Defunct Speedway Tracks

 

 

a
 
Belle Vue Speedway
 
Hyde Road
Part 2
(The Later Years)
 
Zoological Gardens, Hyde Road, Gorton, Manchester, M12 5PX, This was the Aces home between 1929 and 1987. Manchester speedway fans were lucky.  The City had another stadium (Kirkmanshulme Lane first operated 1928) which served the Aces well  from 1988 to 2015
 
Belle Vue Badges  Peter Craven  Belle Vue Colts  Sandor Levai  Chris & Geoff Pusey  Alan Wilkinson 
Peter Collins  Belle Vue v Sheffield 1965
 
 
Belle Vue
In Sweden
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
The Aces were on their travels during 1950, visiting Swedish league sides: Vargana and Griparna
 
Belle Vue's Aviation Scare
 
8th October 1950
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 

 
 
Belle Vue Bulletin
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 

 
 
Belle Vue In Poland 1955
 
 
Jack Babrovskie says:  Hi, john,  Been looking again at your Aces web page. Hope the following will help:  Re photo of ‘Belle Vue in Poland 1955’ on your Hyde Road site:  Riders are (left to right) Ken Sharples, Fred Rogers, Peter Williams, Ron Johnston, Peter Craven, Bob Duckworth (behind), Arthur Wright, Dick Fisher. Promoter Johnnie Hoskins at far right.
 
Warszawa v Manchester
 
 
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
 
Programme Scorechart Courtesy of Tom Roe
 
 
The Captains Exchange Pennants
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
Wlad Swenbroski and Ken Sharples
 
Jack Babrovskie says: You have a photo of Ken Sharples exchanging team pennants with the captain of the Polish touring team at Hyde Road. The name of the Polish rider is in fact  Wlodz Szwendrowski. 
 
Maybe a statistic too far for your site, but the result of the match IN POLAND on the tour can be found here: http://rlach.republika.pl/inne/powb_1955.htm
 

 
 
Belle Vue Team Pics
 
 
Jack Babrovskie says: L to R: Slant Payling, Peter Williams, Ron Johnston, Peter Craven, Lew Grepp, Dick Fisher, Bob Duckworth.
 
 
 Jack Babrovskie says: Harry Edwards, Ron Johnston, Jack Parker, Ken Sharples, Louis Lawson.  Peter Craven, Dick Fisher, Bob Fletcher.
 

 
 
Brothers Jack & Norman Parker
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
John says: Belle Vue's Jack Parker with his brother Norman Parker who looks as if he was being beamed down from the Starship Enterprise!  I couldn't improve this photo so it is on the website regardless.
 

 
 
 
Jack Babrovskie says:  Peter Craven, Dick Fisher,Ron Johnston, Don Cuppleditch, Bob Duckworth, Harry Edwards, (on bike) Ken Sharples.
 
 
Jack Babrovskie says: Peter Craven, Brian Craven, Bob Duckworth, Peter Williams, Slant Payling, Dick Fisher. (on bike) Ron Johnston.
 
 
Jack Babrovskie says: Bob Duckworth, Ken Sharples, Jack Parker, Ron Johnston, Dick Fisher, Harry Edwards, 
(?), Peter Craven
 

 
 
Lady Fan's Headscarf 
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
Note for younger browsers of my websites.  In the 1950/60s ladies fashions dictated that they covered their heads either with hats or scarves.  Belle Vue came up with this novelty "team headscarf".  Did you see anyone wearing one around the track or on the high street?
 

 
 
Graham Gleave's Photographs
 
Graham's Supporter's Club Membership Card
 
 
Double World Champion Peter Craven, Golden Helmet winner
 
 
Henry Long Dick Fisher and Louis Lawson
 
 
 
George Smith and Bob Fletcher
 
 
 
Alf Webster and Brian Craven.  John says: Brian was my boyhood hero (at 10 yrs of age) when he rode for Newcastle Diamonds in the early 1960s.  I switched allegiance when Ivan Mauger arrived in 1963.  So sorry Brian
 
 
 
Frank Johnson and Harry Edwards
 

 
 
V Long &
Dent Oliver
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 

 
 
Belle Vue In Austria 1962
 
 

 
 
