Ride to Harrold – Sunday 1st December

Tim Howell is leading this ride and writes:

Start time: 9.30 a.m.
Meeting point: Overslade Close, East Hunsbury NN4 0RZ
Distance: 50 miles
Refreshment stop: Lunch at Emmaus Village Carlton (at approx 27 miles)
Pace: Steady (approx 13 mph)
Time expected back: approx 2:30 p.m.

Once we have left the suburbs of East Hunsbury we will wend our way through the villages of Quinton, Preston Deanery, Horton, Brafield-On-The-Green and Cogenhoe before enjoying the fast descent down Cogenhoe Hill and along Whiston Road before turning to zigzag cunningly up past Castle Ashby Fisheries (and thus avoiding the somewhat steeper Whiston Hill) en-route to Easton Maudit, Bozeat and Dungee Wood.

There follows another enjoyably fast descent to Harrold. From here it is then just a short ride across the causeway to Carlton and on to our lunch stop at “Emmaus Village Carlton”. For anyone who has not visited this establishment before, the Sausage sandwiches come highly recommended.

Suitably refreshed, our homeward leg takes us back through Turvey, around the outskirts of Olney and then through Weston Underwood en-route to the Newport Pagnell Road. Here we must pay our dues for the earlier descents of Cogenhoe & Dungee Hills as we find ourselves climbing some 400 feet via Bunsty Wood to reach Tathall End, Hanslope and Salcey Forest cross-roads. It is now gently downhill back to Quinton & the East Hunsbury suburbs with a final short climb back to our start point near Hunsbury Library.


The proposed route can be viewed (and downloaded as a gpx file) from the CTC Northampton group on RideWithGPS:


Any questions please contact Tim – 07749 477231.


Ride report – Saturday 23rd November

PhilJ led this ride and writes:

Given that the day was grey as far as the eye could see, we had a decent turnout for our ride over to the Ten Hands Café Bar in Towcester. No doubt named after the measurement for horses with the history the town has with racing them on the nearby racecourse and the stables around the town.

Five opted for the brisk ride kindly led by James C whilst I attempted to use nothing more than my fading memory to get the three moderates round Giles’s undulating course. Pete B and Phil L provided excellent company on the shorter route.

The brisks seemed reluctant to be brisk early on, no doubt saving themselves for the increase in speed and elevation to come later on the longer route. In fact they only really scarpered on the long haul up to Litchborough. The moderates, not far behind but content to forget about time, distance and average speeds on the damp, dank roads and just enjoy the ride.

The route was well signposted so there was little chance of going off course and it wasn’t long before we found ourselves heading for Greens Norton when the phone rang. It was our hosts checking on our progress for the 11 O’clock reservation.

Just Towcester high street stood between us and the warmth of the old Dolphin café and we sliced through it with ease. Including the busy roundabout across the A43, much to our surprise.

The choice of food at Ten Hands is extensive and Curried Parsnip soup proved hard to resist. It was quite exquisite. The accompanying ‘Mint Mountain’ tea that I ordered seemed to be of some interest to my fellow riders with Phil L describing it as antiseptic as both of them proved to be totally unadventurous in an artisan café with the usual americanos!

Some time later the rest of the group rocked up for their well deserved rest. Pete S looking like he had been off-road for most of the journey. Chris D failing to resist the curried soup whilst others doubled up on savoury food and cakes. The extra loop and elevation had earned them that much.

The moderates, having had a rather extended café break left for home with the brisks still enjoying the fine fayre of this classy establishment.

A short stretch along the A5 would get us to Heathcote and on the road to Shutlanger. Philip Gray, having been out with the MK group joined us briefly up to the turn for Blisworth before he went his own way. By now the rain was falling quite considerably with any type of shades almost useless. With the swift run in from Milton Malsor the ride was complete.

Thanks to everyone who turned out today. I think the café stop was worth it.

All hail Giles.

