The city of Nice seen from the surrounding hillside bathed in sunshine

Home Travel StoriesFarewell to England Tour 2021

Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 6 (And 7 And 8)

Ride Date 23 August 2021

By Rev. Mick!

This seems to be the "things going wrong" day. I could not get camera to work on the phone.

At the end of yesterday there had been some ominous noises coming from my rear brake, the sort of "your brake shoes are down to the metal" sounds. The performance of which was also somewhat worrying. So I decided to make the run back through Dorset into Wiltshire, visiting Avebury before heading to my sister's in Bath. The plan being I could order brake shoes and get them couriered to my sister's. There with my brother in law's tools and nice garage I could fit them.

It was a very sunny day and once more there were times when I was a bit of a sweaty beast in all the wet weather gear. My buddy suggested a cargo net on the back however I never saw one for sale in the sunny little villages I rode through.

It was a big loop heading for Avebury and round back to Bath. For those of you who like visiting prehistoric monuments, Avebury has many advantages over Stonehenge. While it does not have the fame and maybe not quite the jaw dropping awe of the small area of big stones which Stonehenge has, it is not the centre of government rules and restrictions. 

I and my siblings grew up at the end of the generation of free access and I can remember sitting on and playing on the stones. Later as a late teen and early biker I remember being at the solstice free festivals, oh the halcyon hippie days. Nowadays there is an exclusion zone and only druids and those accepted by draw are able to ever get near them. 

Avebury is a much much larger site and less famous however you can still walk amongst and touch the actual stones as our forebears did. For those of us who grew up in the sixties and seventies there is the memory of "Children of The Stones", a truly eerie children's TV series, look it up it's still weird even now with a  "The Wicker Man" vibe. Not sure it would pass as suitable for kids now!

Then it was back up the B3143 and the very lovely aforementioned B3095. These are the sort of small roads I was getting to love. Work up round Warminster to Westbury then a little B road, B3098 all the way to Avebury. These B roads go everywhere they just take a slower way. 

If you get fine sunny day, take an afternoon in Avebury, look over at Silbury hill and ask yourself, what were they thinking here? Then a nice loop back through Devises, home to "Feret's Milk" as my father always called 6x they brew here. On the right day you get that yeasty grainy cooking smell from the brewery.

Once back at my sister's brake shoes were ordered. As they would not be here till the next day I decided I would take the train to Twickenham to see Steve and catch the train back down tomorrow. I'd fit shoes and be off again. Days 7 and 8 are not really for BAT.

Also the phone  which was getting close to being adjusted with the big hammer decided after turn off and on again to come back.

Looking over the dorset countryside
The English Countryside rolls of into the haze.


Contact Bikes And Travels using ren@bikesandtravels.com

Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 1 Mick's first day is a simple affair. Load up the Innova, head out and ride.
Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 2 Rev.Mick! sums up his arrival back into Wales.
Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 3 Mick is having a ride out with a friend, into the wilderness of Bristol. Can a vintage Velocette and a 125 complete the epic crossing of the Severn River?
Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 4 Mick receives the soaking of a lifetime before finding the wondrous beauty of Dorset. Beyond that he could tell you but he'd have to kill you.
Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 5 Mick finds his way around Dorset using every back road he can find. For himself and the Innova this is a perfect match made in heaven.
Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 6 (And 7 And 8) Mick is having one of "those" days as his tour of south west England continues. Not to worry, there's still much to see and think about before reaching the haven of family.
Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 9 (And Some 8) After trains and repairs Rev. Mick! is back on two wheels. He seems to be having a fabulous time returning to the haunts of his youth.
Farewell to England Tour 2021 - Day 10 (And 11) It looks as though Armageddon is on Rev. Mick!'s horizon and yet another fine day is to be found on the UK's roads. When you're touring Innova style there's nothing can stop you.

Reader's Comments

Upt'North ¹ said :-
Nice write up Mick. The mention of Devizes brought back memories. We used to do long runs to there on training runs.
Upt'North.
27/09/2021 23:30:59 UTC
Ren - The Ed¹ said :-
Long runs Upt'? Are we talking runs as in real runs with your legs? I'm guessing not.

I'm enjoying Mick's relaxed approach to problems and wishing I could adopt them myself. I guess it comes from years of travel experience plus knowing that there's tools and shelter accessible at his sister's place. This also reminds me I still have so much to see in England let alone the rest of the world.
28/09/2021 09:30:44 UTC
Ian Soady¹ said :-
I agree about Avebury. Many years ago a group of us were sitting about idly after an evening meal, and I have to say that some substances may have been smoked. One of our number (may even have been me) suggested a pootle down from Brum to Avebury. We had a Morris J2 minibus at the time (no idea why as it was perhaps the worst vehicle I've ever owned) so all plied in and set off, arriving in the early hours. The mist was covering the fields and the stones did look quite eerie. Memory fails in the detail at this distance but it may even have been around the summer solstice and getting close to dawn.

What looked even eerier was what looked like a dead newborn lamb at the foot of one of the stones. No idea whether its mother had left it there or whether it was part of some arcane local ritual. Whatever, we shot off to the (t)rusty J2 and sped off back north.

I've since visited several times but in broad daylight when it is much less scary. And as said, Silbury Hill is amazing.
04/10/2021 11:42:42 UTC

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