A World Championship Round At
Hyde Road
 
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave 
 

 
 
Peter Kelly
 
 
John says:  I was supporting my local team, Newcastle Diamonds in the 1960s and along came Peter Kelly.  He was no Ivan Mauger/Ove Fundin etc but Peter was a great team man picking up points in each of his heats.  I remember him riding around Brough Park with a clean, white silk scarf, blowing in the wind
 

 
 
Tony Robinson
 
 
Help please. Who is this and when did he ride for the Aces
Colin Greenwell says: Hi John, The photograph is of Tony Robinson. Tony rode for BV late 1950's /60. Rode for Sheffield 1960/63. That means Tony rode in the first speedway meeting I ever  saw at Cleveland Park in 1961. If the programme is correct, he scored 6 points........Programme scan is on your Middlesbrough page.  I have to be honest and say it was John Somerville who named him . I got info about him from a book...as usual.!!
John Says:  All knowledge comes from books/newspaper archives/websites etc so we all should salute those like John Somerville whom have made it their duty to write books etc, on our favourite topic! but where does their knowledge come from? Some will have read it in other books etc.  I can say that many of my items/articles on my websites have come a roundabout route handed down by the riders to their sons/daughters, and grandchildren. who have then sent me the pictures and stories that appear on the site.
 

 
 
Danny Dunton
 

 
Danny in Belle Vue Aces Racejacket 1959-60.
 

 
 
Belle Vue v Wimbledon
 
 

 

 
 
Name The Riders
& The Year
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 
I wonder about this photo, the bigger wheels on the Rotrax JAP indicate this line up was late 1950s and the absence of Cyril Maidment & Soren Sjosten also lead me to think it isn't the early 1960s.  If you can help then send me an email John

 
 
 
 
 
Belle Vue
1962 Team

 

 
John says: 1962 Aces team.  I can name Peter Kelly, Sandor Levai, Peter Craven and Soren Sjosten please help John

Terry Stone has been in touch he says: Is the first rider Ian Hindle, Peter Kelly, Cyril Maidment, Tall rider is Jim Yacoby, Dick Fisher, Soren Sjosten and Peter Craven on the bike

Alan Bristow says: The rider on the extreme left is not Ian Hindle; he would have been too young in 1962 became active last 60's early 70's Also had long blond hair and a thin face. Rider is Nick Nicholls signed for Belle Vue from Coventry for the 1962 season he rode only the one or maybe 2 seasons for BV Regards Alan
Ian Thompson says: Sandor Levai is definitely not on this photograph
 

 
 
Peter Craven

Peter Theodore Craven  born 21 June 1934 he died 24 September 1963 as a result of a riding accident at Edinburgh's Old Meadowbank Stadium (Old Meadowbank also a defunct speedway). Peter started riding in 1951 for his home town team Liverpool Chads an obviously talented rider, he was signed for 1952 by the North's premier club Belle Vue.  Peter stayed with the Aces until that black day in September 1963.
 
 
The Wizard of Balance: Hanging Tough! Peter Craven at speed!
 
 
Peter Craven &
Barry Briggs
 
 
Peter Craven and Barry Briggs. Two of the "greats" from the 1950s and 1960s

 
Peter Craven
 
 

An Iconic pose, on his bike, from arguably the greatest British rider of all time?  John says well I think he was the greatest British rider of all time.  RIP Peter
 
 
Peter Craven's Achievements
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
 
Peter With His 1955 World Championship Trophy
 
 
 
Bringing
The World Championship Trophy Home to Belle Vue
 
 
 
Above left: Peter Craven With Ove Fundin and Peter On the BV Tractor With His 1955 World Championship Trophy
 
 
The Unique Style Of
Peter Craven

 
 


Peter was known as "The Wizard of Balance". He was small in stature and the "big" handlebars on his bikes allowed him to be "acrobatic" on a bike. Here he is shown cornering in his unique style.
 
