Author Topic: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.  (Read 1107 times)

FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« on: May 07, 2019, 06:42:34 pm »
If you fancy doing this ride in 2019 (and why wouldn't you ?), it's time to start looking at train tickets.

Travel info first:
You'll need to get to either of Manchester's main stations (Piccadilly or Victoria) in time to ride to Albert Square for a midnight departure to Blackpool.
Most trains back to home depart from Blackpool North station. There is a direct Virgin service to London Euston and Northern Rail run direct to Manchester. Other destinations are (probably) best served by travelling to Preston and changing there.
You must have bike reservations for Virgin and Trans Pennine Express. Northern don't care as long as you're not creating too much of an obstruction. If you're going to use another train co. please check their bike policy.

The ride:
It's hilly but most of the hills are long and not too steep although there are exceptions to this. It also means that the descents are the type where you can just let the bike go.
This year I'm going to cut out some of last year's gravel section as we exit Manchester; we'll use the best surfaced section of last year's route before we climb to Prestwich. It'll mean we have an extra climb but it'll keep us off potentially busy main roads and we do all the initial ascending in one go. The main road goes up and down several times.
The mid-way stop is at a 24 hour McDonald's on the outskirts of Blackburn. Sorry about that (McDonald's not Blackburn). I'm hoping that last year's cafe in Fleetwood will be able to recreate that unique al fresco experience for us.
The final part of the ride takes us down Blackpool Prom to the Tower and drinks*. Taking the line of least resistance, it may well be a Wetherspoon's but I'm going to try very hard to find an alternative.
Whatever I come up with, it'll be a few minutes ride from Blackpool North.

A few final things to consider about the route; it's in the North and it goes up high on to the moors so there is the possibility of weather and not the good kind. We've had most things on previous rides including, briefly, snow. It's also been glorious all night......
We go through some remote areas so a bike failure could mean a long walk and/or an expensive taxi ride.
There tends to be a small group on this ride so everyone gets to know everyone else; we suffer and enjoy together :stop::cheers:.

Finally, we'll have a brief stop to remember jogler/Alan S.
I'll bring flowers.

You need to register. Go here;
Other info on the rides and the group is there as well.

If you have any questions, please ask away.

Last year's Cyclechat thread is here:-

Hope you can make it.


*Optional but highly recommended.


  • Timelord
Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2019, 07:27:12 pm »
In.  Hopefully we won't need to charter a train or anything.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...


  • On top of the Galibier
Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2019, 09:18:23 pm »
I think that I may well be interested. I was going to take the following week off work anyway, so this gives me a starter for a direction to head! Plenty of trains from York as well.

Edit: Signed up & registered.
Born to ride my bike, forced to work! ;)

British Cycling Regional Track Commissaire
British Cycling Regional Circuit Commissaire


  • Dez's butler
    • Musings of a Gentleman Cyclist
Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2019, 08:30:34 pm »
Will be in Wales. I sort of fancy this some time, my dear wife hailing from the Pennine side of Manchester, and having spent 3 years "studying" at Poulton-le-Fylde, 3 miles this side of Blackpool. Indeed, it was there that I met the 18-year-old Mrs. Wow-to-be.
Eating's a serious business. Don't bollocks around wagging your tail.

Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2019, 06:04:00 pm »
It'll be good to meet you yorkie.

In other news, I was selling the idea of this ride to the Chorlton(CH) Massive on yesterday's ride.
There is interest and, so far, six of them have expressed interest with two pretty much certain and a third very likely if she gets her new bike in time.


  • It'll soon be summer
    • Charity ride Durness to Dover 18-25th June 2011
Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2019, 10:10:21 pm »
Sorry - I'm in Scotland.
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” -Albert Einstein

Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2019, 06:03:41 pm »
Sorry - I'm in Scotland.

Shame, you'll be missed.
It's worth noting, for future rides, that I'm ambivalent about mudguards; use them or not, I don't care.
How the Friday's have changed  ;).

Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2019, 10:34:31 pm »
Sorry Andrew, I can’t make it either.
I am often asked, what does YOAV stand for? It stands for Yoav On A Velo

Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2019, 06:30:34 pm »
You'll also be missed yoav.

In other news, the cafe have come back to me: they're happy for us to go back there.
They need to know how many people want a veggie breakfast so please indicate either on here or via pm.
There are currently  19 riders signed up with 2 of the ChorltonCH Massive still to do so; they've already told me they're going to ride.

Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2019, 07:38:29 pm »
Those people signed up for the ride should have received a version of this:-

"Thanks for signing up for this ride.

If you haven't let me know a breakfast preference please do so asap; the default option at the cafe is "Meat".
There are, currently, 23 riders signed up. That's if I've counted correctly; some of you appear to have signed up twice.

I've already started battery charging and I'll be tyre and bike checking tomorrow.
This is the method I use for tyres:-

The weather forecast isn't great so anything we can do to reduce the chance of punctures or mechanicals will be helpful.
Please bear in mind that we go high up on to the moors between Manchester and Blackburn so it can get very cold. Bring an extra top.
If nothing else, it'll be useful on the long, long descents.

I can't do a "meet and greet" at Piccadilly Station this year so please plan your own route to the start point in Albert Square in front of MCR's iconic town hall. Mind the tram tracks.

It will be worth looking at the threads on Cyclechat:-

and yACF:-

I'll post a version of this e-mail on both sites.

