Cycling in Sussex: Clubs, routes and where to buy and hire
PUBLISHED: 15:09 18 April 2016 | UPDATED: 15:19 21 February 2018
Sussex is a beautiful place to cycle. Hazel Sillver suggests some of the most scenic places to get pedalling and where to buy and hire bikes
Mountain Bikes and Rides, Storrington
South Downs Bikes offers a range of road and mountain bikes, as well as clothing and accessories. There are monthly weeknight and weekend shop rides, followed by beers and burgers.
01903 745534; southdownsbikes.com
This newly-opened shop specialises in electric bikes with lots of Kalkhoff models to see and test ride. The company also plans to build up a small fleet of electric bikes to hire by the day.
Ladies’ Cycling Club, Chichester
The Biking Belles meet twice a week in spring and summer, for a group ride of 25-50 miles, followed by tea and cake. The women also get together to go hiking and meet for monthly pub suppers. New Belles are welcome, if fit enough to ride 20 miles.
Mountain Biking, Black Down
Cycle to the highest point in the South Downs National Park – the beautiful heather-clad Black Down. Explore the pine woodland on an easy-going loop of bridleways or choose more challenging terrain on uneven, winding paths.
Salterns Way Cycle Route, Chichester to West Wittering
Explore Chichester Harbour via this 12-mile (19km) bicycle way, which runs from The Cross, Chichester to the gorgeous sandy beaches of West Wittering; taking you along designated cycle paths, country lanes and the odd road.
Download the map at conservancy.co.uk
Road Cycling Club, Ditchling
The Sussex Nomads club meet every Sunday throughout the year, whatever the weather. The group splits into four groups of varying speeds along scenic routes of 40-60 miles (65-95km), with a cake stop along the way.
Electric Bikes, Brighton
Electric Bikes Sussex is a family-run shop in Brighton Marina that hires, sells and repairs a range of electric bikes. Hire some wheels and head off for a scenic, electric-charged pedal along the seafront.
01273 625060; electricbikessussex.co.uk
Mountain Bike Club, Horsham
The Horsham Mountain Bike Club meets every Saturday for a two-and-a-half to three hour ride, as well as getting together for rides on weekday evenings. Popular haunts include the South Downs and the Surrey Hills.
Second-hand bikes, Hove
The G-Whizz shop is jam-packed with good quality second-hand bicycles. The friendly team will help you select the best model for your use and budget and will watch you pedal up and down, to ensure the bike suits your height. They also offer servicing and repairs.
01273 749049; g-whizzcycles.co.uk
South Downs Way, Devil’s Dyke
It is possible to mountain bike along most of the beautiful South Downs Way: go to nationaltrail.co.uk to download The South Downs Way Mountain Bike Guide leaflet. One of the best sections is Chanctonbury Ring to Ditchling Beacon, including Devil’s Dyke.
Cuckoo Cylceway, Eastbourne to Heathfield
The Cuckoo Trail is a 14-mile (23 km) cycleway that follows the route of a disused railway line. It is part of the National Cycle Network and runs from Hampden Park to Polegate, Hailsham, and finally Heathfield, taking you through farmland, meadows and woodland.
Print off the map at sustrans.org.uk
Bike Hire, Forest Row
Forest Row Cycle Hire is an initiative created by Forest Row County Council, which hires out bikes on Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays. Borrow bikes for adults and children, helmets and tag-along trailers for toddlers, shopping or the dog.
07539 927467; facebook.com/forestrowcyclehire
Bike Shop, Eastbourne
Phoenix Cycles is a family-run business offering a range of rides, including road, hybrid, BMX, downhill, commuter and mountain bikes. They also specialise in Bespoke Build Bikes designed specifically for your training and your body, and offer a refurb service for old beloved bikes.
01323 729060; phoenixcycles.co.uk
Cycling Club, Battle and Robertsbridge
The 1066 Cycling Club organises group rides, as well as working together to improve local cycling facilities. Their rides include easy novice routes, hills, long distance road rides and muddy off-road scampers.
Forest Way Cyclepath, East Grinstead to Groombridge
This 10-mile route is part of the National Cycle Network and follows the trail of a disused railway line, through the fields and woods of the Weald, from East Grinstead to Groombridge in Kent. Stop off en route in Hartfield or Forest Row for a bite to eat.
Find the map at sustrans.org.uk