 
 
Peter with Norman Wisdom
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 
CRAVEN & NORMAN WISDOM WHO PRESENTED THE TROPHY 1962
 

 
 
Belle Vue
Early 1960s
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 
Igor & Peter
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 
CRAVEN & PLECHANOV MALMO WORLD FINAL 1961
 
 
One Of Peter's Bikes
 
Courtesy of John McCluskey
 
Courtesy of John McCluskey
 
These photos show the typical mount of riders of Peter's era 1951-1963 a totally British made bike, the Rotrax JAP, which stands for the makers name John Alfred Prestwich.  (If you are interested in seeing more about this type of machine and all the other bikes in use from the 1920s onwards. Visit my "bikes" pages from the links on the right hand column).
 

 
 
A Battered Photo Of
Peter Craven

 
Courtesy of Nick Short
.
John says: A battered photo of Peter Craven.  I have made no attempt to clean up the image, preferring to show the picture as it was sent to me.  I often "improve"? old photos, but sometimes I think it is a mistake to alter an old pic by removing creases, tears etc. so this pic is untouched.
 
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
Peter collecting more silverware
 
 
Peter & Older Brother
Brian Craven
A Newcastle Diamond

.
John says: As a Newcastle fan I was always pleased to see our Brian Craven's superstar, younger brother, Peter, in the Newcastle pits supporting older bro Bri's evenings racing.  Brian was so devastated by his younger brother Peter's track death in 1963 that he took a whole season off without turning a wheel.  Brian has since joined Peter in the afterlife where I hope there is a speedway track for the Craven brothers!

 
1962
World Champion


Courtesy of Nick Short
 
The World Championship winged wheel trophy, what every rider wanted. Peter won The World Title twice in his short career. He was World Champion 1955 and 1962.  He may well have added more successes if he had survived his fatal crash in 1963.
 
 
A Peter Craven Car
Window Sticker
 
 

 
 
Peter Craven Tribute
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
John says:  I remember Peter's death on every anniversary. He died on my 11th birthday 24th September 1963.  I will never forget his passing when I celebrate my birthdays!
 

 
 
3 More Early 1960s Aces
 
Photos courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
Willie Wilson, Tink Maynard and Dick Fisher. The JAP machines always catch my attention. They were heavy machines by modern day standards and the handlebars were big to cope with the "deep" tracks in that era.  The Aces were in demand then and the team rode in Ireland and a number of European countries.
 
 
Norman Nevitt
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 
 
Dick Fisher &
Olle Nygren
 
 
 
Belle Vue
Early 1963
 
 
 

 
 
Belle Vue v Coventry
 
5th June 1965
 
Courtesy of Wattie Dunlop
 
Courtesy of Wattie Dunlop
 

 
 
Belle Vue Quiz Winner
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 

 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 

 
 
Belle Vue v Sheffield
 
3rd July 1965
Tom Roe's Photographs


ICT Trophy


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 

 
 
Garry Middleton
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe who says: Garry Middleton, an interesting photograph. Would suggest 1967
 

 
 
Belle Vue Badges
     
1949 1950 1964
     
1967 1968
   
Badge scans are courtesy of Wattie Dunlop
 
    1968
     
1968 1968 1969
     
1968 1968 1969
     
1969 1970 1970
     
1970 1971 1971
     
1971 1972 1972
     
   
1972    
     
1973 1973 1973
     
1974 1975 1975
     
1975 1975 1976
     
1976 1976 1976
     
1977 1977 1977
     
1977 1978 1978
     
1978 1978 1979
     
1979 1979 1980
     
1980 1980 1980
     
1980 1981 1981
     
1981 1981 1981
     
1981 1981 1981
     
1982 1982 1982
     
   
1982    
     
1983 1983 1983
     
 
1983 1983  
     
1984 1984 1984
     
1984 1984 1985
     
1985 1985 1985
     
1985  1986  1987
     
Badge Scan's Courtesy of Wattie Dunlop
 
British League Riders Championship Final Badges
 
Wattie Dunlop has sent me these scans of his BLRC Finals badges, which we are happy to show below. 
 
