Buckshee Wheelers - LAC G. M. Garth
Posted: Saturday 22nd August 2020
Mike Wilson from Bridlington recently contacted me saying he had a pile of black and white photographs taken in Cairo, Palestine, and other places in the Middle East during the 1940s, many of which show cyclists taking part in races such as the Grand Prix Du Firdan, Grand Prix De Gezira and the Aboukir 25-mile time trial. For serving members of the armed forces, recreation in the desert was a problem which was eased by both football matches and cycle racing. Photographs show how popular these events were with big crowds watching the events and prize-givings. More on cycling in the Middle East can be found in Reminiscences by John Basell, Alan Colburn , Sid Ellis and Ken Lowson.
With the photographs were three interesting documents. First LAC Garth’s RAF Form 69, an identification card for RAF drivers valid from 26.2.1946 to 25.2.1947 and showing his F 1250 (Identification Card) as No. 1375747. Shown beneath this card is G M Garth’s Membership Card of the Services Supporters Club of the BLRC.
Also included in this cache is a Buckshee Wheelers Winter Racing Programme for 1945/45. It seems to be annotated by GMG showing him as winning or coming second in many of the events of October to December. It seems as if he didn’t race after Christmas, or if he did, he didn’t note his results down.
The verso of this document shows that the Buckshee Wheelers held a BAR (Best All-Rounder) over distances of 25, 50 and 100 miles, which would be quite a feat on these roads and in this heat.