Exploring a rich history

On Wednesday, September 9, as the 4th Stage of the Tour of Britain passes through Alnwick, members of the Bailiffgate Museum Oral History Group will be out and about recording spectators’ memories and stories of their early days in the saddle.

The event launches an eight-week oral history project to collect and archive peoples’ memories and early experiences of cycling when cars were an exception, rather than the rule.

In the 30s, 40s and early 50s bicycles were used for leisure, delivering goods, transportation and during conflict. Until the rise of the motor car in the 50s and 60s they were often the only viable means of personal transport for the majority of people. They provided young and old with opportunities for adventure, exploration and individual freedom.

Bailiffgate Museum Oral History Group will be running a training project on research and interviewing for anyone interested in helping to establish an archive for future generations. Comprehensive training and support will be given to anyone keen to become involved.

Cycling has a rich history in Alnwick, from the early days of the Cyclists’ Touring Club in the late 19th Century to the Tour of Britain, which is coming up The Peth next week. Cycling has never been more popular.

Many folk will have had wonderful experiences of cycling through the landscapes of North Northumberland, either as recreational cyclists, serving soldiers, or members of groups like Alnwick Cycling Club. We’re interested in capturing all of these memories and preserving them to inspire future generations of potential cyclists to get in the saddle and explore our region.

Anyone who is interested can come along to Bailiffgate Museum and Gallery on Friday, September 4, at 3.30pm, to find out how they can participate in the project and the race day event. For more information please contact the Museum on 01665 605847 or

Roy Bearpark,

Operations Manager

Bailiffgate Museum and Gallery