Posted by: brendaintheboro | March 31, 2019

British Summer Time

 

Well, last night/early hours of today, the clocks went forward an hour so we can look forward to longer evenings. We have had some lovely weather, if a tad windy at times, this week and I managed to get in some cycling each day. It is apparent how early the spring flowers are this year. Already we are seeing cowslips.

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Friday was glorious. No other word to describe it. The sun shone all day, not too much breeze and temperatures in the mid teens. I told DH that it was time for a ride to Durham. He was convinced we had been there a couple of weeks ago but we hadn’t. He had been on his own some months ago but was convinced I was with him. Old age catching up.

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So we packed up some food and the stove, kettle and cups and off we went across Newport bridge and up onto NCN1, through Stockton and along to the Castle Eden Walkway. There are lots of birds on Hurworth Burn reservoir and in the fields around.

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As it was a Friday, there were very few people about and no dogs or children running wild, so we enjoyed the trip as far as Shotton Colliery. The track from here isnt in a good state- rubbish strewn and a poor surface so we choose to ride the road towars Haswell. Part way along is a sign for Haswell Plough which we followed. DH wanted to stick with the main road and so we followed the A1283 along to Sherburn Hill and then down to Sherburn and across a bridge over the A1. This isnt the way we usually ride but it was reasonably quiet.

Once in Durham we made our way to the cathedral and I went into  the World Heritage museum and centre. They had a really good film about the site and St Cuthbert which was very informative and supported what my Gt Grandfather used to tell me about the monks digging up Cuthbert’s body and  carrying him around for years until they came to Dun Holm which is a very strong defensive position on a loop of the River Wear. There has been a church on this site since the 7th Century and the Norman Cathedral was built on the same site over 1000 years ago.  The pointed arches allowed the ceilings to be very high symbolising prayers going up to Heaven.

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There is lots of restoration work going on so we didn’t go there but the cloisters are where some of the Harry Potter scenes were filmed.

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It was lovely for DH to sit in the sun and wait for me. He isnt much of a visitor to museums but will go in , if free. He’s a true Yorkshireman , if you get my drift.

We used the Komoot app to get ourselves out of the city centre  and then found a quite corner with a bench where  sat and had  some cereal and yogurt ( his favourite). Then it was off again following the app but once we saw cycle path signs we followed those coming down through county Durham on quiet or off road paths. The village green at Coxhoe looked lovely with all its daffodils.

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When we got to Trimdon village we  sat near the church for hot chocolate and cake.

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The ground of this old church are beautifully maintained and it was a joy to sit in the sunshine with bare arms and not wrapped up against the cold.

The way to get back on to the Castle Eden cycleway is a couple of miles east of the village just under an old railway bridge which I recognised from years ago. So we came back home more or less on the same route just under 60 miles for the day.

The forecast wasn’t so good for Saturday with rain forecast for later in the day and cooler temperatures so we set out earlier around 8.30am. We headed across to Thornaby and then up to Hilton  (road works) and along to Hutton Rudby before descending to Swainby. The Cleveland hills looked hazy in the distance but it was still early and cool.

However when we stopped briefly in Swainby and I look off a layer as I knew there was some steep climbing ahead. We had decided to ride up to Osmotherly via Sheepwash and Cod Beck. There is a 20% hill with a nasty bend in it. I had a nasty accident here about 40 years ago and don’t think I have ever descended the hill again. I was on a trike with hub brakes and they failed and I had a child on the back. He was Ok but it set off an illness that kept me off the bike for a number of years. So I was off to climb it.

Does this sound daft? We have the e-bikes and they are allowing me to get to places I haven’t managed in a while and yet I feel guilty when I needed to use the turbo mode for the last bit of the climb? Crazy or what?

At Cod Beck there is a NCN65 sign unless you have a full suspension mountain bike and are going to York don’t go this way.  When you go over and down to Nether Silton, its like loose scree. We once went that way and vowed never again.  The reservoir looked beautiful as we looked down the valley.

I did notice that the once small campsite nearby , has grown tremendously with loads of static caravans.

Once in Osmotherely , I stopped to take a photo of the old market cross and there are a few eating establishments and a small shop but we didn’t stay long. When we realised it was only 6 miles to Northallerton , we thought we would ride that way. However, there were too many close passes on the A684 so we turned off for Brompton. That was a revelation as we have never entered the village that way previously. It is much bigger place than I thought. We decided to have a short break and I had a look at the church yard and also discovered that there used to be 8 linen mills here in the 19th century and now is a quiet backwater.

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Next time we go that way , I will warn DH  we are having a good look around there.

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I hope you can read the description board that stands near the church.

We returned home the usual way through Deighton and Appleton Wiske and Yarm was almost at  a stand still with cars so we climbed up along the back street and then down through Preston. We stopped and picnicked in the park before heading home in rapidly clouding skies but didn’t get rained on.

So this week I managed 150 miles woohoo and the YTD is 921 miles

 

 

 

 


Responses

  1. A very good mileage for a week in March which did come in like a lion and go out like a lamb this year.

  2. Poor Cuthbert! I love the history that goes with your cycling jaunts Brenda. And those geese! I just love geese.

    • you would love it here in the NE of the UK Robyn

      • Many years since I was in the UK and I didn’t see all that I wanted to. I’m enjoying experiencing it through your posts Brenda.

      • happy to help. We will hopefully be in Scotland for Easter

  3. Great photo’s thanks. I like Durham, been there twice. Good mileage.

  4. Brenda and DH many thanks.

    I love reading you’re stories what an inspiration you are. I have cycled Stockton to Sedgefield a few times – Castle Eden there and Bishopton redmarshal on way back – 20 ish.
    Keep em coming
    Mike

    • thank you Mike. Have you tried riding up to Sunderland. The route goes all the way up and virtually on paths all the way, You could always get the train back down

  5. I continue to be amazed at your distances Brenda! I managed nearly 50 miles on Saturday and couldn’t have done much more! Lovely photos once again.

    • that’s great Lizzie. Now your saddle is feeling better , I think you will get further. Just take it easy and go with the flow. I don’t think I am getting comments to go through on to your blog comments

      • I’ve no idea why your comments wouldn’t get through. It’s hard for me to work it out from my end. I’ll try getting someone I know to leave a comment and see if they have any problems.

      • When you try to comment, which of the three options do you use? Google account, Name/url, or Anonymous? Maybe there is some sort of problem, as my son has said he can’t comment either.

      • I’ve changed the comment settings slightly – a pop-up window now appears. I hope this will make a difference but if not I’ll keep trying to fix the problem. So maybe you’d like to try again!

      • no pop up window came up when I commented earlier today. There are some other blogs I cannot comment on these days so its not only yours.

      • Glad it’s not just mine. I suspect Blogger has changed something that I hadn’t noticed – or understood…. The pop-up window wasn’t set up when you first tried. Please do try again then I’ll know if this has made a difference.

      • I have given it another try but no pop up thing came up.


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