Jan 14th - Monopoly ride
The idea for the Surrey and Sussex January ride was hatched at our 2017 Christmas lunch when Tim mentioned that he had taken part in a Monopoly ride around London. As that route had been a one way affair involving trains we decided that it might be better to adapt it slightly to start and finish somewhere suitable for us (wanting to stay in our motorhome) and others who normally arrive by car. We came up with Dulwich Park free parking as a starting point with Crystal Palace caravan site just a short ride away. We plotted what we thought might be an acceptable route (with the help of Mr. Google) between the main properties on the standard Monopoly board – that is 26 waypoints. As you might imagine it was quite a convoluted route that 4 tandems and one solo set off to follow on a grey but mercifully dry Sunday in January. We started off with the only place south of the river – Old Kent Road and then over Tower Bridge and into the city. We managed to fit in a coffee and cake stop at the Look Mum No Hands cyclists cafe in Old Street where we watched some of the National Cyclo-Cross championships showing live on their television. The variety of streets covered was very interesting, with buildings old and new around every corner, and lots of sights, sounds and smells! From Brick Lane in the east to Park Lane and Mayfair in the west taking in Leicester and Trafalgar Squares (the latter twice), Piccadilly Circus, The Mall and Parliament Square. The traffic was not as bad as our neighbours at the camp site had feared it would be (they were horrified at the thought of our route), indeed we were treated very kindly by many buses and taxis. The main hazards throughout the route were pedestrians with their eyes glued to smart phones and not the traffic around them! All in all an enjoyable ride, and we didn't lose anyone!