Newbury Velo news

Velo Quest - What have the Romans ever done for us?

NV quest

As ever, although we are limited to riding with household members or one other person, we love to see your photos from the ride shared back here on our Facebook page. We will be giving away free Newbury Velo water bottles to random photo posters (hint: you can only win a bottle once and we've already given loads away, so if you've not won yet you will have a good chance)

Wearing Roman dress guarantees a water bottle. The theme this weekend is "What Have the Romans Ever Done For Us?"

We have rides of 25, 32 and 59 mile lengths.

We'll be looking at the earliest written mention of West Berkshire where Speen (Spenae) gets a mention in 150AD during the reign of Roman Emperor Antoninus. This jewel in West Berkshires crown was noted as being a small settlement and crossing point for the River Lambourn. Speen (Spinis/Spenae) is derived from the Latin meaning "thorney place". The route will go near the crossing of the River Lambourn on the Oxford road.

We'll also visit ancient Ladywell off Speen Lane and a short walk down the grass footpath towards Speen church. This ancient healing well is believed to date back to Roman times. Perhaps you could try splashing a bit of water onto that creaking bottom bracket?

We'll then follow some lanes and sections of the A4 and B4000 (Bath Road and Ermin Way: yes, the Roman also gave us our H10/3 and H103a time trial courses), and head out to admire the spectacular mosaic at Littlecote Roman Villa near Chilton Foliat.

Finally, the 59 mile ride will also take in the remains of the Roman town of Silchester. This has the rare privilege of being a Roman town that failed to thrive after the Romans left. Note: all towns who's names end in "chester" were old roman towns

Have a great ride and we look forward to seeing your photos.

25 Mile with thanks to Rhian Salmon:

32 mile with thanks to Rhian Salmon:

59 mile with thanks to Rachael Elliott: