1329 miles

Tues Apr 1st 38 miles Went out with Roger Bingham through Watford, Berkhampstead, Chesham and then home through Rickmansworth. Very nice but cold. There was two feet of snow by the roadside at Amersham! We are getting up at 4.00 a.m. on Sunday to marshal in the Norland Combine '25'. I hope it doesn't snow! We are also riding in the Uxbridge Wheelers' junior '25' on the 27th April.

Thurs Apr 3rd 48 miles Left at about 9.00 a.m. out through Stanmore, up the Barnet by-pass to Water End (where I stopped in a cafe) to Hatfield and the '25' turn near Welwyn. I then came home via Little Berkhampstead, Newgate Street, Potters Bar, Barnet, Arkley, Elstree and Hatch End. A nice warm day but windy.

Sat Apr 5th 20 miles Went to Pinner in the morning and Roger came round. In the afternoon I went over to Brian's and then to Tony's but they were both out, so I went round to Roger's. We went for a short ride. We are getting up at 4.00 a.m. to marshal in the Norlond '25'.

Sun Apr 6th 53 miles Up at 4.00 a.m. and out with Roget at 5.00 through Hatch End, Stanmore, Apex Corner and up the Barnett by-pass to Bignall's corner, Hatfield. Then the A 1 to Welwyn and the F 4 turn. A lovely morning with a powerful tail wind so we got there in 1¼ hours (23 to 24 miles). Saw all the riders through in pouring rain and then went back to the start into the rain and a wind which must have reached 50 mph gusts and you know how open it is out there! When we got to the Beacon cafe we decided to go straight home after some food because we were so wet. Went to the pictures in the evening.

Mon Apr 7th 18 miles Club night. Went up via Ickenham and Rickmansworth. I climbed the hill on 77" gear. Paid money for the '25s' on Sunday and on the 27th.

Tues Apr 8th 42 miles Went out training up the A 40 to High Wycombe. I was going out with Roger but I missed him. Home at 8.30 p.m. A beautifully warm night one jersey and no gloves. We break up from school tomorrow.

Thurs Apr 10th 40 miles In the morning I went over to Roger's and, after going to Rayners Lane and Harrow, we went over to Claud's at Ealing where I bought some new track mitts (10/6d). We then came home via the A 40 and Greenford. In the afternoon I went to Pinner to collect my shoes and then over to West Harrow. A nice sunny day but it rained in the evening.

Fri Apr 11th Saw a wonderful all-amateur show at Herne Hill. Russell Mockridge is super – but he was beaten by Cyril Peacock in the sprint final. Keith Bentley beat Dave Keeler in the pursuit. A super hot day!

Sat Apr 12th 30 miles Went to Pinner in the morning and then over to Alan's. We went for a ride. In the afternoon I got my bike ready for tomorrow (club '25') and went round to Jerry's.

Sun Apr 13th 73 miles Hot, fine and warm. Up at 5.15 a.m., out at 6.00 and off number 8 at 7.08 but I immediately went over the handlebars as my gear slipped when I was standing up. A slow morning. Alan [Stratman] won with a 1.6. I shall ride tomorrow in the South Ruislip '10' to make up for today's accident.

In the afternoon we went out to tea at Marlow, up the A 40 and down Red Hill. Had a tear-up coming home and I nearly dropped Alan and Brian Major, but they caught me up the viaduct. A super day, but a disappointing morning. I have grazed my left shoulder, right elbow and left knee!

Mon Apr 14th 53 miles Hot. Up at 5.45 a.m. and out at 6.30 with Jerry. Rode in the South Ruislip '10' and did a 28.00. I had to stay in 77" gear all the time as I have (I think) stripped the 15 tooth cog on my freewheel block. I think I will ride a fixed next Sunday, and will order my new bike [Holdsworth 'Zephyr'] the week after.

Several blokes out later in the morning and we went over to Fred's cafe in Amersham for elevenses. Had a tear-up coming home. Very hot. Hope its like this tomorrow when we go to Wales. In the afternoon I got my bike ready and went over to Tony Tucker's with Jerry, and then over to Brian Major's.

Tour to Wales, 15th - 19th April 372 miles

Tues Apr 15th 92 miles Cool in the morning, warm and sunny later. Left about 8.30 a.m. with Jerry out through Slough and Maidenhead to elevenses near Twyford. We then continued up through Reading, Caversham, Pangbourne, Wantage and Faringdon to Cirencester for tea. We had lunch by the roadside. We then went to the hostel at Duntisbourne Abbotts; it is a super place.

Wed Apr 16th 82 miles Some rain in the morning but sunny later. We left the hostel at about 9.00 a.m. along through Birdlip, down a super hill to Gloucester and then up into the Forest of Dean through Mitcheldean, Symond's Yat (where we climbed the rock) to Monmouth for dinner. We then continued along the A 40 to Abergavenny and then via Brynmawr and Ebbw Vale to Merthyr Tydfil and Cefn Coed. We stayed with an old friend of my mother's whom we called ‘Auntie Doris'. A very nice day.

Thurs Apr 17th Did not cycle today. Went over the Brecon Beacons by car in the afternoon.

