Monday, April 23 2018

Published on May 19 2017. Sport
Try riding with the Wheelers
All abilities are welcome

Try riding with the Wheelers

In an age when everyone is more and more aware of keeping fit, what better way than to take up cycling?

I had always cycled to work from Rye to Dungeness, where I worked for 37 years, during the summer months but when I retired in 2014 I wondered how I would have the enthusiasm to just go out cycling for leisure. I continued to cycle mainly around Rye and sometimes to Tenterden or New Romney to pop down and see friends but I didn’t always feel the motivation to get out on the bike.

Things changed. By chance I met one of the ride leaders at a Rye Festival event and he mentioned that the Rye Wheelers ran a Friday ride for ‘slower’ riders and suggested I go along.

I dithered and wondered what I was letting myself in for: “They’re bound to be too fast; I won’t be able to keep up”. But after many conversations with my wife about going out with a proper cycling club, she finally said in exasperation: “Well if you don’t go you’ll never know will you?”

I duly turned up at North Salts on my trusty hybrid bike to meet the rest of the cyclists, about 10 including Jim Hollands, the club president. As there was a mixed bunch of road bikes and hybrids, I felt more comfortable and it didn’t seem to be how I imagined.

We set off and cycled to Appledore to meet any other Kent-based cyclists who would want to join the ride. We meandered across Romney marsh at a leisurely pace to the Oasis Cafe. I wasn’t expecting a break for food but it was a chance to get to know the other cyclists and have a good breakfast!

Four years later I’m still cycling at least twice a week, clocking up 60 to 80 miles.

It’s great being part of the club and meeting new friends and there’s always plenty going on – trips to France, BBQs and other social events. Check our website or Facebook for all activities and information.

All abilities are welcomed by the club and no one gets left behind. Tuesday afternoon at Appledore is tailored to those who haven’t cycled for a while or just want to meander around Romney Marsh.


Photo: Monty Wilson

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