Sunday, 19 May 2013

19th May 2013 Meriden Memorial Day

Out today with Graham.  We don't normally go out on a Sunday but today is an exception. We are going to Meriden where this a national monument dedicated to cyclists who lost their lives, on active  service, during the last two world wars.

The Bear Inn Berkeswell

We met up at Leek Wootton and went out to Meriden via Kenilworth and Balsall Common.  Just before Meriden we went through Berkeswell and stopped at the Bear Inn for a photo op.  This place was a 17th Coaching Inn and has served the village since those days.  

Berryfields Farm Shop

We had left in plenty of time and got to Meriden nice and early for the 11 o'clock service. "Time for tea" said Graham so we called in to Berryfields Farm Shop on the outskirts of Meriden.  The shop and coffee shop are located in an old farm building and they offer a large range of fresh meat and vegetables. The cafe also offered a good selection of meals but we stuck to a cup of tea only as there was a promise of cake later!

Cyclists Memorial Service Meriden

Arrived at Meriden in time for the service.  The village has a war memorial dedicated to those cyclists who died in the Great War 1914-1919. Money was raised from cycling organisations throught Britain and on May 21st 1921, before about 20,000 cyclists, the memorial was unveiled. Meriden was chosen as it is believed to be the centre of England, thus making it more accessible to people. A service has been held annually since that day. In 1963, a further plaque was added commemorating cyclists who had died during World War II. The local vicar conducted a service and was supported by Bulkington Silver Band.

After at the Village Hall

After the service most of the congregation went to the Village Hall for tea and cake. It was a good opportunity to meet fellow cyclists, some of whom had come some distance; there were folks from Leicester, Luton, Sandwell, Dorset and Solihull to name a few.

A very good day today. Weather was perfect, and apart from getting slightly lost on the way home, we had a good ride, about 27.6 miles today. Glad we went.

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