Essex Branch Meetings 2021 dates and venues - Suggestions pleases for 2022

Hi, its a good time to fix our calendar for next year so I’m asking for suggestions on venues - I’ve picked the usual third Sunday of the month unless it clashes with say a Bank Holiday, fathers Days, Mothers Days or some other important event. A few members prefer a summer Thursday night meeting between May and September so I’ve pencilled in the first Thursday of the month, (but this can be changed to another date) I’m flexible on dates/times and just here to co-ordinate what everyone would like. I think we should include a June date for the Essex Camping weekend at the Star at Steeple again too though.

This year we’ve enjoyed quite a variety and mix of venues, including the Power Museum, airfield, various cafes and even the odd pub and one was even out of county xx So, with that all in mind, has anyone got any suggestions of places they’d like to suggest for a meeting etc please? Once I have a good list I’ll mix them up geographically as best I can and then we can publish them.

I will update this message and the provisional list as everyone’s suggestions and comments are received.

Sunday 24th January 2021 - The Great Bromley Cross, Ardleigh Rd, Colchester CO7 7TL. (already in our calendar)
Sunday 21st February 2021 - The Fox and Hounds, Chapel St, Steeple Bumpstead, Essex CB9 7DQ.
Sunday 21st March 2021 - The Cats, Blue Mill Lane, Woodham Walter, CM9 6LS. Cats, Woodham Walter •
Sunday 18th April 2021 - The Horns and Horseshoes, Foster St, Harlow, Essex, CM17 9HX.
Thursday Evening 6th May 2021 - The Chequers, The Square, Goldhanger, Maldon, Essex. CM9 8AS
Sunday 16th May 2021 - Naze Tower, Old Hall Lane The Naze, Walton-on-the-Naze CO14 8LE
Thursday Evening 3rd June 2021 - The Crown, Main Road, Wormingford, CO6 3AB Contact | The Crown Wormingford
Friday 18th to Sunday 20th June 2021 - Essex Branch Camping weekend - The Star at Steeple.
Sunday 20th June 2021 - The Star at Steeple, The Street, Steeple, Southminster, Essex, CM0 7LF.
Thursday Evening 1st July 2021 - The Lobster Smack, Haven Road, Canvey Island, SS8 ONR.
Sunday 18th July 2021 -Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome, Hackmans Lane, Purleigh, Maldon, Essex, CM3 6RN.
Thursday Evening 5th August 2021
Sunday 15th August 2021 - The Three Horseshoes, Molehill Green, Takeley, CM 22 6PQ.
Thursday Evening 2nd September 2021
Sunday 19th September 2021 - Prince of Wales, 2 Prince of Wales Road, Great Totham, Maldon, CM9 8PX.
Sunday 17th October 2021 - The Shepherd and Dog, Ballards Gore, Stambridge, Rochford, Essex, SS4 2DA.
Sunday 21st November 2021 - The Barns Tea Room, Cressing Temple, Witham Road, Braintree, Essex, CM77 8PD.
Saturday 11th December - 7pm Branch Christmas Dinner in the private dining room at The Thatchers, Mount Bures, Essex?
Sunday 19th December 2021 - Black Buoy, Garrison House, East Street, Wivenhoe CO7 9BS.
Sunday 16th January 2022

With lots of love, Evie

Notes: Mothers Day is 14th March. Fathers Day is 20th June

I’d like to suggest reverting to Thursday evenings during the summer months, maybe May to September inclusive?

Maybe a full branch visit back to the Crown at Wormingford?
Cross Keys at White Notley.

I wouldn’t have an objection to Thursday meetings if that’s the group preference. I personally prefer Sunday meetings as I’m not rushing out from work to get there especially if its a fair distance away, and then I’m not travelling back when its getting late and dark either. I’d be less inclined to attend a Thursday evening meeting if its a fair distance than I would if it was lunchtime on a Sunday, but as I say, I’ll go with the majority. If we’re split on a decision, we could always add in a Thursday meeting between May and September as well as a Sunday meeting and then everyone’s preference is captured - so we could add in say the first Thursday evening of May, June, July, August and September?

I see there have been plenty of views but not many venue suggestions yet - if we all picked one nice venue close to where we live that we knew would be suitable we would end up with a nice mix across the county and at least one local to where we live?

With lots of love, Evie

The Cats, Woodham Walter - - Small and low ceilings so better in the summer when you can sit outside. No food but great beer. Large carpark but I think it is gravel.

