Phil Johnson led this ride and writes:
This was a great day’s riding through some of Northamptonshire’s and Warwickshire’s best countryside on a gloriously sunny day.
Four riders joined me for the ride over to Radford Semele for Sunday lunch at the White Lion Pub including Ian M – making this his first CTC ride this year.
With steady pace we headed for Whilton Locks, Welton and Willoughby and then on to Grandborough near Kites Hardwick where we took a very pleasant detour from my original route suggested by Brian.
Off to Offchurch we went and after the climb at Snowford Hill soon arrived in Radford Semele at the 500 year old White Lion pub. Bang on 12 O’clock as it happened – opening time. The rear beer garden was bathed in sunshine and all tucked in to hearty fayre and the odd pint or two. The staff were superb bringing us much need supplies of water and serving great food very quickly to our table outside.
With bottles refilled we soon headed off again with Brian taking over the navigation with an alternative route home. He didn’t manage to reroute the climb up Priors Marston though and well all felt the pain.
Our reward though was the fantastic view over Hill Farm at the top and the surrounding countryside. Quintessentially English. A more beautiful view you will not see anywhere. Perfect for a photo opportunity.
The road closure after Priors Marston didn’t pose any problems in the end and we simply rode around the signs and concrete blocks further down the road. The miles rolled on and we soon found ourselves climbing towards the masts near Woodford Halse. At the top a flypast by the Red Arrows. A superb sight.
A short time later Ian discovered a slow puncture but was able to continue with more air. We concluded at this point to look for afternoon tea before we got too close to home and headed for Litchborough. The church wasn’t open for tea but the village fete was and we pulled in amongst the proceedings and took a seat in the refreshment café.
Dave and Bob however where nowhere to be seen. They must have continued passed the fete entrance and were gone.
Tea and cakes were delicious and Ian got to work on replacing the tube for the final leg home.
We were asked to come again next year by the lovely ladies manning the stall so watch out for this ride in 2019.
The three of us set off again. Pockets full of cakes that were now being sold to us at half price for the journey home.
Thanks to Brian for the help with navigation and to Pete for assistance in plotting the route and the use of his Garmin.