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Polytechnic Cycling Club

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 1753 UWA PCC
Held at: University of Westminster
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Full title: Polytechnic Cycling Club
Date(s): 1883-2006
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 16 boxes
Name of creator(s): Hanover Bicycle Club
Polytechnic Cycling Club
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Polytechnic Cycling Club was founded as the Ian Bicycling Club in 1878 in the Salisbury Street, Strand, branch of the Youths' Christian Institute, and named for the infant son of the Institute's founder, Quintin Hogg. It initially comprised mainly clerks. Hogg bought some machines for the members and their activities at that period apparently consisted of recreational rides. The club was succeeded by the Hanover Bicycle Club (named from the Institute premises in Hanover Street) in 1881-1882. It organised runs and tours, and annual races were held in August each year from 1882. Following the removal of the Institute to premises in Regent Street, formerly occupied by the Royal Polytechnic Institution, in 1882, the name was changed to the Polytechnic Cycling Club in 1885.

The Polytechnic Cycling Club Gazette was started in 1891. The Club grew rapidly. Members made regular excursions on Saturday afternoons with longer trips at holiday times, and during the winter months there was a social programme in conjunction with other Polytechnic clubs. From 1893 it had a club room in no 309 Regent Street. The Club began to organise its own competitions for track and road, and a number of races and time trials were established. Members competed, individually and in teams, at home and abroad, and became successful at the highest level: Alec Watson was the first national champion in 1893, Albert Edward 'Jenny' Walters won the Bol d'Or 24-hour race in Paris in a world record time in 1899, W J ('Bill') Bayley was world champion at 1,000 metres in 1909-1913, and David Edward Ricketts (b 1920) was bronze medallist in the 4,000 metres pursuit at the Olympic Games in London in 1948. By the time the Club celebrated its 60th anniversary in 1938, members had won five world, two Olympic and 62 national and Empire championships. Several successful members went on to become professional cyclists. The Club's first president was J E K Studd, succeeded in 1944 by Lord Hailsham (grandson of the Polytechnic's founder, Lord Chancellor, and well know for cycling around London).

When Regent Street Polytechnic became the Polytechnic of Central London (PCL) in 1970, relations with the sports and social clubs - which had been an integral part of Quintin Hogg's vision for the Polytechnic - were redefined as part of the new constitutional arrangements. They became legally separate, though some links remained. Further changes were made following the Education Reform Act of 1988. The Cycling Club lost its club room in Regent Street in 1989, but continued to use the Quintin Hogg Memorial Ground at Chiswick. In the same year the Institute of Polytechnic Sports and Social Clubs was formed to support the needs of club members and to provide a link with PCL and later with the University of Westminster.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the Polytechnic Cycling Club and its predecessor, 1883-2006, including:

AGM Minutes, 1904-1995 [incomplete] ; AGM Agendas, c.1913-1989 [incomplete] ; Annual Reports of the Honorary Secretary, 1949-1989 [incomplete] ; Statements of Accounts, 1906-1989 [incomplete] ; Attendance Logs, 1922-1989 [incomplete]; Committee Minutes and meeting papers, 1902-1934, 1949-1957, 1976-1980, 1985-1988, 1992-1997 ; Attendance Logs, 1949-1950; Honorary Secretary's Correspondence, 1908-2002 [incomplete];

Finance Committee: Minutes, 1913 ; Agenda and budget, 1914 ; Budgets 1925, 1927; Statement of Accounts, 1906-1962 [incomplete]; Account Books, 1903-1980 [incomplete]; Invoices, receipts and working papers, 1889-1981 [incomplete]; Honorary Treasurer's Correspondence, 1908-1977; Membership records: Subscription Books, 1889-1929 [incomplete], 1958; Register of Members, 1912-1943 [incomplete];

Path and Road Committee papers: Minutes, 1930-1940 ; Notes regarding standards, 1937, n.d.; Race and Track Committee papers: Minutes, 1899 ; Accounts, 1926 ; Track record distances, n.d.;Social Committee: Annual dinner menus, 1899-2003 [incomplete]; Cinderella Dance programmes, 1904-1910 [incomplete]; Season and Winter Programmes, 1937-1961; Miscellaneous social activities 1904-1952; Honorary Social Secretary's Correspondence, 1924-1960;

Medals and trophies: medal requirements, 1966; 1967 medal list; lists of trophies 1978; medal boards, shields and cups, 1888-1981

Cycling events and results:race start cards, results cards and route cards, 1919-1968 ; Race records, 1883-1960; Prizes Book, 1928-1939; Lists of champions, 1891-1972;

Members' memorabilia: Cuttings albums and articles, 1891-1989 [incomplete]; Cap Badges, 1878-1978 [incomplete]; Album of cuttings, photographs, memorabilia and correspondence relating to the career to J.E. 'Jenny' Walters, 2 July 1899-12 Jan 1910; David Ricketts Collection of photographs, memorabilia and correspondence, 1938-2000; Harry Payne Collection of articles and photographs, 1901-2002;

Publications: The Polytechnic Cycling Club Gazette, 1891-1968; Newsletter, 1964, 1985-2006 [incomplete]; and excerpts from RSP Magazine, [1966]-1989; Members' Handbooks, 1893-1968 [incomplete]; Rules Books, 1926- 1960 [incomplete]; Fixtures Booklets, 1899-1958 [incomplete]; Road and Track Programmes, 1892-1962 [incomplete]; Prospectuses, 1902-1913 [incomplete]; Published histories of the PCC: History of the Polytechnic Cycling Club 1878-1899, souvenir of the Coming of Age dinner, 9 Dec 1899; The PCC Jubilee 1878-1928, speech of J. Brothwell recounting the history of the PCC, after Jan 1929; The Polytechnic Cycling Club 100 Years, 1878-1978;

Photographs of trophies, cycling and social activities, 1891-1985.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Arranged as set out in Scope and content.

Conditions governing access:

Open, subject to signing the Regulations for Access form.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies may be supplied, for research use only, unless copyright restrictions apply or the item is too fragile to be copied. Requests to publish original material should be addressed to the University Archivist.

Finding aids:

Partially catalogued.

Archival Information

Archival history:

The records were removed from the Regent Street club room in 1989, but subsequently returned by the club to the University of Westminster Archives.

Immediate source of acquisition:

Deposited by the club.

Allied Materials

Related material:

From 1882 Home Tidings and from 1888 its successor The Polytechnic Magazine include reports on the activites of the Polytechnic Cycling Club. The University of Westminster Archives also holds records of other Polytechnic clubs.

National Register of Archives: Click here to view NRA record

Publication note:

Arthur Winter, 'They Made Today: a History of the 100 Years of the Polytechnic Sports Clubs and Societies' (4 volumes, Polytechnic Harriers [1976]-1980) includes information on the Polytechnic Cycling Club.

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Compiled by Rachel Kemsley as part of the RSLP AIM25 project, additional information added by Samantha Velumyl, AIM25 cataloguer.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Jan 2002 and May 2008

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