Mike led a group of 5,Inci,Paul Cook,John Caves and John Blakeley on a dull morning from Ditton Community Centre and headed to Knole Park,Sevenoaks.Out through West Malling ,Offham,Crouch and down Winfield Lane to Basted,and the very sharp Star Hill to the A227 across the Tonbridge Road,and all the lumps to Bitchets Green,and the St Julian’s entry of the park.A leisurely ride through,watching the deers(not the old dears) .and avoiding the golfers and admiring the House.The return was via the same undulating and challenging route .A distance of 29.1 miles at 10.6 mph.Mike would like to thank the Group for their support.
A warm spring day and five of us set out towards Pluckley, but not going up the hill into the village. We all enjoyed the bluebells in the verges and lambs in the fields. A lovely flat ride of 26 miles at an average speed of 12.5mph. We took our break at Bethersden garden centre where we received the usual great service. Then back along the lanes via Frittenden avoiding the potholes.
Although it was a large turnout of about 14 at Barming,only a group of 4 decided to do the D ride.So,Richard,John Blakeley ,Brian Ovenden and Neal Welsh,headed off on a dry morning to a new stop at Tyland Barn,wildlife centre,Sandling. A leisurely pace took them out to Aylesford and Eccles to the Lower Bell,where a puncture immediately made a split in Richard’s new front tyre.Yet another lack of confidence in Continental 4000 tyres.( third to date).The bin is awaiting.!. From there it was onto the stop,at Tyland Barn,which is ideal with very interesting displays for small groups,but not too much seating. A shortish return,via the new tow path to Aylesford village and up to the Wateringbury Road,where Richard dropped off,leaving Neal,John and Brian to make their way back along North Pole Rd to the start. A distance of about 23 Miles.
Please See Kevyn’s report on the D Group forum
Friday night John C. and Sarah L. decided their plan to lead an undulating ride over the Downs to Brogdale Farm might risk mucky roads and slush, so they left the snow search to Russell and the D+ group. John mapped a flatter route to Bethersden and led a group of 12, which included a new rider -welcome to Neil - and a returning rider. They went south, under grey skies, along fairly quiet, occasionally undulating, country roads, passing banks of snow. The route took them past Egerton House and Pluckley station, to arrive at Greenways Garden Centre cafe. The friendly manager had reserved tables and provided prompt , efficient service. The rain had started to fall during the break, so John set off apace over the gradual incline back to Lenham. He led up through Little Chart crossing over the M20 towards Charing Heath. Just before the Red Lion, John B and (young) Sarah, bringing up the rear, spotted a pair of glasses on the road, which they kindly stopped to recover. During this time the group had turned right but had not left a backstop in view. Apologies to all. As a result John and Sarah sailed by and after several searches and phone calls, they opted to continue, clocked up extra mileage and arrived back before the rest of the group! The glasses were gratefully received by their owner. Snowdrops spotted: many; mileage: 29.5; average speed: 11.1 mph; total elevation: 883 ft.
Too icy to safely ride.
please see his entry on the D Group forum of 24/2/18
On a sunny winter's day nine of us set off to Otford via West Malling, then along Comp Lane before turning off at Crouch down Basted Lane. After a climb back up, we continued along Mill Lane then cycled through Ightham and joined Fen Pond Rd until we reached the Pilgrims Way and cycled past Kemsing and down to Otford.Thankfully we had booked as there were two other cycling groups at Pond View tea room too! After a slightly longer lunch break due to the cafe being so busy we rejoined the Pilgrims Way and retraced our tracks due to a technical problem with Strava but did manage a slight detour along Crowhurst Lane and then up Winfield Lane to join the road back through Comp and back to the start. My apologies for nearly losing some of the group, causing a few to cycle further up the hill from Ightam! The ride was just slightly over 30 miles with an average speed of 11.8 and climbimg approx 1900ft.
John Blakeley led the ride to Staplehurst on what started as a cold and sunny day. The group of 6 left Mote Park and headed through Downswood, Boughton Monchelsea, Linton (south), Collier Street and Claygate. There was a sigh of relief when, at Marden Beech, it was discovered that a road closure allowed easy access for cycles. On the way to the coffee stop at Staplehurst the weather changed to rain.
Having warmed up at the coffee stop, the group then headed through Hawkesbury before attempting the 11% gradient hill at Chart Sutton. There was general agreement from the group that this would be a good ride to return to in the summer months. A distance of just under 30 miles at 11.8 mph average.
Yalding Station was totally packed with about 40 riders ,as it was the starting point for Both D and both Easy Groups. After each group sorted itself out,Mike Griffiths led the D Group with 7 riders.Taking a lovely flat route ,in very cold damp weather, he took them out to Benover,Collier Street,where Richard got the only puncture of the day.Carrying on after, and trying to warm up ,it was staying on quiet roads.A brief stop in Grave Lane to read a wooden cross obituary to Flight Officer Clifford,a 21 year old RAF pilot,who crashed after being shot down at the spot in 1940. It was then on to bye pass Staplehurst and to the break at the cafe in Headcorn High Street. Mike maintained the flat return journey,out towards Ulcombe then Farthing Green and Lamb’s Cross,before crossing the A229 to Hunton and into Yalding.A distance of 30 miles at 12.4 mph average.Great ride ,Thankyou Mike.