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Granddads For Acorns Bike Ride To Newcastle
1 January 2006
Day 1


Well it was time to set off for the adventure of a lifetime. 4 Silly Old Fools were going to ride all the way to Kingston Park in aid of Acorns Children's Hospice.

Jan 1st at 08:45 the team gathered along with Ben Gotting to see us on our way.

Frome left to right Graham Beech, Frank Lloyd (the Boss), Steve Gotting, Martin Johnson, John Phillips and Ben Gotting

The morning was quite warm considering the month however the weather forecast for the journey was getting very cold and SNOW. Now that should test the mettle of these brave "old" souls


The team from a different angle

Sorry guys you don't look any younger - Honest.


Some supporters had turned out to speed them on the way and Magic Jim after celebrating the new year to the very early hours was first there to wish us bon voyage and a

Happy New Year.

many thanks for coming down on New Years day folks it is much appreciated by the whole team


Here we have the intrepid Martin trying to find out which way we leave Sixways and trying hard to persuade Ben to set aside his crutches and join us.

Sensibly Ben refused


Well we were off and almost 300 miles to go, should be a doddle so long as nothing goes wrong.

The journey to Droitwich went very smoothly as we stormed away at an average speed of 14 mph.

We then made are way through Bromsgrove and headed towards the Licky Hills and Birmingham


Big mistake to think this was easy peasy. The hills are an absolute killer especially on very old legs. 15 Stone up a steep incline is hard!

First problem John's gears kept locking up as he tried to push hard up the hills, silly old fool.

We hit the canal at Selly Oak and problem No2 as we cycled into gas Street basin and past all the debris from last nights celebration's we get a puncture on the glass. Kevlar Tyres???

And guess who, yep JP, now to be known as Lucky


The team spirit comes to the fore as Martin and Graham fix the punture Steve Supervises and JP clears off to take the photographs. Good deal or what?

Better was still to come!

As we replace the wheel off we go and 1 mile along the canal "Lucky" snaps his chain, disaster, call out the boss.

Frank is called up to collect "Lucky" as the othere leave him on the canal bridge.


Frank and JP take the transport to the next meeting point to await the arrival of the others, to contact Halfords in Tamworth who say they can fix the bike straight away.

So, Frank calls Graham to find out how far away they are.

Graham does an emergency stop as riding a bike without hands free is just not on, Steve comes to an emergency stop behind Garham but Martin,

Oh Dear!


Martin, in dreamworld thinking about the first pint does not see the "boys" come to a dead stop.

A scream goes up, "get out the bloody way!!", too late.

Martin brakes and sweerves forgetting his on a canal towpath.

Realises too late and straight into the canal still attached to the bike.

Luckily he grabs the bank to stop him being dragged under by the fast sinking bike


The team rush to his aid and drag him out!

So it is now a quick dash to the van and a fresh set of clothes before hyperthermia sets in

  Graham gets caught short and checks out the graffitti


Martin tries quickly to get changed and aviod the camera.


Too late Martin it is all saved for ever


"Lucky" gets his bike repaired at Halfords Tamworth with Frank supervising the standard of work.

There is no way JP is going to miss out again!!


So to sum up the first day

58 Miles completed in 6 Hours

A puncture!

A Knadgered gear boss

A Snapped chain

And a swim in the canal for Martin

Not bad! And we still have 5 days and 240 miles to go.

OOPS! We have now had the van broken into and the SAT NAV has been stolen

Having a great time see you all soon.