1970 1971 1972
     
1973 1974 1975
     
1976 1977 1978
     
 
1979 1980 1981 
     
 
1982  1983  1984 
     
1985  1986  1987 
     
Belle Vue is historically the home of the league riders championship final.  1987 was the last year the final was staged at BV Hyde Road. 1988 onwards the city staged the BLR Championships at Kirkmanshulme Lane.  I will move the post 1987 badges to the Kirky Lane page when you send me badge scans from 1988 or later
 
Hyde Road's world famous "Belle Vue" track, home of the ACES closed it's doors to speedway in 1987 and Manchester's Speedway fans turned their attention to the city's Kirkmanshulme Lane venue.  Any more badges 1988 or later will be shown on my Kirky Lane page in the A-Z 
 

 
 
Tom Roe's Photographs
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 1: Cyril Maidment
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 2: Soren Sjosten
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 3: Ivan Mauger
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 4: Bill Powell
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 5: Dick Fisher
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 6: Tony Robinson
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 7: Derek "Tink" Maynard
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
Pic 8: Chris Pusey
 
 
 
9: Chris Bailey   10: Paul O'Neil
 
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 
Pic11: Tommy Roper, Soren Sjosten and Ivan Mauger
 
 
 
Pic 12: Gordon McGregor  Pic 13: Russ Hodgson 
 
 
 
Pic 14: Gote Nordin
 

 
 
GB v Soviet Russia
 
Courtesy of Wattie Dunlop
 
Courtesy of Wattie Dunlop
 
Courtesy of Wattie Dunlop
 

 
 
Belle Vue v Newport
1966
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 

 
 
Getingarna (Sweden) v
Belle Vue
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 

 
 
Magyar Valogatott
 
The Hungarian National Team v
Belle Vue
 
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 

 
 
Belle Vue v Leningrad
 
ZZ Top! No It's The Leningrad Neva Team
 
 

The "Name the Rider" photo to stump you all.  They appear to be mounted on identical ESO/Jawa machines making them eastern Europeans. Please email any ideas John

Jim Henry says: It's the Leningrad Neva team - probably the one that visited Belle Vue sometime in the 1960s/1970s is the best I can do. The race jacket motif is the give away.
John says: I asked Dave Gifford for his views on the men and machines in this great photo.
 

Giffy says: When we first used Jawas in 1968 they had a rear mudguard with a valance on the right side. An Giffy's Eso with oil tank on rear mudguardoil tank was mounted on the valance. The rear downtube of the frame diamond was 30 mill same as the other tubes. About 1969 or 70 they did away with the valanced guard and the oil tank and put the oil in the frame and increased the size of the downtube, if you look at most Jawas they have an oil filler cap on the frame above the fuel tank. I have a picture of an Eso which also had an oil tank. I have been told by a reliable source that 80% of the Jawa production went to the Soviet Union. Now if this is the case I have a little bit of doubt about the date of the picture being 1971as there are no filler caps on the frames and I think they would have wrecked all the old type frames by 1971! The bikes also have Lucas magnetos which were used on the earlier model. I do have an early model Jawa awaiting restoration, my next project.  Giffy

 
John says: Maybe the Soviets had older bikes and equipment in 1971?   So can anyone name the riders?
Bob Andrews says: The masked men photo was Team Leningrad, taken in 1971 at Belle Vue
Alan Charles says: Here are scans from the match programme which was 1968 not 1971
 
 
Russian/Eastern Bloc speedway teams visiting the UK in the cold war era were mysterious and great crowd pullers.
 

 
 
Belle Vue Bertie!
 
 
Wattie Dunlop's 1969 Badge
 

 
 
 
 
 
Kathy Hitchen's Photographs
 
 
These are Kathy Hitchen's photographs of the Belle Vue track taken in November1987, shortly after closure.  I have placed her photos throughout the Belle Vue webpage.  Could these pictures be of the finest race track the UK has ever known?
 

 
 
Ivan Mauger
 
Since the death of Peter Craven in 1963 the Aces had a massive void to fill . The Aces made a move for Newcastle's unsettled star and current world champion Ivan Mauger joined the Belle Vue Aces in 1969, where he enjoyed his greatest team and individual achievements. As a Belle Vue Ace he won the world title in 1970, 1971 and 1972, thereby becoming the only rider to complete the 'Triple Crown' Three championships in a row.
 
John says: As a Newcastle fan I was almost suicidal when Ivan left us to join the Aces but looking back I think it was the best thing for my hero's career.  He was brilliant for the Diamonds but somehow he stepped up another gear and he was even better with the Aces and possibly wouldn't have achieved so much had he stayed at Newcastle with Mike Parker.  
 
