A fun blast around Hamsterley, on some of the off piste routes and just random routes I chose to take!!
A good, quite atttritional route with some good single track sections up on the moor. I wouldn’t do it again simply because a lot of the route now seems to cross private roads or moors where cycling is not allowed – making it quite difficult to navigate around!
More info here: https://my.viewranger.com/route/details/MTQ4MTU=
A remote but well tracked route. A couple of big ups and downs and some fantastic single track across the moors.
More info here: https://pedalnorth.com/rudland-rigg-2/
A Christmas present for mam and the wife that I tagged along to!
I’ll be honest, I wasn’t expecting a great deal from this – he was never exactly my favourite from Strictly, but it was an excellent show!
It’s hard to say what was best, the live singers and band, the music, the show or the dance routines! A variety of fun, fast, slow, emotional and powerful routines and some humerous chats from Brendan in between.
The highlight definitely the routine to Cinderella that the W had danced to with her Dad on our wedding day. We were in pieces!!
We had the pleasure of catching Kelly Jones on the latest leg of his solo tour “Don’t let the devil take another day” at the Sage in Newcastle. Mixing in stripped back versions of Stereophonics classics with some old solo material, a couple of covers, some upcoming new Stereophonics songs – which seem inspired by and in the same vein as this solo set – and tales from his life – the good the bad and the ugly, it was a special night.
Suddenly his solo material and all those end of album crooners made sense. It’s like they were all written with tonight in mind. Backed by an excellent band and an amazing venue, every note sounded pitched to perfection and Kelly’s voice was as ever on top form. The rearrangement of Phonics songs with violins, trumpets and even the odd ukulele worked brilliantly. The tribute to former band member Stuart Cable was touching and moving and it definitely felt like the audience was sharing a heartfelt moment with Kelly as the whole place fell silent for “Before anyone knew our name”.
It’s hard to compare to Stereophonics gigs of the past because this definitely was not a Stereophonics gig, but it was a fantastic night up there with the best gigs I’ve been to.
A special mention to the support act, The Wind and the Wave who were also excellent in their own stripped back performance and when joining Kelly and the band for the Tom Petty cover (“actually it’s more of a Stevie Nick’s cover,”, Patty of the Wind and the waves informs us) “Stop dragging my heart around”.
Can’t wait for the new Stereophonics material now…. and the tour to go with it…!!!
In the meantime, when life gets shitty, don’t let it drag you down, “don’t let the devil take another day” because ” life can be hard, but it’s the one we all got”. You made us feel like the one, Kelly. Thank you.
Set list below is from a different venue but was more or less the same minus Just Looking, Feel and Jealousy.
Went to see this at the Sunderland empire.
Hilariously funny, brilliant catchy songs and so so wrong. Loved it!!
I’ve still got maggots in my scrooooooooootum.
The Hamsterley Beast was a beast indeed!
8 hours saddle time. The first loop headed out into the Raby Estate for some slogging but also some super trails through the woods.
Then two laps of Hamsterley – some of the usual trails and some other. I missed the official cut-off for the last lap by 5 minutes, but carried on and completed it on my own anyway. I still managed to catch up people that had made the cut off.
It was a great event all in aid of Great North Air Ambulance.
Training ride for the Beast over at Chopwell Woods.
There’s a couple of really good trails here and lots of woodland trails to explore. Good spot for a few hours, but beyond that, you’ll start repeating yourself.