Catch up Sketches (7)

I like the little footnote by Charlie who inadvertently got booked by a Lancashire Policeman for riding without lights on his way home.  As it was Charlie’s first offence he seems to have been very philosophical about it all, but then to expect someone to bring a summons round to his house, he couldn’t resist marking the fact that it was never followed up !

Eyam and the Plague

Another brilliant day, apart from the occasional shower.  The lads penetrated further into the eastern side of the Peak District than usual and it all paid off. We also hear the story – again – of the ravages the Great Plague visited upon Eyam and its inhabitants.  Terrible and frightening indeed.

Wet and Windy, so that would be an obvious time to arrange a weekend away. from a warm cafe in the dark to reclaim a cold and wet cape spread across the saddle.  I cannot imagine what happened to me to give up the great hobby of cycling.  Let me think this thing through…!

Catch up Sketches (6)

Eaton Hall, still the family seat of the Duke of Westminster, although I suspect much time is spent in his London home.  Eaton Hall is something you could usefully Google, seemingly property on the site goes back to the 1440’s, but just bear in mind that although the Duke is said to be the most wealthy landed person in the UK,  some Russian political refugees over here will dwarf his fortune but they wouldn’t have featured in Charlie’s thoughts.

A Breathless December Night

Come on, put your hands up, how many of us would, on a winter’s night feel like turning out for a good fast ride – 42 miles remember – and all set down and related at a breathless pace.  I felt out of breath just reading it.  This ride is in mid December and he admits to it being very cold.

Old Chester as seen in 1924

Charlie spends a good half day wandering here and there and describing Chester and its mix of Roman remains and later  additions.  It is difficult to imagine the old corn mills paying royalties to William the Conqueror, who sent out the invoice in the first place ?

But Chester is a real gem, even with today’s traffic, steeped in history and a true market town.

Catch up Sketches (5)

The drawing today is of the ‘Pickering Arms’ in Thelwall village, just outside Warrington and close to the River Mersey and the Manchester Ship Canal.  There is a lot more history of the pub if you Google the Pickering Arms, Charlie mentions that it was 1000 years old in 1923, which means that now it is only 6 years or so away from 1100 years old.  There is certainly a lot of history around this pub.

A Talking Shop !

Yes, another Annual General Meeting, a veritable talking shop and no mistake.  Nothing daunted our hero enters the fray and starts by taking issue with the Bolton Watch Committee who have recently resolved to lobby for every vehicle in the hours of darkness to carry a red rear light.  (A subject much debated in Parliament at the time).  It doesn’t say so in this piece but Charlie had very strong views on the threatened compulsion to carry any sort of light at the rear.  Let the overtaker beware was his philosophy.  Not much help for the poor cyclist who may be literally carried away, but in those days fatal road accidents were very much more commonplace than nowadays.

Today’s Run Destination Has been Stolen

A pattern seems to be emerging of indolence and slowing down, but it is not reflected in the mileage figures, once again Charlie clocks 84 miles, and don’t forget he is still running what I laughingly describe as a ‘butcher’s bike’.  But he was consistent was he not?  I have just looked back to his master log which covers the period from 1921 to 1947 and in 1924 he covers a total of 7,891 miles.  Not bad going on a bike which will in a few months run out of time in this world.  And he never, as far as I know, used his bike to get to work.  That total of nearly 8,000 miles are all accounted for in runs like today’s which are documented.