Ride to Towcester – Saturday 23rd November

Phil Johnson is leading this ride and writes:


Start time:  9.30 a.m.
Meeting point:  Hunsbury Hill library, Overslade Close, East Hunsbury NN4 0RZ
Distance: Moderate 32 miles / Brisk 39 miles
Refreshment Stop: Ten Hands Café Towcester
Average Pace:   Moderate 12mph/Brisk 14mph


A overdue visit to the Ten Hands Café in Towcester is our ride this Saturday. It’s a very artisan café with teas like ‘Mountain Mint’ and ‘Grand Canyon’. There’s plenty of seating and an extensive menu. It’s the old Dolphin café located right on the main street in Towcester. Bike parking is available in the rear yard with a rear entrance to the café too.

It was a ride initially devised by Giles some time ago and not a route I’m particularly familiar with but between us I’m sure we’ll wing it! The routes are available on the rides calendar of course for those of you with Garmin’s etc. The moderate ride is a 32 miler towards Litchborough, Adstone and Bradden. Greens Norton and Towcester complete the journey out. The brisk at 39 has the extra loop around Little Everdon, Fawsley and Preston Capes before joining the moderate route around Adstone towards our destination at Towcester. Of course we could end up as a steady depending on numbers on the day.


From the café there’s only 10 miles to ride before we get back to the start. Just Shutlanger and Blisworth really.
It’s a classy café which we haven’t done for a while. Join us if you can.


Ride report – Sunday 17th November

Milton led this ride and writes:

The three riders from Hunsbury arrived at the start of this ride at Moulton soaked to the skin and feared that the weather was determined to ruin the day’s fun. In fact, it never rained again and, as the winds were light, it was an almost perfect day – coldish it has to be said –  for a ride.

Nine set off from Moulton for the 55 miles return journey to Cafe Ventoux in deepest Leicestershire. There was a good deal of mud, but the waterlogged roads had drained by the time we passed and our route, both going and coming was clear for us.

We had a puncture on the way and, the practice we had of surrounding the victim and offering loud and contrary advice on the best way to deal with it would serve us well on the return journey when we had two more of the things. Lucky Peter, Daryll and John Wr to have so much generously offered help from people lounging around with their hands in their pockets!

It took until about 3.30 before the last cyclist finally made it to Moulton, and it was beginning to get dark. Lights are essential for the longer rides at this time of year.

Good to see Andy again for his second ever trip with us, and Steve for his first. Both seemed perfectly able to keep up with what was a fairly quick ride.

Ride to Tugby – Sunday 17th November

Milton is leading this ride and writes:

Start time:  9.30 a.m.
Meeting point:  Moulton Co-op, Stocks Hill, Moulton, NN3 7TB
Distance: 55 miles
Climb: 2,900ft
Refreshment Stop: Café Ventoux,  Tugby,  Leics
Average Pace:   12 – 14mph
Time Expected Back:  2-3 pm approx


Café Ventoux has had a chequered past year or so. A cycling café that shut on Sundays and then, after a predictably furious reaction from cyclists, shut on Saturdays too! This didn’t endear it to our community and we haven’t visited much in recent times. It is now under new ownership and open seven days a week and I thought we’d celebrate with a visit as it is a splendid place dedicated to cycling. A recce a couple of weeks ago confirmed that it was worth the effort.

It’s a pleasant route, and only a little challenging with just under 3,000 feet of climbing, but  within the reach of nearly all of us. We get to Café Ventoux by taking a north easterly route which skirts the Western edges of Desborough and we return via the very Eastern tip of Market Harborough. Going up we take the same route to Harrington that we will enjoy from Harrington on the return. We then swing east and head north via Stoke Albany, Ashley, Medbourne and Hallaton before reaching our destination at Tugby. The return to Harrington is a very rural route passing Goadby and Welham before touching Market Harborough and then Braybrooke. From Harrington, we continue back to Moulton, at the finish, via Walgrave and Holcot.

The Outward and Homeward legs are each just under 30 miles, so something to drink and a bite to eat wouldn’t go amiss.

The forecast is surprisingly fabulous for the time of year with highs of 28C predicted by the forecaster I always use called wepredictwhateverweatheryouwantforasmallfee.couk

It should be a really attractive day out   —    it’ll be good to see you



Ride report – Saturday 9th November

Chris Duff led this ride and writes:

The coldest start to the year at -1 degrees and the prospect of rain meant that only the ‘committed’ were out this morning.

