the decision not to proceed to Wrea Green as planned but to take the scenic route back through Brindle to the Rivington chapel tea room.  This is an undulating route and gave us plenty of opportunity to test our climbing legs which helped make up for the lack of miles.

 

A few miles before arrival at Rivington the rain started to  relent.  It continued dry outside whilst we enjoyed a welcome pot of tea - a sorry sight in our wet cloths. On leaving to set off again raindrops soon started to fall, becoming a downpour which we had to contend with all the way through Horwich and the high road back to Bury.  Although drenched we had the consolation of having covering around 60 miles in all.

 

 

Sunday 26th March 2006

 

Thermal gear was abandoned for our first ride of Spring as we enjoyed the mildest day of the year so far on the run to the new destination of Long Preston. Familiar roads were followed to Whalley where we had a break before seeking out a quiet lane parralel to the busy A59. Outside the gates of Standen Hall a puncture delayed our progress but no butler appeared to offer us tea and biscuits! With the wind behind us we swiftly passed Copy Nook and took the Forest Becks road before climbing the drag to Wigglesworth. After crossing the River Ribble we were breaking new ground to try out a new cafe in the Post Office at Long Preston where we enjoyed good fare at reasonable prices.

The very busy A65 Bradford - Kendal road passes through the village so we back tracked after lunch and followed the lanes to Halton West. Here we caught up with a large group from Blackburn CTC before stopping at Bolton-by-Bowland. From here we re-traced our outward route to Whalley and the Cloisters Coffee Shop. Whilst here the first spots of rain began to fall and we caped up for the rest of the ride. From the tops above York Village we could see that the weather had closed in and coming over the Roundhills from Blackburn we were getting wetter all the time. Once over the summit we returned to Bury as quickly as we could to dry out with some 80 - odd miles covered.

Sunday 19th March 2006

 

The coldest March for years continued on Sunday with a stiff northerly wind making for hard going as the "A" run headed out of Bury towards Rawtenstall and Burnley. The severe weather has caused mechanical problems in recent weeks and this time it was Steve's turn to suffer with a seized freewheel and he decided to continue riding as if it were a fixed gear. The panoramic view from Burnley summit did not tempt us to stop as we were keen to get away from this exposed spot. The main road was taken along the valley to Nelson, Colne and onwards to our destination of Barnoldswick. Our favoured cafe was closed when we arrived but we found another in the market square where we were revived by good food and hot tea. Afterwards we found our original cafe open with members of our "B" Section ensconced inside!

We set out along the Lancashire Cycleway along a narrow country lane which links up to outlying farms and there was still a lot of snow piled up at the roadside. Away to the North we enjoyed a superb view towards the Yorkshire Dales with Ingleborough and Pen-y-Ghent covered in snow. After crossing the Gisburn road our route became a switchback of steep climbs and descents until we came to Downham, a village where no street lights or TV aerials are allowed in an effort to preserve the rural atmosphere. We noted a little snow on the north facing side of Pendle Hill as we took a traffic free lane towards Whalley where we took another refreshment stop and Steve's freewheel finally freed itself.

From here we took the direct route home via the climbs to Clayton-le-Moors and Baxenden with between 60 and 70 miles covered on a day when the low temperatures sapped our energy.

 

Sunday 12th March 2006

 

Due to the appalling snowy conditions on Sunday morning and ungritted roads, certainly in the North of the Borough, both clubruns were cancelled.

 

Sunday 5th March 2006

 

The bitterly cold conditions mid-week carried on through the weekend and so it was that we faced a chilling northerly wind all the way to Scorton. From Haslingden we warmed up on then climb over Roundhills and then we were chilled on the descent to Blackburn. The ring road brought us to Wilpshire and another cold descent to Ribchester where we stopped briefly to get some feeling back into fingers and toes. After Longridge we took to the lanes with the Bowland Fells off to the East and after Inglewhite we carried on to Garstang where we saw members of the Lancashire Road club coming the other way.

The Priory at Scorton was packed with cyclists and motorists so we decided instead to go to another venue. The road to Scorton picnic site was still covered in snow so we walked carefully for a few yards before a sharp ascent brought us to JC's Coffee Shop where we thawed out over hot soup and tea. The headwind had delayed our progress all morning and so we made a late start for the return journey. Forton village had rarely been visited on previous clubruns and here we turned for Dolphinholme and Abbeystead and, as we were heading due east, we were now dogged by a crosswind. At last we made it to the Trough road and with the wind behind us rapid progress was made through the defile and on to Dunsop Bridge. At Whitewell the area known as "Little Switzerland" was even more convincing in the snow. From Cow Ark another rapid descent put us well on our way to Whalley and the warmth of the Cloisters coffee shop.

The climbs to Great Harwood, Clayton-le-Moors and Baxenden taxed our weary legs but from then on it was more down than up and our members returned home with 80 - 100 miles covered on a cold, energy sapping day.

Sunday 26th February 2006

 

With several members taking part in a long-distance Audax event through Cheshire and Shropshire in training for their ride to Bury's twin town of Schorndorf it was a small group which set off into the wind on Sunday's "A" run. We rode with the " B" group as far as Edenfield, chatting about cycling matters before parting company as they were going to Todmorden and the Cliviger Gorge. A straight run out brought us through Accrington to Whalley and near Bashall Eaves we stopped to see the last five laps of a road race organised by Clayton Velo and won by Chris Newton. It was very cold standing around in the wind at the roadside so we warmed up by taking the road up Chaigley bank and on to Chipping where we had lunch in the Cobbled Corner cafe along with many other Lancashire cyclists.

A mechanical problem with a sticking freewheel delayed our departure and we took to quiet lanes on the valley side which were virtually traffic free and with good views of Pendle Hill to the East and Beacon Fell to the West before descending to the Longridge road at the Derby Arms. A stop at a local garage for oil failed to solve the freewheel problem and we pressed on for a brief stop at Ribchester, wanting to reach home before dark we didn't go into Nora's Tea Rooms on this occasion. After slogging up Barker Brow and along the Blackburn ring road it was into the wind once more over the Roundhills and from Haslingden with the wind now behind us we reached home just before lighting up time.

 

Sunday 19th February 2006


In contrast to the previous week Sunday was a bright dry day with a cold north easterly wind blowing which hindered our progress as we made our way to Settle. We made a change to the normal route by taking the long drag of a climb from Barrowford through Blacko and past the Moorcock Inn to a summit where the Ribble Valley was laid out before us with distant views of Ingleborough and Pen-Y-Ghent  before making a fast and winding descent to Gisburn. From here we turned off onto quiet lanes taking us over the River Ribble to Wigglesworth and by way of Rathmell to our destination. The warmth and good fare in the Settle Down cafe was very welcome as we discussed the afternoons itinerary.

Forsaking a direct route we chose to take the winding lanes to Paley Green and Eldroth and at Keasden we took the Fell road over Bowland Knotts. From the north side this takes the form of a series of steep climbs punctuated by level or downhill stretches. A brief stop at the summit for a bite to eat and wait for stragglers gave us the chance to admire views across the Three Peaks and to Pendle Hill.  A swift descent brought us to Stocks reservoir before another stiff climb to Greaves and a long descent to Copy Nook. Rolling along the Ribble Valley we were spurred on by the thought of refreshments at Whalley Abbey after which we took the direct route home through Accrington with the temperature dropping as the sun set. Most members covered 90 - 100 miles, a good total for a cold February day.
 
Runs for Sunday 26th February meet Wilkinson's, The Rock  "A" Haworth, 09:00   "B" Cragg Vale, 09:30

Sunday 12th February 2006

 

On Sunday we faced a day of rain, something which has not happened to us for many months. Therefore it was a select band which gathered in Bury and the long ride to Nateby was abandoned there and then in favour of a shorter run to the Ribchester.  The ride over Roundhills can only be described as unpleasant as the rain began to penetrate our 'waterproofs'.  Not only that but we were agressively hooted at by an unsympathic motorist for no reason whatsoever.  Due to the conditions we were happy to take the most direct route by Wilpshire before dropping to cross the old stone bridge over the swollen River Ribble and on to Ribchester.  We entered the very welcoming Nora's cafe and soon the stone floor was covered in puddles of water from our shoes and clothing.  Gloves were placed in front of the stove heater in a vain effort to dry them out.

