Monday, 28 May 2012

Concept 90 In Sweden

A big thank you to Joakim, from Sweden for sending in some photo's of his Dave Lloyd concept 90, Joakim adds the following information. 

Im attaching a couple of pics of my Dave Lloyd concept 90, which I bought a couple of years ago. The bike had at that moment been stored in a barn on the plains of south Sweden for fifteen years or so. However, under a thin layer of dust, the frame proved to be in very good condition, no rust and just some minor paint chips at the usual places.

Im pretty sure the bike dates to 1992, based on the Shimano component's dating. It came with a full dura ace 7400 group, except for the brakes (600 tricolor), Mavic open pro SUP rims, Mavic headset, c-record seatpost and a San Marco regal saddle.
It is apparently built with Columbus SLX tubing, which I have not seen on other Concept 90's.
I would be very interested in knowing more about the brand or the bike as I haven't found much searching the web. I would also be interested in knowing if you could estimate some sort of value for it, even though I will likely not part with it.

Oh well, all in all its the most beatiful bike i've ever had, too bad that it is slightly too small for me.

Malmoe, Sweden

Please contact us with any photo's or stories you may have.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

James Fothergill 1952 Catalogue

As always a big thank you to Mike Duffy, for sending in the scans of a 1952 Fothergill catalogue.

Please contact us with your pictures and stories. 

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Fothergill Restoration Follow - Up

Thanks again to Peter Legg, for suppling a photo of his finished James Fothergill restoration.

All finished and ready for the Tweed run.

Also thanks again to Bill Soens, who on seeing Peter's restoration added the following information.

"The chap who writes about his Fothergill frame asks about the number and possible date.   The number 83 will have nothing to do with the date.  May be a part number for the lugs or something.

The frame looks to be about mid 1960's - 1970 at latest.   Very few builders were using Simples drop-outs.  Campag were virtually dominent by this time.

Most builders by this time were using "italian" type lugs - smooth and not too ornate.    This frame has the appearance of a Johnny Berry in style but Jim Fothergill - who I knew very well indeed - did build some of this nature."

Bill Soens.

Click the following link, for photo's from the Tweed run.

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Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Geoff Hughes

A big thank you again to Geoff Hughes (Geoff helped us with information on Clifton Cycles) , for getting in touch with the blog. Geoff was and still is a very fine cyclist, ran his own bicycle business and has served as secretary of Birkenhead CC for many years.

Geoff Hughes in action.

Geoff sent the following information.

"After my partner Wendy sent you the email on my behalf earlier, I got to looking at the website and was surprised to find the bit about my shop and self.   About Heswall Bicycles, I opened the shop on 1.4.81 (prophetic!) and it closed in ‘89. Various factors with which I won’t bore you.   The frames I had made (some were bought in and transfers added mostly ‘sports bikes’) were in fact for about the first five years made by Terry Dolan’s team at his Cougar Cycles shop Liverpool.   Terry moved on and then I used Keith Coppull who I think had his business on the way to Ormskirk (Maghull?).   If I can find the folder, I have the details for all the hand-made frames and the number on bottom btackets would indicate the builder.   I think about 65 only were made for me.   Chris Boardman did in fact ride the frame I had made and gave him and in his book ‘Fastest Man on Two Wheels’ on page 21 there he is riding the Junior National 25 (1984).   Of course he was only about 15 and moved on framewise eventually to the famous Lotus.   The frame was used afterwards by his racing sister and more recently by his dad Keith.   I presume he still has it.   Must ask him as I see him regularly in the Eureka.   Incidentally, I still have both stick-on and sprit transfers for those who wish to  preserve their GPHs during ministrations by C&G.

I have had three Cliftons: my first back in 1951; second my track bike 1960; and the one mentioned by Paul Gittins my road/TT bike plus a Harry Quinn TT bike.   With the shop, I had/have two GPHs (both Dolans) TT and a road racing machine.   I now have a GPH all-weather bike (frame by Norman Roberts who built I think for Walton Cycles but now freelance in his garage) and a beautiful Longstaff which is a touring bike (do a bit of that now) built with racing features and is the nicest bike ride of all of them.   George thought it a ‘bit flash’ but it was interesting that when he rang Gerry C&G (12 years ago now) and requested the colour I had asked for ie flam claret over tobacco, Gerry said ‘ that wouldn’t be for Geoff Hughes would it?’   My TT frame is that colour combo – once seen never forgotten!