John says: Ivan and I have kept in touch for many years.  He has told me many things about his career (as the greatest speedway rider of all time).  If you want to read more try my Ivan Mauger pages on this website and also on my www.newcastlespeedwayhistory.co.uk website.  However, this is about Ivan at Belle Vue so read on: -
 
 
Probably the best signing made by Belle Vue in their long history.  Bringing Ivan in from Newcastle gave the fans a man to idolize as they did Peter Craven before him.   
 
 
 
 
Courtesy of Jack Longley  
 
Courtesy of Jack Longley  
 
Ivan's Gold Bike displayed on the centre green at Hyde Road   
 
Courtesy of Ivan Mauger
 
John says: One of my favourite photos of Ivan.  He sent me the photo a few years ago.  Ivan has been a great friend to me, this website and also to my History of Newcastle Speedway Website  Where the 1960s pages chronicle Ivan before his transfer to Belle Vue
 

 
 
A Belle Vue Fans Memories Of Ivan Mauger
 
Dave Hobson says: Hi John, I hope you enjoy my story, which follows below: -
 
Sadly my story starts with the death of my father from cancer in August 1972. His death prompted a visit to our family home in Bredbury near Stockport from my uncle Phil Waine, who was also my godfather. Uncle Phil was from the posh side of the family and lived in Bramhall!
 
During my uncles visit he came to chat to me in my bedroom. The walls of my room were festooned with pictures of Belle Vue speedway riders from the souvenir shop, black and white printed posters with the Aces body colour predominant picked out in red. As he slowly turned looked around my room he said “so you follow the speedway” then he said “we had a speedway rider that lived next door to us, he’s just moved” being a slightly disinterested teenager I replied “oh, who?” thinking it was going to be some kid who rides second half races that I never heard of but uncle Phil said “Ivan Mauger” what! Not some unheard of second halfer but my hero, former world champion and captain of Belle Vue, Ivan Mauger and he followed that with “we’ll go for tea, I’ll arrange it”. Which is how, a few months later I ended up sat in the Mauger family home.
 
Initially Ivan was out when we arrived but Raye, made us welcome, soon enough the lounge door open and in walked Ivan, my uncle stood and said “I don’t have to tell you who this is” as I got up to shake hands with a sporting icon. Then followed a tour of the workshop/garage and trophy room with it’s hundreds of gold, silver and quite a lot of ceramic trophy’s as I remember. Next I was allowed to sit on the gold bike, there are not many people in the world who can claim to have sat on that, I also got to hold the world wheel trophy that Ivan had won again in September 1972.
 
There were gifts a well, he gave me a triple crown enameled badge and copy of Ivan Maugers Speedway book, both of which I still have but for some inexplicable reason I never got around to asking him to sign the book, I think I was just awestruck. My aunt, uncle and I were there for a few hours and what a fantastic treat is was for a sixteen year old kid whose father had recently passed away.
 
As the years went by I would spend a few minutes every season talking to Ivan in the pits at Belle Vue, I just used to turn up at the gate, say who I was and in I went, this continued even after he left the Aces.
 
At one of our little chats I mentioned I was thinking of trying speedway and Ivan’s advice was “get the best machinery you can afford”. My speedway career started and ended shortly afterwards at Crewe training school where I sustained a broken shoulder, my mother made me give up training after that, stating “speedway riders are born not made” it was years later that I realised how wrong that was, you can be what you want to be if you put the hard work in, Ivan proved that himself by coming back from the disappointment of his early days at Wimbledon in the fifties.
 
Time moved on and as Peter Collins career blossomed at Hyde Road and speedways loudest fan Soldier Boy arrived on the scene to offer vocal support at home matches. Ivan had left the Aces by now and would be racing against Belle Vue or riding in individuals meetings such as the Peter Craven Memorial Trophy or the British League Riders Championship but my support was always unwavering, I would always be there next to Soldier Boy near the starting gate supporting Ivan, trying to drown out the sergeant majors bellows and taunts, with my own words of encouragement for the kiwi maestro, the final time being Ivan's farewell tour in the eighties.
 
But the story doesn’t end there, when the meeting regarding the new Belle Vue stadium was being held at Gorton Monastery in August 2011 and I heard Ivan was attending I decide to go along. Ivan and Raye were seated in the front row and just before proceedings started I went up to where they were sat and knelt down beside Ivan while I recounted the story told here but I also took the book that I had been given in 1972 and forgot to ask him to sign, which is why my copy now has the inscription “to Dave, forty years late, best wishes Ivan Mauger, what a truly great, great man he is.
 
I was a Belle Vue fan on a weekly basis but I am an Ivan Mauger fan for life. Dave Hobson
John says:  I am a Newcastle fan and I echo your words Dave.  "I am an Ivan Mauger fan for life" too.
 
Courtesy of Dave Hobson
 

 
 
Belle Vue Colts
Belle Vue like other successful clubs ran team(s) in the lower league(s)  You will remember some of the BV Colts from the following team pictures, if you are old enough!
 
Colts Picture 1
 
Steve Wilkes says: Taken in 1968 at Belle Vue Back row -  Ken Eyre, Peter Thompson, Alan Middleton (Manager), Johnnie Hoskins, Brian Bentley, Dave Brockbank Front row - John Woodcock, Taffy Owen, Ken Moss, Chris Bailey, Eric Broadbelt.
 
Phil Masters says:The year 1968.This photo was taken after they won the British League Division 2. Johnnie Hoskins donated and presented the trophy
 
Colts Picture 2
 
Steve Wilkes says: Photo taken in 1969 probably at Doncaster. Left to Right : Ken Moss, Peter Thompson, Steve Waplington, Alan Middleton (Manager), Eric Broadbelt, Taffy Owen, Bill Moulin, Chris Bailey (on bike)
 
Colts Picture 3
 
Can you say the years and name the riders? John
Steve Wilkes says: Taken in 1969 at Belle Vue.  Bill Moulin, Ken Moss, Peter Thompson, Alan Middleton (Manager)Steve Waplington, Eric Broadbelt, Ken Eyre, Chris Bailey (on bike)
 

 
 
Sandor Levai
 
 
Sandor Levai possibly the greatest Hungarian rider of his era and a great accent too.  I would have paid to hear him utter some of Bela Lugosi's Count Dracula lines.
 

 
 
Ace & Diamond
 
 
John says: I had this picture sent to me and as a Newcastle fan I recognised the Diamond, it is Peter Kelly an Ace turned diamond.  I am told Dick Fisher and Sandor Levai are the other two riders. Peter of course, was also a Belle Vue rider from days gone by, before joining Newcastle in the 1960s.
 

 
 
Chris & Geoff Pusey
 
 
Northern brothers Chris and Geoff Pusey were two English lads that should have had more success for their efforts.  This is Chris Pusey, pictured in 1969 before he grew his hair and sideburns!  He was a gritty racer who on track, would pass you if you made any slight mistake.
 
 
The Pusey boys were not shy, as they proved by their appearance. They cut colourful pictures with the polka dots and hairstyles.  If I had been their promoter I would have insisted that the rest of the team followed suit with polka dots and hair.  Team Pusey eh?
 

 
 
Alan Wilkinson
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
Belle Vue Ace Alan Wilkinson's speedway career ended on Saturday, 1st  July 1978 when he crashed at Hyde Road during a BV home match against Swindon.  The accident resulted in Alan needing a wheelchair for the rest of his life.
 
 
 
Wilkie's Benefit Meeting
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 

 
 
 
Belle Vue from the starting gate area
 

 
 
Jim McMillan
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 

 
 
 

 
 

Peter Collins

 
How do you replace Ivan Mauger? Well bring on an Englishman, Peter Collins.  Now Ivan Mauger is without doubt the greatest rider of all time.  If you were old enough to watch him on his home track week after week you will agree, so Peter Collins came along and was so good Belle Vue didn't miss Ivan too much.
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave  
 
 
Belle Vue
Captained By
Peter Collins
 
 
Back row: C Morton, Unknown, J Brett, R Maxfield, Unknown, Front: Unknown, Peter Collins and Les Collins
 
 
Peter Suffers
An Illness
 
Angela Collins says:  Thanks to everyone for all your kind messages of support.  Peter suffered a brain hemorrhage on Thursday 9th September 2010 and is currently recovering in hospital. We are seeing improvements every day and are hoping to have him back home soon.
Peter is still awaiting to undergo some tests, but is eager to get back on track and get back home to his family.
Thanks once again for all your support. Kind regards,
Angela, Chris and Hayley Collins.
 
Bruce Penhall says: "I had a couple of phone calls yesterday one from Ronnie Preston and the other from Phil Collins, to my dismay they had told me that my mate PC (Peter Collins) had a stroke last Thursday. This unfortunate news has saddened all of the Penhall family as PC was instrumental to my speedway career and became great friends with my entire family. "I spoke with PC about 5 months ago and at that time he was awaiting a procedure for a heart condition and apparently the angioplasty went well, I am not sure if his heart had anything to do with the stroke. PC is truly one of the nicest guys in the sport and took a true liking to all of the Yanks and never hesitated to help any of us. Our thoughts and prayers go out to PC and the entire Collins clan"
 
Peter Collins Leads
John Louis  
 
 
 

Peter Collins

 
 

A great picture of a top class Belle Vue and England rider.  For a club to have one English world champion is great but Belle Vue had two, Peter Craven, twice a winner and Peter Collins took a single win.

 
During his career, Peter Collins won 10 World Championships in speedway competition (one Individual, four Pairs and five World Team Cups) making him the most successful English rider ever in UK speedway history.
 

 
 

Back straight, looking back at the second bend

 
Looking out from the pits  
 
What a fantastic venue, lost for ever 
 

 
 
Courtesy of Jack Longley  
 
John says: Another great English Belle Vue rider. The very popular Chris Morton on what appears to be embroidery?
 
Jack Babrovskie says: Hi, me again,  re your picture of Chris Morton on the site which you suggest may be ‘embroidery’ ?  Pur....lease! This is an example of the many badges that were popular in the 70’s and were stitched by supporters to jackets, scarves etc. at that time.  I still have my 12 year-old son’s speedway jacket of the time around somewhere (he’s now 44!)  which is full of these patches.  Embroidery........... how dare you ?
 
John says: Ok Jack.  I am suitably embarrassed!
 
 
Chris Morton Rosette
 
Courtesy of Tom Roe
 

 
 
Chris Morton (Left) &
Les Collins
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
I could have photoshopped these pictures but I think they look great without colour correction just as they are.
 
Paul Tyrer (Left)
& Alan Wilkinson
 
Courtesy of Graham Gleave
 
Two more from Graham Gleave with the unusual colour patina.  I am showing the pics untouched as they look great anyway.
 
 

 
 
Victory Parade
 
Courtesy of Jack Longley
 
I only recognise Peter Collins, Andy Smith and Chris Morton, Jack says Carl Blackbird and Kenny McKinna are on there too. If you can name the other rider please get in touch
Update: John Downer says: It looks very much like Mark Courtney
Update: Mark Evans says it Andy Campbell
 

 
 
Starting Gate Action During The 1980s
 
 
John McCluskey says: here is a picture from Hyde road in the 80s,not sure of the exact year.  It was Belle Vue v Hull,
you can see that some of the stands had been demolished and the scenic railway, which towered over
the first bend has gone.  Sad really, but the Belle Vue Zoo had been going downhill with no investment
for years
John Mather says: The year is 1981. Belle Vue v Hull League Cup match 18th April 1981. Heat 5. Left to right John Eskildsen (Hull) Louis Carr (Belle Vue) Billy Sanders (Hull) Chris Morton (Belle Vue)
 

 
 
Jack Babrovskie Remembers Belle Vue
In Russia
 
Jack has been an enormous help with the Belle Vue, Hyde Rd pages 1 and 2 and Belle Vue Kirkmanshulme Lane pages.
Jack says: Here are a few curiosities relating to the Belle Vue Aces in the Hyde Road days.
 
Item 1) Russia v England 1967
 
 
1) A programme cover from the meeting between Belle Vue and Leningrad in Russia in 1967.  The Cyrillic spelling translates as Anglia v. Russia.  The brackets below translate as Manchester versus Leningrad.
 
