CTC West Surrey Group

Annual Report 2009

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Introduction

CTC West Surrey Group is the local representative body of the CTC and has 1127 members (1191 in 2008) for which it is their 'main' group.  Historically CTC members were allocated to the Group based on the post codes (GU 1-10, 12, 15-16, 18-27;  KT 7, 8, 10-16, 24;  RG 45) that fell within its boundary.  Since April 2009 CTC members have, however, been able to choose which group(s) they are a member of and to specify which of these is to be their 'main' group, i.e. the one at whose AGM they will be entitled to vote.

In addition to several special events, e.g. Reliability Rides and Audax events, the Group organises morning and all-day on-road rides on Wednesdays and Sundays throughout the year.  Rides start from various locations, providing the opportunity for riders of all abilities, ranging from those seeking light exercise to the fit and experienced cyclist, to explore the country lanes of Surrey and bordering counties.

Organisation

In addition to an elected committee to manage its affairs, the Group has a President and five Vice Presidents, these being honorary posts to which members are elected in recognition of their long support and services to the Group.  These posts are currently held by Chris Jeggo (President) and Roy Banks, Harold Coleman, Phil Hamilton, Clive Richardson and Rico Signore (Vice Presidents).

The committee consists of four ex-officio posts (Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Rides Secretary) plus other committee members.  For the past year its members have been:

        Chris Jeggo
Dane Maslen
Tim Bar
John Murdoch
Mark Waters
John Morris
        Chairman
Secretary and Registration Officer
Treasurer
Rides Secretary and Welfare Officer
Promotions Officer
 

The Group's success is dependent on the many members that organise and lead the various Wednesday and Sunday rides (see below).  In addition the following volunteers provide important services to the Group:

        Tim Bar
Keith Chesterton
Peter Clint
Phil Hamilton
Chris Jeggo
David Jupe
Rico Signore
Geoff Smith
Mark Waters
        Tour of the Hills Organiser
Guildford Cycle Forum Representative
Auditor and Right to Ride Representative
Magazine Distributor & Reliability Ride Organiser
Archivist
Website Manager
Reliability Ride Organiser
Magazine Editor
Bicycle Icycle & Stonehenge/Danebury Organiser

Having served on the committee as treasurer for six years and organised the Tour of the Hills and the Tour of the Greensand Hills for five years, Tim Bar is now stepping down from both roles.  The Tour of the Hills is the Group's premier event and attracts many entrants from outside of West Surrey so its continued success under Tim has been important for both our finances and our reputation.  The Group is indebted to him for his efforts over the years.

Special thanks are also due to Geoff Smith, who has now completed ten years as editor of The West Surrey Cyclist, a job that would undoubtedly be a lot easier if more members were to write articles without first having their arms twisted by him.  Geoff had been considering handing the job over to someone else at the end of the year so that he could take a well-earned rest, but he has been inveigled into carrying on.

Wednesday and Sunday rides

These start from various locations in an effort to accommodate cyclists living in different areas of West Surrey.  In addition to groups that operate primarily from Woking, Guildford and Farnham, there are groups that operate from variable start points to give the widest scope for rides.

All-day Sunday Intermediates:

Chris Jeggo has continued to provide all-day rides at a moderate pace (~11-13 mph) with rides starting from various locations.  The programme also included three train/car-assisted rides plus a "summer special" ride to the coast (Woking to Shoreham - a 90-mile round trip) which was well supported.  Group members enthusiastically participated in two weekend trips organised by Derek and Anne Tanner, to the Forest of Dean over May Day Bank Holiday and to the Welsh Festival of Cycling in July.

Farnham Wayfarers:

Thanks to Liz Palethorpe and her team of ride leaders the Farnham Wayfarers have had another very successful year.  All-day rides from Farnham were organised on the first Wednesday (~40-45 miles at ~10-12 mph), second Sunday (~40 miles at ~10 mph) and fourth Sunday (slightly longer and faster) of every month.  These attracted an average of 12 riders.  In addition there were five extra rides during the year from varying locations and these proved popular.  In January a new group, "Easy Riders", was started, offering a morning ride at a very gentle pace (~15-20 miles at ~8 mph) to encourage new riders and get people back on their bikes.  This has really taken off with a good number of new faces.

