"Would the many members of the CTC in Newbury who have not had the enjoyable pastime of Club riding ... be interested in forming a section in Newbury?"
Ernie Bance, letter to Newbury Weekly News, 1924
In November 1924, a letter from Ernie Bance of Kings Road, Newbury was published in the Newbury Weekly News asking, “If the many members of the Cyclists Touring Club in Newbury who have not had the enjoyable pastime of Club riding, mainly on account of the fact that the nearest active district association is at Reading, would be interested in forming a section in Newbury?” This was almost certainly the catalyst which led to the formation in 1925 of Newbury Road Club (NRC).
99 years – the countdown has started to our centenary
In 1925 the Newbury Road Club membership included the two Bance brothers, Ernie and Eddie and fifteen other intrepid cyclists. The Bance brothers were actively involved in the Club for many years holding various committee positions as well as racing and timekeeping.
The first Club competitive event (for which we have records) was held on July 5th 1925. This was a 25-mile ‘time trial’ almost certainly held on the A4 Bath Road starting from the Swan Inn between Newbury and Thatcham, and turning at Theale before returning. The winner of that first Club Time Trial was F. Parker in 1 hour 14 minutes and 55 seconds. Today’s top club cyclists with contemporary bikes would cover that course in a little over 50 minutes!
Do you have pictures or stories to share?
We are planning an NRC Club anniversary celebration in 2025. We hope that will include a local photographic exhibition and a written history to share with everyone. Whilst the Club has its own archives, we are appealing to anyone who has memories of Newbury Road Club. Were you, or a family member or a friend, ever involved? Do you have any old photos or stories? We are particularly short of early records.
If you have anything interesting which you can share, please contact us at email@example.com so we can compile a more complete picture of the last 100 years!
And who was in that photo taken by Brian Tate? From left to right they are John Prescott, Tim Johnson, Ian May, Dave Canning, Dave Jones, Arthur Frost, Steve Hawkes and Brian Copas.