Campaigning for and promoting an enjoyable non-polluting way of transport

T h e   B a r n e t   C y c l i s t

the Barnet Group of the London Cycling Campaign

Number 361

Dec 16 / Jan 17

Barnet Cycling Matters


Local councils, including Barnet Council, have a duty to maintain the roads, but they can only fill a pothole if they know about it. If you want a pothole repaired, you have to report it. There are several different ways to report potholes and road defects but members of Barnet Cyclists have had good experiences with FillThatHole at

You can use this website to report potholes and road defects anywhere in the UK. These reports are then automatically forwarded to the right people (ie Local Councils), to get the roads repaired. If you prefer, you can report potholes on Barnet’s website at

Sign for a Mini-Holland scheme in Barnet

Are you keen to make Barnet’s streets more attractive for walking and to introduce measures to make our roads safer for people who want to cycle? If so, please check out the petition on Barnet’s website which is asking the Council to review its Transport Strategy, with the defined aim of encouraging more walking and cycling through the establishment of a Mini-Holland in the Borough.

It only takes a couple of minutes to sign this petition: click here.

Mini-Holland schemes encourage more people to cycle, and cycle more often, with features that make cycling feel safer and more convenient. They also aim to improve streets and public spaces for everyone.

Andrea Garman             
Coordinator, Barnet LCC

Rides & Meetings

Sunday 4th December TUAG: Turn-Up-And-Go
Nothing planned ahead – head off wherever the group decides. Turn up early for a coffee and talk about where you want to go. Group will be ready to leave at 10am.
Meet: McDonalds near Tally Ho, North Finchley N12
Time: from 9.30am for coffee and planning – leave at 10am.

Sunday 11th December: THE ‘deck the bikes – with boughs of holly – or with anything you like’ RIDE
A ride round the lanes of south Herts, with a stop for coffee along the way at the Dutch Nursery, before heading off to our Christmas Lunch (2.30pm at Alexander’s, Russell Lane for those that have booked in advance). As it is the season to be jolly, decorate your bike and/or yourself in tinsel, lights and baubles. Stupendous prizes!
All welcome on the ride even if you aren’t coming to the lunch.
Meet: 10am Tally Ho Corner, North Finchley, N12 or 10.30am outside Waitrose, The Spires, Barnet –
Stapylton Road entrance, by the bandstand.
Ride leader: Alison Ewington   01707 376282

Yule be amazed at what you can do to decorate a bike.
Really cheap strings of battery-powered snowflakes and Xmas trees, Fairy lights, tinsel, reindeer antlers etc.
Go on, sleigh them (but make sure nothing gets caught in the wheels or chain to avoid embarrassing sudden stops)

            *** 2017 ***

Sunday 1st January TUAG: Turn-Up-And-Go
First day of the New Year – start it off on the right pedal and work off the mince pies. An opportunity to use your initiative to find places to stop – at the very least South Mimms services will be open!
Meet: McDonalds near Tally Ho, North Finchley N12
Time: from 9.30am for coffee and planning – leave at 10am.

Sunday 15th January: Walthamstow Cycling Safari
Cycling east to Walthamstow, we will be met by a member of Waltham Forest Cycling Campaign who will lead us on a cycling safari to spot Toucans, Tigers, and Orcas. You will need to be prepared to cycle in traffic for some stretches of the route to Walthamstow, but once there, we will be cycling through quietened residential streets and on a network of segregated cycle lanes that are all part of the exciting Mini-Holland public realm improvements, taking place in Walthamstow to improve their streets for pedestrians and make them safer for cyclists. By the end of the ride, you will know all about the Toucans, Tigers and Orcas of Walthamstow!
Please bring reflective gear and lights and a spare inner tube for your bike.
Meet: 10.00am Tally Ho Corner, North Finchley N12.
Time: from 9.30am for coffee and planning – leave at 10am.
Ride Leader: Andrea Garman (Mobile No. 07941 641392)

Thursday 26th January: Monthly Meeting – California Dreaming!
After the short business part of the meeting, and the all-important coffee break, Alan and Mavis Wallace will talk to us about their cycle trip down the west coast of the USA, illustrated with their slides.
Come and dream of exotic and far away places to take the chill off the winter. All welcome.
Meet: 8pm Carey Hall, Trinity Church Centre, Nether Street, North Finchley N12

For all rides: Please remember to bring a spare inner tube, in case you have a puncture,
and some basic tools that fit your bike. Late afternoons might be gloomy so bring lights on rides.

Any questions about rides please contact Alison: 01707 376282.

Please follow the links below to see suggested short rides in Barnet suitable for families with children.

Dollis Brook route (
Pymmes Brook route (
Copthall circuit (
Please note: Participants on Barnet Cyclist rides must be over 16 unless accompanied by a parent or guardian. Insurance is your responsibility. Barnet Cyclists cannot accept liability for you or your possessions. It is your responsibility to follow advice and the Highway Code at all times. Your participation is the acceptance of these terms.




Welcome to one new member this month:  Jon Klaff.

We look forward to meeting you.
If you haven’t already been to one of our events we hope there will be an opportunity soon.

 Please contact me with any queries.

Jo McKenzie (Membership Secretary) 020 8449 4813


Ready to pay a sub? - click here to download renewal details (pdf)


  Barnet Cyclists Contacts

Click here for your

2017 Planner

All contributions, letters, cuttings, cartoons, etc.
for the next newsletter
to be sent to
The Editor, 106 Long Lane, Finchley, N3 2HX,
or e-mail to

You can also contact us by e-mail at

See our discussion group at


Autumn leaves ride Sunday 20th November.
An impressive 16+ Barnet cyclists turned out for the Autumn leaves ride on a chilly, wet, windy day.
Unfortunately most of the leaves had blown down the previous night, but that didn't dampen the spirits.

