Fully equipped touring bike available to buy

As many of you will know, former SMCTC member George Ellis sadly died after a battle with cancer. George’s Specialized touring bike is being sold by the club with the proceeds to go to a prostate cancer charity, or possibly to Christie’s Hospital, where he was treated.

George's Specialized

The bike is fully equipped down to the last detail with 9-speed Deore gearing, a triple front-mech, Brooks Pro Titanium saddle (£160 new!), pump, lights, new wheels, top-quality rack etc. The frame size is 54 cm. It is also surprisingly light. With such a full specification the bike would be worth at least £250 normally, but the club is open to offers from members of £200 or above. If you are interested, please contact Harry Burton for details.

Harry receives Exceptional Volunteer Trophy

At the club room on Thursday 27th June David Goatman presented Harry Burton with his well-deserved trophy from Cycling UK as an exceptional volunteer. David had collected the trophy on behalf of Harry, who was unable to attend the award ceremony in London because he was touring in France.

Harry receives his trophy from Chairman David Goatman


Harry Burton wins Going the Extra Mile Award

Harry was recently nominated for a volunteer award given by Cycling UK. His category was “Exceptional Individual in a Cycling Group”. He was one of three finalists. When the envelope was opened at the CTC volunteer celebration held in London on 15th June (David Goatman was there to represent Harry, who is away touring in France) members will be pleased to hear that it was Harry’s name inside. Harry was awarded a “Going the Extra Mile” Trophy. See:

There will be a special club night to celebrate this achievement at 9.00 pm on Thursday 27th June.

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Harry touring in France, June 2019

Wherever next?

These SMCTC riders certainly get around! Here’s Pete Williams enjoying the view en-route from Porto to Lisbon. (And advertising the club too!)

Pete in Portugal

Update about George

George’s sister, Lucy, sent us this link to a Memorium page for George. It contains a brief biography and numerous photos. The video contains mostly a slide show of the photos, but it’s probably easier to study these by scrolling down and viewing them individually. There are a few of George cycling with SMCTC, and also some showing the red hair that we never saw, as well as an old-fashioned moustache! Before the photos are comments submitted by friends, including a rather revealing one about George test flying a Harrier jump jet.

George Ellis

It is with great sadness that we learned that George Ellis, a regular rider with our B group and Vets’ Wednesday rides for many years, has died in Texas after a prolonged battle with prostate cancer. George lived in Bramhall, but also had a home in Texas with his American wife Doris. As well as leading rides he took part in several tours organised by CTC and SMCTC, including both the UK and French end-to-ends. Here’s a picture of him on a South Manchester tour to Thiviers in France, in May 2012:

George, St-Jean de Cole

George Ellis in St-Jean-de-Cole

George will be remembered as a true gentleman and friend, always interesting to talk to, and with an extensive knowledge of engineering and aeroplanes. After graduating from Cambridge he was in the RAF (where he flew Lightnings!!), and then became a test pilot in both the USA and the UK. One of his hobbies was flying vintage aircraft at the Shuttleworth Collection in Bedfordshire ( Very few pilots were entrusted with flying these aircraft and George was one of them. He kindly made several trips with club members to the Collection’s open days, where his inside knowledge and friendship with the other volunteers gave a fascinating insight to the history , restoration, and experience of flying these ancient aircraft (literally) by the seat of the pants. His final job was as a regular airline Captain with EasyJet. A couple of years ago he and Doris moved permanently to their home in Texas, but George always came to see us when he was visiting the UK, most recently last summer when he dropped in one Wednesday to the Konak Cafe.

He will be sorely missed and our condolences go to Doris and other family members. RIP.

Majorcan Odyssey

SMCTC member Bill Irwin is having fun in Majorca:



Cycle network developments in Stockport

Stockport has secured susbstantial funding from the Greater Manchester Mayoral Challenge Fund to implement new cycling and walking paths. Click here for a summary of the proposed developments, which will be subject to consultation.

Changes to GPX Editor

I’ve previously used this to create GPS routes and have recommended it. However, the developer has made some changes so that the really useful routing is only available to subscribers, and this costs £20 per year. I also use a free account on Ride with GPS and also Komoot. You can still use GPX Editor free, but only with 'As the crow flies' (straight lines) or ‘Fastest' (uses main roads) as the routing methods.

The new routing methods also seem to be rather slow, but the system now offers the option to drag routes in order to make local edits, which is available free of charge in Komoot.

I guess if you want an easy-to-use routing system and you are likely to use it frequently then £20 a year is not bad — the developer has been doing this free for years!

Proposals for walking and cycling in Greater Manchester

You can find an outline of the latest proposals to be considered for development of walking and cycling in Greater Manchester in this MEN article: