Archive for the ‘Festivals’ Category

Ok, here it is. The event I’ve been wanting to kick off is to become a reality.

I moved into Hungerford some 9-years ago and have recently developed an almost uncontrollable urge to [do something for the community]. For those that know me, you’ll have already guessed that cycling was going to be central to such an urge. So, following on from the theme of another well know event annual event, I looked for a possible cycle challenge for anybody who wished to [prove that they can] complete the event.

What is the event?

Well, Hungerford is twinned with Liguiel in France, just south of the Loire Valley; so why not cycle there, and back. Better still, why not time the ride so as to coincide with the Hungerford Carnival? So that’s the event / challenge (the carnival bit is still to be confirmed). Hungerford to Liguiel and back. The ride will hopefully comprise of 30 – 40 riders (more if we can manage it) plus 2 – 3 support vehicles (to carry luggage and look after the riders)

The purpose of the ride is [in conjunction with the Hungerford Rotary] to raise as much money as we possibly can for two very worthy causes:

End Polio Now


Bruce Trust Barges

Two very worthy cause which will hopefully encourage lots of interest and support.

When is the event?

The ride will  depart Hungerford on the 7th July 2013 (Sunday) and return on Saturday 13th July, having cycled 550 miles: The proposed itinerary is thus:

Sunday 7th July

Depart Hungerford and cycle (60 miles) to Portsmouth ferry terminal for overnight crossing to Saint-Malo.

Monday 8th July

Depart Saint-Malo and cycle (55 miles) to Rennes.

Tuesday 9th July

Depart Rennes and cycle (86 miles) to Angers.

Wednesday 10th July

Depart angers and cycle (80 miles) to Ligueil.

Thursday 11th July

Depart Ligueil and cycle (80 miles) to Le Mans.

Friday 12th July

Depart Le Mans and cycle (110 miles) to Caen – regrouping at Pegasus Bridge before heading for overnight ferry to Portsmouth.

Saturday 13th July

Depart Portsmouth and cycle (60) miles back to Hungerford for end of ride celebration. If possible, we will try to coincide the home coming with the Hungerford Carnival.

If you feel that you might like to take part in this event, then please do let me know of your interest (this does not commit you) and I shall add you to the mailing list.

Ride Route 2013

It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car, only a high will impress you, and you’ll have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.

Ernest Hemingway.

Tom Mix – Tom’s tricks – Chopsticks – In a fix – Number 6.

In tts form the number 6 is a continuous curve without angle, without line. It is the total love. It is almost spiral, it is on the point of going towards the infinity.

6 is also the number of the indecision and the choice that is required.

6 is also the number of jars in which the water was transformed into wine by Jesus at the wedding of Cana.

But, as you’ll probably have guessed, to His Podgeness, 6 represents:

6 more sleeps to go,
6 more sleeps to cruising,
6 more more sleeps till the fat big feller Gets on that boat,
With his bird, and her boy,
6 more sleeps to cruising

I’m so excited, I could just sing:

Ladies and gentlemen, this is His Podgeness
Welcoming you aboard the A34 Express,
To Southampton Cruise Terminal,
We will be driving at one heck of a rate of knots,
Though at a ground speed not greater than 70 miles per hour,
Refreshments will be served at Hedge End, so;
Kindly tie up your safety belts,
Sit back and settle into the state of great joy & happiness, cos: –

Whooo, I’m going to The Fiord’s;
Whooo, I’m crossing the Great North Sea;
Whooo, I’m going there with me girl friend;
Whooo, a Cruising we’ll all be.

I don’t want to be a Commuter all my life;
I’ve seen too much of Railways, day and night;
So, sail away on P&O Cruise Lines;
I’ll dump the car, so take me far;

I look all around, and I see seven ships sent,
It looks like being one Grand Event
Lets sail away on P&O Cruise Lines;
I’ll dump the car, so take me far;

Whooo, I’m going to The Fiord’s.
Yada Yada

I’m floundering now, the excitements getting to me….. Oooooooooohhhh.

I haven’t been to the Goodwood Revival for various reasons since the last Millennium but be assured I will will be back. Sunday just gone was The Best. Rain or no rain, what a brilliant day. Even she who must be obeyed (She seemed strangely drawn to the clothing and handbag stalls by the way) agreed.

