Shipwrights Way: why Hampshire’s new cycling trail is a perfect way to explore Southern England
A new trail lets city types explore Hampshire — and get fit — on two wheels. Just don’t forget the pub pitstop, says Frankie McCoy
- FRANKIE MCCOY
- Friday 5 August 2016
Before you read any further, buy some padded shorts. Because if you fancy a weekend spinning along 50 miles of stunning East Hampshire countryside, you’re going to need them. Besides that, no experience is necessary to ride the Shipwrights Way, Hampshire’s new 50-mile path, which opens officially next week. I made it (despite the unpadded agony) — and my cycling experience is limited to drunken Boris Bike wobbles and that spin class I accidentally took last year.
Part of Cycle Southern England’s new initiative to get more of us pale, wheezing city dwellers into the countryside, the Shipwrights Way runs from Alice Holt Forest, south of Farnham, over the South Downs and all the way to the sea, finishing at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. It’s named to reflect the journey of oak from forest to docks during ye olde times of medieval shipbuilding.