Ride Sheffield Social is well, sociable!

Henry Norman grabs a great prize!

Ride Sheffield’s second open meeting was once again standing room only as the local mountain bike community turned out in force.  The Lescar public house is rapidly turning into one of the local scene’s spiritual homes and the big turnout was rewarded by appearances from a number of people whose decisions affect our riding on a daily basis.  Danny Udall and Rachel Bennett from the Eastern Moors partnership received a warm welcome largely as a result of the exemplary way they’ve consulted with the biking community since taking over management of the Eastern Moors.  There are a number of new concessionary bridlepaths in the offing and trail maintenance is being carried out with a view to accommodating all users.  Sam Beaton of the Sheffield City Council Rights of Way Team  was sporting the almost obligatory Movember tache making him look a bit like a pantomime villain and, in true seasonal fashion, he received a few boos for recent work on Lenny Hill, but also got a collective pat on the back for maintenance on Piper House Gate.  Win some lose some Sam.

There was some exciting news from Cy Turner of Cotic Bikes, http://www.cotic.co.uk/, who has for some time been chasing funding to build a pump track in Totley .  That funding is now all but in place following a period when Cy thought that the scheme was all but dead.  Nice work Cy.  Nick Howarth reported on the evolving network of trails in Rother Valley Country Park and its growing race scene.

Mike Rhodes from the Peak District National Park Authority explained just how difficult it is to control illegal 4×4 and motorcycle use.  Dan Cook from the CTC reported on the success of Parkwood Springs and dropped the bombshell that the CTC are close to adopting a policy that “There should be a presumption that cyclists should be able to use all rights of way in England and Wales.”  Blimey!

All female MB group No Balls Biking T-shirts turned a few heads!

There were also presentations from Emma Peasland about stilettos on Wheels http://stilettosonwheels.com/, Woodhead Mountain rescue explained what to do if you need to call them out and Roy Mosley from Sheffield Wildlife Trust explained future plans for Grenoside Woods.  Let’s just say it was a busy night.

Ride Sheffield’s increasing influence is clear.  The speakers who turned up manage land and access rights across much of the Peak District adjacent to Sheffield and we can feel rightly chuffed that they’re willing to give up a night to come and talk to us.

The formal part of the evening was followed by the fiendish Ride Sheffield quiz and Raffle.  Cy Turner had kindly donated a BfE frame for auction and fevered bidding resulted in one very happy new Cotic owner and £110 in the coffers.  Overall, the evening raised £100 each for both the Edale and Woodhead mountain rescue teams with the remainder going into the Lady Canning Plantation trail fund.

A big thank you to all those who donated prizes and supported the event in so many ways including, in no particular order, Marmot, Cotic, The Bike Tree, J E James, Langsett Cycles, 18Bikes, Edinburgh Bicycle Co-operative, The Bike Garage, Vertebrate Publishing, Duncan Philpott Photography, Richard Baybutt Photography, Polaris and anyone else I’ve forgotten who helped out!