Guildford and Godalming Wayfarers:

Under Peter Fennemore's leadership the group has continued its format of Sunday half-day rides (~20-25 miles) interspersed with whole day rides (~40 miles) at ~10-12 mph.  Routes are usually on-road, but with occasional use of tracks, with rides starting from Guildford or Godalming, alternating to give a more varied range to the areas accessible.  Rides typically attract a turn out of 5-9 riders.  Whole day rides try to include a visit to a particular place of interest.  Occasional joint rides with Chris Jeggo's Intermediates have added a further dimension to the group identity and expanded inter-group relations.

Sunday Riders:

Clive Richardson, the ever-present regular leader, has encouraged other members to lead occasional rides.  The group's brisk all-day rides (~60-90 miles at ~14-15 mph), starting from Elstead, Farnham, Godalming or Guildford, have covered much of Surrey and neighbouring counties, including several visits to the coast.  They have attracted an average of 4-5 riders, often joined by one or two more for just the morning.  Train/car-assisted rides on the Isle of Wight and to the New Forest proved popular, with numbers occasionally reaching double figures.

Woking Midweek Wayfarers:

Starting from a variety of locations around Woking, these rides continue to attract a healthy attendance with extra riders often joining the group at the coffee stop.  Occasionally a train/car-assisted ride from further afield is offered in addition to the local start.  Attendance has ranged from just four on wet days to an impressive 31, the average being 17.  That's a total attendance for the year of 888, prompting Rico to suggest that we should try for 1000 in the coming year!

The group is very fortunate in having a number of members willing and able to lead rides, thereby accommodating various speeds and fitness levels.  Newer members soon find their feet (or pedals) and join the group best suited to their speed, distance and stamina capabilities.  Of course the leader's choice of lunchtime watering hole can also be a deciding factor.

This year Barbara and Josephine joined the group, professing to be 'non-cyclists' who had signed up for the London to Paris charity ride and needed to gather general information on how to go about riding it.  The advice of the group's experts obviously worked as Barbara and Josephine successfully completed the event.  Congratulations to both of them!  We hope they have now become dedicated cyclists and will continue riding with us.

Woking Sunday Intermediates:

These morning-only rides from outside Boots in Woking attract a small but loyal group of regulars, numbers varying between one on wet Sundays and eight in reasonable weather.  Now that the coffee venues are published in the rides' list the group is occasionally joined by other members riding there direct (except when the group decides to change the coffee venue!).  Despite the low attendances Rico Signore is committed to continue leading these rides as the group's persistence has recently been rewarded by the addition of a few new riders.

Events

The success of the Group's events depends not only on the dedication of their organisers, but also on the willingness of members to act as helpers and marshals.  This year there were fewer volunteers, but the organisers coped manfully nonetheless.  Thanks are due to the organisers and all the volunteers.

The other requirement for the success of the Group's events is that there should be sufficient entrants to make the organisers feel that all their hard work was worthwhile.  Unfortunately this year saw reduced participation for some events and consequently the Group's programme of events for next year is likely to be somewhat thinner.

22.03.09  The Bicycle Icycle:

Mark Waters once again organised this 70km event.  It attracted 13 riders, an increase of two on last year, of whom all but three were from West Surrey.  The roads were reported by the riders to be in better condition than last year and the weather was excellent.  All riders completed the course, with times varying between 4h 15m and 5h 39m.

26.04.09  50-mile Reliability Ride:

All but a handful of the 26 entrants used the Pyrford start, of whom 24 completed the course within the prescribed 5 hours.  A cool start gave way to bright sunshine by mid-morning, so many riders shed layers at the Kirdford control where biscuits and squash were in particularly good supply because of the reduced turnout - before continuing to the finish where many enjoyed a social lunch before returning home.  Although the event attracted a respectable entry, numbers were down on previous years.  As Phil Hamilton also had trouble getting sufficient helpers to run the event, there might be question marks about its future.

17.05.09  Stonehenge 200, Danebury 150 and Elstead 100:

The weather forecast had predicted that there would be rain at times and this proved to be correct.  This led to a reduction in on-the-line entries, especially for the Elstead 100, and an increase in the number of riders not completing the course.  There were a total of 80 starters of whom 64 finished.  A full report from the organiser, Mark Waters, is included at the end of this report.

