Greenwich Cyclists

We are the local group of the London Cycling Campaign (LCC). We work to improve facilities and provision for cycling in the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

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Joydens Wood and the Faesten Dic

Saturday 1 November 2014

Four of us started from Greenwich Park in a light drizzle to follow the path alongside the A2. By the time we got to Eltham it had stopped, and remained dry the rest of the day. Catherine joined us there, having caught the train out from central London. Beyond Falconwood it was on road out to just beyond Sidcup and then on to Old London Road, now a byway. The surface was dry, although deeply rutted in places and we had to walk the steeper sections. But at least it was away from the traffic on the main road.

Another section of bridleway led us across a golf course and into Joydens Wood. Responsible cycling is permitted in this Woodland Trust site but the main tracks in the wood were rather muddy due to use by horses, so we parked up and went on foot in search of the Faesten Dic. Eventually we found an identifiable stretch of this Anglo-Saxon “strong ditch” marking the boundary between the Kingdoms of Kent and Wessex; indeed the present boundary between Kent and Greater London still runs through the woods. None of us had been there before, and at this time of year with autumn colours on the trees, sunny periods and unseasonably warm weather, it was delightful.

Hunger eventually drove us out of the woods in search of lunch. The pub marked on the map nearby turned out to have closed, but Nigel’s find-a-pub app directed us to a Harvester on the outskirts of Dartford where we all had a good value meal.

The shortest route home would have been straight along the old A2 through Crayford, Bexleyheath and Shooters Hill but instead we found a quieter on-road route through East Wickham, Plumstead Common and Charlton.

26 miles, and no punctures despite the holly-strewn byway.

This is a Flikr slideshow of the pictures that we took on the day:

Stephen (ride leader)

Thamesmead Tor

Thamesmead Tor ride, Sunday 19 October 2014

A solid nine at Cutty Sark Gardens with five I’ve never met before but that probably has more to do with me not having been any rides lately than them being new riders. We set off eastwards but unfortunately lost two of our number quite early on due to a puncture but no puncture repair kit. Another puncture just past the Woolwich Ferry was repaired by committee and we continued on our way. We reached the Tor and enjoyed the clear view on a late October day. At about 12.00 we reached the Cornerstone Café in Woolwich Arsenal where barriers have been erected outside so there’s now somewhere to lock bikes but I’m not sure that’s their original purpose. We continued back westwards to Cutty Sark Gardens losing one at the Barrier who wanted to get home to watch the football.

So six got back to base by about 1.45. Thank you all for coming and bringing the good weather with you and to John who had the honour and privilege of back marking.

SARAH