Thursday, 11 August 2011

11 Aug: Thursday ride to Swavesey and St Neots

Edward writes: Although the weather was not too promising ten cyclist gathered at Haslingfield Church. In view of the stiff breeze and the promise of showers this was a good turnout and in keeping with the popularity of the Thursday ride. Luckily, today, we didn't start with the climb up Chapel Hill but with the more sedate ride through Harlton, over the A603 and into the Eversdens and up and down into Kingston before making the turning to Bourn.

It was straight through Bourn and up to and over the A428 where we took the road to Knapwell and Boxworth. Remarkably the wind was mainly on our backs which was a considerable relief because, as the morning went on, the wind had become stronger. From Boxworth we crossed the A14 (not too busy) and into Swavesey.

In Swavesey we took coffee at a new venue, The Compass Cafe at Bethel Baptist Church, and what a success it was. We had good coffee and a fine choice of home-made cakes all for £1.50 and all with a warm welcoming atmosphere. It wouldn't be surprising if this venue appears on future rides lists. Our thanks are due to Brian M for his recommendation - no worries about Brian becoming mincemeat !

After coffee we retraced our steps a little in order to take the road to Fen Drayton and here we did face the wind and the first of the day's short showers. It was head wind now for most of the way into St. Neots which was via Fenstanton, Hilton and Toseland. It's interesting to observe the changing countryside with the harvest now underway and remember all the changes we have seen right back to the spring drought. When we reached St. Neots we took lunch at the Ambience Cafe where some sat outside with sandwiches, others bought meals and sat inside and yet more bought fish and chips from the nearby chippy. Although ten started out, we increased our number, first in Swavesey, and secondly at lunch, so at times our numbers were quite large.

After our usual leisurely lunch we timed our departure to coincide with another of the day's showers, but it soon passed. Our route home was via Abbotsley and the Gransdens and, no doubt by Greta's good planning, we had the wind mostly on our backs. This was some achievement bearing in mind how stiff the breeze had been throughout the day. On the way home some of the group stopped for tea in Bourn whilst another group went straight home. The ride's official end was Haslingfield Church, and once again we must thank Greta for another splendid day out. We covered 50 miles. Edward Elmer.

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