Mike writes: Greta organised a holiday for the club at Castle Acre. About eighteen people attended, some for the whole time and others for just a day or two. Peter brought his camper van and parked in the main street.
We stayed at the Old Red Lion Hostel which has been run for over 30 years by Alison who gave us a great welcome. It had large dormitories and staying there was like stepping back in time. There was a large well-stocked kitchen with a large area for breakfasts, and a communal room with books and a TV. There were also two big grey cats who were determined to get our attention. We enjoyed our stay.
Castle Acre: the castle
The ride up was surprising: we started out in strong winds and rain but it almost immediately dried up and the wind was behind us all the way. We stopped at Fordham Garden Centre for Coffee, and before we left the sun came out. We carried on through Mildenhall and Lakenheath to Hockwold, where we had lunch at the New Inn. There was a shower while we were there but it was dry again when we left. We continued via Weeting and Cockley Cley to Swaffham where we found an excellant cafe, the Pedlars Hall. The staff there were wonderful and it was really good value. After tea we continued to Castle Acre via the ford near the Priory.
We had all our evening meals at the local hotel, The Ostrich. On the first night we had sixteen people in the group and an animated conversation took place during the meal.
Peter, Adrian, Doug and Greta at the Buttermarket in East Lexham
The Buttermarket in East Lexham
On the Wednesday we split into two groups led by Adrian and Mike C. Mike led the fast group to the coast at Blakeney and found a good cafe on the quayside. They did nearly 70 miles. Adrian's group went to Reepham where there is an old station with a large cafe and a shop. There was some rain on the way home but with a following wind it was relatively easy we did 50 miles. As soon as we got home the weather cheered up.
East Lexham: The church
On Thursday we again had two groups. Mike C went to Bircham Mill and then on towards the coast, returning about 6pm. They had a wet ride, as they found one of the heavy showers. The slower group led by Adrian was relatively lucky. They had intended to ride to Wells. Their ride meandered through the lanes avoiding Fakenham. We arrived at Sculthorpe soon after midday and found the Sculthorpe Mill Inn. We stopped there for lunch, which was excellent.
Sculthorpe Mill: the ford
After lunch we continued to South Creake, mending a puncture on the way. It started to rain and this continued for about half an hour when the weather improved with some sunshine. Passing though Great Massingham we spied the Dabbling Duck and stopped for tea, which was served in from of the fire in the bar, after which we continued on back to Castle Acre completing a 40 mile ride.
Adrian, Greta, Peter and Doug at the Dabbling Duck
The Dabbling Duck
There were nine riders who did the return ride incluing Mike C and Adrian. Mike Stapleton