Social Bike Rides for 2018

With the weather just starting to brighten a little, we thought it was time to start thinking about our social rides programme for the coming year. We have put together a programme of twice monthly rides between March and October, which take place on the first and third Saturdays of each month.

Run by trained ride leaders, our rides are aimed at the cyclist who wants more than a family ride, but who doesn’t want to go as fast as a ‘club run’. We go at a relaxed pace (about 10-12 mph) and the regular rides are generally somewhere between 20 and 30 miles, with a longer ‘Big Wheel’ event in the summer. Each ride passes a café, which gives us the option for a pit stop depending on how the group feels.

We limit rides to 10 people plus ride leaders, which we feel is a manageable size. All rides are published on LetsRide, which is a free to use website run by British Cycling and we encourage everyone to book a place on each ride they want to attend.


Social bike rides for 2017

We have been busy over the winter months putting together our programme of led bike rides for 2017. Our fun, friendly, social rides take place on the first and third Saturdays of each month from March through to October. Led by volunteers, our rides take in some of the most beautiful scenery in West Berkshire, Hampshire and Wiltshire.

The routes on the first Saturday of each month are shorter (11 to 17 miles) and we tend to go at a gentle pace of 9-11 mph. As such, they are ideal for new / returning cyclists, or people who just want a more relaxed ride.

If you would like a longer, more challenging ride, then take a look at the second of our rides each month.  These have routes ranging from 27 to 38 miles and we generally go at a slightly faster pace of around 12-14 mph. These are intended for more regular riders who are reasonably fit and don’t mind a bit of the hilly stuff.  If you want a real challenge, then why not sign up for ‘William’s Big Wheel’ – a 57 mile epic into deepest, darkest Hampshire.

All rides start and finish in West Mills, Newbury. We meet by the war memorial between Lloyds bank and St Nicholas’ Church. Our start time is usually 9.30 am, with the exception of ‘William’s Big Wheel’ which sets off at 9 am sharp.

We try to ensure that everyone has an enjoyable time on our rides. For example, hills can be taken at your own pace and we don’t rush off once the last person reaches the summit. Unfortunately, punctures can and do happen, so we ask all riders to bring a spare inner tube. Don’t worry if you don’t know how to change a tyre – we can help / advise as necessary.

Please note that places are limited to 12 people on each ride, so we do ask that you book your place in advance at to avoid disappointment. It also helps us to know who to expect so we don’t set off without you. Also, any under 16s must be accompanied by an adult who is able to take responsibility for them.

If you want any further information about our rides, then please do get in touch. We look forward to seeing you and hope you enjoy the rides!


Spokes now has trained ride leaders

British Cycling

Spokes now has formally trained ride leaders thanks to a recent course organised by West Berkshire Council. Josh Kerry and Gordon Oliver attended the two day course that covered Ride Leader Training (Level 1), as well as Route Mapping and Planning. This means that we are now formally qualified to plan and lead rides of up to 50 miles.

Spokes has been successfully running a programme of informal, social bike rides for a couple of years, which are planned and led by experienced local cyclists. Although one of our group already has a CTC ride leader qualification, we were keen to get others trained up to ensure that we are delivering rides in accordance with best practice. As well as being helpful for our own purposes, it means that we can volunteer to lead more formal programmes of rides on behalf of third parties, such as West Berkshire Council.

The sessions covered a lot of theory including duty of care, child protection and risk assessment, as well as how to safely travel as a group, navigate a variety of different junctions and plan a ride route for different abilities.  These classroom sessions were then followed up with some practical assessments out on the road, where we could put our newly learned skills to the test.

Having cycled for many years, we considered ourselves to be quite knowledgeable and safe cyclists, but we were surprised at how much there was to learn and how leading a group of cyclists requires a very different riding style and set of skills to riding on our own.

We are looking forward to putting our new skills into practice on our led rides. These take place on the first and third Saturdays of every month right through to October.  We have a good mix of easier and intermediate rides to cater for a wide range of abilities.  To find out more and to book your place on any of the rides, please visit our page on the website. If you have any questions about any of the rides, or if you want to find out about which rides are right for you, then please contact us beforehand.


Spokes launches 2016 programme of led bike rides in Newbury

West Berkshire Spokes Bike Rides

Winter weather means that cycling can be hard work. It always seems to be cold or wet and it gets dark way too early! However, Spring is just around the corner, and so we have been working hard to plan our programme of led bike rides for 2016 to tempt you back out on two wheels to discover the beautiful countryside in and around West Berkshire.

We will be running at least two bike rides each month from March right through to October. Rides on the first Saturday of the month are shorter, slower rides that are aimed at occasional cyclists, or those who are looking to get back into cycling after a break. Rides on the third Saturday of the month are a bit longer and faster and are aimed at more experienced cyclists. If you’re feeling really brave, then why not sign up for ‘William’s Big Wheel’ – a 57 mile jaunt deep into Hampshire!

All rides start and finish in Newbury and our meeting point is at the side of Lloyds Bank in the centre of town. Details of the rides can be found on the calendar page of our website. For safety reasons, we limit rides to a maximum of 20 places. To book your place, please visit:

If you want to find out more about our rides and whether or not they are right for you, then please do get in touch. We hope to see you soon!