I must compliment Paul Gittins on finding a racing pic of me AND giving the event and date!   I checked my racing records and he is spot-on.   I finished second by 20 secs 59.47 and my comments were at the time – ‘tailwind to the turn 13 mls 28.30 – hard back into SE wind – should be called “hilly” ! – Ron (Corden) punctured doing 1.1. - cost us the team.   The prize for second place was thirty shillings!   £1.50 in new money!   I was in the Birkenhead North End then (for 35 years) but am now Sec of the Birkenhead CC – Wirral’s oldest club 1898.   I think second oldest on Merseyside only beaten by the Anfield.  

Better stop, sorry to go on but that is what memories are about!   My cycling has been halved in every way – time, speed,distance since I had a knee joint replacement two years ago.   But still turning the pedals which is what counts.   Paul Gittins I met in Wrexham after a number of years last August at a memorial service for Derek Johnson Chairman of our Club and a long-standing friend.   I finished racing in 2007 (by then Club 10s only) after a clubrun fall. I was then 73."

Geoff was, Liverpool and West Cheshire TT Champion 1962/63 and more recently with the veteran racing community, won several age-related National championships. 

Any stories or pictures you may have related to Merseyside bicycles, please send them to

Monday, 7 May 2012

Dave Whitehead

Nottingham Wheelers 25 TT in 1962
A big thank you to Dave Whitehead for sending in his story and pictures. Dave sent the following.

"I hope the following may be of interest to some readers......

In July 1961 I was fortunate enough to establish a new fastest 25 miles TT record in the Manchester RTTC District ( J-Courses) - 56m 59s.

A couple of days later my old pal "Ginger" Bates (Liverpool Unity CC) telephoned to say "Harry Quinn says if you tell him what you want he'll send you a new bike". Remember these were the days of amateur sport, the prize for winning an open "25" was about 30 shillings (£1-50) and it could only be claimed by submitting a receipt for cycling equipment for at least the prize value. This was Harry's way of supporting some riders and of course, if one went fast on a Harry Quinn bike he would maybe sell many more. I was a full time student at the time studying for a degree in Mathematics.   - -  -  - I said I would like a 23", 73 degrees parallel track machine with 28 spoked wheels on L/F Airlite hubs. I was one of the last riders to regularly ride 'fixed' for short distance time trials. The beautiful new machine, finished in white with the HARRY QUINN  decals in bright red, arrived shortly afterwards.
I used it for the remaider of the 1961 season, winning three 25's and a 30. Generally highly place (top 6 ) in other events, and I rode a couple of Track League meetings at Fallowfield on the new machine.

At the start of the 1962 season Robin Murray and I travelled to the London St Christophers CC 25 on the last Sunday in February - before the TT season started up north. The event was on the G9 course on the Brighton Road in Surrey ( Where Gatwick Airport is now.) It snowed. Robin finishe 2nd with a time of 1h 7m   25s and I was 3rd with 1h 7m 45s. I rode in a full TorinoSport woolen training suit. The prize 'money' ( £1-10s and £1-00 ) certainly didn't justify the travelling but maybe the prestige of 2nd and 3rd places did? I didn't have a terribly good 1962 season, a crash on the track leaving me needing new teeth meant I achieved a number of 2nd's 3rd's and 4th's but no solo wins. With Apollo Wheelers we had a number of team wins and , as I recall three Team TT wins. In the Championship "25" ( held on Merseyside that year), I was a seeded rider ( off No. 100) but only placed 33rd (58-34). Riders I often beat were in the top 10.  - Still short of teeth at that time!
Robin and I were 1st and 2nd (in that order) in the BCF M/cr Division 4000m pursuit.

I spent 1963 gaining the BSc Degree I should have got in 1962.

