Hi all,

Just a friendly warning: I imagine that, like us, you have always thought of Les King as a helpful and considerate chap – always there when a puncture needs repairing, or saddles need upping or downing, and right there when a junction lies ahead with a cheery shout of, ‘Left here’, or ‘Right here’, or ‘Straight on’ – so much so that we have rather come to depend on him.

Imagine our disappointment when we were so badly let down today on a ride to meet the 40 plus group. We were happily riding along in the knowledge that Les and Gill would be right behind us ready to give advice and encouragement, (in fact I could swear I could still actually hear Les puffing as he tried to match our speed). Imagine our dismay, then, when on reaching our next junction at Stisted, Les was not in shouting distance, nor was he anywhere to be seen! Most inconsiderate!

Well, we could hardly be expected to navigate for ourselves so reluctantly set off back along the road to find out what he thought he was doing. Well, there they were, Les and Gill, lounging about the road in a most relaxed manner (some might attribute this to shock but to me it just seemed uncaring). Apparently his excuse for deserting us was that his saddle stem had broken clean off in mid-ride leaving him seatless, and Gill somewhat lacking in the handlebar department. Not everyone’s idea of a good excuse, but that’s all Les could come up with. Some consolation, I suppose, is that Gill and Les, thankfully, were not harmed at all, but sadly and of utmost concern was that the bike was in a very sore state and utterly unridable.

Fortunately, Les was able to phone a friend to come and rescue the said tandem – and I’m sure you will share our relief that the bike seemed to have suffered no further damage and is now being lovingly restored to it’s previous tip-top condition. We were encouraged to continue our ride to Woodham Walter so we set off in a northerly (could have been westerly or even easterly) direction and finally got home via Greenstead Green, Halstead, Bures and Aldham (where on earth is Woodham Walter???).

Do get that bike sorted Les, and come back to us. All is forgiven.

Pat and Paul