Meet our groups: CTC South West London

A large group of people are all gathered together on some grass with trees in the background. They are all wearing cycling clothing
Members of CTC South West London celebrated the group’s gold Going the Extra Mile award at the group’s 75th birthday party. Photo: Peter Cornish
The sun shone brilliantly in August for the 75th anniversary of Cycling UK member group CTC South West London, commonly known as the Sou’Westers, when a large contingent of members gathered together for a delicious celebratory tea
A man is presented with a certificate by another man
Colin Quemby receives the Gold Lifetime Achievement award from Cycling UK’s Tom Page. Photo: Peter Cornish

A friendly group

The Sou’Westers describe themselves as “a friendly group of about 150 cyclists based to the south-west of London”. They organise several rides each week, both at weekends and midweek, and new members are always welcome. Their rides are usually based in Surrey and the surrounding counties.

The group has three subgroups:


These Saturday rides are short and easy paced for new and returning cyclists of any age.

Cheam and Morden

These Sunday rides are usually between 40 and 60 miles but may be longer in summer. They are all day, returning home in late afternoon.

Cycling for me means fun, fitness and friendship in the fresh air

Maggie James, a regular rider with Beginners and Wayfarers B Group, CTC South West London

Midweek Wayfarers

Riders meet on Wednesdays at ‘elevenses’, where they subdivide into three groups: ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ for an 11 o'clock departure. Sometimes the ‘C’ group uses a separate venue; their rides may be 10 to 20 miles, while groups ‘A’ and ‘B’ go further – 30, 40 miles or more.

Every March, the group organises the Hilly 50K, a ride that takes in 3,000 feet of climbing in just 30 miles or so, taking in the best climbs in the Surrey Hills. Every third year, they take part in the Tri-Vets, a long-distance event for riders aged 50 and over.

Maggie James, a regular rider with Beginners and Wayfarers B Group, says: “Cycling for me means fun, fitness and friendship in the fresh air.”

Colin Quemby cutting the anniversary cake
Colin Quemby cuts the magnificent 75th anniversary cake. Photo: Peter Cornish

Birthday celebrations

Around 80 current CTC South West London members gathered in Brockham, Surrey, in August 2023 for the club’s 75th birthday celebrations.

Life member Colin Quemby, a former financial adviser to Cycling UK (then known as the Cyclists’ Touring Club) and vice president of the club board, cut the beautiful celebration cake, which had been baked by Maggie Gladwyn. Colin has been riding with the group since it was founded in 1948, his parents having founded the North Cheam section, now known as the Cheam and Morden.

Together with wife Shirley, who was one of our 100 Women in Cycling in 2019 and is now sadly deceased, Colin has been involved in helping thousands of new people to enjoy cycling through the Beginners Group, which meets every Saturday afternoon at the Nonsuch Pantry café in south-west London.

The couple’s three children, and now their grandchildren, were also raised as cyclists, and continue to enjoy cycling today.

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Members enjoying the glorious weather and the equally glorious cakes! Photo: Peter Cornish

Going the Extra Mile

Do you know a group or individual who deserves recognition for their dedication to enabling more people to enjoy cycling? Why not nominate them for one of our Going the Extra Mile awards?

A round, gold award illustration with blue text that reads Going the Extra Mile