British Cycling President Brian Cookson has congratulated the volunteers of the Herne Hill Velodrome Trust and Go-Ride club, Velo Club Londres after Prime Minister David Cameron recognised their fine work to save the historic Herne Hill Velodrome with a Big Society Award.
The historic site, the last remaining venue from the Olympic Games in London in 1948, had been in danger of closing as recently as 2010 before a ‘Save the Velodrome’ campaign began, led by Hillary Peachy and Velo Club Londres.
Following significant financial contributions from British Cycling, the track was resurfaced in 2011, with further improvements to the facilities including track lighting, completed in 2013.
The facility is now thriving, with four Go-Ride cycling clubs hosting regular coaching sessions and Go-Ride holiday clubs attended by 90 young riders every day. There are also regular open race meetings and 19 public sessions a week run by volunteers. This level of participation would not be possible without the continued efforts of Velo Club Londres and the Herne Hill Velodrome Trust, the charity set up to manage the regeneration of the site.
Cookson said: “The project to restore Herne Hill Velodrome has been vital not only to London, but to cycling nationwide. The track remains one of the most iconic sporting venues in the country which is why British Cycling has, and will, continue to give its full support to the project.”
“However, none of this recent success would have been possible without the work of some very passionate volunteers. Often, the work of these people can get overlooked so I was delighted to hear that David Cameron is recognising their contribution with a Big Society Award.”
Prime Minister David Cameron added: “Thanks to the hard work of local people and a bit of help from inspirational cycling heroes, cyclists of all ages and abilities can now enjoy using Herne Hill Velodrome and maybe one day follow in the footsteps of Bradley Wiggins, Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton and Chris Froome.
Herne Hill Velodrome is a fantastic London landmark and an excellent example of the Big Society.”
If you would like to get involved with the Go-Ride activities at Herne Hill, or would like to find out more about a Go-Ride club in your area, please visit www.britishcycling.org.uk/go-ride.