Barca 2 Stage 03

Châteaudun to Châteauroux


It was a heavy night last night for the Captain. I even got a telling off from Bingo: severely reprimanded. It’s not for the first time but when I get older I’m definitely going to calm down.

It’s Sunday in France so no breakfast! This team is brilliant as they dived straight into the van and raided our supplies. Great help from East Kent Foods and Billy & Tina. Thanks for all your support, the lads love it, you have been brilliant supporting our little adventures.

We leave just after 8 with clear blue skies and a slight breeze. What could go wrong.

Soon we were out of the town, then onto the first road of the day. We only had two! Not sure what’s in the flap-jack Billy or the home-made one from Cathal’s Mum Caroline but it made the lads crank the speed up, 25mph, then 28mph rising to 31mph on the flat straight roads.

Young Ronnie (showing his class [Young Ronnie = Rylan: Ed]) and training from his cousin.

To be honest it wrecked me. I spent a couple of hours on the back, thinking what am I doing, getting in at 3am in the morning and then riding with these young fit guys. They are great company and it’s brilliant riding.

I have to apologise to Glen after a little swear word when he offered me his wheel. I’m just not feeling it at that moment. Obviously it’s nothing to do with the fact he is from Canterbury!

When the the Moses clan offered me their wheel I took it with an open heart, even putting up with Carl’s insane banter was a blessing. Mark and Carl towed me back to Glen and Marc Tonks and I made my apologies with a wry smile.

I was back in the the chain gang and then guess what? We have a stop. I feel so much better after a little beer!

We met Eric for a little stop whilst a professional cycle race was going on. They were a bit surprised as we rolled by.

Then I got on the wheel of our own professionals Glen and Dave. They pulled Bingo and I through a stunning 30 odd mile run in. Typically Bingo took the lead as we entered Châteauroux then led me in for the stage win. The four oldest guys first home. It may be a bit different tomorrow.

Now we are sitting in the pub garden waxing lyrical about the ride. A truly great team.

Note that the following photos may not be in the right place or refer to the right time of day. It’s often hard to see what’s what! No worries it’s not that important. I was given no information on why they were dancing in a fountain or whether they got arrested and Dale stole the Policeman’s helmet or indeed why they were arrested by a British Policeman. I guess some things stay on tour.


On the Road


Lunch Stop

Afternoon Ride

Route Stage 03
Profile Stage 03


Kobi News

We are still thinking about Kobi and all his incredible family. Keep going and we are sending you all our love.

Remarkably the donations are very close to £5000. Top effort all around and many thanks to all our contributors.

You can donate on our JustGiving page here. Or use the QR code:

QR for Kobi/SlideAway JustGiving Page

Barca 2 Stage 02

Puiseux-Pontoise to Châteaudun


After eating all we could last night I was surprised to see the full complement at the breakfast bar in morning. Fair play to the lads they are a team – all pulling together.

Little side note, nothing much was doing on the breakfast table this morning. Sunday in France is great! “We will sort it as Stubby” says “there is always a McDonalds”! “Not on my watch” I reply.

We left just after 8am through the urban outskirts of Paris. The team did well keeping to the traffic management, all that is, except Carl who likes to go the wrong way around roundabouts. Living dangerously and keeping us all entertained – absolutely brilliant.

Getting Going

Finally got out of the city and the lads are putting in some miles but at the same time holding back for us old ones. We were eating up the miles.

Eric pulling us towards the 35 mile refreshment break, and received some ice creams. Naturall the more riders had a beer – not keen on ice cream!


With two beers in my legs off we went. May be it’s not great for a team but once again, they pulled us through. Steve Richards is riding like a diamond. Cathal is marshalling the younger contingent to keep the pace.

We keep the pace up as we got into the arable farm land south west of Paris. Not much around – just the odd farm hamlet. Eric tried to find a refreshment stop to no avail but the young scout’s up their game and found the only cafe in the area. Pity they only had two pint glasses, obviously Bingo and I took control of them.

Lunch Stop


After getting suitable refreshed we rolled on to Châteaudun around 10 miles away.

We all re-convened in the vibrant town square where some kind of medieval fete was going on.

The lovely Loir river – a tricky weir to get past when paddling!


After finally being allowed to check-in – the hotel had beren closed all afternoon – we sorted ourselves out and came out for the evening. Fortunately there was plenty of choice from food-stalls are aroiund the square and we were soon tucking in. Naturally a few more beers were required. It’s been a hot day.

it has been a privilege to ride with such a great, strong bunch of blokes all pulling together and riding as a great team.

Stage 02 Route
Stage 02 Profile

Kobi News

Once again thanks for all your great support and are thoughts are always with Kobi and his amazingly supportive family and friends.

As you can see we have reached 120% of our target on the charity collection. Massive effort from everyone. Big thanks all round.

