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Though the summer of 1996 fell short of that of '95 in hours of sunshine, there were very few Sundays spoilt by rain during the year and the D.A. riders gladly took advantage of this.  Attendance on D.A. rides varied, of course, with the time of the year and the weather but also with the 'start', the direction and the destination.  Attention is being given to these factors with a view to attempting to make rides as popular as is reasonably feasible in 1997.

Membership numbers rose once again to reach 979 during 1996.  This represents an increase of 8.5% over 1995.  All groups have been pleased to see and to welcome new faces on rides this year but all regret that too few youthful riders are joining us.

George Alesbury retired as President of the DA at the A.G.M. after a term in office that was much appreciated by the membership.  The new President, Harold Coleman, thanked George for all the work he had carried out on behalf of the DA and said that George had set an example that he would find very hard to follow.

D.A. COMMITTEE:  The Committee, consisting of Harold Coleman [Chairman] (7), Rory Fenner [Secretary] (7), Dave Bigmore (2), Ken Bolingbroke (7), Peter Callaghan (7), Keith Parfitt (7), Roger Philo (7) and Harry Statham (5), met on seven occasions.  Attendances in ().


Hardriders  Reported by Peter Norris.

The average attendance each week was 5.  The highest attendance for one day was 11.  We travelled as far west as Piddletrenthide in Dorset, as far east as Ide Hill in Kent, down to the south coast a few times and as far north as South Heath in Buckinghamshire.  As well as the regulars we have had the pleasure of two new faces in the peloton.  Most of the rides from start to finish have averaged 65 - 75 miles.  There have been a couple over 80 miles and one just over 100 miles (to Piddletrenthide).  The average speed for each ride has been 14 - 15 mph.  The Hardriders weekend away was enjoyed by all and the general feeling is that another trip should be organised next year.

Intermediates  Reported by Ken Bolingbroke.

Attendance on Intermediate group rides this summer has been a little low although the numbers have varied from week to week.  Most of the rides cover a good average distance of 60 - 70 miles and have been well led by people like Alan Holbrook, Roy Banks etc. who seem to have a nose for nice, out of the way Pubs for lunch.  Trevor Strudwick and Keith Parfitt have kindly agreed to lead a joint ride with Cranleigh & Villages Wayfarers once a month starting from Guildford.  We look forward to seeing more of our friends who have not been out lately and hope that some riders who have been out with the morning groups might try an all day ride with the Intermediates.  You will always be welcome.

Midweek Wayfarers  Reported by John Ostrom.

For the last 12 months the group has been the responsibility of Harry Statham, Les Houlton and John Ostrom - the so-called "troika", which took over from Marguerite Statham.  The total number of members who have put in at least one ride is 59.  Average attendance was 17.  Best turnout was 28 on December 20th and the lowest was three.  Once again Harry Statham took the highest number of points (46), tying for first place with George Alesbury.  They share the Alesbury Tankard (how is their problem!).  The group did eight train-assisted rides (including the Lasham picnic).  Some members came by car and a heroic few rode all the way.  These runs prove very popular.  Congratulations to Sandy Campbell for achieving the End to End and to Heidi Powell for her solo ride from Lands End to Windermere.

Cranleigh and Villages Wayfarers  Reported by Keith Parfitt.

A number of rides have been enjoyed by members of the group during the year.  Unfortunately, there has not been an increase in numbers on these rides although enquiries have been received about the group's activities.  A possible reason why numbers have not increased is that insufficient use was made of the FREE advertising facility in the Surrey Advertiser.  The Group has assisted the D.A. in:  a) providing marshals for events (Ian McAlister from Dorking marshalled on Box Hill during the Tour of the Hills),  b) supported other groups on a Sunday and c) helped to swell the CTC team on the bi-monthly visits to the Cheshire Homes (Bowling and Quizzes).

Guildford and Godalming Wayfarers  Reported by David Bigmore.

The group organised over 25 Sunday rides, including 2 Youth Hostel Weekends, one to Arundel and one to Brecon.  Sixty-three different riders have ridden with the group this year and group size has varied between 3, when it rained, and 28.  Normal group size was about 10.  The prize, if there was one, for the highest attendance would go to Peter Fennemore, closely followed by Dave Bigmore, David Whittle and Marguerite Statham.

