Retired, work part-time or shifts, enjoy being out in the countryside? Then cycle the lanes and byways of Cheshire and surrounding areas with Chester Easy Riders: you won't get left behind.
Chester Easy Riders is an independent cycling club affiliated to Cycling UK. We cycle every Thursday throughout the year with moderate and brisk day rides of 40 to 80 miles.

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Tuesday, 5 November 2013

31st October 2013: Ellesmere

Seven of us assembled at Hildegard’s with the prospect of indifferent weather ahead. Both Trevor and Brian Mac had only come for the café, leaving Ray, Andy, Petar, Tish and Steve for the day. Tish is new: she joined last Thursday’s group for part of the ride and obviously liked what she found, for today she was back for a full ride.  Andy suggested Ellesmere as our destination, and so everyone else nominated him as our leader for the day.
We had a delightful journey out with reasonable weather and a modest headwind, passing through Shochlach, Worthenbury, Holly Bush and Duddleston, to approach Ellesmere unusually from the NW. This is where things started to go wrong.  First the weather changed, with an initial shower turning to heavy rain, then Petar was nearly wiped out by a lorry, and then Steve got separated from the group by traffic.  Eventually we reassembled in the warming atmosphere of the Red Lion, where sustained by the over-60s menu, we refreshed ourselves and dried off. 

Photograph by Stephen Haywood

When we emerged from the pub, the rain had stopped and we plotted a return via Penley and Threapwood, before rejoining our outward route for the final few miles. Andy warned us of a few steep hills on the return, but a fine afternoon and an encouraging tailwind helped us on our way.  We paused at Sarn Bridge, near Threapwood, for our photo and noticed the Queen Head Hotel as a possible future pub stop, until we saw it was closed.
A relatively short 35 miles in total brought us back into Holt for a final stop at Hildegard’s by 3pm, in plenty of time before an early dusk following the clocks changing at the weekend. Tish and Petar drove back and the rest of us cycled back towards Chester.


  1. Well done Stephen and this ride covered some of my favourite lanes. Anyone on the ride that Bryan led to Ellesmere a few years ago will remember arriving within half a mile of the centre warm and dry only for our beloved leader to carry on South. He had a yen to fill in some of the unexplored lanes on his famous map so a 5 or so mile diversion ensued during which the heavens opened resulting in a very sodden, bedraggled and slightly rebellious group reaching the Black Lion for lunch. Good days!

    1. It's funny that Mike; I'd forgotten all about the rain but I had remembered the most extreme humpback bridge I've ever cycled over. Bryan

  2. Given the thriving size of the Easy riders today it is difficult to believe that in the early days the group often consisted only of Bryan, Ray Hardman and myself. Only Bryan' s tenacity kept it going for which we all owe him thanks.