You can donate on our JustGiving page here. Or use the QR code:

QR for Kobi/SlideAway JustGiving Page

Barca 2 Stage 01

Montreuil-Sur-Mer to Puiseux-Pontoise

Up and Ready

What a great night and meal in the town we was in last night. The hospitality they showed and the love of our tour was something to be proud of.

Woke in the morning to the lads pulling together to make the best breakfast feast they could; porridge, cereal, toast and lashing of sweet coffee. Keith is trying to restrict my coffee but as usual I am rebelling a bit.

Hitting the Road

So we are off just before 8am. Unfortunately 4 guys missed the team photo. They waited at the main gate, but this was not the Captain’s choice.

Seem to have lost 4 riders already!

The same as always it’s difficult to find our way out of the eerily pretty town. But once we did we were onto the rolling roads past the arable fields and through some forest roads. It was superb riding and we ate up the miles until our first stop at just over 40 miles.

On the road

Pitstop at Huppy

We all reconvened at the Cafe La Marmite in Huppy. You either love it or hate it – we loved it. All there except Eric who apparently had little accident in the supermarket. Let’s keep it at that for the time being.

Then it was back on the brilliant roads eating up the miles. All the lads working as a team and all coming together. The young lads Rylan, Linney and Cathal were up front riding like the wind and leading us out.

Lunch at Gournay-en-Bray

We pushed on to the pin drop that Eric had done – fortunately he is back in the game. He’d prepared an excellent picnic, Rylan and I had a few ice cold beers. All good.

Pin drops are markers on an online map that you use to indicate where you are so others can see and a rendezvous can be agreed – it usually works.


On the Road

Then we are all back on the road for the final 40 or so miles. No dramas, just hard strong riding.

Everyone was looking for a pub in the last 10 miles, but nothing could be found. Dave Austin and I even rode all the way around a church at the top of small hill, there is always a pub by a church, but not but this time though.

Finally we found a bar 100m from the hotel, so normal service was resumed.

We didn’t have the lush settings of the previous hotel in this place but it is a pound cheaper!

Had a meal in the Chinese restaurant next to the hotel which was eat as much as you like. Naturally the lads were happy.

All in all a good day in the saddle

Route Details

Stage 01 Route – Heading towards Paris
Stage 01 Profile

Kobi News

All day the contributions kept coming in. Very much appreciated.

Collection so far

You can donate on our JustGiving page here. Or use the QR code:

QR for Kobi/SlideAway JustGiving Page

Day 3: Tour of Wessex


Kobi, chilling

We’ve had some very generous contributions this week. A big thank you to all of you.

Please support Kobi and family and help us raise enough money to give them the best break ever when the time is right.

The JustGiving donation page is here. Or use the QR code below.

On the Road

Route for Tour of Wessex Day 3
Tour of Wessex Day 3 profile

We had great hospitality from the landlord last night, though its not the ideal preparation for a tough day in the saddle.

Our team was a bit lighter this morning due to prior commitments, weddings in the village etc.
So with weary eyes and broken bodies we set of to enjoy the Dorset countryside and hills. We are heading for Weymouth, then up the peninsula to Portland Bill. Should be great training for Barcelona.

We had a fine weekend away with tough strong rides and riders. All the preparations are coming together, for Barcelona. Before that we have a few more training rides. First we have the annual Snowdown Colliery Welfare Rugby Club fancy dress ride next Saturday followed by the Tour of Sandwich on the Sunday. After that Bingo and I go off to do the Vatternruden epic 24hr sportive in Sweden the following weekend.

Good news on the charity side, we have passed the £1000 mark, that’s just over a quarter of our target, please follow the links above to the Just Giving site.

Day 2: Tour of Wessex

Kobi chilling out


Once again our thoughts are with young Kobi and his family. All the very very best young man. The team from Aylesham are with you all the way mate. Keep strong and positive.

Please support Kobi and family and help us raise enough money to give them the best break ever when the time is right.

The JustGiving donation page is here. Or use the QR code below.

On the Road

Route for Tour of Wessex Day 2
Tour of Wessex Day 2 profile

Even though ‘nothing can go wrong’ things inevitably do. Today started with a couple of mechanical problems. First Carl’s drive was knackered. Owen the mechanic from the ride did his best to clean it up and get it going as best he could. What a great bloke from the valley’s of Wales he is.

However the biggest issue was a broken spoke on the captain’s bike. For the first time ever I had to get in the van and go to the local bike shop. Great service though. I was the first one in the shop and I soon had a new back wheel and was off. Being very cnscious of Moey’s wise words I re-started from the start and pushed it through hard, strong and fast and managed to join them at the first feed stop. The lads relaxed when the (self appointed) captain rejoined the team.