Refreshed, we decided on taking the route home via Longridge into Preston and then tackle the Belmont climb.  The run through Goosnargh was into a headwind but we had a trouble free ride through Preston.  Eric decided that a stop at the Higher Walton cafe was necessary, the others opting to continue on unable to face sitting in a cafe in soggy clothing again.  At least we had a favourable wind over Belmont, but the rain just would not let up.  We were home before 3pm with almost 60 miles covered.  Better conditions are hoped for next Sunday.

Runs for Sunday 19th February meet at Wilkinson's, The Rock  "A" Settle 09:00, Edenfield 09:30

"B" Longton 09:30

 

Sunday 5th February 2006

 

Numbers were down for this mid-winter ride in misty overcast conditions where the damp, clammy atmosphere added to the low temperature. However, those who did venture out enjoyed the ride along part of the Lancashire Cycleway. From Bury we rode due North to Rawtenstall and at Crawshawbooth we climbed into the mist which continued to linger in the valley around Burnley. From Duke Bar we took the Reedley Hallows road and descended to cross the river and the motorway before facing the stiff climb to Fence. Here we took to quiet lanes along the valley side where, on a clear day, there is a panoramic view across East Lancashire., but today all was lost in the mist. From Noggarth Top a fast descent was followed by a long slog from Barley to Amel Cross under the shoulder of Pendle Hill which, despite it's proximity, was also lost in the mist.

The Post Office tea room in Downham had a welcoming open fire where giant portions of fruit pie and custard were soon washed down with hot tea. The main discussion was, as ever, the afternoon's route and after musing over hilly routes and longer distances we settled for a valley route along the Ribble to Waddington before crossing a low ridge at Cow Ark taking us into the Hodder Valley. From Chipping we threaded our way through quiet lanes to Longridge and Afternoon tea at Nora's in Ribchester in front of a warm stove. The murky conditions meant dusk was upon us after the Roundhills and we returned to Bury with around 80 miles covered.

Sunday 29th January 2006

 

Another cold but bright January morning last Sunday made for the prospect of a great day's winter cycling. Wycoller Country Park was the “A” group destination, so the usual outward route through Rawtenstall, Burnley, Nelson and Colne was taken before narrow country roads were encountered. After turning right off the Cowling road we hit the first climb of the day which took us up to the high road to Wycoller. At the cafe the group tucked into a hearty meal in preparation for the climbing to come. The roads from Wycoller through Trawden to Worsthorne village can only be described as resembling a roller-coaster ride. The views are magnificent though, especially when looking across to the steep Widdop Moor road.

Halting for a breather in Worsthorne village, there was still more climbing to come after descending to the Burnley - Todmorden road. On the steep narrow road which is a short cut up to the main Crown Point road, the disconcerting feeling of the rear wheel losing traction on the frosty road surface ensured that riders kept seated for the remainder of the climb. Back on the main road the climbing continued to Crown Point before the fast descent to Waterfoot. It was here that we were delayed by a puncture. Once back on the road the final leg of the ride was completed through Rawtenstall and Edenfield. The mileage may have been a little less than in recent weeks, but this was more than made up for by the hilly terrain covered.

The “B” group set off in an easterly direction going by Middleton and Failsworth. The riders then continued skirting Ashton for the ascent of Hartshead Pike, where the narrow unsurfaced road proved a little tricky to negotiate due to water running from the hillside having been turned into sheets of ice.

Once at the summit our efforts were well rewarded with panoramic views in all directions. A short stay here and wheels were turned for home taking us via Strines Dale high above Oldham, arriving home before the sun disappeared over the horizon and temperatures dropped.

 

Sunday 22nd January 2006

 

Sunday was a bright, cold day without a breath of wind to hinder our progress. Then usual route was taken to Rawtenstall, Burnley and Colne from here the "A" group took to the lanes and the long drag up Skipton Old Road to the head of Lothersdale. From Elswick Moor there was a panoramic view across Airedale and the hills beyond. Dropping to Gargrave we took lunch in the Dalesman Cafe where the afternoons route was planned.

Taking to the Dales we rode up to Airton and turned onto Scosthrop Lane for the climb to High Side at 308 metres. from here we enjoyed a magnificent view off Upper Ribblesdale but, away to the west, Pendle Hill was lost in the haze. Steep descents brought us to Scaleber and Settle and in contrast we took the flat road by the River Ribble to Rathmell. During the last ice age this was the bed of a glacial lake and sometimes still is when the Ribble floods!

Undulating roads now took us to Bolton-by-Bowland and Waddington and we stopped for refreshments at Whalley Abbey. four climbs of increasing length and severity were now faced as we made our way through Accrington and in the gathering gloom lights were required. Depending on which part of the Borough our members come from the distance covered varied between 80 and 100 miles, not bad for January!

A small group of riders who had to be home early had a very enjoyable shorter ride over Burnley Summit and then through Cliviger Gorge to Todmorden where a cafe stop was made near the market for an al fresco cup of tea from a polystyrene cup. Taking the valley road the riders then diverted right and climbed the narrow minor road which has only just been repaired following subsidence damage. They then descended to Littleborough and cycled up to  Hollingworth Lake which looked tranquil on this still morning.  Then onto Milnrow, Rochdale and Norden and the climb up to Owd Betts prior to a fast descent back to Edenfield and Bury.

 

Sunday 15th January 2006

 

Our members wore black armbands on Sunday as a mark of respect for the four members of Rhyl CC who were killed on the road the previous week.

Climbing out of Bury to Ainsworth our progress was halted at Bradshaw by a split tyre. Fortunately one of our members lives nearby and had a spare tyre at home. Winter Hill was visible at Belmont but the TV masts were lost in the cloud and on the descent to Riley Green the clouds parted and we were treated to some winter sun.

We followed urban roads through Leyland to Brethrerton and then picked our way through the lanes to Croston and the popular cafe there. A puncture was discovered as we left the cafe and after its repair we threaded our way along quiet lanes to Coppull and another puncture lead to further delay. We stopped at the Chapel Tearooms at Rivington before tackling the steep climb over to Belmont and on to Edgworth. The final few miles back to Bury were covered in the dark with around 65 miles covered.

 

Sunday 8th January 2006

 

Sunday was a misty and murky day when the clouds were down over the hills and the damp, clammy atmosphere made the low temperature feel even colder. Undeterred we headed for Rochdale and at Newhey we tackled the first major climb of the day past the Moorcock Inn to Denshaw. In Delph we turned onto the Standedge climb and by the Floating Light very small crystals of snow were falling to add to the light dusting already there. The windchill on the long descent to Marsden was compensated for by a 1 in 5 climb to Slaithwaite Moor. We followed the West Yorkshire Cycleway around Scammonden Water and then crossed the M62 which hereabouts is the highest motorway in Britain, higher even than the M6 over Shap Fell. A steep descent to Rishworth was followed by a fast run into Sowerby Bridge where our usual Cafe beckoned.

After a mountainous all day breakfast washed down with plenty of tea we set out to avoid the busy A646 but this involved much climbing on a convoluted route only to drop back down into the valley at Luddenden Foot. At Mytholmroyd we turned onto the longest continuous climb in Britain, the 6 miles of Cragg Vale which brought us to the summit of Blackstone Edge. A fast descent into Littleborough was followed by a dash for home before dark.

Monday 2nd January 2006

 

Once again our members took advantage of the quiet roads on New Year's Day and those who did go out averaged 40 miles while Mark Cranshaw made his way to Malpas in Cheshire, not far from the Shropshire/Welsh border and just a few miles east of Wrexham. He returned home having covered 116 miles.

