The Millennium Festival of Cycling 16-24 June 2001
Greenwich Cyclists events
All rides started at the Cutty Sark, Greenwich, unless otherwise stated.
Totals: 228 people covered 6,030 miles in 9 very varied events.
Saturday 16 June: Locks, docks and one smoking ferry. 10am. 10 and 25 mile options. 22 people at the start. Down the Thames path to the Dome, the Flood Barrier and a quick look at the newly opened Woolwich Arsenal. Then free cruise over the Woolwich Ferry and a stop on the bridge by City Airport to be buzzed by taking off planes. A ride through the new University of East London campus, past the huge Royal Docks and into the lovely new North Barrier Park gardens where we cycled in the fountains. Trinity Buoy Wharf, the new bird reserve, and down the Isle of Dogs to lunch in the always dependable Pier Tavern. Some then went home via the Greenwich Foot Tunnel. Most stayed on for the Canary Wharf riverside, Wapping Pumping Station, Tower Bridge and home along the southern side of the Thames.
Sunday 17 June: Love Lea Valley. 10am.
30 of us met Peter Jolly, the Sustrans Ranger for the Lea Valley, at Island Gardens and headed north through Canary Wharf, over The Highway, up into Victoria Park and onto the canal and up to the Lea. We were met by 10 Hackney riders. Lots of unknowns here: Tottenham Marshes and lunch by the canal. We turned round at Enfield Lock and rode back down the Lea and onto the Limehouse Cut and Basin and then the Thames path back to Island Gardens and the Foot Tunnel. Only half a mile of road in about 30.
Monday 18 June: Southwark Cyclists picnic, Dulwich Park, 6pm. 8 Greenwich Cyclists went over to meet Southwark and ride the 7 seater Octopus round the park and on to Herne Hill station and the official opening of the new piazza and bike park there. Much street hilarity and free wine.
Tuesday 19 June: The Afterworker: 21 met for a quiet explore down the Thames as far as Crossness and back into a huge sunset.
Wednesday 20 June: Bike to Work Day and Breakfast: 10 met and, miscalculated leadership, rode the jammed Opening of Parliament rehearsal main roads up to the Island Cafe in Southwark Bridge Road where we breakfasted with the Southwark mob. We should have dawdled along the riverside
Thursday 21 June: Summer Solstice Special. 30 met at Cutty Sark at 2am, wonderful atmosphere. Rode the quiet streets and picked up another 20 at the south end of London Bridge.
Through the deserted city and up Fleet Street, round Trafalgar Square to Soho and busy Bar Italia in Frith Street. Another 10 or so there.
After coffee etc we rode north to Oxford Street and Portland Place and then the huge deserted avenue of Regents Park. We got to the top of Primrose Hill at 4am. The 4.43am dawn was gorgeous.....blazing red sun over sleeping city.
Most of us then went to the pre-warned Island Cafe for 6am breakfast. Great to greet the sun on the longest day.
Friday 22 June: 7pm: Afterworker: 12 headed west to Crossness and back into, again, the setting sun.
Saturday 23 June: London Bridge station 10am. 30 turned up and we had to split into two for the trains. The hill down from Folkstone to the sea is huge and then its a flat 50 miles via the Romney Marshes and Dungeness lunch pub to Rye. Most got the train home from there. The rest of us hit the huge hill into Hastings, had beers and got back to London around midnight.
Sunday 24 June: 10am. A huge 35 to get to Whitstable. Good Rochester lunch stop where 2 met us and a slowest journey to do the 65 miles by 7pm. About 10 dropped off to various stations along the way....and the best fish and chip shop I know was closed for a power failure. But we found another and watched the sun drop slowly into the North Sea and got the last train back.