Category Archives: Methodist Pilgrimage

Bikes ready for the Pilgrimage

So the Bikes ready for the Pilgrimage, pity about the riders ūüôā

Here is mine loaded and ready to go

I’ve taken the rear rack off Jane’s and added a handlebar extension so that her front light clears her handlebar bag (underneath).

 

Preparing for a Pilgrimage

So as I have mentioned (once or twice) this weekend is a Methodist Pilgrimage. The Methodists of Syston are heading to Epworth Old Rectory, home of the Wesleys. Five of us are planning to cycle the whole way (165 miles over 3 days) and another two are cutting out Leicestershire’s hills by starting and finishing at Newark-on-Trent (about 100 miles over 3 days). And yes you can still sponsor me! ūüôā

I thought I had done a lot of the preparation but as the ride leader there has seemed to be a lot to do this week.

A friend is driving our car as a mobile support/rescue vehicle, so I have been sorting out tools and spares to cover lots of eventualities.

We are camping for Saturday and Sunday night, with cyclists, families and support team there are 17 of us at Trentfield Campsite, I volunteered to cook bacon rolls for everyone on Sunday and Monday and that plus our tent etc is going up in a caravan with more of the support team.

Meanwhile, I have been sorting out my own bike. While my Shand Stoater Bike for Life, was my first choice my knees have been so bad that I am using my road bike as the lighter weight should help save my knees. Following the Leicester Triathlon I have now taken off the tri bars, added three bags:

This will be my first ride with this combination of bags on this bike. So far they look great, I am very interested to see how well they work in practice.

I have also added my new¬†and very bright¬†See Sense rear light although I’ll swap it onto whoever is bringing up the rear of our group. Now I just have to put the mudguards back on (have you seen the weather forecast!).

It will also be my first ride with my Mio Link heart wristband¬†so I’m very interested to see how well that works, sadly at the moment the heart rate is only picked up by my Garmin Edge and not by my Android phone or tablet.

For the first time too I am trying out live tracking of the ride, you will be able to follow us at¬†http://42bikes.warnock.me.uk/tracking/¬†I can run the app on both my phone and my tablet so I’m hoping to get enough battery life even with the GPS on continually.

One thing I have not yet fully sorted out it getting data off my Garmin without my laptop. I’ll have one more try today, if it works I can get the rides onto Strava and Garmin Connect each day without having to take my laptop computer.

By the time of my sabbatical in 12 months time I hope that I’ll have a newer Garmin and they will have updated their website enough for live tracking to be possible with the Garmin picking up the heart rate and using my phone to upload both live tracking and daily rides. That will make a big difference, especially as on my Bike for Life I can charge USB devices while I ride using the dynamo.

Charging USB devices is getting to be a significant issue. For Jane and I this weekend we have the following USB devices:

  • 2 x Android Phones (Samsung S3 mini)
  • 2 x Exposure front lights (actually shouldn’t need to be recharged)
  • 2 x Garmin GPS
  • 1 x Android Tablet (Nexus 7)
  • 1 x Tecknet USB Battery
  • 1 x Camera (small Olympus)
  • 1 x Bluetooth keyboard for my Nexus 7
  • 1 x See Sense rear light (our other rear lights use rechargeable AA or AAA batteries and won’t need charging for just a weekend).

So 11 devices. They include 4 different connectors and two different charger outputs.

Fortunately by the time I take my sabbatical things should have got easier in terms of USB. On my Bike for Life both bike lights run straight off the dynamo. I am hoping the dynamo will be able to fully charge the Tecknet battery each day and maybe also put some charge into my phone and tablet. Hopefully then the Tecknet battery will be able to recharge/top up the tablet, garmin, camera, phone, bluetooth keyboard, bluetooth speaker and a tent light each night. Also that I’ll cut out at least one non standard USB connector (for the exposure lights).

I am taking my sabbatical¬†coffee kit to try in real world conditions, I’m be happy to make anyone a coffee but they will have to grind the beans themselves (all those winds of the grinder handle for each one of 17 people sounds tiring) ūüôā

What’s been up Doc?

