EuroVelo 12 – Yorkshire, Day 1: The Humber Bridge To Beverley

My timing is exquisite; I’ve just arrived at Beverley Youth Hostel and it has started raining… I got no further than typing those words before the hostel manager came to rescue me from the raindrops. I locked Wanda in the shed (if you think that a curious thing for me to write, please take a few moments to catch up by reading a few of the earlier posts and working out who Wanda is), snoozed for half an hour or so in the dorm, showered, changed, headed into town for a little more exploration but got no further than the local pub…

…where I am continuing to write this. It’s a popular place full of the good folk of Beverley. So busy in fact – it’s only 6:30pm – that one wonders if something special is about to happen. Do you think they had heard I was in town? I’ve not yet been recognised. It seems unlikely. Very unlikely…

So, today’s summary. 60km in total consisting of three rides; the first from home to Huddersfield station…

…the second from Hull station to the Humber Bridge…

…and the third from the Humber Bridge to Beverly:

It will come as no surprise….

BREAKING NEWS: It’s quiz night at the Monks Walk Inn which could answer the earlier question regarding why the pub is so busy. The quizmaster has just arrived with a briefcase. It is clearly a serious affair.

…that the third of those rides was the longest at 40km. However, the most taxing climb was the one within 200m of my front door in West Yorkshire. The topography has been somewhat ironed out since.

It being four years since I have cycled with heavy panniers, the ride up that first hill was tentative to say the least. Just the two for this trip – on the back wheel – as I don’t need the camping gear. That will increase to four when I head to Spain later in the month. It’s a gradual return to hard-core cycle touring.

The train was mercifully only busy rather than packed and Wanda found her place with few problems. Within 90 minutes I was back where I found myself at the end of the 2015 ride from Tarifa to Nordkapp; with a bicycle, on the platform of Hull train station, wondering to myself ‘what next?’.

Now back at the Youth Hostel in Beverley. After 60km, my body could not cope with an arduous pub quiz. I have eaten a delicious plate of spaghetti mixed with curried chick peas. I will sleep well tonight.

The first thing I needed to do this morning upon arrival in Hull was to make my way to the southern point of the Humber in order to start the trek along the Yorkshire section of the EuroVelo 12 for proper. It passes over the Humber Bridge and so did I. Twice. First heading south against the wind then, gust-assisted, north. Bridges are great fun and memories of my bridge-related exploits in Norway came to mind. The Humber Bridge is looking a tad dated and it’s now many years since it has lost its world’s longest suspension bridge title yet it remains the longest suspension bridge in the world that you can cross on foot.

The suburbs of Hull are in complete contrast to its smart centre. If they were able to do so in a humane way, the German Luftwaffe would be welcome to come back and have a second go. The burgers of Kingston-upon-Hull could then have a second go at rebuilding the outskirts.

There is one redeeming feature of the drab housing estates of Hull; they are well served by segregated cycling facilities. Or rather they were when the lanes were built. These post-war additions to the urban environment have not needed the German Air Force to destroy them, just time. Almost every kilometre upon which the EuroVelo 12 piggybacks has never been maintained to the extent that is required. The network must have been a marvel to behold in the 1970s. Now, it’s just embarrassing and yet another symptom of Britain building stuff but not being willing to maintain it as we have seen this week with the reservoir in the Peak District.

The highlight of Hull is the the centre. Serious money has been spent in renovation and modernisation. Some areas are simply delightful, the roads of the old town particularly so. I ate lunch in the trendy but non-pretentious Trinity covered market just to one side of the cathedral. Very nice indeed.

The cycle from the edge of the greater Hull sprawl to Beverley didn’t take long at all. Perhaps only an hour of negotiating country roads and farmers’ fields was needed. And then, somewhat abruptly, the towers of the Minster appeared above the trees. There is something very Dutch about Beverley. It’s perhaps all the red bricks…

Categories: Adventure, Cycling, Travel

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4 replies »

  1. Yes, Beverley’s ace. Nice Youth Hostel, eh? Ancient convent or something. Next time, have a ยฃ2 pint in equally ancient, gaslit Nellie’s, York’s most remarkable pub! Have a great trip!

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