Inevitably, the drive to the event became slower and slower as the traffic built up but, tuning into to Radio Goodwood and listening to the live commentary made us feel as though we were already there and even though the journey slowed, it never really stopped and just looking around at all the classic cars going to the same event again went to reinforce that feeling of having arrived (I have to admit to having concern that the MG in front wasn’t going to make it, but it held out thank goodness).

Having parked up [and noted where we had actually parked the car] we made our way towards the track but even before getting there we seemed to step back in time as we entered what I call ‘The Outer Village’ of stalls and displays and even a fairground all set back in the 40s, 50s and 60s. In addition to the stall, there seemed to be an endless range of classic cars to view. All makes (Ford, Mercedes, Jaguar, Triumph, Rolls Royce, Maserati, BMWs, Yada Yada), shapes (3-wheel, 4-wheel, saloon, droptop, estate, vans, et al) and sizes (small, medium, large and extra large (from America). Naturally, there were also motorbikes of all ages and makes including one from Harry Potter (not sure how old that one was). I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say we could have just spent our time there and not gone into the circuit but the draw of the sound of those engines hurtling round the track drew everybody in [like the pied piper]. But, wait, is that Nick Mason over there? Crikey, yes it is: How thrilled was I to not only see Nick but to be able to buy a book which he then signed for signed [To Podge] was a great start to the day.

So, clutching my ever growing bag of goodies (leaflets, pamphlets, flyers and now a proper book) we made our way into the circuit proper. Now we have truly stepped back to the 50’s & 60’s. It seems as though there were more that dressed for the period than those that didn’t (we’ll certainly be doing the same ourselves next year). Walking through the high street that had appeared in the last couple of weeks (we came here on the 28th August with the Matt & Nick for a Cycle Race event around the same circuit: it was much quieter then) was a real trip down down memory lane. Not only were the shops set back in time but the vast number of people that had dressed for the occasion, even with prams of that same era, just set the scene: there was even a Tesco Supermarket offering Green Shield Stamps (So much better than Club Card points, Nectar Points or whatever).

So much was going on it is difficult to describe. We saw for instance, Laural & Hardy driving around and arguing; we saw dancers rocking and rolling; we saw a wedding troubled by drunkenness with the groom and best man being ‘arrested’ by the local copper; we saw the Royal Marine Band; we even saw the home guard (Dad’s Army) parading through the ‘streets’. It was all just too much to take in, we needed to find something to eat and drink. Fortunately, there was an old Army Chuck Wagon serving tea, coffee and hamburgers (woohoo). So hunger and thirst sated, we made our way, finally, to the actual track to see some racing. As we clambered up the bank to look down on the course we were served up with a view of not only Race Cars from the 50’s and 60’s but also the sight of two spitfires warming up ready for takeoff (the track circles an airfield which was used during WWII and is still in use today though not normally by fighter planes). The spitfires were warming for a fly past with a Lancaster Bomber though bad weather precluded the Lanc’ actually taking part but the antics of the two spitfires above the circuit more than made up for it, and having them seemingly skim your heads as they came into land was something I’ll never forget. This had to be, for me, the highlight of the day. But oh no,no no. After this we were able enjoy numerous races of both cars and motor cycles and wonder around a part of the airfield where lo and behold, was parked numerous aircraft including a Chipmunk (I remember flying in them in the 60’s), a Gipsy Moth, A tiger Moth, a Leopard Moth, a Puss Moth (lots of Moths!) and a Flying Fortress. How I wish I’d been there to see the latter come in to land. And then of course was the rather nifty collection of spitfires. This was the clue to what would be my highlight: All Spitfires were ‘scrambled’ into action. To see ten, yes ten, Spitfires taking off and grouping to circle the circuit was, for me, awe inspiring and yes, just a bit emotional. Again, the sight and sound is something I’ll never forget, nor I count will any of those that were able to see and enjoy [I do know that many of the surrounding roads were littered with parked cars while the occupant simply stopped to get out and watch piece of history in the air].

All too soon however, the excitement of the days events got the better of me and I started to flag, so with great reluctance, we had to call it a day and head for home :-(, where we can at least start to plan for 2012. Check the Goodwood Web Site for details. Why not checkout the Facebook Pages as well.

NOTE: – I regret that my organisational skills, and old age, caused me to leave behind both my still camera and video camera so any images are taken from my iPhone with a broken screen (so I couldn’t see what I was filming very well).

Just a few random pictures 🙂 )

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