Fri Apr 18th 102 miles Hot and fine again today; really caught the sun! Left at about 8.30 a.m. up the Brecon road, through the beautiful Beacons. Jerry got a puncture. We turned right at Brecon through Hay-on-Wye (elevenses) to Hereford where we had dinner and I had a puncture. After dinner we continued through Ledbury and Tewkesbury to Cheltenham and the hostel at Cleeve Hill. We could not get supper at the hostel so we rode down into Cheltenham. A very nice, hot day.

Sat Apr 19th 96 miles Hot and fine. Left the hostel about 9.00 a.m. down into the town, then through Andoversford and Northleach to Burford for elevenses. We then continued on down the A 40 through Witney, Oxford (dinner), Wheatley, Stokenchurch, High Wycombe and Beaconsfield. We got home at 4.30 p.m. I then got my bike ready for tomorrow's '30'. A fast and easy day.

Sun Apr 20th 82 miles Up at 6.15 a.m., out at 7.00 and off number 10 at 8.12 in the club '30'. It was quite hard going out, but a 'flyer' coming home. I did a 1.22.22 and took 3rd place and 1st handicap! Alan Stratman won with 1.19.02 and Brian Major was a few seconds slower. Had two 'pepsis' at the cafe. Len [Chapman] and Ken [Dopson] on the tandem broke the club record with a 1.10.52.

In the afternoon we met the club and went out via Uxbridge and the Slough track to tea at the Southdown cafe at Taplow. Came home via Slough and the viaduct.

Mon Apr 21st 56 miles Wet and windy. Took my rear sprint wheel up to Gordon Prangley's to have the block removed and I bought a chain. He is not a Holdsworth agent so I had to ride over to their shop in Putney to order my new frame which they are going to send to Prangley's. I got lost around Mortlake and Wandsworth! Home at 1.45 wet and starving.

Club night. Gave out runs lists and made arrangements for the weekend (Uxbridge junior '25' on the Bath road). Going training with Roger tomorrow night.

Tues Apr 22nd 33 miles Went to Pinner and Eastcote and over to Prangley's in the morning. Bought a sprocket. In the evening I went out with Roger through Rickmansworth, along the ‘10' course, and home through Harefield, all in the pouring rain!

Wed Apr 23rd 45 miles left at about 9.45 in the morning down through Ickenham and Slough to Maidenhead, right through Boulters Lock, Bookham, Bourne End. Home up Glory hill and through Beaconsfield, Gerrards Cross and Ruislip. Cleaned my bike in the afternoon. It poured with rain again in the evening so I could not go out.

Thurs Apr 24th 52 miles In the morning I left at about 9.10 to Wendover via Rickmansworth and Amersham into a headwind. Got there is 1 hour 20 minutes. Had some cakes and then came home through the Missendens, Amersham, the Chalfonts and Ickenham. Cloudy and showery, cool.

Fri Apr 25th 38 miles Warm and fine today. Went to Prangley's in the morning via Ickenham, Harefield and Rickmansworth; got my wheel back. In the evening I went over to Alan's. Brian also came round and we fitted the Russ (track bike) up for Sunday's meeting at Slough track.

Sat Apr 26th 55 miles Warm but cloudy. In the morning I went round to Prangley's and gave him a list of components I want for the new bike. I also bought a new headset and fitted it when I got home. I then got the Thanet ready for the weekend and put saddlebag etc. on.

We left at about 5.45 p.m. down through Slough, Windsor, Ascot, Bagshot (food) to Camberley. We soon found a place to camp and went to bed about 9.30. [I seem to remember we just camped by the road-side. We had brought bacon, eggs and beans, but no-one thought to bring a tin-opener! It was a terribly noisy campsite; not the best preparation for a race the next morning!].

Sun Apr 27th 82 miles Thousands of jets landing at the airport, dogs barking, lorries screeching, Bingham snoring, bumps and cold - got about 1½ hours sleep! Up at 6.30 out to the start. Staggered round the course in 1.11.10 – I was really bonked. Roger did a 1.7.58 but he is used to camping and it was my first such night. Ken Dopson came down. We then retraced our wheel-tracks to Slough for dinner, and then to the track in the afternoon. Brian Huggins won his heat (sprint) but was boxed in the final.

Derek Speakman pipped Alan Stratman this morning by 2 seconds. Brian Major did a 1.6. K. Fisher of the Festival R.C. won our event with a 1.0.25. One of my off days! Hot and fine.

Mon Apr 28th 38 miles Cleaned my bike in the morning and put the gear back on. I then went over to Harro

w to buy a wing nut and some handlebar tape. Then off to Wealdstone to buy some jeans. I just poodled around in the afternoon, and in the evening went up to the club rooms via Watford and Rickmansworth (up the hill in 69"). Took bookings for Sunday's run to Hindhead.

In the last 20 days I have done 1,049 miles – my Easter holidays! In the week of April 14th to 20th I did 507 miles.

Tues Apr 29th 43 miles In the morning I rushed round to Gordon Prangley's before school and gave him a 15 tooth sprocket for my block. In the evening I went for a short ride and then met the club (12 blokes) at Nell's cafe. We went down through Hatch End and round the Hare and Hounds' course. My chain jumped off so I stopped. But I then caught Tom and Boff who were about 500 yards ahead, and then we caught the rest of them at Hunton Bridge. I was back 4th at Nell's after a bit of a miscalculation on Rickmansworth hill. A very nice evening; very fast.

Wed Apr 30th 18 miles Went for a short ride and then to the committee meeting.