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24 June: Wheathampstead to Whitwell

posted 27 Jun 2012, 04:15 by South Herts   [ updated 13 Jan 2017, 23:18 ]
It was supposed to be the Herts hilly 100k today.  I had done my homework, organised the stops and had the written directions from the 40+, I had the application forms, and I had the map and a Google map print out of the 2010 route (which we were going to do).  Sunday morning arrived and the skies were crying, I knew there was to have been a lot of water overnight, but it looked like it was stretching into the morning.  Wheathampstead was wet and I took shelter in the doorway of the Bull pub.

The only person to turn up was Richard and he had to be back by lunchtime, this suited me and we decided to do a short ride instead of the event, so the ride was cut short, very short indeed.  We headed off toward Lamerswood and then turned left to wards Kimpton Bottom; from here we were making our way to Darley Hall.  It has to be noted that there was a huge amount of water on the roads with several sections flooded.  The whole of the countryside looked as if it had had a damn good soak.

On our way to Darley Hall we passed a sign for a castle, I scoffed at this and Richard said no, there really is a ruin.  So without further ado we went to have a look.
Tumble down brick walls inside castle
Someries Castle

Someries Castle: The castle is a brick building built by Sir John Wenlock in the 15th century. What remains is in ruins but will allow you to imagine how it must have looked in its prime. The remaining brick building is the gatehouse to the actual manor house.  All that remains of the manor house is the clearly visible earthworks that outline the plot where once the house would have stood. The bricks from the manor house were used to build the nearby farmhouses in the 17th century.

Safe from our brush with culture we decide that tea at Emily’s in Whitwell would be great, but on our way there I did a delightful controlled skid into the hedges opposite me.  A car came up in front of us as we were on a descent, I touched my brakes lightly and off I skidded into a neighbouring hedgerow.  With a mouth full of stinging nettles I waved the car on then humbly picked myself up, dusted down, straightened my forks and headed off to Emily’s.

Tea, ah! it’s nice, and the café was full of cyclists.  At this point I noticed the stingers were becoming uncomfortable, especially in the ear (not recommended).  From here we made a beeline back to the start.  All in all a good mornings ride and I felt better for doing it, but I’m quietly happy that nobody else turned up.

24 June 2012

Neil 24/06/2012