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Proposed Wessex Trip - Wednesday 10th to Sunday 14th May 2017

Last year we organised a four-day cycle ride from Penzance to Exeter - see Exeter 2016 Trip to Cornwall. This time we plan to visit Wessex.

Participants will travel to Salisbury by train on the Wednesday and stay there for two nights (Wednesday and Thursday). On the Thursday we will do a loop - for example to Stonehenge. From Salisbury we will travel to Swanage (Friday night), Bridport (Saturday night) and return to Exeter on Sunday evening.

As last time, participants will have to arrange their own accommodation for the four nights away. Some chose to do this individually whilst others got together in groups of two or four to share the load. It will helpful to others if you could let us know where you have booked (see list below).

Each participant will have to perform one or more (depending on numbers) of the following roles:-

  • 'Expert Leader' who will review (and possibly modify) one of the routes on the web site and be prepared to lead it. On each day, given our numbers, there will be two leaders. They may or may not take the same routes.
  • 'Tea & Coffee Monitor' who will research suitable cafes on-route, and also recommend interesting sites to visit,
  • 'Evening Meal Reviewer' who will look for appropriate eateries for the evening – remember that we are likely to have some vegetarians in our group.

We are staying in Salisbury on both Wednesday and Thursday nights so will be possible to join the trip on Thursday evening. This might suit people who are only able to get one day off work.

Overnight Stops

<googlemap lat="50.85" lon="-2.6"

      width="600" height="300"  zoom="8"

(12) 51.068, -1.794 (3) 50.608, -1.960 (4) 50.733, -2.758 (5) 50.717, -3.533 </googlemap>

Sample Route

A sample route is available at Route Map.

2017 wessex sample route b.png

Day From To Total
Total Climb
Wednesday 10 May Exeter Salisbury - - -
Thursday 11 May Salisbury Stonehenge loop 46 400 66
Friday 12 May Salisbury Swanage 84 790 124
Saturday 13 May Swanage Bridport 80 880 124
Sunday 14 May Bridport Exeter 83 1200 143

Note: 'Effective Distance' is the actual distance plus 5 km for each 100 metres climbed. It gives a more realistic indication of how hard a ride will be.


Please let us know where you have booked, it may help others looking for accommodation.

  • Salisbury
    • The Kings Head, 1 Bridge Street, SP1 2ND (x 8)
  • Swanage
    • Amberlea Guest House, 36 Victoria Avenue, BH19 1AP (x 10)
    • YHA, Cluny Crescent, BH19 2BS
  • Bridport
    • Tiger Inn, 14 - 16 Barrack Street, DT6 3LB (x 10)
    • AirBnB, Bridport, St Andrew's Rd (x 3)


From To Role Who
Salisbury Stonehenge Leader 1 Tim
Salisbury Stonehenge Leader 2 Jenny
Salisbury Stonehenge Coffee Judy
Salisbury Evening Meal Sheena/Penny
Salisbury Swanage Leader 1 Roger
Salisbury Swanage Leader 2 Keith a.m. / Hugh p.m.
Salisbury Swanage Coffee Marilyn
Swanage Evening Meal Kim
Swanage Bridport Leader 1 Hugh a.m. / Keith p.m.
Swanage Bridport Leader 2 Roy
Swanage Bridport Coffee Stephanie
Bridport Evening Meal Wolf
Bridport Exeter Leader 1 Glenis
Bridport Exeter Leader 2 Tom
Bridport Exeter Coffee Lyndsay


The judges for each day's prize giving will be as follows.

Evening Judges
Salisbury (Wednesday night)
Jenny Ingram
Tim Green
Judy Green
Penny Cockram
Salisbury (Thursday night)
Kim Littlewood
Marilyn Spurr
Roger Spurr
Keith Portlock
Swanage (Friday night)
Roy Russell
Stephanie Houghton
Hugh Roberts
Wolf Jenett
Bridport (Saturday night)
Kirby James
Glenis Pewsey
Lyndsay Kyrke Smith
Tom Ingram

Evening Meals

  • Salisbury: Wednesday 19:00 (pre orders required)
    • Ox Row Inn, 10-11 Ox Row, SP1 1EU
  • Salisbury: Thursday 19:00
    • Leonardo's Restaurant, 18 Oatmeal Row, SP1 1TF
  • Swanage: Friday 19:00
    • The Black Swan, 159 High Street, BH19 2NE
  • Bridport: Saturday 19:00
    • The Stable, Behind The Bull Hotel, 34 East Street, DT6 3LF

Morning Coffee & Afternoon Tea

  • Thursday (Salisbury Stonehenge loop)
    • Hillside Cafe, Cosford nr Wylye. BA12 0JZ Tel: 01985 850712
    • Stonehenge Visitor Centre, SP4 7DE
  • Friday (Salisbury to Swanage)
    • Hyde-Out Cafe, Hyde, Fordingbridge, SP6 2QB. Tel: 01425 655 392
    • Cranborne Garden Centre, Cranborne, BH21 5PP. Tel: 01725 517 248
  • Saturday (Swanage to Bridport) - ** -- Stephanie --
  • Sunday (Bridport to Exeter) - ** -- Lyndsay --
    • Postles Cafe, Charmouth
    • The Beach Cafe, Charmouth.

Optional Ideas

Some participants are considering cycling up to Salisbury on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Others plan to take the train up on the Wednesday but get off early and cycle into Salisbury.

The map below shows the route from Gillingham Station to Stourhead and then down the Wylye Valley to Salisbury. This route is 63 km long with a climb of 400 m.

Route Map

Gillingham salisbury.png