Sunday 26 July 2020

Views from a bench

Leigh bus stop in the rain

I have an end date for my lockdown; the third of August. After that I may be back to just riding at weekends. Although working from home could give me the opportunity for a short ride in the time I use to commute.

Continuing from last week's theme - a change of pace - this post will show more views as I sit on various benches in Surrey. The one above is from Leigh; I used it to shelter from the rain last Sunday.

Monday ushered in a return to sunny weather, and a new destination; Charlwood.

charlwood green
Charlwood Green
My return journey was paused for a while when I saw these donkeys.


The handlebar mounted camera recorded their saunter over to me. I didn't have anything to feed them, although I have read it's not encouraged. I believe horses etc can be poisoned by some of the food most people think is okay.

Tuesday started cool, but by the time the food and drink I bought with me had been consumed at St Bartholomew's Church in Leigh the sun was making its presence felt.

St Bartholomew's Leigh

Long term readers will also be surprised to know; I cleaned both bikes when I got home.

clean bike

It was back to St Bartholomew's churchyard on Wednesday. It's a quiet area to sit and think.

I glanced around from my bench, there is a better than average shed. So I used it as a background for my picture.

St Bartholomew's churchyard shed

I also wondered if there was a story behind the sunken headstone.

sunken headstone

I could only muster a short ride on Thursday, and Friday had no time for cycling. I have had months where I have ridden every day, but as the end of this period approaches I find I have less time.

Saturday was a moist ride, (why do some people not like that word?) I went to the green at Charlwood, this time sheltering from the rain at the front of the cricket pavilion.

cricket pavilion charlwood

Sunday 19 July 2020

A change of pace


I decided this week to back off the mileage and have a bit more rest. Last week I rode my biggest distance; 228 miles. So Monday instead of riding further with my extra time; I stopped more. The deer were closer to the fence this time, and I paused for longer at St Michael's Church in Betchworth.

St Michael's Church in Betchworth

I made use of the shade provided by the gate, unfortunately all the benches were in direct sunlight.

On Tuesday I took a day off from riding and started this post. I also did some gardening, No rest for the wicked.

The day flew past and before I knew it Wednesday arrived. I rode to Leigh as it's a slightly shorter distance. On the way I tackled Weller Lane. This year would have been my third Waller Pain hill climb. Year 1, and Year 2. The quickest time was last year; 2:49. This year I had to estimate the finish line. Comparing it with the previous runs I think I got it fairly close. My time was 2:22, over twenty seconds faster.

Thursday was a short ride in the morning, around 16 miles; I had errands to run. Then in the afternoon another 16 miles. I wasn't going to go out a second time, but was at a loose end. :-)

Friday was a very hot day; I could have gone out in the evening. But I didn't, I think I just need a bit of a rest this week.

A couple of pictures from last Sunday, that post automatically went live while I was out. The countryside near Betchworth and Brockham is beautiful.

brockham common

betchworth common

And finally; I was having a coffee sitting on the step at the kitchen door Friday morning when a bird with a beak full of insects landed just a few feet away from me. I didn't have my camera, by the time I got it the bird had flown away. I waited but it didn't return, so I looked at the flowers close to me.

insect on flowers in the garden

flowers in the garden

Sunday 12 July 2020


I had a little more time on Monday, for a longer ride. I extended my usual route to include Newdigate. I wanted to find a cafe for coffee and cake. I was unsuccessful, so I initially stopped to eat an energy bar in the park at Brockham, with just this feathered companion.


Fortunately Leigh has The Plough Inn public house. The sign said not to enter, a bell was provided to summon assistance. They served very tasty chips and a coffee whilst I sat in the sun.

coffee and chips The Plough Leigh

Almost without exception, if there is a bridge it's only one car width wide in this area.

Here is a picture from the one in Betchworth.

View from a bridge

On Wednesday as I cycled under a tree I went through a wall of flies, luckily I had my mouth closed. You can just see them as they are illuminated by my the built in light on my camera.

Friday I chilled out on the green in Brockham, I usually stop, eat and head home. This time it was good to just watch the world go for a while.

chilling on the green at brockham

Sunday 5 July 2020

One route in pictures

Brockham church and my bike

I have ridden this for a while, it's a good mix of flat and hilly lanes. The only busy bits are through Redhill and Reigate. I don't ride through the center of either town so it's not too bad. The rest is country lanes, normally fairly quiet.

I included a picture of the Royal Oak public house in last weeks post. Here is the church at Brockham.

Christ church Brockham
Christ Church Brockham
Picture taken on Tuesday as I sheltered from the rain under the covered gate. The church was renovated some time ago, and the entrance moved to provide a view of the green.

Or, a view across the green to the two pubs. You can just see the Royal Oak on the left and the Inn on the Green on the right.

Brockham green Royal Oak and Inn on the Green

Through the village, and a narrow bridge leads to Kiln Road which in turn takes you to Betchworth. This was where most of the big houses were built, that some of the people of Brockham worked in.

betchworth house and church
Betchworth House and church
Close by is Wonham Manor, again shielded from the road. The herd of deer is visible through the fence.

deer Wonham Manor

Then to finish this post; another pic of the bike. Not exactly snow capped Alps in the background I know. But you have to work with what you have. 

Brockham park.
Brockham park
Fresh water comes to Brockham.

On Saturday I finished off the last of my birthday cake before I went for a ride. I absolutely flew round.

birthday cake