Fingers crossed for the weather on Friday and thanks again for signing up,


Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2019, 06:09:29 pm »
A copy and paste from Cyclechat:-

"It's strange what a little time and reflection does to your memories.
If I'd been organised (and sober) enough to write this on Saturday I'd have gone on about the unrelenting rain, the tough hills, the monstrous wind, everything being "epic" but that I'd enjoyed it.
A few days later it doesn't seem so bad; drizzle from time to time before McDonald's and a bit of rain afterwards although I still remember the wind in the same way and the ride was very enjoyable.

Back to the beginning and I got to ChorltonCH to meet the Massive way too early. It was raining a bit but it was warm and I took a layer off but kept the waterproof on. It stayed on 'til BPool.......
The various Massive members arrived on time and there were the usual "What are we doing this for ?" comments. We all say the same things on FNRttC, we just say them more frequently when it's raining. Which it was.
Into MCR early and some sheltering opposite the town hall since Albert Square was fenced off for MIF and cyclists started to arrive from all directions.
All were on time so we set off almost bang on midnight for the schlep towards Salford along some really crap cycle lanes. We also made our 1st and 2nd crossings of the River Irwell.
The shortened off-road section came and went quickly (two more Irwell crossings) and the hill up to Prestwich was barely noticed by the group.
MAC and James were ready and waiting so we continued our convoy to Bury and stopped, as we always do, to remember AlanS/jogler.
Layers were adjusted for the climbing that was about to begin; Bury to Tottington is a gradual grind before the road steepens for a short time and then descends. This was the first stretch without street lights.
The safety warning about the tricky bend in the dip was heeded (at least everyone made it round) as was the advice to "let it rip" on the following dip and we regrouped in Edgworth. The Rose and Crown was closed, unlike last year.
The climb up towards the Grane Road stretched the group out but it didn't matter; the wait at the top wasn't long and it was still comfortably warm. As a further bonus, compared to last year, we could see the poles that guide the snow ploughs and the line in the centre of the road at the same time. We could also see up and down rather than feeling it.
The descent towards Blackburn and McD's is lovely (at 02.30; lots of fast traffic during the day). It always seems to repay the effort taken to get to the top so we were a cheery group when we arrived. My morale was also boosted because we were earlier than last year. And it wasn't raining.
I'd said to a few people that setting off again would be unpleasant but I hadn't anticipated the rain starting with a vengance. Despite my earlier comments about memories softening, it was a downer. Still, the Fridays being the Fridays, we cursed quietly and got on with it. Then I took a wrong turn and we had to back track. I'd like to say that was the 1st time I've gone wrong there but..........
Back on track there was the drag through what was left of Blackburn and then the fabulous descent to Ribchester. I stop on the bridge over the Ribble to look back at the line of lights coming down the hill. It's a great sight.
I always think of the climb from Ribchester to Longridge as being particularly cruel. There are lots of false summits and the last rise is the steepest.
At least there's a bench to sit on at the top.
Again it didn't take long to regroup and we set off but managed to lose the back of the ride temporarily. Back together again and in daylight we tackled the lanes pretty much as a peleton before we hopped on to the A6 for a few miles. West of Garstang it's incredibly flat and we made good progress before the boring drag into Fleetwood.
A slightly early arrival at Frankie's and Bronnie's for breakfast was both a surprise and relief to Bronnie; given the weather, she'd been expecting a text in the middle of the night saying "We're not coming". She clearly doesn't know the Fridays.
Unlike last year, we didn't sit outside but, like last year, tea, coffee and food arrived quickly and with good humour. It was also delicious although I have to admit that, after riding through the night, my standards may lessen slightly. In those circumstances I'll probably eat anything. Except andouillette, obvs. Joking aside, I did enjoy it and they do try very hard.
Then came the final stretch which meant going back outside into a freshening wind and the roughest few miles that I've experienced on a FNRttC.
That part of the memory hasn't softened; it was gruesome. I must check on Strava to see if my highest heart rate coincided with being flicked sideways by the wind as I passed a gap in the sea wall. The sand blasting in to my face (and mouth and ears) just compounded the misery.
Thankfully the cross wind relented as we turned round Rossall Point and it became a cross/tailwind speeding progress towards Blackpool and Wetherspoons after pictures under the tower.
The pub was very busy but we managed to get enough seats for everyone and the over-riding sentiments seemed to be:-
"Thank goodness that's over."
"Let's do it again next year."
"More beer ?"
The responses were:- Yes; YES; YES.

Back in MCR (after an interesting journey) a few of the Massive went for a beer. Then another. As we do.

In retrospect, I think this was one of the most miserable MCR based FNRttC and yet one of the best.
The weather wasn't great (really Sherlock ?) but, wind along the Prom aside, it wasn't epic.
What was epic though was the spirit of the group; no surprise with a Fridays ride but still........ it's humbling and uplifting.

Thanks to everyone for checking your bikes over; no punctures or mechanicals. Marvellous.
Particular thanks to bazzer for TEC duties and the way-markers en route. I've said it before but a group that can look after itself really helps the ride leader.

Further thanks for making the effort to come to MCR for the ride.
Hope to see you next year.

ETA: Strava, so it did happen

It cruelly (IMO) highlights the wrong turn."

More stuff, including pictures, over there as well.


Re: FNRttc Manchester-Blackpool 7th June 2019.
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2019, 11:20:25 pm »
I really love that you stop to remember Alan.

L'enfer, c'est les autos.