 
Item 2) A couple of photos from Russia 1967
 
 
 
2) A couple of photos claiming to be Belle Vue riders in Russia that year.  These were obtained from an archive held at Chethams library.
 
 
Item 3) England v Russia 1968
 
 
3) Also a programme cover from a meeting held in Manchester in 1968 for England versus Russia.  I don’t remember any other details about this meeting (despite probably being there!) but assume that it was a return fixture
 

 
 
Race Jackets
John says: The following email may interest race jacket collectors: -
My name is Tom Newey, I am a race jacket collector from Manchester. In particular I collect Belle Vue aces race jackets but I have many from other teams across the UK.
I came across your website recently, which is a great insight into speedway from the past, and wondered if you may be able to help me?
I am always looking to add to my collection of jackets, would you by chance know the location of any original race jackets that might be for swap or sale? Or if you know of any race jacket collectors that you could put me in touch with that would be great, I'm always looking to find who collects each team's jackets across the UK.
Any help would be appreciated.   Email me if you are looking to swap or sell any of your race jackets Tom
 

 
Belle Vue
(Hyde Road)
League Results
 
Jack Babrovskie says: Hi, John, Whilst digging for stuff for your Kirky Lane page I came across the following page from the Diamond Jubilee programme that list all Aces results from the time they were a league team until 1987 when Hyde Road closed...see below: -
 
The Death Of
Hyde Road
 
 

 
 
Belle Vue Hyde Road Site After Demolition
 
Courtesy of Jack Babrovskie
 
Jack Babrovskie says: Here are some photos taken just after after the bulldozers had left the Hyde Road site. When you stood in the area where the pits used to be you could still smell the fuel that had been absorbed by the soil over the years.
 
Well,  Manchester's best known Speedway Track BV  was flattened by big business and was lost to the sport but the Aces were lucky that the city had another venue, namely Kirkmanshulme Lane and so for Belle Vue fans the racing continued at "Kirky Lane"
 

 
 

 
 
1987 The Final Programme
From
Hyde Road
 
 
Ist November 1987. A double header:  BV v Coventry and BV v Cradley Heath. Both matches were last heat deciders
 
Belle Vue v Coventry
 
 
 
Belle Vue v
Cradley Heath
 
 
 
Individual score charts from both meetings.  The programme scans came from the Jack Babrovskie collection
 
John says: A really sad day when speedways number 1 all time venue staged it's last ever meeting.  As a Newcastle supporter I didn't see Belle Vue that often but when I did, the meetings were always excellent.  I am happy to see from this programme that ex-Newcastle rider David Bargh did well for Coventry
 

 
 
Kathy Hitchen at Hyde Rd
 
 
Kathy Hitchen at Belle Vue.  Thank you Kathy for the excellent photographs.  
 

 
 
The Meeting's Off For Good!
 
Courtesy of Kathy Hitchen
 
The writing was on the wall literally.  "The meetings off for good"
 

 
 
Hyde Road 2014
 
 
 
Chris Wallett says: Made a visit to Belle Vue to see the mighty Wolves on Good Friday. Thought I would drop round and see the whats happening at the old Hyde Road site just around the corner. Sad to say no sign of the mighty track or the Botanical Gardens and amusement park we used to visit as a family which always made the trip to Belle Vue speedway such an event. Sent a couple of pics taken from where the back straight entrance would have been looking across the track. Hope these bring the story of Hyde Road up to date. As a side issue also took loads of pics of the current Kirkmanshulme Lane track as judging by Chris Morton's notes in the programme this may be the last season before the move to the new stadium so when needed I will have them.
Hope you are enjoying the new 2014 season as much as us here.
Chris
 
John says: Yes Chris, Belle Vue look to be heading for a second Defunct Track, polish up your photos and send me them when it happens or if it happens!
 
 
The End Of
Belle Vue
(Hyde Road)
 
It was great whilst  it lasted at Hyde Road, but all good things must come to an end.  Manchester had a new Belle Vue venue at Kirky Lane so the BV fans could continue to get their speedway fix.
 
Belle Vue Kirky Lane is now also Defunct so check it out in my A-Z in this website
 

 
If you have any photos etc please send me scans John
 
This is BV Hyde Rd Part Two.  If you have missed BV Hyde Rd Part One visit it Here
 

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