Rob Ainsley’s first bike was run over by a laundry van in 1968. Luckily he was in a cake shop at the time. His best bike, the one he cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats and London to Athens on, was crushed by a lorry in 2001. Luckily he was in a pub at the time. His next favourite bike was stolen from outside a curry house in Twickenham in 2005. Unfortunately he was in the middle of a jalfrezi and didn’t notice. He dislikes his current bike and has spent hours in cake shops, pubs and curry houses, but to no avail.
Rob once visited all the places in the world called Bath, and its twins, most by bike, which earned him an interview on Blue Peter in 2001; he received a prawn sandwich for this. He lives in London with his partner Rebecca, who also cycles everywhere, almost as slowly.
Visit Rob’s website at www.robainsley.com.
50 Quirky Bike Rides
50 terrific bike rides, taking pedal power all over England and Wales, all of them easy and all of them delightful. The spooky Ashborne Tunnel, the vertiginous aqueduct over a gorge at Pontcysyllte and a lovely flat ride by canals near Bath. Swoops over bridges and hills, rides on ferries and steam railways, fords and causeways, the longest cyclable suspension bridge in the world and the wonder of cycle polo. Some rides are short, some can stretch over a holiday. All entries have snack stops, a tourer’s ticklist and spots for teas, cakes and beer. Comprehensively illustrated, with map references and route tips, 50 Quirky Bike Rides is a treasure-store of accessible outdoor adventure.