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LINCS WINGS Out and About

 (Aug - Dec) 2021

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Here are photos from different events and visits during 2020
sent in by our members.


Chairman's challenge 2021 - Trevor and Marion's journey

When the Chairman suggested the challenge of visiting as many of the top 20 MCN biker cafes in a year, we thought why not give it a go and see if we could tick off a few. Well you know once you start something, there is always a drive to see it through to the end.

    I started by plotting all the cafes on Garmin Base-Camp and realised that there were clusters of cafes that suggested a number of target areas. Such as London and South-east, South-west etc. We decided to have a trial run with 3 local cafes, so set off on the 29th May from Sleaford to the Krazy Horse at Bury St. Edmunds, followed by The Super Sausage Café Pottersbury (which was closed) and returning home via the Iron Horse Ranch House in Market Deeping. A total of around 262 miles.

    The next trip was for Cornwall and the South-west, this would need a stop-over in a hotel. We looked online and found the The White Hart in Leonard Stanley near Stroud. We set off on the 3rd June for a three night stay and 147 miles later found a lovely Inn with really helpful staff and a great room. The following day we set off for the Chequered Flag near Liskeard and 318 miles later were back at the White Hart. A small note here, Fridays are not good on the M5, the sat-nav had at least 4 hours of delays, so we exited and found a non-motorway way back! Next day was 218 miles from the White Hart to Harry’s Café, Café Moto Corsa, The Haven, Loomies Moto Café and back to the White Hart. After a reasonable night’s sleep we headed back home another 147 miles.

    Trip 3 was a short hop over to the Ponderosa Café, stopping overnight at the Moreton Park hotel near Chirk and taking in the Cat and Fiddle on the way back, just for fun! A round trip of around 320 miles. For those keeping count that is 9 out of 20 cafés in three trips and around 1400 miles.

    Earlier in the year we had booked a week at a holiday cottage near Pocklington for the whole family for the first week in August. So two cars for the family and us on the ‘wing headed north. We stopped at the Whistle-stop Café and Seaways on the trip up and a day out in the Dales for the Penny Garth Café while we were there. Another 238 miles for the shortest route. That’s 12 down, more than half way after 2 months.

    The 5th Trip would be north to Scotland was bound to need another overnight stop-over so we decided to stay near Penrith at another great place, two nights at The Black Swan Inn at Culgaith. We travelled up on the 9th August with a view to running up to Scotland the following day. The next day that was exactly what we did, up to The Glen Café via The Filling Station Café in Keswick. The Glen Café is about in the middle of the brilliant Moffat to Selkirk run and where I discovered the pictures of the Filling Station Café had failed. So the plans changed and we had to return to Keswick to re-take the pictures before returning to The Black Swan. By the way the Glen Café is closed on Tuesdays! The run home was via Squires Café a round trip of around 565 miles.

    The 6th and last trip was to London and the South-east. I must admit I wasn’t looking forward to London traffic. We decided on a two night stay at The Black Horse Inn near Maidstone which unfortunately did not meet expectations. However, the trip down to via The Ace Café and The Bike Shed did! Typical solid traffic in the centre of London, it was hot enough for the sat-nav to throw a fit on the Pentonville Road, needing a few minutes on a garage forecourt to cool down. This stress was only relieved when we reached the Bike Shed. It must be the only Café where you ride in the front entrance, past tables and customers to reach the indoor parking at the rear, inspired! After a night at the Black Horse we set off to tick off H’s Café and the Route 1066 returning to Maidstone for the final night. The last day was home via the Original Tea Hut near Waltham Abbey. The only problem was the M25 showed four hours delay, so we diverted by the A13 and the North Circular to pick up the café before heading home via the M11 and A1(M). Another 456 miles and all 20 cafés, challenge completed.

    When we first saw the challenge, we knew it wouldn’t be easy or cheap, I haven’t worked out the cost, I’ll leave that up to Visa! All in all it wasn’t too hard, just an exercise in logic working out a route or set of routes and fitting it all around work, time off etc. You don’t need an Iron Butt, but the ability to ride for up to seven hours is certainly a help. We covered 2671 miles in just over three months and enjoyed (almost) every mile/minute.

Here are the Cafe photos in order
(Click the thumbnail for a full size photo)

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I wonder what the next challenge will be?

Trevor and Marion Watson

Pictures by Trev and Marion


Ian and Sue visit Ironbridge, The National Arboretum
and the Triumph Factory. 10 - 13 Aug


Ian reported:  We had 3 nights away stopping at Ironbridge.  On route we stopped at the National Arboretum. A very peaceful place. We did the road-train tour which lasted approx 50 minutes, but overall had a couple of hours there and it was well worth a visit.  During our stay at Ironbridge we had a ride to the horseshoe pass visiting Ponderosa cafe (another on the cafe challenge). What a cracking location.  Other than Ironbridge it was a chill out couple of days.  We sat outside the pub we staying at, drinking beer and watching the world go by.

On our way home, we visited the Triumph exhibition centre at Hinckley. We didn't do the factory tour as we were only stopping for a coffee break.  Instead we had a wander around the exhibition, but we will plan to visit again and do the factory tour.

Overall, a mini break and nice again to be away on the bikes leaving the waterproofs in the pannier.  Unfortunately, this will be a last tour on the wing this year due to Sue breaking her arm badly. So any more cafe's on the challenge will have to wait till next spring.  Now take a look at our photo album.




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