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NeilsYard
Coventry
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31 of 37  Wed 26th Jun 2019 9:57am  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:2139

Hi Harrier Wave Not certain of the date but guessing mid to late '50's, this is my lovely dad wearing Godiva kit - as mentioned previously he was in the Harriers. Obviously taken at the Butts track. Not quite sure why the boneshaker is there either but interesting nonetheless! Also not really any brilliant images for you here but I have shared this collection before in relation to Coventry's music and the Rock Against Racism gig at the Butts in 1981 - there are a couple if you scan through the pages of elements of the track and banking though. Festival against racism Edited by member, 26th Jun 2019 9:57 am
Godiva Harriers
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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32 of 37  Wed 26th Jun 2019 1:35pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:3328

Bet you were not even a twinkle in his eye then, Neil. Shame someone forgot to put the litter bins out for the Festival (probably would have today).
Godiva Harriers
Harrier
Coventry
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Thread starter
33 of 37  Fri 28th Jun 2019 4:06pm  
Member: Joined Apr 2012  Total posts:175

Thanks for that photograph, Neil - by the look of the Adidas shoes, it would have been late 50s/early 60s, by which time, branded sportswear was starting to make an impact. With athletics being a minority sport, sales would have been low with only four manufacturers making a serious attempt in marketing. In addition there was the cheap dreadful red-coloured spikes with leather soles and individual spikes inserted rather than a foot plate, the result being that the wearers were in agony as each spike could be felt poking into the soles of the feet, made much worse in wet conditions or conversely, if the track was bone hard. I will do a 'Yardley' search and let you know what I can find. Certainly there was one competing regularly in the 1880s! I will try to get some information about why the bike was featured. Godiva has a problem with its history … a very long story. Suffice to say that in the late 1970s, much material was collected to be utilised for a History to be written in time for our Centenary. This was never done and many items were never returned to the club. A simple search on e-bay TODAY will reveal at least 7 postcards (photographs) from the period 1924 to 1934 for sale. These came from one of the albums lent to the club at the time and then went walkabouts. For the last 20 years I have been trying to buy back the more important relevant items - not a cheap hobby!!! The 'Festival' photos were interesting with some of the views of the track. Before Godiva moved to the facility on the Westwood Campus of Warwick University in 1984, the council hired the track out to all manner of organisation. Most caused no problems (schools and local football clubs for example) BUT the Dog Shows left the ground and changing rooms in a disgusting mess from both humans and animals while car racing and stunts left glass from the vehicles on the grass infield, the track and the approach paths, rendering the whole facility out of bounds until the council finally got around to a having a clear up.
Godiva Harriers
NeilsYard
Coventry
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34 of 37  Fri 28th Jun 2019 4:38pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:2139

I'm sure we have some other images somewhere - I will add when I come across them. My mum's loft is a bit of a time machine! Dad's birth name was Laurie Yardley but everyone called him Jack so may have been registered as that. Edited by member, 28th Jun 2019 4:40 pm
Godiva Harriers
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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35 of 37  Sat 29th Jun 2019 9:40am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:2923

Hi Neil, I remember going to a big cycle meeting at the Butts, mid fifties, that bike was on show. But someone fell off their bike at the front, one hell of a pile up, several got nasty injuries. I think a lot of events were cancelled, maybe Harrier knows?
Godiva Harriers
Harrier
Coventry
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Thread starter
36 of 37  Sun 30th Jun 2019 10:02am  
Member: Joined Apr 2012  Total posts:175

I will try to answer both Neil and Kaga but .... Christian names are always a help as are places of work. Information, particularly dates, can be found via the apprentice scheme which engendered the Apprentices' Sports in which most apprentices were engaged. Dates of birth can give a fix on the range of time when a particular athlete might have competed which leads to the use of athletics programmes for further details of the athlete. These bits of information lead back to Godiva Club minutes (where they exist) and voila!! Simple? Well not really. The problems with locating information about your dad's bike picture, Neil, and Kaga's pileup is such things would not have been recorded in club level reports which were more interested in times and distances of individual performances, so there is a reliance on newspaper reports of such happenings - is the photograph a family picture or is there a commercial stamp of the photographer on the back? Two problems arise here - was either event considered newsworthy by the local editor, and if it was, did either report / photo only make the 'Pink', in which case, finding information becomes almost impossible because most archives, local and the National Newspaper Archive, kept few copies of the local sports paper and the local editor assumed that most sport reports would have been read by local interested readers in the Saturday edition, so considered a repeat sports report in the Monday paper a waste of valuable space. The second problem concerns the simmering dispute between the governing bodies of the respective athletics and cycling sports. Events at the Butts, like elsewhere, had cycle racing and athletic events at the same meeting, but were governed by the rules of each sport - often different and conflicting. For example. Most events were handicap races (very few field events!) and the value of prizes strictly controlled with athletics having an upper limit of 7 guineas and the cyclists 12 - a cause of friction between competitors especially if an athlete participated in both sports, or a club like Godiva catered for both disciplines. This was exasperated further by the cycle officials being a little less rigorous than their athletic counter parts in interpreting the rule and also allowing semi or full professional riders to compete at the same meetings as their amateur counterparts, while the athletic officials often interpreted the rule as meaning the manufacturing cost was 7 guineas which of course, hiked the value of the prize considerably while 'strictly' enforcing the amateur code! And conflict could also arise as to whether it was an athletics' meeting with cycle racing or a cycle meeting with athletic races. And through all this muddle, records / information was not kept or lost and historians have to try to wade through the detritus. So Neil and Kaga, don't hold your breath ..... but I will try.
Godiva Harriers
NeilsYard
Coventry
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37 of 37  Mon 1st Jul 2019 9:42am  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:2139

BTW Harrier, I'm sure my dad had those same shoes at the bottom of his bedroom cupboard right up until the late 70's! I remember trying them on - despite us both being over 6ft we both only had/have little size 8 feet. Thankfully I trust the long legs helped with the running - we were both fast!
Godiva Harriers

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