Monday 2nd dawned cold but dry and we took the usual route through Accrington to Whalley. The cafe at Whalley Abbey was closed so we pressed on to Bashall Eaves and at Cow Ark we took the minor road to Whitewell. From the top there is usually a stunning view across the Bowland Fells but the clouds were down over the summits. At Burholme Bridge a puncture stopped our progress and after fixing it we climbed to Little Bowland and passed the wild boar park on the way to Chipping. The cafe here was open and busy and while we enjoyed our lunch it began to drizzle outside. After caping up we took to deserted minor lanes and descended into the valley,joining the Longridge road at the Derby Arms. At Ribchester we had a brief stop before heading for the Blackburn ring road and the Roundhills. We maintained a brisk pace in the gathering gloom and switched our lights on in Haslingden for the rest of the ride back to Bury.

Monday 26th December 2005


A few of our members have taken advantage of the Christmas period to enjoy rides while the roads were quiet. Most Prolific has been Mark Cranshaw who went to Airton on Christmas Eve, a deserted Glasson Dock on Christmas day and Roughlee via Hebden Bridge and Widdop on Boxing Day. Here he met up with other club members who had come via Sabden or Blacko. The Clarion Clubhouse was the only establishment open for miles around and, with a Jacob's join buffet laid on, it was full of hikers and cyclists.  After eating more than we should we reluctantly left to climb over the ridge to Fence followed by a chilly descent to Reedley Hallows. At Cliviger light rain began to fall so we caped up before continuing to Waterfoot. A slow puncture was pumped up in Shuttleworth for the last few miles home. These notes are being written before our Christmas meal run on Wednesday 28th but, weather permitting the intention was to go over the Roundhills to Guide and Tockholes, arriving at the Black dog, Belmont in time for lunch with a direct route home afterwards.
 

Sunday 18th December 2005


The temperature in Bury at 9am on Sunday morning was -3C and it was the usual suspects who turned up in thermal gear up for the clubrun to Chipping. At Edenfield we met Bolton Clarion who were on their way to Towneley Hall and in Haslingden a Christmas card was hand delivered. After a very chilly descent into Accrington we stopped in Whalley for a collective moan about the amount of feeling, or not, in hands and feet. A brief discussion favoured the shortest route to our destination and at Great Mitton we skirted around an ice patch and stopped for a roadside gearing repair. A warming ascent of Chaigley Bank was followed by another icy encounter before we reached our destination. Our usual cafe has again been refurbished more in the style of a restaurant but we were still welcome.  A little rain was beginning to fall as we left but the damp atmosphere and wind meant it felt just as cold as we made our way to Longridge and Ribchester. Skirting Blackburn the rain increased as we made our way over the Roundhills and in Haslingden we switched our lights on for the final few miles home with around 65 miles covered.
 

Sunday 11th December 2005

 

Sunday was a complete contrast to the previous weeks clubrun with blue skies, sunshine and mild temperatures. After taking the usual route direct to Whalley we took to a traffic free lane parallel with the Clitheroe by-pass and at Copy Nook we took the long drag to Greaves where we crossed a watershed between the valleys of the Ribble and the Hodder.

In Slaidburn we had an alfresco lunch in the warm sunshine before taking a quiet lane to Laythams and New Biggin. At Newton we turned directly into a strong wind which made us struggle to Dunsop Bridge where we stopped for a pot of tea. Heading for Whitewell we compared the scenery favourably with parts of Scotland and Switzerland and at Walker Fold with the wind now behind us we made a fast descent of Chaigley Bank. Anxious to get home in daylight we made a brief stop at Whalley picnic area and re-traced our steps through Accrington to Bury.


 

Sunday 4th December 2005

 

The heavy overnight rain was still falling on Sunday morning so it was only those who were desperate for their weekly cycling "fix" who turned up at the start! By the time we reached Edenfield the rain had eased off and the clouds were beginning to break up. From Burnley summit we saw Pendle Hill with clouds hiding it's summit but it's flanks were lit by the low autumnal sun. Although it was now dry it was also colder in Burnley due to the clear skies. From Nelson we took the Barrowford road and climbed through Blacko before turning off for Roughlee.

Perhaps it was the early inclement weather which had prompted many cyclists to head for the bolt-hole of the Clarion Clubhouse. Smoke coming from the chimney confirmed that the coal fire was burning and once inside a benevolent looking Kier Hardy gazed down upon us from his photo frame.

After lunch we immediately faced a 1-in-5 climb to Newchurch-in-Pendle and then rode along a lane clinging to the side of the valley. Before Sabden Heights we ran into a rain shower and a swift descent brought us to Simonstone. From Clayton-Le-Moors we followed the main road through Accrington and in Shuttleworth heavy rain began to fall once more as we made a final dash for home.

 

Sunday 27th November 2005

 

Sunday morning started cold with a little sleet in the hills around Bury and the temperature in the town centre was a chilly +1C. It was the usual hardy souls who departed into the North wind and headed towards Belmont under threatening skies but from the summit we could se clear weather to the North with Heysham power station and Black Combe on the western edge of the Lake District clearly visible in the far distance.

 

We avoided Preston city centre by riding along the banks of the river Ribble through Avenham park and then took to country lanes around Bartle. On arrival at our lunch stop we met our friends in the Lancashire Road Club, exchanging news and stories. We were fortunate that the only rain of the day fell whilst we were in the cafe and we noted that the hills to the south of Preston now had a dusting of snow on them. 

 

We stuck to quiet lanes back to Longridge and had another tea stop in Ribchester before facing the climbs of Barker Brow and the Roundhills where the setting sun picked out the environs of Accrington against a dark backdrop of a brooding Pendle Hill. With the temperature now plummeting and darkness being upon us we made a dash for home with 70-odd miles covered.

 

 

Sunday 20th November 2005

 

The cold but dry weather continued for Sunday's clubrun to West Marton and we were all dressed in thermal gear to keep the windchill out. Good progress was made through Rawtenstall to Burnley Summit and from here we had a magnificent view across East Lancashire to Pendle Hill. Following main roads through to Colne and Earby we then turned into the lanes and crossed the Leeds and Liverpool Canal before reaching the warmth of the cafe at our destination. After causing mayhem by ordering items not on the menu we discussed our options for the afternoon. By now the Sun had done it's work once more and it was pleasant following single track roads to Newsholme. The bridge over the river Ribble at Paythorne had not seen the sun all day and it's walls were still covered in frost. From Bolton-by-Bowland we made our way to the Clitheroe by-pass and some opted to head direct for home whilst others had a tea stop ay Whalley Abbey. Lights were needed for the final few miles with 70 odd miles covered.

 

Sunday 13th November 2005

 

After the mild weather of recent weeks Sunday came as a shock to the
system as the Northerly wind brought cold weather for our run to Haworth.
We followed a valley route through Rochdale to Littleborough and then
over Summit to Todmorden and Hebden Bridge. From here a 4 mile climb through
Pecket Well warmed us up and from the top the Worth Valley was laid out
before us all the way to Keighley. Re-grouping in Oxenhope we followed
lanes to Haworth where we found a new cafe, our previous favourite having
closed down.

The afternoon sun had warmed things up and two riders decided to extend
the ride by way of Lothersdale. The rest of us,  wanting to arrive home
before dark,  took a more direct route through Stanbury and past the remote
and now closed Herders Arms before a fast descent brought us to Laneshawbridge.
Main roads were followed to Burnley and the 2 1/2 mile climb to Burnley
Summit had us strung out along the road. After re-grouping and a roadside
snack we continued through Rawtenstall arriving home at 3:30pm

 




 

Sunday 6th November 2005

 

Sunday dawned grey and wet so it was five hardy souls who turned up in Bury at 9:30. After a delayed departure the rain soon stopped and we felt no more than a few spots for the rest of the day. The A56 was followed through Prestwich before we turned for Rainsough Brow and Agecroft. We threaded our way through Salford to Eccles and around Davyhulme Circle and at Partington we left urban areas behind and threaded through country lanes to Dunham Massey and the Rope and Anchor where our District Association AGM was being held. A long lunch was taken and we met friends from all over the Manchester area before a mid-afternoon departure to get home before dark. The homeward route took us over the Warburton toll bridge (free to cyclists) and through lanes around Glazebrook before we entered the urban sprawl again at Leigh. At Little Hulton we switched our lights on for the last few miles back to Bury.