In 1964 fixed wheel time trialling was over. Road bikes with one large ring and a close ratio block were the norm. I didn't ride mant trck events and I'm afraid I can't  remember what happened to the frame. I still have the 28-spoked track wheels 'tied-and-soldered'  - NEVER NEEDED ANY ATTENTION or REPAIR.
Thank you Harry.
Incidentally - Another Merseyside rider - Norman Shiel, (57min 08sec) had held the 25miles record I broke .
Dave Whitehead"

London St Christophers CC 25 TT in 1962

In a later e-mail Dave added the following information.

"Up to mid july 1961 I was a "fair" 25 miles Timtriallist (I hate the word "tester") Having won one or two events , done a short '58' in 1960 in Manchester and a short '57' on the E3 course in Essex - I was studying at London University.
I did the (long) '56' on my Carpenter track bike (88" gear I recall). This was a few seconds faster than Norman Shiel's previous best in M/cr set in 1957.
As a result of the ride Harry Quinn sent his offer so my rides on the Quinn machine were all after the record.
Hope tis helps clear up the sequence of events. I'll dig out "PROOF" of the record ride and send it.
I don't know how many of the Liverpool riders from that era are still about. some of them would remember me...... Ginger (EG) Bates of course, Dave Allen & Brian Green (Port Sunlight) Keith Boardman, I'm sure is still around. Charly McCoy  and the Melling boys.....Joe McLean, Frank Beattie Geoff Hughes (Birkenhead) and Norman Bartley."

So if any of Dave's old competitors are still around, i'm sure he'd like to hear from you.

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Thursday, 3 May 2012

Bill Whitcomb Track Bike

A big thank you to Magnus for sending in pictures of his splendid looking track bike. As you can see from Magnus's e-mail, he was struggling to indentfy the maker, but we have been able to confirm that it was built by Bill Whitcomb in 1985.

"A while ago I purchased an old and very special and nice custom-made pursuit track frame which is probably from the mid 1980's (my guess).
The seller first told me that it is an early Ribble custom build, possibly made by Terry Dolan or Graham Weigh who both seem to have worked at Ribble at the time, but he was not sure at all.
I then contacted Graham Weigh, who said the frame looks like it has been made by Mike Kowal - then Mike Kowal again replied to me that it looks like either a Billy Whitcomb for Harry Quinn, or a Bob Jackson.
So I am writing to you as I would love to find out more detailed info about who actually really built the frame as it's so unique and must have an interesting history.
More info about the frame: the size is 62cm c-t-c seattube, fully chromed, bi-laminate seatpost lug, heart-shaped cutouts in the lugs, Columbus SLX decals (looks old and worn, but I don't know if it's original), Gipiemme dropouts and fork ends.
The previous owner was a track rider in Manchester.
I would be really very happy if you could help me and tell me a bit more about this frame if that's possible.
All the best,

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Fothergill Restoration

A big thank you to Peter Legg for sending in some superb detailed photo's of his James Fothergill restoration, Peter sent us the following information.

" I was looking for information on a sorry looking frame I purchased on ebay, it had lovely lugs which I fell in love with and it made me pay way too much for a bike in such a bad condition (and a little on the large size for me). Anyway I've finally stripped it down and I'm restoring it in time for the Tweed Run in London. I thought I'd do a bit of research on it. I love the old 50s catalogue and saw that the frame is a 'Grimpeur' I've sent you pictures of it all stripped down (just in time the rust was starting to move into heavy pitting on the lower parts of the bike). You might like the pictures of the bare frame I think it looks beautiful. You might be a little shocked with the random components now on the bike (hub gears and old lauterwasser handlebars).

It has 83 stamped underneath, is this the year it was made? seems quite late on, the frame has grease nipples and simplex rear drops, it has the facility for centre pull brakes, braze ons for front and rear gears, if that helps date it.

It's starting to look great I wish I had the forks and stays re-chromed (they are a chipped and pitted in places) but it wasn't in the budget."

I certainly think it'll be the finest looking bike on the Tweed Run.

We'd love to see your restoration photo's, you can contact us at