Five go to the seaside-15th October 2017

As this ride was into a busy sector of Essex I wasn’t sure how many riders would turn up but like the title says five of us left Chelmsford on a beautiful sunny morning. Our elevenses stop was at the Riverview Nursery at Hockley where Norman L met us. After refreshments Phil returned home so we still had five going onto lunch.

At Canewdon we walked through the churchyard for a quick look at the church and village lock-up before making a detour to see the old radar site. Not much can be seen from the road but Dave R said he remembered the wooden masts, which were part of the receiver. The transmitter masts were of steel and the one at Gt Baddow came from this site.

To avoid a busy section around Rochford I took the group off-road round the remains of the old Stambridge Mill.

Lunch was taken at Parsons Barn at Shoebury. This is a Wetherspoons and was remarkably quiet for a Sunday. Moving on we had a couple of culture stops in the old Shoebury Garrison, now all private residences. The sea front cycle path is about 4.5 miles long and requires no navigation input just collision avoidance tactics. Around the pier entrance we were down to a crawl and with hindsight we should have got on the road and mixed it with the cars.

Our return was via Leigh and along beside a noisy A127 until we got to Rayleigh where Norman went directly home. Along Rawreth Lane we met Brian Penny making his way home after a SEG ride. Three of us stopped at the Haybarn Tea Room in Battlebridge for a top up of tea. Most places close at 4:00 on a Sunday but I knew this one stayed open to 4:30.

I think the other riders enjoyed this ride as something different but it has two main problems, distance and traffic. Chelmsford to Chelmsford was about 65-70 miles and this could have been reduced but there is little that can be done about the traffic. The Southend Section of Forty Plus has a similar ride but the traffic levels are different on Thursdays.

My route on Google maps- https://drive.google.com/open?id=172R_t_n__HPBcClnZbszUTD0Vvc&usp=sharing

Mel M

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