August 2016

2 August 2016 at 12:04 pm

Ellen writes… Last month’s rides all had good weather which was fantastic. Hopefully the trend will continue into August where we have some more great rides including a new short ride route visiting 9.5 parks and open spaces in Headington and Marston! That must be the highest park to mile ratio we’ve ever managed. Our team of ride leaders have been busy because there’s a new stop and stare ride on offer too; an exploration of Oxford’s working past. Old favourites such as Abingdon, Otmoor and cream tea at Coombe haven’t been forgotten though.

At our last Isis leaders’ get together we discussed the observation that numbers on our short and steady rides have been declining. As we haven’t carried out any active publicity for a while, we’ll be getting going on that again. If you have any thoughts and comments on the short and steady rides do let me know as we do really value your input. Let us know whether you think occasional Sunday short rides are a good idea or perhaps you would you prefer a greater variety of start times etc.

Two other events in which you might be interested in are:

  • Tour de Potholes on Sunday 14th August, , organised by Cyclox. The idea is to record as many of Oxford’s potholes as possible (they shouldn’t be stumped for lack of raw material!). You can either join the main event or record potholes individually: visit the Cyclox website for more information. I’m sure we’ve all got our particular “favourites”!
  • Cycling Picnic and Treasure Hunt on Sunday 18th September, organised by Oxfordshire CTC. The event is based at the village of Standlake, south of Oxford. More information is on the Oxfordshire CTC website.

Happy pedalling!

Check our photo site for all the latest pictures taken on our rides! 


Meet from 10am for a prompt 10.15am start outside The South Lodge, University Parks (OX1 3JA, corner of South Parks Road and St Cross Road). (Note the slightly later start to accommodate the pub opening time).

Join us on this slow and gentle 8 mile ride to discover the green and leafy spaces of Headington and Marston. – some have manor houses, some have secrets and others you may have passed many times and not even realised that they were there. The challenge will be to name all of the parks during our coffee break at the Victoria Arms in Old Marston, while relaxing by the banks of the River Cherwell – hopefully in the sunshine!

The other lesser challenge will be the hill that has to be climbed to get us to Headington. Of course, our route will be green and leafy, and as always, this can be taken at a gentle pace or walked if you prefer. We will always wait.

After coffee, we will return to the starting point in town or disperse from Old Marston, depending on the group. The ride leader is Lucy Wright, her email is in case of queries.


Meet at 10.45 am for an 11am departure by the tourist information office in Broad Street, Oxford. From the town centre we will follow cycle route number 5 to Kennington then on to Sugworth Lane towards Sunningwell. There we will pick up Pen Lane which will take us off road to Abingdon where we are going to have our lunch/ refreshment stop at Throwing Buns.

We will return following route number 5 via Radley then along the river all the way to Oxford city centre.

Please note that very thin tyres are not suitable for this ride as it includes some bumpy, off road path. Please also remember to bring with you a spare inner tube that fits your bike tyre.

The ride leader will be Lilia Bonacorsi, 07890731542


On this flat ride around central Oxford, we will visit former industrial and commercial buildings that have been converted into housing.  We’ll note the shift from 19th Century industry to residential accommodation, reflecting the industrial decline that we’ve seen in our lifetimes and the huge and unmet demand for housing in the city.

We will meet in Radcliffe Square, opposite the Radcliffe Camera, outside the Vaults & Gardens Café, at 13.45hrs for a 14.00hrs departure. The ride is 5 miles long and mainly on quiet roads and cycle paths, to avoid the crowds.  It should take 1 ½ to 2 hours, with stops.  We’ll have tea at Manos Café in Walton Street.

The ride leader will be Jane Carlton Smith –  If running late, ring me on 07833 731253.


Meet at 1:15pm for a 1:30pm departure outside Costa Coffee on the main Banbury Rd in Summertown for our annual pilgrimage to Coombe for cream tea. We will head north on quiet roads and tracks to Kidlington from where we will pick up a short section of off-road track, Begbroke Lane. This brings us out on the A44 cycle track for about 3 miles before we reach Woodstock. There we pick up Sustrans route 5 for a mile or so before turning north and west towards Coombe. After our cream teas in Coombe’s historic “Reading Room” we will head back to Oxford via East End and the Hanboroughs. The approach to Oxford will be along the A40 cycle track, although if you are heading south and west of Oxford, you may prefer to divert through Eynsham. This is a mixed social ride, so male partners and friends are very welcome to join us. The ride is approximately 25 miles in length and moderately hilly, but all hills can be taken at your own paced or walked if necessary. The Begbroke Lane off-road section is suitable for all bikes. However, the off-road section north of Woodstock is probably not suitable for bikes with very narrow tyres. However an on-road alternative is available so don’t be put off. The ride leader will be Liz Weekes.


Meet at 6pm for a 6.15pm departure outside The South Lodge, University Parks (OX1 3JA, corner of South Parks Road and St Cross Road). Tonight’s ride will explore some of the villages and countryside around Otmoor. If the weather preceding the ride has been dry, then we will ride to the Otmoor RSPB Reserve via Elsfield and Beckley. Once there we will take a bridle path to the small Hamlet of Noke before returning to the Victoria Arms in Old Marston for a drink and some food. If the bridle path is not dry, we’ll ride a different on-road route ending up at the same destination. The ride will be approximately 15 miles long and will involve climbing a couple of hills, but only at your own pace. This is a mixed social ride, male partners and friends are very welcome to join us. As the nights are starting to draw in, remember to bring lights with you.

Please note that very thin tyres will not be suitable if we ride the bridle path option. I will send out a separate email a few days beforehand letting you know what I plan, so that you can choose the right bike for the ride. The ride leader is Ellen Lee (


Team Beryl invites women and trans folk into the Broken Spoke workshop on the first Thursday of every month from 6-9pm. Please join us to take part in a FREE mini-class on our monthly theme, work on your own bike in a safe space, and enjoy plenty of tea, biscuits and good company!

For information about this month’s Beryl’s Night, please visit:


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