So I have been pretty quiet here for a while. The main reason is a combination of Triathlon recovery and a busy time at work.

Earlier I wrote about my preparations for the Leicester Triathlon, in the end I did 2 training runs, both 5k. The 2nd was on Tuesday 29th April with the race on Monday 5th May. In hindsight this was a mistake – although not as big a mistake as leaving running training so late ūüôā

The first two parts of the race went well but when I came to start the run my knees were hopeless and I had to walk/hobble nearly the whole 5k. My overall result was still better than I expected at 1hour 38minutes 51seconds but the breakdown shows how biased the speed was against the run.

The problem is that my knees have still not recovered. A couple of things have taken me backwards. First a weekend after the race I had to do a fair bit of driving (3hrs on both Saturday and Sunday). Both the position and the weight of the clutch made my left knee considerably work. Then last week I had to do more walking and step climbing than normal while delivering and collecting Christian Aid envelopes (on one road every house has about 6 steps).

I have been able to get around by bike but have avoided long rides and have been slower than normal. Even when almost unable to walk it is quite possible to ride slowly without pain.

In the last day or so they do seem to have improved quite a bit. That is good news because this weekend is a big ride, the Methodist Pilgrimage to Epworth. We have 5 riders doing 165 miles over 3 days and 2 riders doing a slightly shorter ride of about 100 miles. The Pilgrimage includes a fundraising element 50% for Epworth Old Rectory (the family home of John and Charles Wesley) and the other 50% to Syston Methodist Church¬†towards our project to create a Youth Cafe and Community Hub (sadly Syston has nowhere for young people to go in the evening and our current 1960’s facilities¬†need a new separate entrance, refurbished toilets etc).

Please sponsor me at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/DaveWarnock cos these are both excellent causes.

Because of the knee problems I have changed my plans for the ride a little. A friend is driving our car as a support vehicle so I have decided that instead of using my Shand Stoater bike for life I am going to carry far fewer tools etc and ride my Whyte Suffolk hoping that a lighter faster bike will allow me to ride in a much more knee friendly way.

While my Whyte Suffolk does not have a rack (there are mounting points but the whole point is to keep it a lightweight road bike – albeit one with excellent disk brakes and comfortable 28mm tyres) I can carry quite a lot of stuff now. I can have three bags on the bike (all British made):

So with the smaller bag on the handlebars I should still have 20 litres capacity with the frame bag ideally suited to relatively heavy tools while the others are going to be great for people’s immediate clothing and food needs.

I am looking forward to the ride which is with good friends. Jane is coming and it will include her longest day ride (twice) and more long days in a row that she has done before.

Anyway your sponsorship will be much appreciated at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/DaveWarnock NB if you give on a Wednesday between 5pm and 6pm (UK time) then Paypal should match your donation (but it is likely to be used up very quickly each Wednesday so it looks liek you need to get in at 5:01pm

Epworth Pilgrimage tyre upgrade for Jane

Our Epworth Pilgrimage at the end of May includes a number of gravel sections and some huge potholes. Jane’s bike still has the original 23mm tyres on it so I have just ordered her an upgrade to 25mm Schwalbe Durano Plus Rigid tyres. I used the 28mm version on my Lands End to John o’Groats ride and didn’t get a single puncture.

I am hoping that the mudguards she has will still fit!

For the actual ride I am going to suggest I remove her rear rack and instead lend her one of my Bridge Street saddlebags (I’m very pleased with these!) that will save a bit of weight to make up for the heavier tyres. ūüėČ

I need more sponsors or I’ll be embarrassed. Please help

At the moment I am doing better at recruiting extra riders for our Epworth pilgrimage than I am at getting sponsors for me! We are up to 8 riders, 1 walker and 1 runner so far.

Now I want some more sponsors! We are raising money for two great causes:

Youth Cafe in Syston. We want to convert part of the Methodist Church Centre into a self contained, youth friendly venue. The first target is to get the work completed (new entrance created by reconfiguring the toilets) so that we can open as many evenings each week as possible. Later we want to be able to open during the day too as a Community Hub. Syston is really lacking places for young people to go.

The Development Work at Epworth Old Rectory. This great museum has been having lots of work done to make restore it and making it a better place to visit. The place where John and Charles Wesley grew up is an important piece of heritage, not just for Methodists but for us all as the Wesleys had a profound impact on the whole country, indeed the much of the world.

The total I raise will get split 50% to each of these causes.

You can sponsor me here.

Please do so because it is starting to get embarrassing as all the others leave me behind ūüėČ

Methodist Cycling Pilgrimage keeps growing

Latest news always at Epworth Rides.

We have confirmed this evening that we are now up to 5 full distance cyclists taking part in our Methodist Pilgrimage from Syston to Epworth Old Rectory and back. We also have 2 part way cyclist and a part distance walker. More are welcome ūüôā

Sponsor them here:

 

How to join the Methodist Cycling Pilgrimage

Latest news always at Epworth Rides.

It is very easy to join the Methodist Cycling Pilgrimage

Just two simple steps:

  1. Tell me (Dave) either by email dave@warnock.me.uk or leave a comment here
  2. Join the Fundraising event on Virgin Money Giving to start collecting money. Details below:

To get registered with our event on Virgin Money Giving

This looks like a long list because I have spelled out every step. It is very straightforward (but easiest if you use the answers I give in item 3 below).

  1. Use your web browser tot our event page  on Virgin Money Giving.
  2. Click the “Start Fundraising” button on the right
  3. As you fill in the form there are two important questions to get right:
    1. Answer “No” to the question “Has your charity contributed to the cost of your event?*”
    2. Answer “Just me” to the question “Are you fundraising on your own or with other people?”
  4. When done click “Next”
  5. If you don’t already have an account with Virgin Money Giving click “Register” to create one.
  6. Fill in your details click “Next”
  7. Give your security details (note that it will only ever ask you for 2 letters of your password eg 5th and 7th). Click “Next”
  8. You will now get to choose a unique web page address for your fundraising. Remember this, it is what you will want to tell everyone you ask to sponsor you. Click “Next”
  9. It gives you my details so you can tell me you have registered. Click “Next”
  10. It tells you about creating your own webpage where people will find out what you are doing and where they can donate (it will be at the address you chose in ¬†step 9). For example my page is¬†http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/DaveWarnock¬†Click “Create my page”.
  11. You now get to customise your page (you can change this at anytime in the future). When you are happy click “Save” then “Next”.
  12. Now you get to control whether you are told about donations and are able to customise your thank-you. I suggest both are a good idea. When done click “Create my page”.
  13. You can now share your page on facebook, by email or through twitter. When done click “Go to my account”
  14. All done for the moment. You can come back and edit your page to keep people interested. Please continue to share it via social media and email.

Note that Virgin Money Giving is a free service for us to use and all the sponsorship money goes straight into the Church bank account!

I look forward to seeing your name added to the list of riders!

Epworth Pilgrimage Route Maps

Latest news always at Epworth Rides.

Main Ride: Saturday (repeated in reverse on Monday):
Syston Methodist Church to/from Church Laneham

Main outward ride on Saturday 24th May. The same route is used in reverse on Monday 26th May to return from Church Laneham.
Total 61.5 miles.
If this is too far then you can reduce it (on Saturday and/or on Monday) to 26 miles by using the train between Syston and Newark-on-Trent, this also cuts out the biggest climbs of the pilgrimage.

The southern section between Syston and Newark-on-Trent is mostly on minor roads (apart from the 5 miles to Newark North Gate Station which use an old railway line). The section between Newark-on-Trent and Church Laneham is mostly off road or on some very minor roads with poor surfaces.