Sunday 30th October 2005

 

With shorter days now with us clubruns have modest mileages but the autumnal weather still makes them testing. The recent mild weather tempted most of our riders to venture out in shorts for Sundays ride to Marsden and with no sign of the promised rain we made good progress to Newhey. The stiff climb between here and Denshaw was not helped by the swirling wind and on the next climb to Nont Sarah's the rain finally arrived. The Roman Road across Slaithwaite Moor is very exposed at a height of around 400 metres and the strong, gusty crosswind hindered our progress. At Worts Hill we turned into the full blast of the wind and then we picked our way through a network of narrow lanes before a very steep descent, which one member walked down, brought us into the Colne Valley and Marsden.

Whilst we were in the cafe here the rain stopped but on the climb to Standedge we found the wind to be just as strong. At Delph we had another cafe stop before tackling Grains Bar and from this summit we had a magnificent view across south Lancashire and Cheshire with Fiddler's Ferry power station and Snowdon visible in the distance. We chose busy roads through Rochdale and Heywood to return to Bury by mid-afternoon.

Sunday 23rd October 2005


Seven section members enjoyed last weekend away at a revamped Dufton Youth Hostel in
Westmorland.  Arriving at the hostel mid morning on Saturday, car-assisted, we were
soon enjoying riding along quiet lanes in the Eden Valley.  After an early dinner at
Culgarth garden centre, the cafe being a former station on the Settle-Carlisle railway
line, we continued following the River Eden, until disaster struck when Nigel's
right-hand pedal fell off.  This mean't a six mile diversion to find a bike shop in
Penrith, with Nigel arriving with a very tired left leg.  After a two-hour delay for repairs,
we made our way back to the Eden Valley, by this time it was pouring down, so seven
soaked cyclists arrived back at the hostel, later than planned.

Sunday we again had a damp start, as we headed east towards Brough, but again we
had to deviate from our planned route, due to the army being active on the firing range near
Warcop.  So after leaving Appleby we took the lanes to Rutterforce Waterfall, which was in
full spate due to recent heavy rain.  Unfortunately the cafe here was shut, so we turned west and
headed to Crosby Ravensworth for dinner. On emerging from the pub we found that the
rain had departed, and with the cloud breaking, the sun turned a drab countryside into
a sparkling autumn spectacular, as we headed to Askham near Ullswater via Shap
Village.  From here it was time to head back east via Lowther Park, enjoying the
autumn colours of the trees and ferns on the hillside, as we made our way back to
Dufton, and then home.

Sunday 16th October 2005

 

There was a good turnout for Sundays ride to Malham and although it was dry, a strong easterly wind made for tough going as we passed through Burnley, Nelson and Colne. At Earby there was a split with some members opting for West Marton whilst the rest carried on to Gargrave and Malham.

Here we had lunch while watching fell runners and being harrassed by local ducks! There will not be many more Sundays this year when it is warm enough for an alfresco lunch.

Malham is surrounded by limestone fells and we chose to climb Malham Rakes to Malham Tarn engaging our lowest gears as we eventually climbed 226 metres to a summit on Langcliffe Moor. By now the sun had broken through and on deserted roads conditions were almost idyllic for cycling. Here we truly were on the roof of England and enjoyed views looking down onto hills we usually look up to. With the wind now behind us we clocked 45mph on the descent to the Ribble valley and we flew along to Wigglesworth and Whalley.

After a refreshment stop here we did more climbing to York village and, with shadows lengthening, we crossed the Roundhills and returned to Bury.


Sunday 9th October 2005

 

Members of the "A" Section have completed rides of over 100 miles, and in some cases well over 100 miles, every Sunday for the past 10 weeks which shows not only the fitness of the riders but also favourable weather conditions. Only once did we have to cape up and then only for an hour.

On Sunday the wind was the dominant weather feature, with it behind us we made good progress to Whalley and on to Sawley, Wigglesworth and Settle. From here we took a quiet lane and climbed steadily to Helwith Bridge and just before Horton-in-Ribblesdale we caught a large group from Blackburn CTC. Warmth and hot food were taken at the Pen-y-Ghent cafe and then we faced the wind for the journey home. Passing under Norber Fell with it's perched blocks deposited during the last Ice Age we came to Austwick where a decision had to be made, Bowland Knotts was ruled out due to it's high and exposed position so we made for Lawkland. From Giggleswick we took the deserted road to Wham before climbing to Long Gill and Tosside. With good views of Pendle Hill we followed the Ribble Valley to Waddington and took afternoon tea at Whalley Abbey. From here we retraced our outward route through Accrington. There won't be many more rides so long this year.

 

Sunday 2nd October 2005

 

Sunday brought the first real signs of autumn, the chilly weather bringing some riders out in longs for the first time and the leaves were beginning to change colour on some trees.

The usual route was taken to Whalley where some riders diverted for a shorter ride around the lanes near Great Mitton, Hurst Green, Old Langho and York Village. The main group took to quiet lanes through Whitewell to Dunsop Bridge and on through the Trough of Bowland, the North-West wind making the climb even harder. Some members went directly to Scorton whilst others extended the ride over the Jubilee Tower to Quernmore with fine views over Lancaster and Morecambe Bay. After a reviving pot of tea in the Priory we now had the wind on our backs and made good progress through Inglewhite and Longridge to Ribchester. The cafe here had just been invaded by a large group of walkers so we ate our own provisions and carried on. We made a steady climb over the Roundhills to Haslingden and once again we returned to Bury with 100 miles covered.

Sunday 25th September 2005

 

Sunday morning was dry (just!) and with the promise of better weather to come we set off for the Yorkshire Dales determined to make the most of the early Autumn weather. The usual route along main roads was taken to Burnley and Colne and with the wind behind us the climb onto the moors above Laneshawbridge was quick and followed by a rapid descent to Crosshills. Crossing the Leeds and Liverpool canal at Kildwick the climbing began in earnest as we took narrow lanes which were virtually deserted onto Silsden Moor. A fast descent was made to Addingham and after Bolton Bridge we took the minor road to Storiths where there were more fast descents and tough little climbs on the way to Appletreewick.

We took lunch in a busy Grassington and then faced the wind on our return journey. From Hetton we took the minor road to Airton and on to Hellifield, at Halton West we were delayed by a puncture but this proved to be a blessing in disguise as we sheltered under the trees as a heavy shower passed over. Another puncture at Sawley meant further delay and we made it to the Cloisters tearoom at Whalley Abbey with a few minutes to spare, never has bakewell tart and custard tasted so good! With the days now shortening we took the direct route back through Accrington to arrive back in Bury in daylight - there won't be many long days like this again this year.

 

Sunday 18th September 2005

 

After a cool start we made our way over the Roundhills where we passed the Sustrans riders on the last leg of their journey from Cambridge to Preston and our progress was delayed by a puncture. From Wilpshire we descended into the picturesque Ribble Valley at Ribchester. After Longridge we picked our way through the lanes under Beacon Fell and entered the Forest of Bowland before arriving at our lunch stop of Tootle Hall.

Since the demise of Bleasdale Post Office cafes are a little thin on the ground in this area. After lunch we climbed over the ridge to Chipping before returning to Longridge and going on to Preston. Here a short cut proved to be anything but and we picked up a following of children on bikes on a local estate.

Eventually we emerged at the Tickled Trout and followed the cycle path under the motorway before turning into the lanes to Hoghton and Brindle. This picturesque area is underrated but so close to home and has a network of minor lanes so attractive to cyclists. At Rivington we had afternoon tea while being entertained by the pianist in the Chapel Tearooms. From here we followed main roads through Horwich and Bolton back to Bury and two members, anxious to make the most of the late summer weather, did an extra loop to make the mileage up to 100 for the day.

 

Sunday 11th September 2005

 

With summer drawing to a close some of our members have been taking part in long distance Audax events. On Sunday 4th September Steve Willetts completed the Northern Dales 200k from Arnside to Tan Hill and back in very hot conditions. On Sunday 18th September Mark Cranshaw is doing the Fleet Moss 200k from Claughton which tackles Fleet Moss from Hawes (the hard side!)