We enjoyed a lovely ride though the stunning Dorset (and Jurassic) scenery past castles and Manor houses and the village of Tollpuddle famous for its Martyrs. That’s why we are who we are as they kicked off the fight for worker’s rights and the idea of socialism: respect to all of them (not forgetting our own Wat Tyler and the Peasants Revolt: historical Ed).

It was a great ride with great company. What more can you ask for? We said our goodbyes to two legends on the bike who need to get back for a wedding: Carl who’s inspirational words keeps us going and Mark his son the most helpful strong rider in the team and my lead out man. Mark has led me to two 1st stage wins (not bad for the oldest rider in the team) which puts me up on the leader board once again.

They both fully deserve the speech and medals kindly donated from the lad from Canterbury, who will gingerly be able to get a word in now Carl has gone home.

Day 1: Tour of Wessex

Kobi Update

Kobi – mucking about

Our thoughts go out to Kobi and his incredible supporting family. All the very best as he starts his second round of treatment. A true Aylesham family full of support, love and affection.

Please support them and help us raise enough money to give them the best break ever when the time is right. Good luck Kobi from all the lads.

The JustGiving donation page is here. Or use the QR code below.

Down in Yeovil

We are currently down in Dorset and Wiltshire doing the Wessex 300. That is three consecutive 100 mile rides around the Mendips hills. It’s all good training for Barcelona.

Route for Tour of Wessex Day 1
Tour of Wessex Day 1 profile

We’ve got a good turn out will 11 of the team down here; Cathal, Carl, Mark Moses, Marc Tonks, Stubbsy, Conor, Mark Jordan, Glen, Bingo and Me. We’ve just left the youngsters at home as they are fit enough already!

Not the best preparation for a long difficult training ride; skin full of beer and a massive meal, washed down with a full English breakfast in the morning. The true athletic start. The hotel is excellent with a cracking host plying us with bevarges all night with no fuss.

Woke up to a lovely sunny crisp morning, all met at the start, no issues just our normal confident start, left around 8:30 after Carl had finished chatting to all the riders as per normal.

Great tough ride with some vicious climbs including King Alfred’s Tower gets up to 22% incline pretty tough going. Only one little mechanical nothing that can’t be sorted. We just get on with it along with the usual banter and sarcasm that gets us though it.

All in all a great 120 miles and a lovely day all capped off with a few refreshments at Yeovil Rugby Club, just what we all love.

Ready for the next day, bring it on.

All set
Looks like the Cheddar Gorge
Pit Stop
Refreshments at Yeovil Rugby Club

Kobi/Barcelona Update 1

Raised so far.

These lovely Gents out of the goodness of their hearts are riding for Kobi. Please donate if you can. Thank you Dale and the Gang.

Stacey Milton

Many thanks to those who have donated so far.

The JustGiving donation page is here. Or use the QR code below.

Details of the our Charity Bike Ride to Barcelona in aid of Kobi and the Slide Away charity can be found in the latest edition of the Aylesham InTouch newsletter. (or directly in pdf form)

Keith and Linford with the Slide Away bears in Ukraine, June 2019
The Slide Away bear at the Ukraine border, June 2019

2022 Barcelona 2 Tour

Have we vanquished an enemy? None but ourselves. Have we gained success? That word means nothing here. Have we won a kingdom? No. . . and yes. We have achieved an ultimate satisfaction. . . fulfilled a destiny. . . To struggle and to understand – never this last without the other; such is the law. . .

George Mallory

Aylesham to Barcelona

For 2022 the team are returning to Barcelona, last visited in 2013 in a memorably wet tour.

Fourteen friends from Aylesham and the surrounding area are set for an epic charity ride, cycling from Aylesham to Barcelona which is about 900 miles in eight days.  We will be raising money for two very worthy causes.

Kobi Turnbull; a young lad from the village who has recently been diagnosed with Bone Cancer. We hope to support Kobi’s parents in providing much needed help during this difficult time.

Slide Away; This is a charity offering support to children and young people in Kent who have been bereaved of a family member or friend.  They also support children and young people who have a parent or sibling with a life limiting illness. 

The team includes four father/son pairs; Carl & Mark Moses; Andy Stupples & Conor; Keith (Bingo) & Linford House and Dale & Rylan House, who will be joined by Dave Austen, Cathal Bartolo, Mark Tonks, Mark Jordan, Glen Dobson and Steve Richards.  The team will be supported by their van driver Eric Norton.

They hope to raise over £4000 to be shared equally by both causes. They are due to set off from Aylesham on Thursday 30th June 2022.

You can donate on our JustGiving page here. Thanks.

QR Code for Kobi/SlideAway JustGiving Page

The ride is also by way of a celebration of Keith (Bingo) House’s 60th birthday, who will be joined by his brother Dale for the cycle home.

The team would like to thank their two main sponsors East Kent Foods, and D.A. Tree Surgeons for their support.

Route map: Calais to Barcelona
Route: Calais to Barcelona

Interactive route map here.