Great effort by the guys from Lanyon Plaza and massive thanks to Philip for the brilliant write up below! Glad you had a good day out!
‘Thankfully we managed to get a good day for our cycle to Holywood on Friday 3rd July, five of us (Colin Baird, Philip Goss, Philip Livingstone, Neil McCall and Colin Thompson – left to right in photo) assembled in front of Lanyon Plaza at lunchtime for the obligatory photo, there were a variety of bicycles from folding commuters to hybrids and road bikes – we’re a broad church so all were welcome and it enabled bikes that have been consigned to commuting duties to get some leisure use which can only be a good thing.
With the Tall Ships in town we were confronted with massive crowds as we met Sam Roberson in front of the Odyssey to bring our total up to six riders for the day, and off we went – “six of one or half a dozen of the other”. Cycling past the Bombardier factory wasn’t as traffic free as envisaged due to the park and ride system being utilised for the Tall Ships so we rode single file and stopped to regroup near the WOW bird sanctuary, once we reached the back of the Kinnegar barracks we had the roads to ourselves and made our way along the coast to Holywood.
In town we stopped at The Yard coffee shop for a mid ride chat over a cup of joe and a scone, we could sit outside and shoot the breeze while I tried to sort out the agenda for the next part of the ride.
With a mixed bunch, some were content to repeat the outward journey home while others were looking for a bit more. We split up into 3 groups, Colin Baird on his folding bicycle returned to Belfast through Loughshore Industrial Park which made sense given his choice of bike, a folding bike being unsuitable for any hills while Colin Thompson and Neil McCall cycled past Holywood Golf Club towards the Old Holywood Road and on to Stormont before heading for the city centre. That left Philip Goss, Sam Roberson and Philip Livingstone to take in a few hills by way of Craigantlet, Bradshaws Brae and Scrabo to reach Newtownards and then head for Comber, Moneyreagh and Carryduff before cycling down Saintfield Road into Belfast.
So, that was our lot – a day to release your cycle to work bike from the daily commute and use it for social, domestic and pleasure use’