28.06.09  30-, 50-, 75- and 100-mile Reliability Rides:

The once popular 100-mile route was revived several years ago and other route lengths added to the programme in an attempt to increase interest in the event.  The number of entrants had, however, remained disappointing, especially last year when the weather poor, so this year the event was moved from September to June in an attempt to increase participation.  Alas there were only 14 riders in total (3, 5, 2 and 4 respectively on each of the rides) despite good weather.  In the face of this lack of enthusiasm Rico Signore will no longer be organising the event so it is unlikely to be repeated next year.  Thanks are due to Rico for his efforts over the last few years to revive the event.

16.08.09  Tour of the Hills and Tour of the Greensand Hills:

Because Audax UK have introduced a stricter assessment of route length, the old Tour of the Hills route was disqualified by them this year, so Tim Bar was forced to redesign the route.  Problems with establishing exactly what criteria the route needed to satisfy to be acceptable meant that Audax approval for the new route was not obtained until mid-May.

Because the event was late appearing in the Audax calendar it attracted only 118 entrants (167 in 2008), though this was still a satisfactory number given the circumstances.  In addition there were 13 riders on the Tour of the Greensand Hills.  The entrants were rewarded with good weather.  Judging by comments made afterwards by riders, the new route was well received.

Thanks go to the many marshals, without whom this event would not be possible, and in particular to Lynette Jeggo and Libia Gomez-Jupe for running the kitchen.

20.09.09  Pace Judging and Freewheeling competitions:

Last year's Tricyclathon had to be scrapped because of insufficient entrants so this year the hill-climbing component was dropped and the two other components were run as separate competitions to compensate for the loss of the Scorathon from the Benstead Cup.  Possibly encouraged by good weather 12 riders entered after enjoying a coffee stop at Seale.  On the pace-judging circuit of about 10 minutes no fewer than eight riders managed a difference of under 10 seconds between their clockwise and anti-clockwise times, Tim Bar winning with a difference of only 2 seconds.  The freewheeling competition was won by Chris Jeggo by a large margin:  he was the only rider to make it over a hump and round the following corner.

Annual award of trophies

The following awards are based on points given for the results of competitions and participation in events and Wednesday and Sunday rides.

Benstead Challenge Cup:  Peter Hackman
      Best overall result.

Benstead Ladies Shield:  Roberta Shore
      Best overall result by a lady.

Junior Benstead Cup:  not awarded
      Best overall result by a junior (under 18 on 30/09/09).

Bernard Howell Trophy:  Peter Hackman
      Best overall result by a veteran (55 or over on 01/10/08).

Bill Inder Trophy:  Clive Richardson
      Best Sunday attendance.

George Alesbury Tankard:  Rico Signore
      Best Wednesday attendance.

Junior Attendance Cup:  not awarded
      Best overall attendance by a junior (under 18 on 30/09/09).

Bert Bartholomew Trophy:  Peter Hackman
      Oldest rider to complete the 100-mile Reliability Ride within the time limit.

There are two further awards:

Keith Parfitt Memorial Pot:  Mark Waters
      Based on points given for organising events or helping at events

The Wooden Crank:  not awarded
      Awarded for the most amusing blunder during the year.

Other Activities

Guildford Cycle Forum:

Keith Chesterton reports that this continues to meet quarterly, but results from its activities over the past year have been disappointing.  The Guildford Local Committee has had a lot less money to spend and little of that has been spent on cycling.  Furthermore Guildford Council has abolished the small pot of money it used to put aside for cycling schemes.

On a brighter note cycling might get some funding via the new Transport for Guildford group.  The group's remit is to produce plans for improving Guildford's transport, which would justify Guildford getting £29,000,000 from Government to cope with develoments from the SE Plan.  The schemes have to reduce congestion and improve public transport, walking & cycling.  The Cycle Forum has put forward schemes it regards as a priority.

Keith has been made a member of the Transport for Guildford steering group to represent both walking and cycling interests.  He does not expect it to be easy to get significant schemes for cycling, but will be doing his best.