Sundays "A" run started in cool conditions with riders wearing an extra top for the first time this summer and the usual route was taken to Burnley, Nelson and Colne. We passed the Dalesman cafe in Gargrave which was heaving with cyclists and corralled by some expensive looking machines. By now the sun had broken through and it was starting to warm up and after Cracoe we took a narrow lane with grass growing in the middle! From here we had a magnificent view of Upper Wharfedale towards Grassington and Kilnsey Crag before dropping into Burnsall for lunch on the village green.

The afternoon was hot as we retraced our steps to Hetton where we took another quiet lane to Airton and on to Otterburn and Hellifield. With Pendle Hill looming we climbed away from Halton West and crossed into Lancashire before descending to Bolton by Bowland. At Whalley we had afternoon tea in the Cloisters tearoom at the Abbey before taking the direct route home through Accrington.

 

Sunday 4th September 2005

 

We are now into September, but the ‘A’ section rode out of Bury last Sunday into what turned out to be one of the hottest days of the year.  The destination on the runs list was Elswick so the outward route was Haslingden and over the Roundhills and through Wilpshire with a stop at Ribchester.  The group of five riders than continued through Longridge and then diverted onto the Lancashire Cycleway before arriving at Broughton.  A short spell on the busy A6 came to an end after turning left onto the quiet country lanes around Bilsbarrow and a tour around the villages of St Michaels on Wyre and Inskip preceded the lunch stop at Blackleach Farm, Catforth.  This café replaces the Elswick café on our rides around these roads as the latter caters more for motorists now.

 

The homeward ride took us through more quiet lanes before a busy section into Preston and Avenham Park where we rode along the banks of a tranquil River Ribble.  Once back on the road through Walton-le-Dale a right turn was taken for the steady climb to Brindle. Here one of the riders took the route home via Tockholes and Belmont while the others made for a final tea stop at Rivington before arriving home in Bury late afternoon.

 

 

Sunday 28th August 2005

 

The promise of a dry day brought "A" section members out in force on Sunday for the run to Arncliffe.  A fast run out to Whalley was followed by quiet country lanes to Copy Nook where we met members of Blackburn CTC who were en route to Kirkby Lonsdale. From Wigglesworth we felt the first spots of rain as it began to drizzle.  At Settle we stopped for an early lunch in the Settle Down café which has recently changed hands and now does service with a smile!   

A full stomach is not recommended for the next stage of our ride.  At Stainforth we turned onto the aptly named Goat Lane which required the skills of a mountain goat on it's 1 in 5 sections for 3 miles until we crossed the Pennine Way. From here there are usually good views of Pen-y-Ghent, the  “Hill of the winds", well it was certainly windy but the summit was lost in the clouds and we caped up for the descent to Halton Gill and Littondale.  This Dale is usually quiet but it being a Bank Holiday weekend motorists were out and some seemed to be able to see around blind bends!!  After Kilnsey Crag we followed the back road to Grassington and on to Gargrave where we met Mark Cranshaw who had extended the ride to a busy and wet Hawes.  After afternoon tea we returned in the sun and a fierce headwind to Earby and Burnley and with another 100 miles covered when we returned to Bury.

 

Sunday 21st August 2005

 

The "A" and "B" sections met briefly in Bury on Sunday morning before going their separate ways. The "A" section took the usual route to Whalley before turning onto quiet lanes to Sawley. From Copy Nook we climbed over the moors to Slaidburn where the Heritage Centre was closed for refurbishment so we continued to the cafe at Dunsop Bridge. One member found that his front changer had sheared apart leaving him with 8 gears instead of 24 but, undeterred, he still headed for the hills! From here the group split up with some heading to Whitewell and Ribchester whilst the rest took the Trough of Bowland road. A further split saw some members descend Cam Brow under Catshaw Fell to Scorton while one member, anxious to get more miles in, continued over the Jubilee Tower to Quernmore.

There was'nt much climbing for a few miles to Longridge and at Ribchester we re-grouped in Nora's tearooms. We then climbed to Wilpshire and crossed the Roundhills to Haslingden, returning to Bury with another 100 miles covered.

"B" section had a more leisurely ride to Longton. Beryl was out on her new lightweight bike - a surprise anniversary present from husband Brian. Alas it didn't seem to have been set up too well and, after a puncture on the way up to Belmont Reservoir, adjustments to clattering gears were made to it at the Greasy Spoon cafe in Walton-le-Dale. Then followed a quiet route avoiding Preston city centre along the banks of the River Ribble before joining a cycle route taking us through various residential areas. Then Beryl's saddle and seat post slipped down but she soldiered on for the last few miles before Longton was reached and we rode to the lunch stop at the Dolphin pub. This secluded pub was busier than usual due to the hot weather, and those with their own sandwiches lunched by the riverbank. Here we met up with Nigel and Mandy who had ridden out earlier on their tandem.  Refreshed, the riders took a return route, led by Nigel, through pleasant Lancashire lanes to Chorley and Cowling and on to Rivington for an ice cream stop at the lower barn before taking the direct route back to Bury.

Sunday 14th August 2005

 

Sunday morning started with a cool easterly wind which was in our faces as the 'A' group set out through Rochdale. From Littleborough we went over Summit where the railway line below is in a tunnel which was the longest in the world when it was built in 1839. We followed the Calder Valley route as far as Hebden Bridge and then came the first major climb of the day to Peckett Well and over Cock Hill. We were sheltered from the wind by the trees on the first part of the climb but we were hampered by it on the descent to Oxenhope. Around Howarth a few spots of rain came to nothing and after Keighley we climbed through East Morton up the aptly named Swine Lane which softened our legs even more. Once at the top we followed the rolling road over Hawksworth Moor with fine views over the Aire Valley before dropping down to Otley for lunch beside the River Wharfe at Otley.

Fortified, we took the minor road along the north side of the river to Askwith and Addingham. Here we found the footbridge over the river was closed for repairs but, not wanting to make a lenghty detour, we crossed it anyway. Skipton was relatively quiet and knowing that our usual cafe at Foulridge is closed for the foreseeable future we went to Greenber Locks on the Leeds and Liverpool canal and the tea hut there. From Barnoldswick the group split up with some following the main roads whilst others climbed to the Fanny Grey pub and enjoyed quiet lanes to Foulridge. After the stiff climb to Burnley summit we re-grouped for the final miles back to Bury with 95 - 100 miles covered.

The 'B' group's destination was Holmfirth. Leaving Bury via Heap Brow and using the usual scenic short cuts leading to Victoria Avenue, we made our way through Failsworth for an earlier than usual tea stop at Daisy Nook Garden Centre. Refreshed we pushed on through Ashton and Mossley to start the long but steady climb out of Greenfield. This climb is always a challenge and great satisfaction is gained on reaching the summit and the open moorland road beyond. A speedy run over the moor - bleak even on a summer's day - and past the location of the long since demolished Isle of Skye Inn ended with the descent into Holmfirth and lunch. We had a new rider out today, Duncan Limbert, and it was good to have John Merritt with us again after a lengthy break.

Sunday 7th August 2005


Sunday morning saw clear blue sky and sunshine with  a cool north-westerly breeze which was in our faces as we headed out of Bury via Ainsworth, Bradshaw and Bromley Cross. On the descent from Belmont to Abbey Village we could see the Lake District fells as clear as a bell and seemingly much closer than their actual distance. Several pairs of swans were noted on the River Ribble as we passed through Avenham Park in Preston and all were in harmony with no evidence of any ongoing territorial disputes.  Crossing onto the Fylde we followed quiet lanes to Kirkham after which we espied Blackpool Tower in the distance. We stopped at  Wrea Green for an alfresco lunch on the village green.

Retracing our steps to Preston we took to the lanes around Gregson Lane and Brindle, climbing all the while until we reached the charming hamlet of Top'o'th Lane with it's brilliant views towards Winter Hill. Between here and Wheelton we dropped towards the noisy and busy M61 before climbing to the quiet and relaxed Leeds and Liverpool canal where a narrow boat was descending a lock.

Afternoon tea was taken in the busy tea chapel tearoom at Rivington and then we took the route of least resistance through Bolton and back to Bury with another 100 miles covered.

