Feeling nostalgic

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Chilly, May 2, 2003.

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  1. Chilly

    Chilly Guest

    Back in the early 1960's I was a student nurse in Gloucester and had a girlfriend in London. Friday
    night I would cycle to London, spend a weekend of debauchery, then ride back to Gloucester Sunday
    afternoon. The afternoon coach from Victoria to Cheltenham went passed Hanger Lane (I think from
    memory), as it was then on the A40, at 4:00 pm. I would tuck in behind it and slipstream it all the
    way to Cheltenham. Of course coaches didn't go very fast in those days. She packed me in eventually
    for a guy in London who had a boat

    I lived in Hucclecote, although I can't remember if that's how it's spelt. Riding out of Gloucester
    one had the choice of Coombe Hill or Birdlip Hill. In the evenings I would ride up Coombe Hill,
    regularly overtaking the bus on the way up. The look on the pasengers faces was a picture. Then ride
    down Birdlip like a banshee. Going down Birdlip, there is a long straight then a very sharp left
    hand bend. Fortunately there was a drive on the bend which made a perfect escape route for when I
    overcooked things and couldn't make the bend.

    All this on a steel Raleigh, with steel wheels and handlebars, 27x1 1/4 tyres, cottered cranks and
    five gears, purchased new from Currys in Gloucester for £15. I eventually had enough money to have a
    ten speed conversion done. Still with steel cottered cranks and chainwheels, and a funny little
    front changer that had a lever attached to twist to change gear.

    That time in my youth on my bike gave me a love of cycling that even a couple of decades layoff
    didn't eradicate. Now I have a half way decent bike and get totally knackered after ten miles.

    I'm getting better though. I recover the use of my legs after two hours, not two days!

    Bill Suffolk
     
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  2. Nick Kew

    Nick Kew Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, one of infinite monkeys at the keyboard of
    "Chilly" <[email protected]> wrote:
    > Back in the early 1960's I was a student nurse in Gloucester and had a girlfriend in London.
    > Friday night I would cycle to London, spend a weekend of debauchery, then ride back to Gloucester
    > Sunday afternoon.

    Eeek, that puts my pedalling from Bristol to Oxford for a weekend with my then-girlfriend to shame!

    Hmmm .. wonder if I can claim a leading mad-ride for having jumped on the bike on-spec and
    pedalled across the cotswolds from Bath to Cheltenham (and back) for no better readon than to see
    a new opera?

    The distressing thing is ... I really don't think I could do it any more. At least not if I expect
    any prospect of enjoying the thing I've cycled for.

    > Suffolk

    That's flat, innit?

    --
    Axis of Evil: Whose economy needs ever more wars? Arms Exports $bn: USA 14.2, UK 5.1, vs France 1.5,
    Germany 0.8 (The Economist, July 2002)
     
  3. Chilly

    Chilly Guest

  4. Alanp

    Alanp Guest

    "Chilly" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > > I lived in Hucclecote, although I can't remember if that's how it's spelt.
    > Riding out of Gloucester one had the choice of Coombe Hill or Birdlip Hill. In the evenings I
    > would ride up Coombe Hill, regularly overtaking the bus on the way up. The look on the pasengers
    > faces was a picture. Then ride down Birdlip like a banshee. Going down Birdlip, there is a long
    > straight then a very sharp left hand bend. Fortunately there was a drive on the bend which made a
    > perfect escape route for when I overcooked things and couldn't make the bend.

    I think your facts are wrong here. Anybody can overtake a bus 'up' Coombe Hill, it's about as flat
    as you get in Gloucester!

    Cricley Hill, yes. That is a good one and round the top to come down Birdlip Hill. Although from
    your description I suspect it was Cricley Hill you came down, Birdlip is very twisty.

    Anyway coming down Crickley Hill is even more fun now, the bend has gone and the road becomes a dual
    carriage-way.

    AlanP

    PS It is Hucclecote, well remembered.
     
  5. Hello, I used to meet a Female Student Nurse in Gloucester at similar time-she was called Shelagh
    Thomas. Anyone know where she is now? I used to ride up to see her at weekends too! Kind regards,
    John. Always late for work the following Monday morning of course.

    --
    John, Pauline & Hannah. Thornbury, South Gloucestershire. UK. http://www.pbase.com/john28july
     
  6. James Hodson

    James Hodson Guest

    On Fri, 2 May 2003 14:07:42 +0100, "Chilly" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I lived in Hucclecote, although I can't remember if that's how it's spelt. Riding out of Gloucester
    >one had the choice of Coombe Hill or Birdlip Hill.
    >

    Hi Bill

    I know the area quite well.

    In fact, I'm off to see a gaggle of Gloucertershire guys and gals next weekend.

    FWIW, it is indeed spelt Hucclecote. IIRC, it's the smallish area between the M5 and Barnwood.

    The Birdlip hill is very nice on the way down but not so nice when going upwards. When you mention
    the hill at Bridlip are you refering to the main road downwards from The Air Balloon or the far
    steeper bit that goes straight down?

    James

    --
    http://homepage.ntlworld.com/c.butty/Larrau.jpg
     
  7. Chilly

    Chilly Guest

    "AlanP" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > "Chilly" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > > > I lived in Hucclecote, although I can't remember if that's how it's
    spelt.
    > > Riding out of Gloucester one had the choice of Coombe Hill or Birdlip
    Hill.
    > > In the evenings I would ride up Coombe Hill, regularly overtaking the
    bus on
    > > the way up. The look on the pasengers faces was a picture. Then ride
    down
    > > Birdlip like a banshee. Going down Birdlip, there is a long straight
    then a
    > > very sharp left hand bend. Fortunately there was a drive on the bend
    which
    > > made a perfect escape route for when I overcooked things and couldn't
    make
    > > the bend.
    >
    > I think your facts are wrong here. Anybody can overtake a bus 'up' Coombe Hill, it's about as flat
    > as you get in Gloucester!
    >
    > Cricley Hill, yes. That is a good one and round the top to come down Birdlip Hill. Although from
    > your description I suspect it was Cricley Hill you came down, Birdlip is very twisty.

    May be wrong about Coombe Hill, especially as you say "up Cricley, down Birdlip". It is the hill
    that ran almost parallel with Birdlip, used by traffic that couldn't get up Birdlip. Back then, you
    came into Birdlip at the top, dropped a bit, round a right hander, then a longish straight to a
    sharp left hander. Once round that pedal like mad and hope nothing was comung up round the bends,
    and didn't need to stop in a hurry.

    Refresh my memory please. Where was Coombe Hill.

    Bill
     
  8. Alanp

    Alanp Guest

    "Chilly" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    > May be wrong about Coombe Hill, especially as you say "up Cricley, down Birdlip". It is the hill
    > that ran almost parallel with Birdlip, used by traffic that couldn't get up Birdlip. Back then,
    > you came into Birdlip at the top, dropped a bit, round a right hander, then a longish straight to
    > a sharp left hander. Once round that pedal like mad and hope nothing was comung up round the
    > bends, and didn't need to stop in a hurry.
    >
    > Refresh my memory please. Where was Coombe Hill.
    >
    > Bill

    Coombe Hill is a place along the A38 (Gloucester to Tewkesbury section). There is only a slight rise
    as you pass through.

    The road down from the Air Balloon is Crickley Hill with Birdlip Hill running parallel. Your
    description of Birdlip Hill is correct.
     
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