Not yet ‘chestnuts roasting on an open fire’ but certainly ‘gloves warming on the radiators’ before setting off.

Five intrepid riders took up the gauntlet this morning and, although dressed like terrorists at first, made a good pace out to Gayton (or should that be Dayton?), then Dalscote  Pattishall and Blakesley.

The ride leader was ‘shown up’ by not having brought a spare pair of gloves with James C proving (as ever) to be the smart, well organised one.

Phil G left us at Bradden, to protect himself from a nasty cold and the remaining four then went on to take the longer ride in their stride.

What a lovely autumnal morning, iconic: golden trees, great views, mysterious mist – there was nothing not to like.

Faster now through Wappenham and KOM through Helmdon and on to Sulgrave on quiet roads.

Forge Coffee was by mutual acclaim a brilliant place to stop, lovely food and cake and the best coffee for miles.

A hot stove completed an idyllic stop and after much convivial chat and second coffees we reluctantly left to face the prospect of rain.

Even faster now, we raced the westerly rain front – winning mostly – through Moreton Pinkney and Canons Ashby and then to Maidford.

Darryl and Pete S were disconcertingly able to hold high-brow conversations at 18 miles an hour.

James C to glide up steep hills with no apparent effort.

Farthingstone and the hill to Upper Stowe did not dent the pace and urgent progress was made to avoid the glowering weather front.

‘Tired legs’ were ignored by me through Kislingbury and then all swiftly home to Hunsbury before the worst of the weather.

Then to enjoy the welcome embrace of centrally heated homes and the complacent inner glow of a route completed in good style.

‘Hail to the kings of the road’ on this Autumnal brisk ride out.

Ride to Culworth – Saturday 9th November

Chris Duff is leading this ride and writes:

Start time:  9.30 a.m.

Meeting point:  Hunsbury Hill Library, Overslade Close, East Hunsbury, NN4 0RZ

Distance:  Brisk 45 mls, Moderate 40 mls

Refreshment Stop: Forge Coffee

Average Pace:   Brisk ~15mph, Moderate ~12mph

Time Expected Back:  Around 2.00pm

The main route for the moderate riders is Milton Malsor, Gayton, Dayton, Pattishall, Blakesley, Woodend, Weston and Culworth.

For the brisk riders there is a slightly wider circuit after Blakesley that goes to Bradden, Wappenham and Helmdon then turns West to Sulgrave before turning north for Culworth.

The café has great coffee and good storage for the bikes in the garden at the back.  The food is limited in range but should have good cake and some other snacks all local sourced with vegetarian options.

From Culworth the route back is Moreton Pinkney, Cannons Ashby, Adstone, Maidford, Farthingstone, Upper Stowe, Nether Heyford, Bugbrooke, Kislingbury, Hunsbury.

New riders would be very welcome.

For any further questions, please feel free to contact Chris Duff on 07770 976291

Brisk Route:


Moderate Route:


Ride to Yelvertoft – Sunday 3rd November

Peter Bayles is leading this ride and writes:

Start time  9.30 a.m.
Meeting point:  TGI Friday’s, Sixfields, Northampton NN5 4EG
Distance:  Steady 41 mls,
Refreshment Stop: Timeless Tea Rooms, Crick
Average Pace:   13mph,

Time Expected Back:  Around 2.00pm

The route out follows a NW direction from our start at Sixfields, passing through the Althorp Estate, Long Buckby, West Haddon, Cold Ashby and Yelvertoft.  Our coffee stop at 24 miles is at the Timeless Tea Rooms at Crick, which is a nice little café, albeit a bit snug, although at our time of day, I’m sure we will be accommodated.

The return leg is via Norton, Whilton, Nobottle and back through Upton to Sixfields.

Hopefully the weather will not be too unkind – a cool, cloudy day is forecast, but no black clouds as yet.

As always, new riders are very welcome to join us.

For any further questions, please feel free to contact Peter Bayles on 07979850096

You can find the route on RidewithGPS: