As 12 riders began arriving at paddock wood station, rain started to fall and dark clouds hovered around in the distance, I made an executive decision and changed the route to the shorter flat ride in Kent; some fifteen miles shorter.
We set off at a steady Pace in the rain along the very quiet roads, when after about fifteen minutes the rain began to ease and then stopped altogether and apart from a few minutes of light drizzle later in the morning the rest of the ride remained dry.
We made excellent time along the lanes and roads through the small villages and hamlets towards the small airdrome at Headcorn where we had a well-earned cuppa.
I had phoned the bell and Jorrocks pub before we had started the ride and they had kindly reserved a table for us and so we headed out towards Frittenden for our lunch stop.
As we made our way along well into the ride, it was evident that there was a complete lack of other cycle groups in the area, very unusual and apart from the odd horse or car we had the lanes to ourselves.
We arrived at the bell and Jorrocks where I think it’s fair to say the large and varied menu and the warm welcome makes it a great place to stop.
Spirits were high as we set off on the last leg of our journey back to paddock wood and with the pace stepped up slightly we were on track to get back just as the light was going but good ol sods law decided to step in and with about seven miles to go we suffered our first of three punctures that slowed us up somewhat making the last mile or two cycled in complete darkness but who cares it couldn’t spoil a great day out.
Thanks to everyone who came out and I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did leading a good group of cyclist.
And a big thank you to Trevor for back marking for me, making my job a lot easier.