Hertford 500 Mile Bike Ride Venice to Oxford Bike Ride 11th-18th July 2020

Hertford 500 Mile Bike Ride Venice to Oxford Bike Ride 11th-18th July 2020

  • July 11, 2020 - July 18, 2020
    8:00 am - 5:00 pm

In July 2020, to celebrate the Principalship of Will Hutton and as we gear up for our 150th anniversary celebrations in 2024, we will be embarking on another bike ride – this time starting from the Bridge of Sighs in Venice and cycling back via countless bridges in the Netherlands and the Cambridge Bridge of Sighs to Oxford and the Hertford Bridge!  Whether you’re a recent graduate or a longstanding member of our alumni community, this is a fantastic opportunity to come together to celebrate Hertford, get to know other alumni, fellows and students, and to raise money for a great cause.

Please click on one of the three links below to explore the options:

Option 1: Venice to Oxford, 8 days (11-18 July) – 500 miles

Option 2: Bruges to Oxford, 3 days (15-18 July) – 250 miles

Option 3: Cambridge to Oxford, 1 day (18 July) – 80 miles

Not sure yet? Use the button at the bottom of the page to register your interest for more information!

The cycle will start on the iconic island of Venice, and the first four days of this journey will go through Italy, Austria, Germany and the Alsace wine region in France. For experienced cyclists, this is your chance to pit yourself against the some of the routes of the 2019 Tour de France, while less advanced cyclists will follow the classic route through stunning countryside. We’ll take it easier on Day 5, with a short morning ride followed by a transfer from Strasbourg to Bruges while you recover from the exertion of the mountains.

From the beautiful medieval town of Bruges, we head north to the coast and then east into the Netherlands. We follow the North Sea Coastal Route on bike paths, along small bridges and chain ferries, keeping the North Sea on our left until we arrive into Hook of Holland. We get the overnight ferry to Harwich where we resume our cycling journey into Cambridge. Our final day will take us from Cambridge, with its own Bridge of Sighs, back to the Hertford Bridge and a celebratory barbecue in the Quad.



  • Iconic start in Venice
  • Alpine scenery
  • Alsace wine route
  • Black Forest castles
  • Optional Tour de France climbs
  • Optional longer routes for elite cyclists
  • Celebration finish in Hertford
  • Guided groups at different speeds to match your level

Dates and details:

Cost per person:

  • 8 day event (Venice to Oxford): £1,100 + fundraising
  • 3 day event (Bruges to Oxford): £550 + fundraising
  • 1 day event (Cambridge to Oxford): £100 + fundraising

Non-fundraiser ticket prices

We know that not everyone wants to fundraise, so we have introduced a ‘non-fundraiser’ ticket price. If your friends and family have donor fatigue or you don’t want to ask for support for another reason, you can still sign up to the bike ride without needing to fundraise for your place. If you choose this option, some of the money will be paid to pie and some to Hertford.

  • 8 day event (Venice to Oxford): £2,200
  • 3 day event (Bruges to Oxford): £1,100
  • 1 day event (Cambridge to Oxford): £200

The deposit amounts are £165 for the 8 day Venice to Oxford, £82.50 for the Bruges to Oxford, and £15 for the Cambridge to Oxford leg.

Ticket prices include

All food, hotels, ferries as appropriate, 1 unique tour jersey, post ride food, guides/mechanics (at a ratio of approx 1 guide to 8-10 cyclists), medic, tour leaders in charge of the logistics of the ride, possible extra route option on some days, support vehicles (with bike spares, med kits, water, etc), transfer of bikes from The Storage King, Weybridge to the start of your ride, a minimum of 3 food and drink stops a day, evening meals and accommodation along the way, pie water bottles, coaches/transfers where noted, finish celebrations in Hertford, and, of course amazing cycling.

Not Included in the Package

  • Flights/travel to the start of your ride
  • Accommodation and meal in Venice the night before the ride starts
  • Transfer from/to arrival airport
  • Single room – available for a supplement – please enquire to PIE
  • Travel insurance
  • Bicycle insurance
  • Personal expenditures


There is no travel included in the package price for the event. We will send out recommendations for travel to your relevant start point once you have signed up to the event, but you will need to make your own way to your chosen start and organise onward travel from Hertford at the finish.

Testimonial from the 2014 Hertford bike ride

“Once the physical aches eventually diminish, what will stay with me and, I hope with all of us, are the friendships formed and strengthened during the ride” – Matthew Abbott (1996)


We encourage you to fundraise for this event using Everydayhero.com (https://nfp.everydayhero.com/uk/hertford-college).

All donations towards the bike ride will go towards whichever area you choose to support: this could be a specific area like Student Support, teaching and research in a specific subject, or our planned redevelopments of the college’s buildings on the Catte Street site. Or you can choose to keep your fundraising donations unrestricted (this is our preferred option, so we can put your donations towards the area of greatest need). Just let us know when you set up your fundraising page.

If you have any questions please contact the Development team on Development.Office@hertford.ox.ac.uk, or 01865 279428.

If you don’t want to fundraise, you can sign up for one of the non-fundraising places.

Corporate Event Sponsorship:

We welcome sponsorship of the kit, drinks, meals, guides, bike freight, and subsidised student places so every penny of sponsorship will go to support our charity objectives.

Please contact the Development team on Development.Office@hertford.ox.ac.uk, or 01865 279428.


You will be receiving one exclusive Hertford tour cycle jersey. Please let us know your size at the time of booking.

Who are pie?

pie are unique in the industry offering only bespoke guided rides for companies, charities and groups of individuals.

Looking After You

The route will be fully recce’d and will be along smaller roads making the cycling fun as well as challenging.  The Venice to Oxford bike ride is fully supported with guides at a ratio of one guide to 8-10 cyclists, support vehicles, tour leaders and medics. Each day you will receive breakfast at the hotel before setting off, morning and afternoon refreshment stops while on the ride, a substantial lunch, post ride snacks, dinner and twin room accommodation each night.

pie Guides

The Venice to Oxford bike ride is a guided ride with groups being led by pie guides who help all abilities complete the challenge.

  • We offer guided rides to make sure we offer the very best care to our cyclists
  • All of our guides are experienced cyclists. They range from ex-professional racers to keen amateurs and all are very used to guiding groups of differing abilities, experience and skill
  • All of our guides will navigate their small group of 8 – 10 cyclists, from start to finish
  • They are on hand to do mechanical work so there is no waiting around for a mechanic’s van
  • Many pie guides are first aid trained
  • Cyclists can change groups (up or down) at any time during the day
  • www.pieevents.co.uk/guides-leaders-medics/


We will set up a Strava “club” for the Venice to Oxford ride. The link will be sent to you when you sign up.

If you have already got a personal Strava account you can just log on using the link we will send, join the Hertford “club” and start your training with other cyclists.

If you haven’t got a Strava account, simply enter your details in the “Sign Up for Free” section on Strava.

Don’t be daunted by the leader board and other people’s fast times. We offer 1-2 different routes and different guides will be offering different speeds as well, so there is something for everyone.

Social Media

Hertford will be posting highlights from the bike ride using #Hertfordbikeride on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

You can also follow pie on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter using #bespokeguidedrides #pieevents


We look forward to seeing you there!

Yes! I'd like to register my interest!!