Not one of our longest rides, but after 2 hours in the saddle taking in some familiar quiet lanes and a couple of short loops, the thought of a roast beef lunch and the vegetarian option was too much and we decamped in Dutch Nursery amongst the glitter and baubles.

A quick dash along the A1000 saw us back to High Barnet by 2. Well done to all who made the effort to come out including a couple of new riders and thanks to Chris as usual for backstopping.

PS. Helen and Alison visited Johns cycles on the way home, a new bike shop at the bottom of Barnet Hill, where Helen had new brakes fitted with refreshments!
Ray Thorn     

(October 2016)

I had been contemplating the idea of cycling the South Downs Way possibly since June, but you may remember that the weather was too wet, then too windy, then too hot. Finally, with a break in the weather forecast in October, I booked accommodation for 3 nights. I also booked a train ticket to Winchester but decided to have a ‘warm up’ ride, alighting at Basingstoke and taking in a beautiful ride on NCR No. 23 by way of country villages and stopping briefly at New Alresford (an old coaching town) before continuing onto Winchester for the night. It’s some years since I had been there, so I had a long walk around the town before dining at Wetherspoons.

6th October 2016
The next day I stocked up with emergency provisions – a pack of sausage rolls and sandwiches (Greggs), not forgetting bottles of water which the guides say are essential but are more weight to carry. I had one side pannier packed to the hilt. After a brief look at the Cathedral, I set off in overcast weather and easterly winds but the right temperature. The first South Downs Way finger post said 99 miles to Eastbourne. My heart was racing thinking of all the literature I had read with pictures of the inclines of the Downs. After an hour, I saw a group of girls cycling from the opposite direction, but they said that they were only doing a loop of the immediate area. In the main, there were more walkers than cyclists, probably doing local walks. I had to stop briefly when a chap came from the opposite direction on an E-bike. The pathways were steep and rugged – lime stone boulders, grass, grooves with lots of stones embedded, gravel and steep inclines where rain had washed the surfaces into deep ruts making it near impossible to ride – so lots of pushing and panting till Butser Hill where I left the South Downs Way to head into Petersfield to a B & B for the night.

7th October 2016
Next day I set off to climb up a very steep zigzag road to rejoin the South Downs Way at South Harting. The weather was just right, overcast and dry. There were at some stage some reasonably flat paths towards East Lavington where I could pedal as fast as possible to gain time, but it soon came to an end and dismounting and walking was necessary. You can often pick out, in the distance, the route with lime stone paths mingling between trees etc. It is also important to look back where you have been. There are water taps here and there but I only topped up once en route; the guide books recommend to carry about 2 litres of water. The gates dividing fields have very strong springs which are a pain opening and rushing through! One gate caught my back mudguard and wrenched it sideways – luckily I had tools to fix it! The views were spectacular, both inland and to the coast, but I did not have time to stop and stare. I arrived at Steyning at 5:50 pm after descending a rutted bridleway in a dark wood – bike still intact. I stayed in a hotel where the receptionist brought salmon sandwiches and scones to my room and I feasted with a well earned cup of Earl Grey. Later on it was fish and chips night.

8th October 2016
Leaving the hotel, a passing biker led the way to rejoin the South Downs Way with me pushing the bike up to the start of the final leg to Eastbourne. This is the toughest and longest part of the ride (38 miles) according to the guide and, sure enough, they were right. The weather was overcast and dry but turning hot and sunny until I reached Alfriston, when it started to rain and I couldn’t make out the route and had to ask a shop owner who pointed me in the right direction. Wearing the wet gear made it such a hot journey, pushing the bike up the Firle Beacon. Other cyclists were passing me by. One was carrying his tent but said he was looking forward to the luxury of a B & B in Eastbourne. A lady with big bulbous tyres remarked “how could I ride the South Downs Way with my skinny mountain bike tyres”. I replied “very well”. Later on, one of her male friends had a puncture with his bulbous tyres! Soon they passed me again saying “after The Long Man of Wilmington (which I didn’t see because the light was failing rapidly) it would be all downhill to join the main road” and “down a final hill into Eastbourne”. Actually, the last 45 minutes were quite frightening because it was pitch black and drizzling. I finally hit the main road into Eastbourne at 7:10 pm.

In my opinion, this ride is more like an assault course. You need strong determination, a mountain bike with suspension and disc brakes as the guides recommend. To get information about the route, I wrote to the Information Centre at Winchester who also provided details of B & B accommodation and websites of interest. I don’t know how many times I ‘went up Everest’.
Malcolm Nightingale

Attention all smartphone users, you can join the Barnet cyclists Strava club by downloading the Strava app and clicking on clubs, it is free and very easy to use.

We have 3 users at the moment and are hoping more of you will join in the fun. It basically maps your ride giving you a record of where you went even if you had no idea yourself!
For those who don't yet have a smart phone send a nice letter to the big guy with the white beard and herd of reindeer. Ray.

Got cycling bits in your garage that are not needed but you do not want to bin them?

Then our Rummage Box
could be for you. Just pop them into the box at each meeting.
If you want any money for them make sure your name and price are marked.

Any item not taken away must be removed from the box at the end of the meeting.
Go on, bring something to the next meeting - it could make someone's day.
This really is re-cycling! Ian Ollier

Opinions expressed in this newsletter are the views of the contributors and are not
necessarily those of the Editor, Barnet Cyclists or the London Cycling Campaign.