Midsomer Murders:

Last October Rico Signore, Bob McLeod and Peter Fennemore took part as cycling extras in the filming of an episode of Midsomer Murders at Newlands Corner and Wellington College, Crowthorne.  The episode aired recently on ITV, affording them a few seconds of stardom.  As they are still willing to ride with the rest of us, it seems that this has not gone to their heads, though they are perhaps disappointed by the lack of requests for autographs.

New Year's get-together in Seale:

Many members rode to Seale Craft Centre on 1st January where the tea room, ever popular with our members, opened especially for cyclists to celebrate the New Year.  Over the years this has become a popular get-together for other cycle clubs to 'gatecrash', so it was once again standing room only.

Right to Ride:

Changes initiated by Woking B.C. and Surrey C.C at the beginning of the year to the way Woking Cycle Forum interacts with them has in the opinion of Peter Clint effectively reduced the input that he and others are able to give.  Subsequently his heart deterioration further impaired his ability to act as the CTC's Right to Ride representative.  After several months of enforced lack of contact with cycling and the Forum he recently felt it appropriate to resign his role in this capacity.  We'd like to thank him for his efforts over the years and wish him a speedy recovery.

Tour Series Woking:

Several members volunteered to help marshal this event, which will be returning to Woking in 2010 (see below).

Other Matters

Group membership:

Since April CTC members have been able to choose which CTC groups they belong to (cf article on page 53 of the Apr-May 2009 issue of Cycle).  Anyone who considers themselves a 'member' of CTC West Surrey but who lives outside the historical geographical boundaries of the Group (cf Introduction) is encouraged to contact the CTC Membership Department on 0844 736 8451 to ensure that they are officially listed as a member of the Group.  If you specify CTC West Surrey as your 'main' group, then you will be entitled to vote at future AGMs and the Group will be entitled to claim your subscription levy from HQ.  Note that at some stage in the future it will be possible to specify your group membership online.

Group jerseys and shirts:

Last year's AGM agreed that the Group should attempt to encourage sales by buying some shirts in advance.  The Group still has a number of these shirts in stock.  Given the deterioration of the £/€ exchange rate, it is likely that any jerseys and shirts ordered in the future will be more expensive than those currently in stock, so members of the right sizes (7, 8, 10, 11 and 13) should take advantage of the opportunity before it's gone!  Contact Peter Clint (see details in the The West Surrey Cyclist to do so).

Marguerite Statham (1942-2008):

Marguerite Statham lost her battle with cancer on 12th October 2008.  Up until 2001, when she and her husband moved to Dorset, she was a leading light in the West Surrey DA, having led various riding groups and served as Secretary and Chair.  16 present and past CTC West Surrey members attended her funeral in Yeovil.

Sale of Map Library:

The West Surrey DA used to have a map library, a cardboard box full of Bartholomew's half-inch and Ordnance Survey 1-inch maps.  These used to be hired out to members for a few pence a week.  The last loan was in 1980, there having been very few in the immediately preceding years, so it was decided informally at an AGM some years ago that the maps might as well be sold if they were worth anything.  This year Chris Jeggo took advantage of passing through Hay-on-Wye en route to the Welsh Festival of Cycling to take them to the Old Cinema Book Shop.  They offered £60, representing 50p to £1 per map depending on condition, and this was accepted.

Tour Series Woking:

The Tour Series is returning to Woking in June 2010.  It is quite likely that the Group will again be asked if we can provide marshals for the event.  In order that we should be able to give the organisers an accurate answer, it would be helpful if any member potentially interested in marshalling would contact the Secretary well in advance of the event.

Dane Maslen, Secretary 20th October 2009
 

EVENT REPORT

The 29th Stonehenge, 13th Danebury & 4th Elstead Hundred Rides 2009

Organised by Mark Waters for West Surrey CTC

These rides took place on Sunday 17th May.  Charges remained the same as last year (£4.00, £3.50 & £3.00 for the Stonehenge, Danebury and Elstead Hundred respectively).  On-the-line entries for those people not belonging to West Surrey CTC or VC Godalming & Haslemere were charged an extra £1.

The weather was an issue this year.  Not only was it wet for a large part of the day but the forecast predicted as much, which undoubtedly put quite a number of people off coming to ride, particularly local cyclists who tend to enter on the line.