Stops

There are not many places to stop.¬†You might find a few pubs open, but the “official” stops are

  1. The only coffee shop/cafe we pass (fortunately an excellent one) which is at Long Clawson:
    Saturday 15 miles: Monday 47 miles.
  2. The support crew will wait for us at Elton near the crossing of the A52:
    Saturday 25 miles: Monday 37 miles.
  3. The support crew will wait for us outside Newark-on-Trent North Gate Station. NB our train connection uses Newark Castle less than a mile away, so train users will need to cycle between the stations.
    Saturday 36 miles: Monday 25 miles.
  4. There is a large convenience store just 1 mile north of Newark North Gate Station. The route uses Winthorpe Road, the shop is on Meering Ave (on left on Saturday, right on Monday):
    Saturday 37 miles: Monday 24 miles.
  5. The support crew will wait for us in the village of Eagle.
    Saturday 50 miles: Monday 12 miles

That means a maximum of 15 miles between stops. The support crew will have water, bananas and energy bars. Plus anything you want to give them to carry for you.

If you choose to stay at the B&B then the route is about 3 miles shorter (a little way south of the A57). Of course this means the ride on Sunday is about 3 miles further each way.

Main Ride: Sunday
Church Laneham to Epworth and then back

Sunday’s ride. The same route is used to get from the campsite to Epworth and then in reverse to return to the campsite. It is 21 miles each way and very flat. There are a couple of sections on fairly quiet A roads where we will ride in groups of at least 4.

If you are staying at the B&B then you need to add about 3 miles in each direction.

Stops

There is a very nice Garden Centre Cafe just before Beckingham at about the 1/2 way point for morning coffee (sadly may not be open on the way back, in which case the support crew will provide the usual fare).
We will get to Epworth in time to use one of the many cafes for lunch before the (optional) activities (tour of the Epworth Old Rectory, visit to the Parish Church, worship then tea in Wesley Memorial Church)

A very Methodist Pilgrimage progress update

Latest news always at Epworth Rides.

There is lots of progress to share about our very Methodist Pilgrimage in May this year. So some reminders:

A Methodist Cycling Pilgrimage

from Leicester to the Epworth Old Rectory

165 miles over a three day May Bank Holiday weekend

24th, 25th and 26th May 2014

Includes:

  • A beautiful bike ride over three days, with lovely people, through stunning Leicestershire countryside and flat as a pancake Lincolnshire.
  • Two nights camping (option to upgrade to a B&B). Both nights at the same site so you only pitch your tent once. Site has good shower and toilet facilities and electricity for all your gadgets.
  • A support team to carry all your luggage, rescue you if needed and cook breakfast ūüôā
  • Guided tour of Epworth Old Rectory home of the Wesleys, founders of Methodism.
  • A chance to visit Epworth Parish Church where John Wesley preached standing on his Father’s grave.
  • Special celebration worship at Wesley Memorial Church, Epworth

Everyone is welcome to cycle with us and we have a variety of flexible route options to suit varying preferences.

The “Main” Ride is as follows:

Grand Total 165 miles

Route maps are already available and are on both Garmin Connect and Strava. Printed route cue sheets will also be available.

Options:

If 165 miles over three days seems a little too far for you, then there are plenty of options for you to reduce it to what suits you:

Option A: On either or both Saturday and Monday use the train between Syston and Newark-on-Trent. This saves 36 miles cycling each time you take the train. That reduces¬†the ride to only 26 very flat miles (23 if staying at the B&B). You don’t need to decide this ahead of time as the route passes very close to the station at Newark-on-Trent, the trains are hourly and you don’t have to book to take your bike on the train.

Option B: On the Sunday the support team will be driving from the campsite to Epworth. That means you can choose to not cycle or cycle only one way (you choose). You could ride to Epworth in the morning (21 miles or 24 if staying at the B&B) and decide later if you are going to cycle back or get a lift. Or have a lazy morning with the option of cycling back if you feel like it.

Option C: We can provide a small number of people with transport all the way to or from the campsite on Saturday/Monday giving you the chance to simply join the Sunday ride to/from Epworth (21 miles each way or 24 miles if staying at the B&B).

Option D: the Our support team will be able to pick up a number of cyclists and their bikes at nearly any point if you find the distance is too great or have a mechanical problem that we can’t fix.

Getting to Syston for the start.

