Origami Phoenix Monthly Cycle Ride


About the Origami Phoenix Ride
Planned meetings
Reports on past rides

About the Origami Phoenix Ride

The 'Origami Phoenix Ride' is a cycle ride usually held in England, normally on the second Saturday of every month. The location varies from month to month. The ride was originally held particularly for the owners of folding (hence the 'Origami' of the ride name) and separable cycles, but anyone riding any kind of cycle is welcome - indeed, you are welcome to join us at the start for breakfast and a chat even if you don't have a cycle or don't feel like riding ! 

Tea RoomsThe usual arrangement is to meet from about 10:30, with a ride starting at about 11:00. The distance covered is typically 15 to 25 miles. This is a social ride, and we ride at the pace of the slowest, with plenty of stops along the way to regroup if necessary. Rides usually start and end at the same location, which is generally near a railway station, so that those who do not choose to travel by car can easily get to and from the event. 

{Start}The Origami ride attracts a wide variety of cycles and riders. You do not even have to come on a folder, as the Marin mountain bike seen here shows!

The first Origami Ride was held in August 1994, but was a one off, and it was not until April 1997 that the ride was revived on a monthly basis (hence the 'Phoenix' of the ride name). The ride was originated and organised until his death in February 2002 by John Pinkerton. Although we no longer have a formal organiser for the rides, they still take place every month, unless the date (second Saturday of the month) coincides with a Bank Holiday, Moulton Bicycle Club BoA Weekend, or another major cycling event.

Planned future meetings 

For all rides, we meet from about 10:30am, with the ride starting at 11:00am, unless stated otherwise. The planned finishing time will depend on a number of factors, for instance ride length and time of year, but will almost always be before dusk. Riders who need to return for a specific time should consult the ride leader, but be prepared to return under their own navigation.

Note that as the location of these rides varies from month to month, it is important to check the location before travelling to an event - the planned rides are listed on this page (see below). You can also check by contacting the Origami team via email here to see what is planned.

Further details will be added for the rides as they are available, usually about two weeks beforehand.

Planned 2018 rides

September 15th  Swindon (note 3rd Saturday)

Meet from 10:30am (or earlier) at the National Trust HQ Cafe, The Designer Outlet Centre, Kemble Drive, Swindon SN2 2NA

Getting there:

By Rail:
Swindon is on the main line between London and Bristol. Coming from the north the line comes down via Birmingham/Cheltenham/Gloucester to Swindon. At the front of the station, you need to turn right and push your cycle along the pavement, against the one-way system. There is some cycle track on the left hand pavement. Go back under the tracks at the old railway works tunnel (marked to Designer Outlet Centre). No cycling in the tunnel - then cycle across to National Trust HQ.

By Road:
Swindon is on the M4 between London and Bristol. Coming from the north on the M5, there is a link dual carriageway from Gloucester to Swindon A417/A419. The Designer Outlet Centre appears on signs in the Swindon area, the STEAM Museum is also on the same site.

It is best NOT to park at the Outlet Centre as the cost rises steeply after 5 hours, and we always go over time. There is a small free car park nearby called Morris Street Car Park SN2 2HT.

Interesting Cycle Links:

The Cycle Map is also useful for motorists:

The Ride:

We explore Swindon's re-cycled railway track along NCN route 45 and also the dedicated cycle tracks through ‘Toy Town’ to reach our lunch stop:  The Blunsdon Arms . 
Check out the special Set Menu 1, 2 or 3-course lunch.

After lunch, we continue on for our yearly visit to Swindon and Cricklade Railway for tea and cakes. The timetable promises a Steam Day.

We aim for around 20 miles, almost all on dedicated cycle tracks.

October 13th       Ely

November 10th   Watford

December 8th     West Midlands


Thank you


Thank you to everyone who has participated in a ride this year, and very especially to all those who have lead them.

Also, big  thanks to those who have volunteered to lead next year !

Origami mailing list

We have a mailing list, who are usually sent details of each ride about 1 - 2 weeks before the event. Normally there will only be one email per month (possibly 2 if there is a real need), and the list is normally only used to give information specifically about the Origami Rides. If you would like to be included on the list, please send an email indicating this to origami@foldsoc.co.uk. No personal details are held apart from simply the email address.

Travelling by train to Origami rides

While folding bikes are usually carried as 'luggage' without restrictions carriage of non-folding bicycles by rail in the UK can be complicated. The excellent a to b website has useful information on carriage of bicycles by train here.

Reports on past rides

Since we changed to using a more convenient 'blog' system for posting Folding Society news, we will usually report on Origami Rides there rather than below. The news blog is available by accessing The Folding Society web site.

Photographs of more recent rides can be viewed on a FlickR group (UK Origami-Phoenix) that has been set up for this purpose. Anyone joining an Origami ride is encouraged to join the group and upload their photos of the ride.

Folding Society home page