The ‘Hell of the North Downs’ was an organised ride out from Herne Hill Velodrome to the North Downs and back, held in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. Not a race but what people would now call a gravel ride, it drew a good entry and despite locals messing with signage it was good fun. I rode it on a mountain bike, a road bike and a cyclo-cross bike, the road machine offered the most stories as it was far from ideal  ‘off-piste.’

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