 

Sunday 31st July 2005


Sunday morning started dull but dry and cool for the clubrun to Gargrave, a destination which the "A" section have not visited for some time. The usual route was taken through Rawtenstall, Burnley, Nelson and Colne and in Foulridge we crossed a low watershed. It is said that that rainwater at one end of the village drains eventually into the Irish Sea whilst at the other end it goes into the North Sea. At Broughton we turned off main roads and climbed through drumlin country before dropping to or destination. The Dalesman cafe has been popular with cyclists for generations and Sunday was no exception with bikes stacked outside and cyclists inside from as far afield as Blackburn and Huddersfield.

After lunch we continued through quiet lanes towards Airton before turning off for Bell busk and Otterburn where a slow puncture halted us for a short while. The clouds were slowly breaking up by now and with the sun breaking through it became pleasantly warm. After Hellifield we passed through Halton West and followed the almost deserted road to Bolton-by-Bowland. We stopped for afternoon tea at Whalley Abbey where we were treated to an outdoor concert in the grounds. The direct route through Accrington was taken to arrive home with some 90 miles covered.

Sunday 24th July 2005

 

Some members were camping in Derbyshire last weekend and some on holiday, so the turnout was lower than recently for last Sundays "B" group ride to Gargrave. Two tandems and a solo set off into a headwind through Edenfield, Rawtenstall and Burnley in cloudy but dry weather with rain threatening.  It was decided to cut the ride short with a lengthy stop being made at cafe near Barrowford. The afternoon ride home was with the benefit of a tailwind so fast progress made with an arrival back in Bury before the rain started.

 

The "A" group had an earlier start at 8.30am for their ride to Ingleton.

 

This Sunday the "A" group ride is to Southport meeting at 8am outside Wilkinsons on The Rock.  The "B" ride is car assisted with riders to drive out to Grassington and meet in the car park there at 10am.  The ride will be around the lanes of Wharfedale and Littondale on roads usually too distant to be used by the "B" group.

 

Sunday 17th July 2005

 

Last weekend started on Friday night with a farewell celebration at the Church Inn, Birtle for members Andy Agnelli and Bev Swindells who were leaving for a new life in Italy the following day. They will be missed on "B" group rides. However, there will soon be a reunion as a large contingent of members are off to visit them in September for a cycle touring and camping holiday in Northen Italy.

Last Sundays ride for the "B" group was to the annual CTC Manchester District Association Picnic in Tatton Park. The outward route took us through Agecroft and Irlam before a stop on the footbridge over the Manchester Ship Canal. Here Jack Harrison, who hadn't been out with us for some time, decided to make his way home. The others continued to Carrington Moss where Brian paid his usual respects to a certain football team. There then followed what can only be described as a mystery tour led by Brian through country lanes before stopping at a garden centre cafe in Lymm an hour later than planned for a welcome pot of tea.

After this the cyclists pressed on to Knutsford and into Tatton Park where they met up with riders from other CTC Sections for the picnic. Sandwiches were eaten in ideal picnic conditions with the sun warming the proceedings. Later all the riders rode to the Greyhound pub in Ashley for liquid refreshment and met up with a group from Seamons Cycling Club. On a day when the emphasis was on socialising we still managed to ride well over fifty miles in all.

"A" group had planned to visit the Manifold Valley in Derbyshire, but on the day some didn't like the idea of the necessary ride through Manchester so headed in a northerly direction instead.

This coming Sunday 24 July, "A" group ride to Ingleton (meet 08.30) and "B" group ride to Gargrave (meet 09.00). Both rides start at Wilkinsons, The Rock.

Sunday 10th July 2005

 

Sunday was one of the warmest days of the year so far with almost unbroken sunshine all day and with some members now back from French holidays numbers were up for the "A" clubrun to Knott End on Sea.

It was warm from the start as we climbed through Ainsworth and by the time we got to Belmont perspiration was already a problem. We cooled off on the descent to Riley Green and then had a problem in Preston as our usual route through Avenham Park was closed due to a charity run. From Lea we took to the lanes to Elswick and Out Rawcliffe and arrived for an early lunch in Knott End despite having covered 55 miles non-stop.

Riding back across the low lying and flat expanse of the Wyre we considered how much of it would still be above sea level in 100 years time when global warming takes hold.

From Garstang we skirted the Bowland Fells, still making fast progress and being cooled by our own breeze until we stopped at Ribchester for afternoon tea.

A broken chain delayed us at Salesbury but a tailwind over Roundhills helped us back to Rossendale and we reached home having covered 100 miles once more.

The "B" group headed north - first stopping at Whalley Abbey cafe to enjoy an al fresco cup of tea and refreshments.  The hot Italian style weather was very fitting as this was Andy Agnelli and Bev's last Sunday ride before departing for their new life in Italy.  On Friday night, 15th July, there will be a farewell celebration at the Church Inn at Birtle.   

Sunday 3rd July 2005

 

Due to holidays in France numbers were down on Sundays 'A' group clubrun which nevertheless was enjoyed by those members who turned out. An early start meant that we were riding on quiet roads through Accrington to Whalley and we had the sun and the wind on our backs making for good progress to Sawley and Wigglesworth. We had an early lunch in Settle where we plotted our afternoon route. Entering limestone country we took the quiet lane on the west side of the Ribble and passed through Little Stainforth climbing steadily until we reached the Austwick road. We crossed the busy A65 and followed deserted roads to Lawkland, Wham and Long Gill climbing again into a headwind. From Tosside we descended to Forest Becks and retraced our tracks to Whalley for afternoon tea before another climb to York village. Good progress was made over Roundhills and we returned to Bury with another 100 miles covered.

The 'B' group headed west for Southport. A tea stop was made at Haigh Hall where the group split up. Some opted for a shorter ride to Croston while the others continued all the way to Southport.  Lord Street was bustling there being a street market in progress, but once the new coast road was joined the place suddenly seemed deserted.  Everyone enjoyed a pleasant summer day's cycling on the flatter roads of west Lancashire.

 

Sunday 26th June 2005

 

York Rally was well attended with a dozen members camping on the Knavesmire and two in B & B. Saturday saw a sponsored charity ride of 150km which went due North across the plain of York and into the Howardian Hills where the large groups began to fragment and riders reverted to their own speed. After Kirkbymoorside we entered the North Yorkshire Moors and the climbing began in earnest. From Farndale we faced the infamous Blakey Bank in the rain and against a headwind before descending to Castleton. The return leg saw us climbing over Glaisdale Moor to Rosedale Abbey but any thoughts of an easy ride back to York were dispelled as a fast pace was maintained past Castle Howard and all the way back into the city to finish well within the time limit.

Sunday was more leisurely with a visit to the Central Methodist Chapel for the annual cyclist's service and the parade back to the Knavesmire where the trade stands were scoured for bargains. We met friends from as far away as Hertfordshire and Glasgow, Workington and Middlesbrough and we exchanged stories and news. After lunch some could not resist another ride and the Sustrans route along a disused railway line to Selby was followed with a return along unclassified and B roads.

For those not making the trip to York there was a joint 'A' and 'B' impromptu run on Sunday to the Fylde and a pleasant cafe near Catforth. The outward route was over Roundhills and through Wilpshire with a brief stop at Ribchester. Pressing on, the five strong group went through Longridge and across the A6 at Broughton onto the delightful Lancashire lanes. After refreshments at the cafe / craft centre we headed back towards Preston eventually joining a quiet path which took us along the banks of the River Ribble. Back on the route towards Higher Walton we forked right onto a quiet road which climbed steadily. Fortunately the level crossing was open as we rode to the top then turned right into Brindle. A left turn here took us on a route skirting Chorley which eventually led to Rivington where we enjoyed a tea stop at the old Unitarian chapel which has been converted to a cafe complete with accompanying pianist. The last leg of the ride was through Horwich, diverting to avoid the closed roads due to the cycle races taking place, then directly back to Bury.

Sunday 19th June 2005

 

"B" group had a car assisted ride meeting up at Styal for a days ride into in Derbyshire.

