Save The Herne Hill Velodrome!
‘Save the Velodrome’ campaign launches today with an open invitation to a public meeting.
An alliance of residents and cyclists has been formed to save a former Olympic stadium from closure. The Herne Hill Velodrome is the oldest cycling track in the country and the home of the 1948 Olympic Cycling Championships. But now it faces closure due to deterioration and lack of funding. There is no alternative track in London for the hundreds of children who ride and race there. In the past, that has included Bradley Wiggins, the three-time Olympic gold medallist, who began his competitive cycling career at Herne Hill.
The Campaign is the brainchild of Hillary Peachey, a local resident whose children use the site regularly. She says, “It seems shameful that, with 2012 approaching, London cannot even sustain the facilities it has. That is why we are calling on Londoners as a whole to save this precious resource.”
The Campaign kicks off with a public meeting at Dulwich College at 7.30 pm on Wednesday 6th October. But Londoners are asked to register their support on www.savethevelodrome.com
Campaigners aim to secure the future of the site and make it a viable long-term facility for all, including local residents and schools. Hillary adds, “We are going to find a viable, sustainable and environmentally sensitive solution. The only given is that it must be cycling-led, inclusive and work for the entire community.”
The agenda for the public meeting is to:
• raise awareness of the plight of the facilities;
• hear suggestions for the future proposed regeneration;
• review potential plans.
Peter Cattermole, whose club runs the site currently, says, “If you came here on a Saturday and saw hundreds of kids bombing around the track, you’d think it would be criminal to lose it. Anyone who cares about kids, cycling or the environment should come to the public meeting.”
To stay open, the Velodrome will need corporate and private funding, together with volunteer support. The campaigners are hopeful of getting it. “Cycling is one of the most popular sports in the country. If we pull together, we can save this amazing place for future generations,” says Hillary.
Details of public meeting:
Wednesday 6th October
7.30pm to 9.30pm
Great Hall, Dulwich College
Dulwich Common, London SE21 7LD
Official campaign website: http://www.savethevelodrome.com/