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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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Friday 5 July 2024

4th July 2024: Cholmondeley (mod)

I think it is Plato who is quoted as saying that the first requirement of any leader is that they have no desire to lead.  This was certainly true, in my case, as I found myself leading six Easy Riders out of Meadow Lea.  We were bound for the café and farm shop outside the gates of Cholmondeley Castle.  Why? I hear you ask.  Good question.  It was, as with many things in life, as a result of a chance remark.  In this instance by Dave M while we were sitting outside Maggie’s last week.  He had remarked that he had heard good reports of this café and so I thought, why not.

My band of brothers consisted of Andy B; electric Ray; Dave M; Andy W; Neil and Steve Haywood.  It was good to see both Andy W and Steve neither of whom I have seen for some time.

We cycled through Waverton and alongside the Shropshire Union canal.  Turning through Huxley and Brassy Green.  Steve left us at Huxley so not as to aggravate a tweaked Achilles.  Down to six riders we cycled around Beeston Castle and on to Bunbury where Andy W couldn’t resist the call of Tilley’s.  Thank goodness I didn’t lose any more of my “chosen men” as the five of us headed south to cross the A534 at Brindley.  Here we turned south west through Larden Green and crossing the A49 we arrived at the café.

There were tables outside and we decided that would do nicely as the weather was dry.  However, while ordering our food we espied a trestle table with comfortable seating in a cosy alcove indoors and immediately sat ourselves down.  The staff were welcoming and friendly and the quality of the food was very good.  The crockery from a bygone age. However, a couple of caveats.  The menu was limited to sandwiches and cakes so no full meals.  Also, Neil and Andy W had mentioned that their opening times can be variable.  So best to check by ringing as their website is not always accurate.  That said for us overall we were well satisfied.  The only negative comment from Andy B who considered his sandwich on the small side countered by Dave M who informed the staff his sandwich was the best he had eaten in a long time.

Photos by Neil T

Suitably replenished we said farewell to Dave M who was taking a more direct route home as he had hoovering and dusting to do before his good lady arrived back, from a holiday in Devon, later that day.  Now down to four we continued our tour of rural Cheshire.  Climbing up past Egerton Hall we turned right at Hampton Post.  I had intended cycling through Bickerton and Harthill.  Although I was acutely aware that Andy B and Ray had been over this ground with me on last week’s ride.  Thankfully Neil came to my rescue by offering an alternative route through Brown Knowl and circling around behind Bolesworth Castle.  He then continued to lead us along a honeycomb of narrow lanes before arriving, as if by magic at the Ice Cream farm.  Once a favourite of the club but now, for various reasons, consigned to history.  I had intended re-crossing the canal and going back to Waverton through Hargrave which, would again have meant covering some ground we had traversed on the outward leg.  Again, Neil offered us a better alternative.  We cycled through Gatesheath and crossing the A41 arrived at Bruera before turning north.  Neil, his sheepdog work over for the day, had left us at the A41 to head for home.  And thus it was the last three men standing who trundled into Waverton.  Here Andy said adios leaving Ray and myself to cycle the last mile or so into Guilden Sutton.

45 miles covered at an average speed of 11.6 mph.  The same average speed as last week.  I have no idea how that happened.  My thanks to my fellow riders for their good company throughout and particularly to Neil for his route guidance, his spells of leading and the photographs.          


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