Dear all

I hope you have all enjoyed a good festive season – welcome to 2024!

The start of the New Year seems like a good time to provide an update on some WSCC dates and events, and to keep you informed on the work of the committee over the last few months.

2023 club ride stats at a glance

On a quick look through the Spond records for 2023, the club put on around 450 rides in total, with 158 different riders taking part. With just over 8 riders per ride on average that comes to a grand total of around 3,700 rides across the club in 2023 – an impressive result. Assuming that at least one cake is consumed by each ride participant, and based on an average cake portion of 125g, that comes to almost half a metric tonne of cake that we have collectively shifted from the local coffee shop shelves ?. We’ll put these and other vital statistics together for the annual report that is presented at the AGM (see below).

I’d like to offer a huge thankyou to all the ride leaders whose hard work and dedication enabled this to happen in 2023.

WSCC annual club dinner and awards, Friday 15 March 2024

Following the success of the club’s Annual Dinner and awards last year, we have once again booked the Cygnet room at the Mill in Elstead for this event on Friday 15 March 2024. Please make a note of the date and look out for further details which will follow soon. The dinner provides a nice opportunity for the various groups to get together under one roof, and to thank those who have made a special contribution to the success of our club. We hope to see as many club members as possible again this year, and remember that partners are also very welcome.

WSCC AGM, Saturday 27 April at Normandy Village Hall

Another date for your new 2024 diaries is the AGM, which has been booked for the morning of Saturday 27 April 2024, to be held this year at Normandy Village Hall. As previously advertised, I’ll be standing down from the Chair role after this meeting, so the AGM business will include at least one change to the committee. There are no current plans for any special resolutions at this point, but members will be notified in advance if there are any other changes that will require a vote.

As with the Annual Dinner, we will shortly post a club event on Spond for the AGM, and further details and updates will be available there closer to the time.

Rides and ride leader guidelines

As many of you will know, since taking up his role as Rides Secretary in April 2023, John Carolin has been busy making some changes to the rides and ride leader guidelines on our website to remove some anomalies and bring them up to date with current CUK policies. The results of John’s excellent work can be found at:

· for the rides guidelines; and

· for the ride leader details.

Please take some time out to review these pages. Even some of our most experienced riders might learn something! It is in everyone’s interests for our groups rides to be run safely and under consistent procedures.

WSCC Ride with GPS account

Whilst on the subject of club rides, it may be worth a reminder that we have recently renewed the club’s subscription to RideWithGPS. This allows every member to access the premium features of this route planning tool, and for both riders and ride leaders to benefit from the growing library of gpx files that are stored in the club’s account, conveniently organised by start point. Please take a look at the website details, to be found at:

First Aid Courses

Many of you will also be aware that Keith Stainer has taken the lead for the committee to organise a series of practical first aid courses at Merrist Wood college, run by Jen Craven from Wimbledon First Aid. Feedback from those who have attended the two courses to date has been very positive. The third group of 8 club members is due to benefit from Jen’s dynamic teaching later this month, and if there is sufficient interest we will consider extending this further in 2024, in conjunction with some online options.

Club Audax events 2024

Finally, a brief mention of the two main fundraising events that the club plans to run in 2024:

·      After a gap of a couple of years, the Elstead Audax rides will return this year, on Sunday 16 June, organised by Neil McIntyre; and

·      The Tour of the Hills Audax will take place on Sunday 11 August, with me again in charge of the admin, along with Jill and her catering team.

Look out for further announcements on these events, and also for requests for volunteers to help to make them a success. And of course if you’d like to register an interest in helping, both Neil and I would be very pleased to hear from you.

That’s all for now.  I look forward to seeing you out on the road in 2024 – happy cycling!