Option A: Drive to Syston with your bike and park your car for the weekend in the driveway of one of our Church Members (optionally arrive Friday night and we will find someone to put you up).

Option B: Arrive at Syston by train. Hourly service from Leicester or from stations up to Nottingham. No bike booking needed on this local line. Again if it is easier to arrive on Friday night we can find somewhere for you to stay.

Option C: Arrive at Leicester by train either on Friday evening or Saturday morning. We will arrange a guide to cycle with you from Leicester to Syston (7.3 miles). The guide will have a cargobike to help with your luggage. If you arrive on Friday then we will find accommodation for you.

Essentially all the same options (in reverse) are available for getting home from Syston at the end.

Money!

We will provide, at no cost to you:

  • Accommodation with a Church member on Friday evening.
  • Parking in a Church members driveway for the weekend, if needed
  • Coffee/Tea and Cake before we start on Saturday
  • Breakfast on Sunday and Monday for the campers
  • Coffee/Tea and Cake at the end on Monday
  • Support vehicle to rescue you if needed
  • Refuelling points on each ride, maximum 15 miles apart

You will need to pay for:

  • Getting to/from Syston
  • All train fares
  • Campsite or B&B costs
  • Evening meals Saturday and Sunday (two local pubs or cook for yourself at the campsite)
  • Cafe stops while cycling (very limited options on Saturday and Monday)

Sponsorship

All riders need to be sponsored. 50% of the money raised is to go to the Epworth Old Rectory. The other 50% to go to a charity chosen by the rider (although we encourage all to consider giving to the Syston Methodist Church Community Hub project which will allow us to open a Youth Cafe).

We will provide sponsor forms and will sign off completion of the ride. We expect all riders to raise a minimum of £100 in sponsorship. We have an account on VirginGiving to allow you to raise your sponsorship through the Internet.

Any questions?

Methodist Pilgrimage Confirmation Update

A quick update on the Methodist Pilgrimage 2014.

It is a Sponsored Cycle Ride from Leicester to Epworth Old Rectory and back. We start on Saturday 24th May and end on Monday 26th May.

The pieces are falling into place so we now have a set of confirmations:

  • Methodist Insurance have confirmed insurance cover is possible
  • The Old Epworth Rectory have confirmed they will welcome us and we will have guided tours on the Sunday
  • Epworth Wesley Memorial Church have confirmed they will welcome us. We will have some worship here on the Sunday
  • A shorter ride is possible on Saturday and Monday for those who prefer it (using the train between Leicester and Newark then cycle)
  • Syston Methodist Church are organising a Coach party to join us in Epworth, leaving after Sunday morning worship
  • Either camping or B&B accommodation are available near Church Laneham for Saturday and Sunday Nights.

So the cycling distances are

Standard Route (158 miles in total)

  • Saturday 24th: Syston Methodist Church to Church Laneham: 58 miles
  • Sunday 25th: Church Laneham to Epworth and back: 42 miles (2 x 21 miles)
  • Monday 26th:¬†Church Laneham to¬†Syston Methodist Church: 58 miles

Long Route (174 miles in total)

  • As the standard route but start and finish at Leicester Railway Station adding 8 miles to/from Syston on Saturday and Monday
  • Anyone arriving/departing Leicester Railway station can, if preferred, use the train to Syston on Saturday and get a lift to Leicester Railway Station from Syston on Monday so still ride the standard route.

Short Route (100 miles in total)

  • Saturday 24th: Train Leicester or Syston to Newark. Then cycle to Church Laneham: 25 miles
  • Sunday 25th: Church Laneham to Epworth and back: 42 miles (2 x 21 miles)
  • Monday 26th:¬†Church Laneham to¬†Newark: 25 miles then train to Leicester (potential cycle or lift back to Syston 8 miles)

Obviously many other combinations are possible. The only restriction is that there is no train service that stops at Syston on the Monday.

We will have a support crew in a car who will be able to pick up a number of cyclists and their bikes on any of the rides.

For more details see my earlier posts Methodist Pilgrimage 2014 update 1 and A very Methodist Challenge for 2014

 

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