Club Run to Pensthorpe on 26/2/2022.

Eight Wheelers left Pretty Corner for the run down to the Courtyard Cafe on a lovely late winter’s day after early frost and some patches of ice in the heavily shaded areas. The route out pushed a stiff south west wind by way of Bodham, Salthouse Heath, Glandford, Letheringsett, Sharrington, Bale, Hindringham and Little Snoring airfield. Jim suffered a defaillance en route, so he turned for home. A combination of running training and racing, cycling training and numerous trips away from home is definitely a heavy schedule for an ultraveteran, plus Jim had put in a good few miles before joining the bunch at PC. The wind was shifting to a solid and rising southerly through the middle of the day, so the bunch was deprived of genuine tailwind until they turned north at Thurning, from where the rest of the route crossed the Blackwater and the upper Bure, climbed up Ramsgate Street, looped round Hempstead village to Baconsthorpe and then the familiar drag up to Bodham Hill and West Beckham.

Bunch: Neil S; Neil Mc; Mark; Jim; Harvey; Graham; Brian; Andrew.

Distances: 53 miles to 69 miles.

Club Run to The Three Horseshoes, Warham on 23rd February 2022

Three wheelers met for a ride to Warham on a windy but relatively mild winter day. The route took us through High Kelling, Wiveton, Langham, Stiffkey and Wighton. This was bit of a surprise for the leader as he had intended to come back on this route! However, this worked out okay and we arrived in good time for lunch despite the strong wind. The pub was very welcoming and we all enjoyed good food, with Mark tucking into one of their famous pies. The route back took us to Binham, Hindringham and Thursford against a strong head wind. As the proposed route then involved using a main road (whoops!) we returned to PC via. Gunthorpe, Brinton, Briston, Edgefield and Baconsthorpe. The skies were very dark towards the end of the ride but it held off. Overall a good days cycling despite the navigation errors and the strong wind.

PC to PC 41 miles

Average speed 14 mph  Total Elevation 1,722 ft

Mark, Graham and Andrew B leading.

Club Run to …………… The Garden Terrace on Monday 21/2/2022.

The composition of the main weekend club run bunch over recent months has enabled us to offer Sunday and Monday alternatives when the weather is dubious or worse on Saturday. This has worked well on three or four occasions, but can be a bit problematic when the distinction is a little less clear cut. This weekend was complicated further when Storm Franklin proved to be not much less vigorous than Storm Eunice, so today’s run was delayed for a while until the big gusts eased back a bit to mid-50s mph. Eventually, two Wheelers got out on the road at 10.15. The pair decided to push the big wind out west for a bit, with a few meanders for occasional relief. So, it was Gresham church, North Barningham, Baconsthorpe, a loop round Hempstead, Selbrigg, Cley, a loop round Wiveton, Glandford, Bridgefoot Lane, Salthouse Heath and the Holgate Hill road to the Garden Terrace. When riding the Monday option it always has to be borne in mind that a lot of refreshment venues will be closed, so the Garden Terrace was a safe bet for this impromptu ride. It has to be admitted that the Wheelers lingered longer than usual over their refreshments after the morning battering from the storm. The wind obviously dropped significantly in the afternoon, but was still brisk enough to provide a fast ride back to Aldborough school, from where one rider had to turn back west into the wind and a few short, but heavy showers.

So, not the best of weekends for cycling club runs, but nothing lost really. Saturday saw one of the mainstream bunch, heeding an off the wall forecast of rain not starting until 15.00, complete the originally scheduled short route from Sheringham to Themelthorpe, while Geoff did his regular ride to Reepham. Rumours that he has shares in the Station Cafe have been denied.

Distances: 37 miles to 50 miles.

Club Run to The Teapot at North Elmham on 16th February 2022

After much discussion about wind strength, four riders met at Pretty Corner. The ride leader Graham Aldous, who has a wind phobia, wanted to do the ride, prompting a view that his email had been taken over by impostors! It was a mild day with sun at times. There was a head wind on the way to North Elmham but apart from the open road to Corpusty there was shelter from hedges on mostly minor roads. The route took the riders to Foulsham, Bintree and Billingford. The riders enjoyed a “Danish” lake district view over the Wensum valley and flooded gravel pits en route to Mill Street and Worthing. A well deserved excellent lunch was enjoyed. The route back was easy with the following wind, but it did not help the steep ride past Bintree Mill. Andrew had to dismount after a missed gear. The route then took riders to Twyford, Foulsham and near Thurning Andrew picked up a thorn puncture while on his Thorn steel bike and Marathon tyres. The rain held off and the ride was enjoyed, even with the wind.

PC to PC 47 miles

Average speed 13.5 mph           Total Elevation 1,660 ft

Andrew B, Mark, Duncan and Graham A leading.

Club Run to Walcott on 12/2/2022.

This was the third consecutive windy Saturday, although the velocity of the gusts becomes a little bit less each week. Five North Norfolk Wheelers set out from Pretty Corner, picking up Chris B south of Gresham, who was out for a morning ride and accompanied the bunch as far as Antingham. The route to the always welcoming Lighthouse Inn was by way of Hanworth Common, Thorpe Market, Trunch, Edingthorpe Green, Crostwight Heath, Hill 60*, Happisburgh Common and Ostend.

After some high quality nourishment it was in and out of the gusty wind again, following a contorted route via Witton, Bacton Gas Terminal, Paston, the edge of Mundesley, the back lane to Trunch, Stump Cross, Hungry Hill, Sally Bean’s House, Metton and Sustead to a split at Gresham.

*The summit of Hill 60 is reputed to stand sixty feet above sea level at Happisburgh. However, the more recent metric Ordnance Survey denotes 19 metres elevation. North Norfolk Wheelers are therefore looking for a volunteer to knock on the door of Hill 60 cottage to tell the owners that they need to change the name of their bungalow to Hill 62.335958.

Bunch: Brian; Harvey; Mark; Neil Mc; Neil S + Chris B out for a short one as he gets back to full health following an autumn bout of Covid.

Distances: 53 miles to 72 miles.

Club Run to Corner House Café, Mundesley 09/02/2022

PC was a Wheelers hot spot this morning as the four that had assembled for the ride were joined by Robert N who had driven out just to have a chat and confirm that he would be out cycling with us again soon. Good to see you again Robert. Then Geoff P stopped for a quick chat on his way to Reepham and a rendezvous with a large cake. Current Wheelers count = 6

So, the four set off for Mundesley in mild but overcast conditions with a steady Westerly wind that would soon be on our backs after we had passed through West Beckham and Matlaske. Then onto Thurgarton, Town Green, Thwaite and Erpingham. We then took the little used Lodge Lane and soon discovered why it was little used, a large flood close to Erpingham Lodge which forced a detour via the field headland, this was a well-worn path suggesting the flood was a semi-permanent feature. Onto Banningham and back lanes to cross the A149, then Bradfield, Trunch and up and over Mundesley Golf Course, where it started to rain and then downhill to the café.

More Wheelers! Out on their own ride but deciding to stop at the cafe were Brian P and Chris B, they had finished their coffee and cakes when we arrived so after a chat they set off again.  Also waiting for us was John S, who was able to join us for lunch and for some of the homeward route.
Total Wheelers count = 9!

After a good lunch, the rain and the wind had stopped, which was ideal for the generally westerly route home. We continued our circuit of Mundesley, then Trunch, Knapton and down the Paston road to the N Walsham road, where we said goodbye to John S and we headed up to Swafield, Bradfield, around Southrepps to Hungry Hill near Sidestrand where Graham A left us to take the coast road home.

The remaining three took on Hungry Hill, Northrepps, Sally Beans, Crossdale Street, Metton, Sustead and the split at Gresham church.

In summary, the morning was dry roads and the wind on our backs, the afternoon, the wind had fortunately dropped but the roads were wet and the bikes were liberally covered in mud. Plenty of Wheelers out and enjoying the mild conditions.

Andrew B, Duncan S, Graham A and Mark leading. Guest appearances by John S, Brian P, Chris B, Geoff P and Robert N

PC to PC was 50 miles.

Club Run to Coltishall on 5/2/2022.

Brian, Mark, Neil Mc and Harvey set out for No.77 Cafe at Coltishall on another windy Saturday. Obviously not satisfied that the lanes were filthy enough today, the small bunch ran across a sugar beet field carrying their bikes after only two miles on the road*. The morning ride meandered round a lot of lanes by way of Lower Gresham, Aldborough School, the shortcut past Hanworth Timber, Suffield Rectory, Felmingham, Swanton Hill, Sloley, Ashmanaugh and Belaugh Green. The group was supplemented at the cafe by former Wednesday supremo, Malcolm, who had ridden up from his new domicile over the marshes, via the Reedham ferry. The return route to Sheringham featured a lot of changes of direction to avoid the worst of a rising gusty wind and to enable a largely wind assisted last hour. So it was south initially past Heggatt’s Hall before heading home via Frettenham, Stratton Strawless, Buxton, Allison Street, Cawston Eastgate, from where Neil headed for home further west, Oulton, Itteringham, the Barninghams and a split at Red Barn Lane.

One slow puncture (thorn in front Gatorskin).

Distances: 56 miles to 68 miles.

*Two lorries and a sugar beet loader completely blocked the East Beckham to Gresham lane, tight up to the thorn hedge, enforcing drastic diversionary tactics. Despite following a route that passed close to the Cantley refinery, Malcolm’s bike was as clean as a whistle; an enquiry into this phenomenon is called for.

**Annual Social, Buffet and Awards evening**

To all members. You and your partner/friends are invited to our annual awards buffet which will be held at Upper Sheringham Village Hall on Saturday 26th February at 19:00.

This is an important event from a number of perspectives. Firstly, after two years of Covid it will be great to all get together again to relax and have a social evening. Also, after two years away, Chris Knowles is returning to Norfolk and will again take to the stage to make the presentation of the trophies. For those of you who have joined the club more recently, Chris is a stalwart and long-time Chairman of the club. So come along and welcome him home and have a good natter.

The club is partially subsidising the event, but we would like a contribution of £15 per person to cover an extensive buffet. If you bring along your own drinks we can enjoy a great evening (soft drinks and tea/coffee will be available). Could you let Mike Padfield (brizamedia@hotmail.com) know if you have any special dietary requirements. If you could confirm that you will be coming and make payment direct to the club account (North Norfolk Wheelers, sort code 09-01-29, acc no.19987590) using reference <buffet name>.

Club Run to Norton Cafe at Little Walsingham 2 February 2022

Four riders met at PC on a cloudy morning with a moderate breeze from the west.

We set off south, crossed the Holt/Norwich road at Saxthorpe, through Corpusty towards Thurning and Hindolveston and Fulmoldeston. Andrew B then punctured a rear tyre near Little Snoring. With great team work between Andrew and Mark we were soon back on the road. However, as we had lost some time, we decided to head direct to Walsingham instead of the original plan to head towards the Barshams and loop around via Waterden to enter Little Walsingham from the west.

At Norton Cafe, we enjoyed a good lunch and a chin wag before starting the return leg. We set off for Wighton, then to Binham, Langham and Wiveton, with weather, although still cloudy, a lot milder than in previous days. After the climb up from Wiveton, we continued across Salthouse Heath to High Kelling, across the A148 to Lower Bodham, West Beckham and back to PC.

Duncan S (leader), Andrew B, Mark, John

PC to PC 42 miles.