The Chequers, Goldhanger - - There is a small room at the front that we could possibly book, the pub is busy on Sunday lunchtimes as they do great food as well as good beer. Parking in the square outside but not ideal?

The Swan, Little Totham - - We have been there before and I am there most Fridays! Best beer in Essex, the food is good too. There is a side bar and a separate restaurant we could book either. Large beer garden and great beer festivals. Gravel car park so bring your stand puck!

Sundays in the summer have always been difficult for me as I have other things that consume my time. Sundays in the winter are fine. Thursdays in the summer were an antidote to my busy weekends but being summer it means that you rarely ride home in the dark and if you do I suspect that your bike will have lights. You guys will have to decide what suits you all best.

That’s three from me, one we have been to before and two new ones. There is of course also the Prince of Wales, Great Totham -,character%2C%20guaranteed%20to%20enchant%20all%20those%20who%20visit. crawling distance from where I am sitting now. I put us off in March last year in favour of the Swan, Little Totham, as then the landlord was not very good at keeping real ale well. The landlord role has passed to his grandson who is making a fantastic job of running the pub. Good beer, good food, large tarmac carpark, beer garden and these days worth a visit.

Have fun and stay safe :smiley:

I will go with the flow, naturally.

With regard to the choice of Thursday evenings or Sunday lunchtimes; I am now in the happy position of being retired, so I no longer have an issue with getting to a venue after work. Previously, I would not get home until after 7 PM, and I live in the bottom corner of the county ( with the emphasis on bottom ) hence my preference for Sunday lunchtime meetings.

Here’s a crazy suggestion. We have Thursday evening meetings in the summer, plus group ride-outs once a month at weekends.

Thanks Richard x It seems the Thursday evening meetings would be well attended so I will definitely leave those in the calendar, along with the third Sunday of the month meetings as these are equally popular.

We could arrange a ride out as you suggest during the summer months, but I’d suggest they aim to start OR finish at the listed meeting place, that way those that wanted a ride could do so and those that didn’t knew where we’d all be sooner or later, but we’d all meet up eventually at the same time in the same place. That would seem to work for everyone. Whoever was organising/leading the ride would have to publish the details on the forum just beforehand I think - I’d leave that up to members to organise this themselves I think.

Thanks for the suggestion though - I’ve populated a few ideas into the calendar but I do need a few more. Happy to get feedback on them and the geographical scatter etc etc. I’m hoping to get it finalised by end of November so we can get it into the Gambalunga for the New Year.

Thanks again, Evie

I also like the ride out idea, but to start and finish at the same place as the meeting does seem a little odd. How about meeting somewhere else in the county for breakfast and then a ride out ending up at the meeting? I think it possibly needs a little more thought… :confused:

I will plot them on the branch map

Thanks Chris, it did say the ride out will start or finish at the meeting location not start and finish there so you ride round in circles - I’ll amend the message to make it a bit clearer though! x Thanks for plotting it on the map for me - that will definitely help to see how its all looking - sincere thanks x

Like the EAHAA rideout that Red Mog organised recently

OK, thanks Evie and Chris. I’m happy to organise something and take on board your comments.
Probably start somewhere central, like Chelmsford, but we could have pick up points along the way so that people don’t need to double back on themselves.
I’ll try to come up with some interesting destinations and I’ll put them on the forum for discussion. I’ll make it as democratic as possible.

Map updated

Thanks Chris, can you add a link or a copy of the map please? Sorry, not sure where to find it, with sincere thanks, Evie

It is pinned to the top of the Essex branch section. “Welcome to the Essex branch” thread here

I think I will have to start again at some time as the quality of the graphics has reduced over the years, first drawn on CoralDraw then copies onto AutoCAD, now I have a new PC and all of the links to the original background map have gone and also the colours, text style and text size changed. I spent too long over the weekend sorting it out as it is now but I think it would be better to start again and make it legible again.

Thanks so much Chris, this is brilliant and really does help see the bigger picture - thank you so much xxx I can see I need a few more suggestions for the NW bit - the M11 up near Saffron Waldon way and the SW bit over towards Basildon way for the remaining slots and then we seem to have a decent spread x


I hope you are all keeping well in these trying times.

On a lighter note I have booked my room at the Star for the camping weekend in June next year

Keep save

I’ve corrected/updated the list so they are now right - I’ve scheduled the June meeting for Sunday 20th June so its the same weekend as the camping weekend (which is 18th to 20th June) as its all at the same place anyway, love Evie


Just a quick request what time do we meet on Thursday evenings?