This is a look at our History for those who
Brian Edward Green was born in Leicester
the only child of Lol and Hilda.
A working class family, their transport was
either the bike or by foot.
Their holidays which my Dad loved, was a
tour to the coast on the bike.
Many story's I have been told of
the two kids in the street "Ron Parks”
and “John Tallis" the adventures
these three would have, the rides to the
coast, the times the whole street were trying
to find them when a puncture delayed them.
Sleeping in old barns on route, times different
to when I was young, very different
My Dad was a apprentice plumber and got into
the sport of cycling fairly late, he saw
a grass track meeting at Abbey Park in Leicester
and liked the speed, the banter, the crowds,
the girls watching, the whole package…
The local stars at that time were "Colin
Hearth” and “Bill Duffin".
I have met Colin who became the Canadian
national track coach in the Gordon Singleton
era. Colin was to become my hero and
also World Keirin champion at Leicester.
Bill still races today and gives some younger
riders a run for their money.
Not forgetting the likes of Owen Blower,
a fantastic time triallist and all rounder who
a few years ago I had the honour of building
a bike for, and Lionel Crompton and Ray Dring
with whom he was good friends.
Benny Foster who many will remember with
his colourful jackets from the Track Champs
at Leicester was the track coach of the East
My Dad became a very track rider in a season
and was giving the riders that he had been
watching, a hard time.
He won many races in only a couple of seasons,
many prizes that were won were sold off by
his Mum to help pay for equipment and fund
And then national service got in the way,
Dad was stationed at Beeston and it was there
he was to meet my Mum Anne.
One story that I was told was of "Pinky
Green” (his racing name) came over
to Nottinghams track league and won the 5
mile, the last race of the night. He clipped
away near the end.
He came back the following week and won the
5 mile again, this time in a gallop.
Getting married and having a family finished
the racing ,a few half-hearted come backs
never came to anything.
It wasn’t until many years later when
he brought a second hand Paragon track frame that
he decided to have ago at building a frame.
A fully qualified plumber and heating engineer
and wicked with a brazing torch .
He made the first in our garage, then showing
his worth to a few local shops who gave him
orders he decided to give up his job at Skerritts
of Nottingham and open Langdale’s.
Why the name I am often asked? Well he spent
alot of time riding in his youth in the Lake
District and particularly liked Langdale…
hence the name!
I started riding at the age of 10, although
my first love was football, I played for
my school team Sir John Shirebrook in
Calverton from as early as a second year
and then kept the place until finishing junior
school. We were a good school side, we won
the league! I also represented the Arnold and Carlton
area team from the same age so for nearly
3 seasons I was the best ‘keeper locally.
When I went to Frank Seely I carried on playing
and we won the cup for under 16s. I played Saturday mornings for the area
and Saturday afternoons for Calverton colts.
Cycling was beginning to become more important
than the football, and I was starting to
get some results and did not enjoy throwing
myself on the ground as my legs were starting
to become precious.
Local rider Phil Wilkins had become one of
my hero’s, as I would go with Lin and Phil now and again
and watch him ride top junior races. He would often win or just be beaten by one
Malc Elliott (Tour de France star and still
a big name today).. Phil himself having won
many races, having also been a pro and currently
the Vets Nnational Criterium Champion.
From the opening of the shop I was always
around and about. I have seen many faces come and go, then
return as cycling never leaves the blood. Working in the shop at weekends and after
school my mate Dave Good and I would ride
the Leicester track league on a Tuesday and
Nottingham on the Wednesday.
I started riding with the Sherwood and joined
the newly formed Trent valley which had flash new
clothing and fresh ideas, no longer running
unfortunately. I had two good years with them but had wanted
to join the no-one club at the time Velo
Club Europa. Having watched Geoff Cooke, Trever Gadd,
Steve Cronshaw, Paul Sydenham.
The club changed its name to Velo Club Nottingham
and some of its more notable names were:
Piers Hewitt, Gary Sadler, Mark Barry, Shaun
Wallace, Gary Coltman, Jon Walshaw most
of which had been National Champions.
I look back to some of the pre track champ
training sessions which were brilliant behind
Geoff’s motorbike and it was ace. Martin and Richard Oakes, Adrian Adgar, Phil
Wilkins, Alan Taylor, Tim Beech, Dave Sheppard,
Nigel Redmile, Dave Miller, Simon Day, many
still riding today.
During my time with VCN I got glandular
fever and this stopped me riding for a few
years, but when I started again, things had
changed and I joined the newly re-formed
Mapperley CC, of which I am still a member
To Be continued.................