Ten suggested local cycle rides (I’m afraid I’ve not done all of them)

Having trained for and partaken in two overseas charity bike rides I know of several rides from the house and I’m happy to recommend to guests when they’re staying. This is a selection of rides that start a short distance from the house, they are great rides to do if you come down for a two day cycling break and can put your bikes on the back of your car to get started.

1. The Nadder Valley, Tisbury and Teffont. 12 miles – there are two good pubs on this route, The Beckford Arms at Tisbury or The Black Dog and Chilmark. You could also see Phillips House (National Trust) open Monday and Saturdays from April to October, and the partially restored ruins of Old Wardour Castle

2. Stay while cycling some or all of The Wiltshire Cycleway

3. Along the Kennet & Avon canal – 40 miles – Bath, Bradford on Avon, Devizes going alongside the Caen Hill Locks – and back to Bath.

4. Street, Glastonbury and Wells circular route 20 miles. There’s plenty of choice for places to eat in any of these towns, Wells has a wonderful Cathedral and Bishops Palace to visit.

5. The South Somerset Cycleway 80 miles. Suitable for keen cyclists as a day ride and one I want to do myself

6. Maiden Bradley, Shearwater and Longleat – 13 miles. Three good pubs, The Bath Arms at Crockerton, The Bath Arms at Horningsham or The Somerset Arms at Maiden Bradley. This route passes Longleat House and Shearwater Lake.

7. Chiseldon, Avebury and Marlborough – 27 miles. Several pubs and cafes to choose from on this ride. Be sure to stop off at The Stone Circle at Avebury which has free access at ‘all reasonable times’, The Great Barn Museum open from mid March to mid November and Avebury Manor is also open to the public on certain days.

8. Salisbury Plain and the Wylye Valley – 54 miles. This ride has lots of places to stop off including Heale House and Hardens, Woodhenge and Wilton House. Pubs for lunch include The Angel at Heytesbury, the Kings Head in Chitterne and The Royal Oak in Great Wishford.

9. Frome/Wincanton circular route – 51 miles. You could start this ride from Mere as we’re just a few miles off the route. A nice ride on quiet lanes and country roads with a few climbs. Places to stop off at include Nunney Castle and Stourhead House and Gardens, there are good pubs too, Three Horseshoes, Batcombe; The Bell and Crown, Zeals; White Hart Inn, Trudoxhill.

10. Shaftesbury to Salisbury circular route – 48.5 miles. A good circular route on quite roads and lanes with some track surface, lots of nice English villages to cycle through.