Following the last A.G.M., discussions established that members of the Guildford and Godalming Group did not wish to become an official Section of the West Surrey D.A. but did require financial help to cover the costs of postage and printing etc.  This was agreed by the D.A. Committee, up to a maximum of £50 in the current year and the Guildford and Godalming Secretary, David Bigmore, was co-opted on to the D.A. Committee in March 1996.

Woking Wayfarers  Reported by David Nightingale.

We have had an excellent year thanks to all the people who ride with us.  A special thanks to Les Houlton and Harry Statham who do a splendid job of looking after new riders, leading rides and leading a second group when numbers make a single group too big.  Thanks also to those people who have used their initiative and helped on various other rides, especially remembered is the help and assistance provided by riders and general public when Bert Bartholomew passed away.  Please talk to the leader if you have any ideas or suggestions.  Thank you all.  Happy cycling.

Junior Group  Reported by Keith Parfitt.

Except for a short break during August, short morning rides and longer all-day rides have taken place on Saturdays.  The number of riders has varied from approximately 3 to 8.  We meet at Newlands Corner and although the starting time was 10.00 we always waited for late arrivals.  Some good and testing off-road rides have been enjoyed by the young and aged members of the group.  My thanks to Peter and Ian Callaghan and John and Alex for all their help.  The administration work has been taken over by Linda Fortey from Claire Bright.  Our thanks to Claire for her stint on the paper-work.  Our rides have been advertised in the Guildford Schools' Advertiser and David from Acorn Cycles has taken an interest in the group.

Thursday Evening Rides  Reported by Martin Taplin.

This year the number of participants has been lower than in previous years.  However, a regular group of 4 to 6 riders have achieved a higher-than-normal average mileage with rides frequently extending to 25 - 30 miles.  The rides set out from the CTC HQ at 7.15 pm and explore the country lanes and byways (and pubs!) of South-West Surrey.  Good companionship and good fun combine to make Thursday evening rides a weekly event not to be missed.

Away Rides  Reported by Roger Philo

At least 19 West Surrey D.A. members have ridden events organised by other DAs and clubs.  Some of these events have been included on the WSDA runs list, for example, Rother Valley CC Late Autumn Wind-Down (November), South Hampshire DA Watership Down 110km (January), South Kent DA Shepway Roughstuff (April), Lincolnshire DA CTC National 400km (July).  At 12th September, WSDA riders were well placed in the District Associations' Tourist Competition, with Chris Avery leading the individual placings, Sharon Gorton highest placed lady and West Surrey the leading team.


50 Mile Reliability Ride.  Organised by Keith Parfitt.

That old favourite the 50 Mile Reliability Ride in April once again enjoyed fine weather (it has not been ridden in the rain for at least 25 yrs!!).  There was an entry of 37;  10 finishing inside 3½ hrs, 17 inside 4 hrs, 8 inside 4½ hrs and 1 inside 5 hrs.

Sesquicentury 150km Audax Ride.  Organised by Roger Philo.

The Sesquicentury Ride in May unfortunately fell on one of this year's wettest days which made appreciation of the delightful route rather difficult for the 43 entrants.  38 riders, including 16 WSDA riders, finished inside the specified time.

Stonehenge 200km Audax Ride.  Organised by Roger Philo.

On June 16th the 200km 'Stonehenge' Audax ride attracted 74 entries of whom 61 actually started.  The 48 finishers from outside the WSDA provided a useful boost to the DA's finances.  It was a beautiful day for the ride in stark contrast to the 150 km ride in May.

Clover Leaf Rides.

On the same day as the Stonehenge ride Roger Philo organised a series of 'Clover Leaf' rides which provided a choice of shorter rides, from 25 miles to 100 miles, starting and finishing from the same place.  Nine riders, including 4 from North Hants DA, completed 50 miles and a further 9 WSDA riders completed 25 miles.

Nightride.  Organised by Chris Juden.

Six riders joined Chris Juden for a midsummer night ride to the south coast.

Roughstuff 60km Audax Ride.  Organised by Clive Richardson.

Of the 43 original entries for the Roughstuff ride on 21st July only 34 started and 26 finished.  This has not proved to be a popular ride with WSDA members and, despite the fact that only 2 of our members turned out on a lovely day to tackle this attractive but testing route, the field was led home by the DA's most active junior rider, Ian Callaghan.

Tour of the Hills 100km Audax Ride.  Organised by Keith Parfitt.

The Tour of the Hills on 18th August attracted 92 starters, including 12 WSDA riders.  Of the 74 finishers there were three riders who rode fixed wheel (including WSDA's Paul Holmes) and a pair who rode a tandem!  The hard work put in by the organiser Keith Parfitt and the marshals and assistants at the start and finish resulted in an event that was financially advantageous to the D.A. but was tough for the riders on an extremely hot day.