74 riders rode the three events, a decrease of 19 on last year.  Whilst entries for the 200 remained buoyant despite a slight drop, and the 150 showed a minor increase (but still nothing like the numbers of several years ago) it was the 100 which showed the greatest decline in numbers.  Undoubtedly this was due to the weather with the most riders normally entering on the line.

Once again, other events drew potential entries away.  The Bryan Chapman 600 was mentioned by one rider, a ride that people are prepared to travel a long way for - it’s in Wales.  Evans also organised a ‘King of the Downs’ cyclo sportif which undoubtedly attracted a few - 992 riders in fact.

The statistics reveal a large number of DNFs and many of these occurred early on in the day and were a result of a particularly nasty rainstorm with a simultaneous sharp drop in temperature.  There were also a couple of equipment failures.  Fortunately no accidents or incidents were reported.  The last rider returned at 9.15pm.

The weather cleared up a bit later in the day so many riders got back reasonably dry.  Tea was popular but less food was eaten than predicted.  Having got the amounts just about right last year, this year the food required was overestimated.  Although I had heard the forecast, I did not think it would reduce numbers to such a degree (and I didn’t know about the Evans ride).  The number of pre-entered riders was up slightly this year and my experience is that cooler weather causes people to eat more at the end of the ride in order to warm up.  The amount of food bought for the Start / Finish control was identical almost to last year at £91.14.  Donations this year came to £78.42, a significant increase on last year.  (£55.17 in 2008, £56.64 in 2007, £89.70 in 2006).

Warm thanks are given to Tim Bar, Matt Carolan, Phil Hamilton and his daughter, Chris Jeggo and Rebecca Lucas for helping at various times during the day.

The only other significant occurrence was the fact that the town of Alresford was having a watercress festival.  This effectively blocked the main road through the town which all three rides used.  Discovering this just a week before the events took place, I quickly ‘google mapped’ an alternative route through the town which would have worked perfectly but for the fact that there was a ‘no through road’ sign at a left turn so riders didn’t count it as a turn and continued, searching for the next left turn which didn’t arrive.  The NTR was caused by the existence of a ford which cyclists could in fact get over using an adjacent footbridge.  Unfortunately neither the ford nor the NTR sign was visible on Google Maps’ satellite imaging.  In fact it turned out that many people walked through the town and enjoyed the experience.

Congratulations to the following DA members for completing the courses:

Stonehenge:  Jeff Ellingham, Don Gray, Roger Philo, Jane and John Gillbe, Peter Hackman, Peter Hampson, Robert Lockley, John Morris, Clive Richardson and David Streek

Danebury:  Chris Jeggo

Elstead Hundred:  Ian Campbell, Paul Gillingham, Dane Maslen, Bob McLeod and Carol Moore.

Full financial details may be found in the accounts submitted to the Treasurer.

Next year the Stonehenge 200, Danebury 150 and Elstead 100 will be held on 9 May 2010, the day after an Audax organised by North Hants, to encourage riders from further afield to participate in both events.

STATISTICS

Stonehenge

Year Entries (of which on-the-line entries) DNS DNF No of finishers
2009 42 5 7 7 28
2008 46 9 4 1 41
2007 34 1 5 4 25
2006 45 5 19 4 22
2005 59 8 10 4 45
2004 46 7 9 2 35
2003 67   9 3 55
2002 51   6 10 35

Danebury

Year Entries (of which on-the-line entries) DNS DNF No of finishers
2009 19 6 3 4 18
2008 16 6 1 0 15
2007 20 8 2 0 18
2006 39 5 7 5 27
2005 49 13 2 2 45*
2004 48 11 7 3 38*
2003 42   4 5 38
2002 28   8 2 18

Elstead 100

Year Entries (of which on-the-line entries) DNS DNF No of finishers
2009 24 13 1 5 18
2008 39 30 3 1 35*
2007 39 24 2 1 38*
2006 29 13 3 2 24*

All Rides ~ Total Entries

2002 79 2006 123 (100km ride introduced)
2003 109          2007 93
2004 94 2008 101
2005 108 2009 85

Mark Waters
Organiser


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