Overnight cycle ride attracts noise complaints from ‘sleepy’ Suffolk villages

Cyclists resting on the beach after a completing a previous Dunwich Dynamo ride Picture: GREGG BROWN

Cyclists resting on the beach after a completing a previous Dunwich Dynamo ride Picture: GREGG BROWN

Suffolk villagers along the route of an iconic overnight cycle ride have complained that noisy bikers prevented them getting any sleep.

The 26th Dunwich Dynamo saw an estimated 3,000 cyclists set off from London Fields in Hackney on Saturday night with most arriving on the Suffolk coast early the following morning.

The event, which has grown is size over the years and is now seen as one of the “must ride” events of the season, passes through many Essex and Suffolk communities including Sudbury, Needham Market, Framlingham, Peasenhall, Darsham and Westleton.

While the riders are welcomed in many places, such as Brandeston where villagers serve refreshments throughout the night, and Dunwich where The Ship and the Flora Tea Rooms both open specially for the arriving cyclists, not everyone is so supportive.

MORE: Cyclists hit out against ‘negativity’ in complaints from overnight ride

In Chelsworth, Philip Lancaster claims the growth of the event, from 230-3,000 cyclists, meant it was starting to cause a nuisance, particularly in the “sleepy” Suffolk villages it passes through.

“In the early hours of the morning, when the cyclists are quite tired, their voices are rather loud,” he said. “It goes on hour after hour after hour.

“Someone I spoke to said they had to sit up all night to keep their dog from barking.

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“If the event keeps getting bigger I think it’s going to cause a real problem.”

Event supporters, Southwark Cyclists, remind riders not to drop litter or make noise near to homes and to use headphones if listening to music.

However, Mr Lancaster has questioned how effective this advice is.

“There doesn’t seem to be any policing of the noise disturbance caused or willingness to modify the route,” he added.

As well as noise, Mr Lancaster said there were also issues with bright lights. He is calling for the riders to be issued with firmer guidance prior to the race.

Part of the ride’s popularity, however, is owed to its loose organisation and relaxed atmosphere, which could make it difficult to regulate. The 2019 Dunwich Dynamo is scheduled to take place on Saturday and Sunday July 13/14.

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