100 mile and 75 mile Reliability Rides.  Organised by Ken Bolingbroke.

12 riders completed the 100 mile Reliability Ride on September 8th including 5 WSDA riders and 10 riders including 5 WSDA riders completed the 75 mile Ride.  The changes made to the route resulted in almost the whole of the 100 miles being on country roads and lanes.

Tricyclathon.  Organised by Ken Bolingbroke.

The Tricyclathon was held on 6th October and included a Hillclimb - won by Peter Norris, Freewheeling - won by Chris Avery, and Speed judging - joint winners Harold Coleman and Peter Smith.  The overall winner for the day was Chris Avery.  Overnight rain fortunately cleared just in time for all the events to be run in the dry.


Benstead Cup    CLIVE RICHARDSON.    Runner up    PETER CALLAGHAN

Ladies Benstead Shield    GILL NORRIS

Bernard Howell Trophy - Highest Placed Veteran    PETER CALLAGHAN

Junior Benstead Cup    IAN CALLAGHAN

Bill Inder Trophy - Sunday Attendance Competition    GILL NORRIS

Junior Attendance Cup    IAN CALLAGHAN

Alesbury Tankard - Midweek Wayfarers Attendance Competition    HARRY STATHAM and GEORGE ALESBURY

D.A. Badges



Farnham.  The Farnham Group have been putting together some routes around the Farnham area and have got as far as asking Surrey County Council to produce some leaflets.  During the National Bike Week the Group organised a 5-mile cycle challenge in the Alice Holt Forest.

Woking.  The Woking Group organised an Open Day on the last Saturday of the National Bike Week in the Town Square, Woking.  There were a number of stands concerned with cycling including vintage bicycles, a CTC stand, Chris Jeggo - Cycle Doctor and a Trade stand.  The DA Junior Group organised a circular cycle ride from Woking Town Square along the Basingstoke Canal and the Wey Navigation and back to Woking.


The DA has produced some attractive colour posters to advertise major events.  Acorn Cycles, Worplesdon Road, Guildford and Evans in Woking have displayed the posters.  The new owners of the Barn Cafe, Newlands Corner have agreed to replace our original notice board with a larger one and to position it where it will be easier to study.  At present it is inconveniently placed close to the entrance.

MAGAZINE.  Report from the Editor, David Nightingale.

The magazine 'The West Surrey Cyclist' has been produced quarterly.  Thank you to all the contributors and customers of the Magazine.  Apologies for some late issuing.  If anyone has any suggestions or ideas for its improvement please speak to the Editor, likewise if you wish to contribute an article or two.  If anyone else would like the challenge of Editing the magazine the current Editor would be happy to give them the opportunity.  The Editor took over from Ian Parker in April 1991.


Annual Dinner and Awards Presentation.  48 Members and friends attended the 4th Annual Dinner which was held at the YMCA, Guildford on 25th November 1995.  The food and service were excellent and everyone enjoyed themselves.  The decision to do away with the 'Top Table' and arrange the tables informally was a success and added to the enjoyment of those present.  The Toast to the West Surrey District Association was proposed by Peter Callaghan.  Harold Coleman replied on behalf of the DA.  The presentation of Awards by Eveline and George Alesbury was accompanied by some good hearted banter.  After the awards presentation the President thanked Eveline and George for all the good work that they had done for the club over the years and presented Eveline with a bouquet of flowers and George with the Thursday Nighters Trophy to keep in memory of past rides and friends.

Midweek Wayfarers Christmas Lunch.  30 members enjoyed a convivial lunch in the company of the President and Secretary (not normally seen riding with the Wayfarers) at the Hare and Hounds, West End.

Cheshire Homes at Hydestile.  Social visits to the Cheshire Home at Hydestile have taken place every two months.  The residents have made us very welcome and have introduced quizzes into the programme of activities.  On a beautiful summer's day several riders rode over to the Home's annual fete.


The D.A. has agreed to host the Millennium Rally in the year 2000 and is very much looking forward to the challenge that this event will present.  The D.A. Committee will need help in the organising and running of the rally and would welcome your ideas on what should be included and what events might be put on.  Remember, the year 2000 will soon be upon us so do not hang back, now is the time to volunteer - let us have the use of your brain and muscles;  they and you will be much appreciated.

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