Streatley Hill

Streatley hill is a short and steep climb from the village of Goring on the B4009, heading West.

  • Length = 800m
  • Average Gradient: 13%
  • Max gradient: 18%
  • Height gain: 318ft / 96m
  • Direction – east to west.
  • Strava link to HCC005

Streatley Hill is used in Reading CC hill climbs and is one of the steepest climbs in the area. It is reached by going through a set of traffic lights on the A329. The road is called Streatley hill (B4009)

The start is after the pub car park and just after the junction onto a minor road (The Coombe). After a short section of relatively gentle gradient, it becomes steep 12-18% and stays at this gradient for 0.6 km. Even though the hill climb is quite short, if you go full effort, it can end up being longer than you expect. At just over halfway, the climb kicks up again, a small sting in the tail if you’ve run out of energy. As you get close to the finish, the gradient eases off as you reach the summit and it almost levels out. The hill climb course uses the steepest 0.8 km of the road, which gives an average gradient of 13%.

The road surface near the top is a little rough. It’s hard to find a smooth bit of road on the left-hand side of the road.

The prevailing wind is from the west and so it is often a headwind. However, with a tree-lined route, it is also very sheltered, so the wind is not usually a big factor – like say an exposed hill, such as Pea Royd Lane.)

streatley hill
Photo: jelignite from open event September 2020

2020 National hill climb course HCC005

Strava – Hill climb course HCC005 TT

The climb is similar to the Rake, though a little less steep and perhaps 10 seconds quicker. It is a climb for the powerful, explosive hill climber. You have to get a lot out in a short time. It is also similar to the Cat and Bec hill climbs.

Course records

(as far as I know)

  • Men – Cameron Biddle – 2.12.94 (2020)
    • (Previous) Robert Gough – 2.16.1 (2012)
  • Women Bithja Jones 2.54.41 (2020)
    • (Previous) Maryka Sennema 3.09.5 (2016)
  • Junior men course record – William Smith – 02:36.34  26-Sep-2020
  • Junior Female CR – Hope Inglis 03.48.94  – 26-Sep-2020
  • Tandem Course record – Steward House / Rob Gough – 2.50.9

2020 National Hill climb Championship

Streatley Hill is the venue for the 2020 national hill climb championship. It will be promoted by Reading CC and will feature closed road.

Top of Streatley Hill climb

Pacing Streatley hill

I have ridden Streatley hill in a race four times. From 2.39 to 2.26. I think one main factor is not to go too hard for first 200 metres where gradient is relatively gentle. The toughest section is in the middle. At the same time, as soon as the climb gets steep you need to get up to an effort you will be able to keep going for the next 2-3mins. Then it’s a matter of trying to hold your effort all the way to the top. You need to be really motivated to get the best out of Streatley. Only for the last 100m does the climb level out and – even if out of energy you will be able to spin your way to the finish.

I wrote a post on Sept 2020 warm-up for national here.

Streatley Hill – Full climb

  • Location: Goring, Berkshire
  • Distance: 0.9 km
  • Avg grade 11.0%
  • Max Grade: 18.0%
  • Elev Gain: 104m
  • 100 Hill Climbs version #24
  • Everesting? 86*1.8km = 155 km

Veloviewer – 100 Hill climbs version

Strava – 100 hills version


Streatley is one of the hardest hills in the area and made S. Warren’s 100 Greatest Hill Climbs (24).

Personal notes on Streatley Hill

I’ve done Streatley hill back in 2004 and 2005 – without any particular distinction. After a long gap, I rode again in 2012. It made good preparation for that year’s National hill climb course on the Rake. – which is similar length and gradient. I seem to remember very small field sizes. Perhaps 10-20 riders. Since then hill climbs have become more popular and I would expect a really big entry for the National in 2020. (450 entrants)

My 2012 Blog from Reading CC event

The start of the climb went well, but as it got steeper, I felt I went down too many gears. I guess the advantage of riding fixed is that you don’t have the temptation to lower gears, you just have to keep going. Anyway, I sprinted for line and felt it was a reasonable effort. A minute later, Robert Gough came through the finish and was obviously exhausted from his effort. He really put everything out to again break the course record, setting a time of 2.16.1. He won £50 AW Cycles voucher. From memory:

  • I was second in 2.24.
  • Richard Cartland Team Corley was 3rd in 2.27?
  • Clare Leaver (Zappi CC) was the first lady in about 3.12 (which was also a new course record for women)
  • First junior was Jamil Gaida (Rapha CC) in just under 3 minutes.

On the one hand, I was pleased with my time. On the other hand, it’s a confirmation that this ‘Rake’ kind of climb doesn’t really suit my strengths.

But, I can still get more out on a climb, and if I remember my lightweight wheels to the nationals, there’s definitely a few more seconds to be gained. :)

Rob Gough’s bike


Robert Gough is definitely a tip for a very good placing in the nationals. It is worth bearing in mind that when Jim Henderson (5* nat champ) used to ride this hill he did a time of around 2.21.

Special mention to Stewart House and Reading CC, who continue to organise the event with great enthusiasm. If you fancy a challenge next year, come along – it’s all good fun really. There aren’t too many hill climbs in the area so it’s great to see it continue.

Previous Streatley Hill Climbs

  • 2004 – 2.38 – 5th/38
  • 2005 – 2.39 – 5th/ 27 winner Rob English 2.21. That year on the Rake I did 2.39 in the national championships. Rob English finished 4th in a time of 2:33.9. It was won in 2.26
  • 2006? Maybe rode, can’t remember.
  • 2012 – 2.24 – 2nd.
  • 2020 – Sept club event. 2.36

In 2005, my time on Streatley was exactly the same as my time on the Rake. But Rob English was 12 seconds slower on the Rake.

As a rough guide, Streatley could be anything between 0 and 12 seconds faster than the Rake.


1 thought on “Streatley Hill”

  1. I’ve now ascended Streatley hill over 200 times, mostly all in last 4 years. 3:25 is my best (not too bad for a 52 year old). Its a good idea to take the first 200 meters at a comfortable pace and then hold it through the steep section, saving enough gas for the final kick over the top. Great hill for out the saddle climbers !! Road has recently been resurfaced, so the top section is far more pleasant nowadays.


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