Brian, our Rides Secretary, writes about one of the high points of our calendar:
Start times: 8.15 a.m. (97 miles); 9.45 a.m. (66 miles or 56 miles)
Start points: Overslade Close, East Hunsbury NN4 0RZ (97 miles); Market Square, Buckingham, MK18 1NJ (66 miles or 56 miles)
Parking in Buckingham: Cornwalls Meadow Car Park MK18 1RP is free on Sundays. It is well signposted and is off the High Street behind Waitrose.
Refreshments: Twyford Village Shop (coffee), Café Couscous Oxford (lunch) on all three rides. Afternoon stops: Farthingstone on 97-mile ride; Stowe Park on 66-mile ride; Hogshaw on 56-mile ride.
Every year we host the Guy Barber Memorial Ride in aid of the local branch of Headway. Guy was a member of CTC Northampton and a supporter of the charity. He had two favourite rides: one to Cambridge and one to Oxford. On one occasion he rode both routes on the same day! For 10 years we have ridden the Cambridge / St Neots route in his memory. This year we are riding to Oxford for the first time.
To enable everyone to lunch together in Oxford we have two start points. The long ride (97m) starts in East Hunsbury at 8.15am and the other two options (66m and 56m) start in Buckingham at 9.45am and join the group from Northampton as we ride to the community-run shop and café in Twyford village.
Lunch is in Oxford at Café Couscous. This serves a wide range of sandwiches, baguettes, and Mediterranean dishes including vegan options; good coffee and tea as well. Bikes can be left outside in view of the seating or one can sit outside with them. Within fifty metres, there is both a pub serving lunches and a Subway franchise.
Most of the route is on fairly quiet country roads and is undulating rather than hilly. Then from the outskirts of Oxford there are good cycle paths into the city centre, some separated from the main road.
A donation of £5 to Headway Northampton is requested. For planning purposes we would be grateful for an email if you intend to ride, stating from which start point.
Route 1 Start 8.15 a.m. from East Hunsbury.
Route is Stoke Bruerne, Leckhampstead, Buckingham (20m). Meet others. Twyford (Coffee 27m), Boarstal, Oxford (46m). Return: Islip, Kirtlington (59m) from where there is a National Route (unsurfaced road/track) for two miles to Tackley Station (OK in the dry) and then Steeple Aston to Somerton. (If wet there is a direct route on the road from Kirtlington to Somerton.) Farthingstone (Café 77m), Wappenham, Greens Norton, Tiffield and back to East Hunsbury (97m).
Route 2 Start 9.45 a.m. from Buckingham Market Square.
Route is Twyford (Coffee 7m), Boarstal, Oxford (25m). Return: Islip, Kirtlington (38m) from where there is a National Route (unsurfaced road/track) for two miles to Tackley Station (OK in the dry) and then Steeple Aston to Somerton. (If wet there is a direct route on the road from Kirtlington to Somerton.) Leave Route 1 at Ayhno (52m), Finmere, Stowe Park (64m – café possibly), Buckingham (66m).
Route 3 Start 9.45 a.m. from Buckingham Market Square.
Route Twyford Village Shop (Coffee 7m), Boarstal, Oxford (25m). Return: Beckley, Horton-cum-Studley, Brill (40m) Hogshaw Green Dragon Eco Centre (Café 47m), East Claydon, Gawcott, Buckingham (56m). This is a very flat route, easy going.
More details? Contact Brian Tunbridge (tel: 01604 622073; text: 07722 055149).
Many thanks! We look forward to seeing you!