The 2011 Annual Cleland ride is Sunday 4th December. Retrobikers Welcome!
These rides started in 1982 as regular monthly rides and then became yearly rides in the 1990's after Geoff moved away from thee area. They have been run every single year since, so this modest ride is probably the UK's longest running off-road cycling event.
Each year, Geoff Apps travels down from Scotland to revisit the Chiltern Hills, the locality where Cleland designs were first conceived, tested and produced. During the 1980s, a regular ride used to begin in Wendover on the first Sunday every month, usually led by Geoff on his latest concept machine.
After he moved to Scotland in 1990, it was thought that a single ride each year would be more practical, and since there was a cluster of regular participant birth dates around the beginning of December (including Geoff’s), the first Sunday in December would become the date for each ‘Birthday’ ride.
This is a completely informal event, with no need to register, or anything like that. Just turn up with your mountain bike, or Cleland, or home-brewed lash-up, with an open mind and not too competitive a spirit.
This year’s ride will take place on:
Sunday 4th December 2011
We meet at the Wendover Library car park at around 10am, and then go round the corner to Crumb’s Cafe and Sandwich Bar, at the Clock Tower end of the High Sreet, for about 10:30. .
The pace is generally quite slow, with frequent stops for the younger riders to catch up with the pensioners! Although slow, the going can sometimes be quite challenging, involving lots of mud and as many bumps as we can find. One or more of the stops may involve messing around on an impromptu ‘trials section’, another will be for lunch at one of the hilltop pubs.
We should reach the Cafe in the Forest, at the top of Wendover Woods in time for tea, about 4pm. After this we turn our lights on (or not, sometimes) and take the descent back down to Wendover in darkness.
After a change of clothes, if necessary, an hour or so is spent under the outdoor heaters round the back of the Red Lion, in the High Street, from about 6pm.
So, even if you’re not riding, you may be able to catch up with us at one of the venues mentioned.