This ride, which now has legendary status amongst Britain's biking community, has taken place every year since it was inaugurated by Barry Mason in 2001. Although Barry died more than five years ago, there is no diminution in the interest that people show in doing his ride. The ride doesn't yet have the same status as the Ace Cafe, but we're working on it. It is a great way to explore some of the lesser known features of central London on the quietest day of the year.
We meet at Cutty Sark Gardens at 10am and cycle along National Route 4 past Russia Dock and Rotherhithe to meet up with more cyclists at the Southwark Needle at 11am. We then ride around London looking at some of its fascinating and lesser-known features on a route that takes us up to Edgware Road. Many people just come for a couple of hours, but if you can stay longer we can have lunch at the Beirut Cafe, where we have eaten for the last two years. This restaurant is a Lebanese restaurant which opens as usual on Christmas Day.
Previous years have seen upwards of 100 cyclists of all ages, genders, ethnicities and body-mass indices take part, and we usually get a few skiving Santas thrown in.
This was the route we took for our 2015 Christmas Day ride:
Those wishing to come on the ride are asked to bring warm clothing, water, snacks, lights, basic tools and a spare inner tube in case you have a puncture (particularly important for this ride as there will no public transport on Christmas Day). Active parents are most welcome on the ride, provided that they are accompanied by at least one responsible child, and behave themselves. All should have at least basic road cycling experience.
All our rides are turn up and go, but, if you want to, you can sign up to this ride on the goskride.com website.