Most of the "A" section riders had other commitments later on Sunday and so opted for a "short" ride. It was the warmest Sunday so far this year and , although very humid, we created our own breeze which kept us relatively cool. The usual route to Whalley was taken and then we followed the quiet lane parrallel to the A59 before turning off at Sawley. Other cyclists were out in force on the quiet lanes hereabouts and it was tempting to go further. From Bolton-by-Bowland we took the winding lane back to Gisburn pausing for a while for soft drinks. We then faced a climb over the moors to Blacko before dropping down to Barrowford and on to Burnley. After the strenuous climb to Burnley Summit we pushed on into a headwind and reached Bury with 60 odd miles covered and not long before the thunderstorms set in.

Sunday 12th June 2005

 

Nine male and three lady riders participated in last weekend’s rides. The B section ride was out to Rathmell. The route out towards the north of our county went the usual route up Walmersley Rd. with elevenses being consumed at the café’ within Whalley Abbey, then a cycle through the quiet lanes around Great Mitton and Waddington saw the riders pedal under increasingly darker skies.

As the day went on the weather turned for the worse, the cloud thickened and the wind turned colder hardly the sort of weather you’d expect for June. Whilst having a much welcomed tea stop in Barrowford the tired rider’s worst fears were soon to be realised and the heavens opened with gusto. The heavy rain unfortunately accompanied us for the majority of the ride homewards through Burnley up and over Crown Point Summit. This route home is less than pleasurable even in warm and dry conditions so this was a real struggle with very little enjoyment obtained, not even the sights and sounds of the horse drawn caravans witnessed in Crawshawbooth could raise our seriously dampened spirits.

With roughly 75 miles completed it was very frustrating to be back home in Bury surrounded by totally dry footpaths and the bikes being put back away into the shed under cloudy but dry skies.

 

 

Sunday 5th June 2005

 

CHARLIE WESTLAKE INVITATION RIDES

The fourth annual Charlie Westlake Memorial Invitation Bike Rides took place on Sunday. With proceeds going to Bury Hospice, cloudy but dry weather, and a choice of two routes, the event attracted 22 cyclists. 10 chose to ride the shorter 54km (33 miles) route and there were 9 finishers. For the longer 105km (64 miles) route there were 12 entrants with everyone completing the course. Alas, this year we did not attract any junior riders.

Both rides started at Castle Leisure Centre and finished at Millcroft Tea Gardens, Norden.

The longer ride introduced last year proved to be a great test with many climbs having to be tackled. Probably the most difficult are Pendle Hill out of Downham and that to Crown Point out of Burnley. The ‘sting in the tail’ of Owd Betts (tackled by both rides) made for a challenging day.

Although not a race, there will always be riders wanting to go round in as quick a time as possible. This year Stan Freerick completed the 54km route in 2hrs 21mins – just 11 minutes outside the record. First riders home in the 105km event were Andrew Ascroft, Stephen Casstles, Eric Taylor and Andrew Greenhalgh who completed the course in 5hrs 35mins.

All finishers will be awarded a commemorative certificate.

This year we attracted fewer riders than last year’s record turnout of 39, but thanks to entrance fees and extra donations received, we collected £52 on the day – all of which will be forwarded to Bury Hospice.

Thanks to everyone who participated - your certificates will soon be despatched.

 

Bury Times Tuesday 7 June

 

Here is the article which appeared with the headline above it:   Fourth event to honour 'hero' Charlie

Sunday 22nd May 2005

 

Sunday started cold with sunshine and showers forecast and "A" group began climbing out of Bury towards a summit at Roundhills from where we had a brisk descent to Blackburn and on to Ribchester where we caught the very edge of a shower.  From Longridge we followed lanes to Broughton where we saw the West Coast car rally with a Ford Zephyr (ex-Police car), Triumph Herald and a Jowett Javelin which must have been at least 50 years old.

From Woodplumpton we followed the Lancashire Cycleway to Kirkham and on to Lytham. It was bright and breezy on the promenade and from here we could see across to the Lancashire hills, Southport and North Wales and we noted the heavy showers we could see passing over. A fast run back to Preston was rewarded with a deluge on London Road and we sheltered for 10 minutes until the worst had passed.  We climbed through the lanes to Brindle where we could see the surface water actually evaporating in the sun and at Rivington we stopped for tea and scones in the Chapel tea rooms. A low level route through Bolton saw us arrive home with another 100 miles covered.

The "B" group ride to Luddenden Foot was cancelled due to Bev not feeling up to the hilly route, so a ride to Cheshire was decided upon. However even before we arrived at Little Lever, Bev's tyre split with a loud bang.  A temporary repair was made, but she had to abandon the ride.  The remaining group of ten riders continued and had a good days cycling in a mixture of showers and sunshine.

 

Sunday 15th May 2005

 

Throughout the winter and spring we seem to have been plagued by the wind and Sunday was no exception.  The forecast had been for sunny and still conditions but we did'nt see much of the sun either until later on. After an early start the "A" group made good progress to Whalley and Copy Nook where we took to quiet moorland roads.  Stocks reservoir was full and fishing boats were out on the water. From here we started an ascent which becomes more difficult as it goes on but we were rewarded at Bowland Knotts with views across East and North Lancashire, the Forest of Bowland and North Yorkshire.  We enjoyed several miles of fast descending to Clapham where we had lunch in Brookhouse Tea Rooms. Wanting to avoid busy roads in the afternoon we took to undulating lanes through Eldroth, Wham and Long Gill emerging at Tosside which straddles the Lancashire/North Yorkshire border and where the village pub has recently re-opened.  After another fast descent we carried on to Whalley for afternoon tea and then further climbing brought us to York village. We must be getting fit as Roundhills was crossed relatively comfortably and we returned to Bury with yet another 100 miles covered.

The eleven strong "B" group including four ladies also went through Whalley but stopped at the Abbey cafe for early refreshments. Then the riders, passing through the ancient gatehouse and under the wonderful brick viaduct, left Whalley and followed lanes to Bashall Eaves and Cow Ark.  Not wanting to cover anywhere near the mileage of the "A" group, the destination was changed to Chipping, so it was a left turn that was made rather than the right towards Whitewell and Dunsop Bridge. The day warmed up and the afternoon cycling was most pleasant in ideal conditions.

 

Sunday 8th May 2005

 

Sundays weather forecast was dire, showers in the morning and heavy rain in the afternoon. So it was an intrepid 'A' group which gathered early on Sunday morning in Bury for the long ride to Glasson Dock. A strong North westerly wind made it hard going and a heavy shower had us caping up on Walmersley Road. Progress was slow out through Whalley and on to Dunsop Bridge where the Trough of Bowland road was taken. We stopped at the caravan near Syke for bacon butties and mugs of tea before facing the steep climb to the summit which was made doubly difficult by the wind. From Dolphinholme we climbed to a ridge where we enjoyed views out to Morecambe Bay including Heysham power station and Lancaster University. At Galgate we saw a large group from Blackburn CTC and on arrival in Glasson Dock we took refuge from the wind in the usual cafe. 

Not only did the forecast rain not arrive but we enjoyed blue sky and sunshine in the afternoon and with the wind now behind us good progress was made to Cockerham, Garstang and onto Ribchester where we enjoyed jam and cream scones in Norah's tea room.

The wind continued to assist us on the climbs to Wilpshire and over Roundhills and we returned to Bury with another 100 miles covered.

The 'B' groups' planned ride to Hope in Derbyshire was cancelled and the riders instead decided to head out of Bury in the direction of Belmont for the new destination of Longton.

Sunday 1st May 2005

 

Some of our members mostly from the 'B' group spent the Bank Holiday weekend in Derbyshire but those of us who stayed at home enjoyed the longest 'A' ride of the year so far. On the outward journey we seemed to be following the back edge of a cold front with warmer clearer weather always behind us. Quiet lanes were taken after Whalley apart from a short stretch of the very busy A59 then we took the Wigglesworth road to Settle. Here we saw the steam locomotive "Duke of Gloucester" (recently based on the East Lancashire Railway) depart from the station and then we pressed on to Ribblehead, pausing for a moment to gaze at the impressive viaduct which strides across Batty Moss. From Ingleton we climbed over the back road to Clapham and the Brookhouse tearooms which have recently changed hands. Suitably refreshed we took on the major climb to Bowland Knotts and at the summit we enjoyed a panoramic view taking in Whernside, Ingleborough, Pen-y-Ghent, Fountains Fell and Pendle Hill. After a rapid descent we skirted Stocks Reservoir and after a brief stop at Bolton-by-Bowland we retraced our outward route arriving home with over 100 miles covered.

Sunday 24th April 2005

 

Sunday started bright but once again an easterly wind made it a cool morning and hard going as we went head on into it through Rochdale and Littleborough before tackling Blackstone Edge.

The approach to this climb resembles the Tourmalet in France with the road zig-zagging to a cafe (or in our case a pub) on the ridge at the summit and the conditions made the climb seem just as hard!

We started the descent of Cragg Vale but part way down we turned onto a moorland road which eventually gives an extensive vista over Calderdale and Halifax. From here we went down the aptly named Steep Lane into Sowerby Bridge for lunch in the usual cafe.

In the afternoon some of us rode along the quiet canal towpath whilst others chose the main road, re-grouping in Hebden Bridge.

At Todmorden some members chose to continue along the valley road whilst others took to the hills again and the strenuous climb over Sharneyford to Bacup. Eager to cover more miles we then turned onto the Deerplay road and then came down through Water to Waterfoot. From Rawtenstall we went through Helmshore and over Holcombe Top Road for a fast finish back into Bury with 66 miles covered.

Sunday 17th April 2005

 

Conditions for cycling remain cool, especially for April, and the windchill factor meant we were still wearing windproof tops usually reserved for the winter. A strong tailwind made for a fast ride out through Accrington and we chose a quiet lane through Wiswell under the shoulder of Pendle Hill. At Wigglesworth we noted that Pen-y-Ghent and Ingleborough still had pockets of snow around their summits and we were delighted to see the Ilkley Jubilee classic car rally coming the other way which was made up of cars from the 60's and 70's including two Triumph sports cars.

After lunch in Settle one member had an unusual mechanical problem and luckily we bumped into Geoff Smith from Bolton who fixed it in double quick time. From Giggleswick we took to single track roads past Wham and Long Gill with glorious views of upper Ribblesdale. From Tosside we enjoyed a long descent to Bolton-by-Bowland and a tea stop was had at Whalley Abbey. The predicted rain arrived as we passed Accrington but we retuned to Bury without having to cape up and with 80-odd miles on our computers.

Sunday 10th April 2005

 

Sunday's clubrun headed North along familiar roads to Whalley in cold conditons and with the threat of rain to the North. Pendle Hill was shrouded in mist as we made our way along quiet lanes parallel to the A59. From Copy Nook we climbed the drag of Holden Lane before a fast descent into Slaidburn. Lunch was taken in the Heritage Centre and was immediately followed by the stiff climb past Bluebutts farm. The sun had now come out but the wind was still cool. At Dunsop Bridge we noted the phonebox which is inscribed as being at the centre of the British Isles. After Whitewell we made for Chaigley where a bad puncture rendered a tyre useless but fortunately another member had a folding tyre in his bag which got us out of a potentially difficult situation. At Mitton we noted that Pendle Hill was bathed in Sunshine from a clear blue sky.

After a tea stop in Whalley we enjoyed the warmest spell of the day. As it was late afternoon we chose the direct route home through Accrington with another 70-odd miles covered.

The 'B' group had a car assisted ride to the Goyt Valley. Driving with bikes to Hazel Grove and starting the ride from the Rising Sun pub cuts out the need to cycle through Manchester and Stockport on busy roads with many traffic lights and gave more time for cycling on the quieter roads.

 

Sunday 3rd April 2005

 

Twelve riders turned out for Sundays "B" run to Wycoller when mild temperatures and a dry day were forecast. A cool start meant several layers of clothing were being worn as we progressed through Rawtenstall and over Burnley summit. After a cool descent we continued through Nelson and Colne then taking the Trawden road and negotiating a sharp climb where one member punctured. We fed the ducks on the local pond by the ruins of Wycoller Hall before stopping in the village cafe.

The afternoon was still cool as a wind had got up and clouds were obscuring the sun and it's warmth. The climb out of Trawden and past Colden Reservoir and onto to Briercliffe and Worsthorne was made doubly difficult by the wind in our faces and we were further delayed by a mechanical failure - a broken gear cable. By now we were following part of the Lancashire Cycleway which at least meant we were on quiet lanes.

We slogged away at the climb from Towneley to Deerplay and turned for Waterfoot but progress continued to be slow into the wind even going downhill. 

Gathering clouds threatened rain but it held off until we got home having covered around 55 miles in demanding conditions. 

Easter Weekend

 

Our members enjoyed a great Easter break at Minnigaff Youth Hostel in the Dumfries and Galloway region of Scotland.
 
On Good Friday two runs headed for Ayrshire the longer one going via Sanquhar and New Cumnock with the shorter one going to Dalry and Dalmellington.
 
Saturday saw us all skirting the highest mountain in the region, Merrick, and climbing to the Nick of the Balloch before a swift descent to Barr. The ride down this valley of the River Stinchar was on roads bereft of traffic. Even the main A714 between Pinwherry and Barrhill was very lightly trafficked. We then crossed moorland as remote and depopulated as anywhere in Scotland to reach Glenwhilly and New Luce. A steep climb brought us to the site of a new wind farm and the tarmaced road had disappeared under a rough track laid down for contractors vehicles. We then enjoyed forest roads back to Newton Stewart.
 
Sunday saw us head along Clatteringshaws Loch and take the Raiders Road across Forestry Commission land. After Laurieston we stopped to watch the Girvan 3 day professional cycle race pass through before continuing to Gatehouse of Fleet for lunch in the actual gatehouse. We returned along the Sustrans route to Creetown before a fast finish along the A75.
 
Easter Monday took in a short ride to Whithorn.
 
Everyone enjoyed the weekend and plans are already being mooted for Easter 2006!  (See the tour group photograph on the 'News' page and a full detailed report of the tour on the 'Easter Tour 2005' page of this website.)
 

Sunday 20th March 2005



Sunday began chilly but with the promise of mild temperatures some members were tempted out in shorts for the first time this year. For a change we had a tailwind in the morning and good progress was made over the Roundhills until we came to roadworks where we were escorted through them by a workman on a buggy.

Many other cyclists were seen as we passed through Ribchester, Longridge and Inglewhite before we crossed the busy A6 at Bilsborrow.

For the second week running we arrived at our destination, this time Great Eccleston, only to find the cafe closed on this occasion - it had turned into a Gent's outfitters! We ate what food we had in the village square and exchanged news with friends from the Lune and Lakes DA who were on a ride from Lancaster before continuing to Elswick for soup and tea.

Quiet lanes were followed back to Preston where the busy London Road had to be followed for a while before we turned onto pleasant lanes through Brindle and Top'o'th Lane where we enjoyed views of the West Pennine Moors before dropping to Chorley.

We were glad of afternoon tea at the Old Chapel in Rivington before riding the final miles through Bolton and back to Bury having covered 90-odd miles.

Sunday 13th March 2005

 

Sunday morning followed a similar pattern to the last month, a cold and frosty start with a Northerly wind which the ‘A’ group rode into hoping for a tailwind on the way home.

The usual route was followed through Accrington to Whalley where we took to quiet lanes and we observed that daffodils were in bloom with lambs in the fields and buds just starting to grow on the trees, spring is just around the corner!

Our route took us to Copy Nook, Flass and Wigglesworth and we stopped at Rathmell and the Millgate Tea Rooms where a notice on the door told us that they were now permanently closed. We have been stopping there for at least 16 years but now we had to carry on to Settle where the Settle Down Cafe is for sale. We noted that Ingleborough and Pen-y-Ghent still had some snow around their summits. 

Suitably refreshed we returned to Wigglesworth and followed the busy A682 for a mile before returning to quiet lanes at Halton West. From Bolton-by-Bowland we retraced our steps to Whalley where we met up with our more ambitious members who had been to Horton-in-Ribblesdale and returned via the strenuous climb of Bowland Knotts. By now the wind had turned around to the South West so we had a headwind on the way home too!

Re-grouped and with the sun now dipping we opted for a direct return through Accrington to Bury again getting home in daylight with the temperature dropping rapidly.