This week's Newbury Velo Quest is to explore the chalk white horses of the surrounding area.
Our shorter route is a gentle 31miles through quiet lanes and goes via the Inkpen or Ham Hill White Horse (late 1860s). This has sadly been lost over time but you can clearly see the escarpment where it was once visible.
The middle distance is 45miles and will take you along the Lambourn Valley, up over the Lambourn gallops and on to the well-known, Bronze aged, Uffington White Horse. Uffington is considered one of the earliest chalk horses in Britain and as a result, is very different in its design to the others.
For those who fancy an epic and wish to take full advantage of the good weather and light summer evenings, we have an 86mile 'lumpy' route. This visits six of the chalk white horses which are later and more lifelike than that of Uffington, all of which date between 1780 and c1864. Ham Hill, Alton Priors, Cherhill, Broad Town, Hackpen and Marlborough.
As ever with the Newbury Velo Quest, we would love to see your photos of the white horses (perhaps even real white horses?) The more imaginative the better! You will then be put into a draw to win a Newbury Velo water bottle
Routes posted below.
31mile route: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/course/37137707
Notes: Best viewing point to see where Ham Hill white horse once stood is by the metal double farm gates flagged.
45mile route: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/course/37144121
Notes: You will struggle to see the Uffington White Horse from the road that goes immediately under it. You may need to be imaginative, walk up to the top or you may get a glimpse once down on the B4507.
86mile route: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/course/35158564
Notes: Most chalk figures are obvious and flagged on the GPX file. However, Ham Hill is best seen from the flagged double gates. Cherwell can be seen in a field gateway opposite Oxley Clocks. Broad Town is best seen once in the small churchyard (flagged). Marlborough is very hard to see but you can get a glimpse, behind some trees, from the A4 next to the school sports grounds. (Unless those in the know use the track/bridlepath beside the river towards Manton for a clear view. Possibly not one for your best bike.)