Thursday, 3 September 2015

3 Sep: Thursday ride to Hinchingbrooke and St Neots

John R writes: The weather at the start today was light cloud but quite fresh with hints already of early autumn. Having taken over the leader's role from Rupert at the last minute I set off from home in Swavesey with four other Northern contingent riders at 8.45am with a certain amount of trepidation. Today was the first Thursday ride from the newly arranged start point of Girton (rather than the two normal starts south of the city) so nobody was certain how many riders would turn out.

The start at Girton Recreation Ground (Photo: John Ferguson)

As it turns out 17 of us met outside Girton Church bus stop – this number included a friend of mine David K who had come all the way from Preston just to ride with us……….OK not really but he does live in Preston. Also with us at Girton was Bill who had ridden all the way from Ely having been pleased that a north of Cambridge start allowed him to join us for the ride to coffee.

The start at Girton Recreation Ground (Photo: John Ferguson)

We rode back out towards the busway at Histon and continued along this through Swavesey (picking up Vin along the way) and to the end at St Ives. Heading through the town and across the bridge we then picked up Ian W who was riding interestingly an 'Adult' bike rather then his normal small-wheeled French jobs!!

From St Ives we all headed out toward the Hemingfords and across the common into Godmanchester where I asked Ian to lead us through the one-way system of Huntingdon. Outside the train station we were shouted at by a seemingly mad motorist, only to discover it was none other than our own Andy C who was clearly envious of us riding and him having to go into work!!!

The cafe at Hinchingbrooke Country Park (Photo: John Ferguson)

It was only then a short ride to our coffee stop at Hinchingbrook Country Park café – this was a new stop for one or two of our regular riders. We were joined here by three other regular Thursday riders. Food and drinks here are great value and the service is quick, efficient and friendly.

Hinchingbrooke Country Park (Photo: John Ferguson)

Soon it was time to head off towards our lunch stop in St Neots. As usual after coffee a number of our group headed back toward Cambridge but we still managed to set off with 16 riders.

Leaving Hinchingbrooke Country Park (Photo: John Ferguson)

Reassembling outside Hinchingbrooke Country Park (Photo: John Ferguson)

Winding our way through the back of Huntingdon and along the quiet Brampton Road we were soon into Grafham. We then cycled along one of our standard routes along Buckden Road into Perry. From here we rode along quiet country lanes through Dillington, Staunton Moor, Upper Staploe and into the centre of St Neots for a well deserved lunch at Ambience Café.

Near Great Staughton (Photo: John Ferguson)

A few of us had to sit outside as the place was busy with families, (can't wait for the schools to go back!), but the threatened rain held off thankfully.

Preparing to leave after lunch in St Neots (Photo: John Ferguson)

Around 2pm it was time for us all to make our various ways back home. John Ross

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