Eleven of us met up at Ness Gardens to be joined for the first time by Jane. I have photographed everyone, so you can see who else was riding. It was over 13 months since I last led this ride via the Ferry across the Mersey, but luckily I checked the previous night on the ship’s timetable. We had an hour to cycle to the jetty, which I have easily done many times, but with so many riders, we only did it with minutes to spare. Then the bombshell........... £5 each, when the underground train ticket is only £1.20. Hope you all enjoyed the cruise, as I’ll be catching the train next time.
A Team photo was taken outside The Cunard Building, where sadly the flags were flying at half-mast in memory of “The Luisitania”. It was a Cunarder, torpedoed 100 years ago to the day with the loss of 1,198 souls. On through Albert Dock, following the estuary to Otterspool, then onto Cressington, circumnavigating our way in and around Garston where we went off-road trying to find the elusive track to the hamlet of Oglet. We were thwarted by a dirt path about 2kms short, where we had to go inland through the grounds of Speke Hall (I would recommend a visit to this NT property). We passed through Speke and finally picked up the Trans Pennine Trail that took us on to our lunch stop at the ‘Childe of Hale’, L24 4AX, where we were suitably well served very quickly (Tel: 0151 425 5538).
After lunch we again followed the Trans Pennine Trail to Widnes where we met a Wirral CTC group doing the same ride in reverse. At “The Bridge” Dave H pointed out the new Mersey Crossing further upstream and took over the navigation to make sure we didn’t end up still out there wandering the bus lanes of Halton. He took us via Runcorn Hill, Weston Village then via various cycle routes and footways to the A56 and Route 5 to Frodsham. We had a sunny café stop at the Castle Park Arts Centre in Frodsham before returning via Manley and splitting into groups: with Keith, Dave H and Trevor for Guilden Sutton; Bryan for central Chester and Martin, Lizzie, George, Jane & Brian Mac making for Ness. Return to Ness Gardens was about 63 miles. The slowish semi-urban ride at 12mph with multiple stops for ferries, traffic lights, coat changes, errant dogs etc made it feel like 83 miles