Lanarkshire Philatelic Society




Mr. Ian J. Gray


It was a case of "On yer bike!" at the Lanarkshire Philatelic Society last Friday (16th September) with Ian Gray, of Grangemouth, giving his fascinating display of "Cycling". He showed stamps, covers, postmarks, cachets and postcards of every aspect of this theme.


He began with postcards depicting the "Tour de France" - 1903 – when it was first staged - and also displayed stamps issued in 1963 and 1983 to commemorate the 60th and 80th anniversary of the race respectively. There were many postmarks and covers issued for this race throughout the years – in 1994 and 1998 Britain and Ireland respectively issued special covers of the event. A miniature sheet issued by Belgium plotted out the route through the country.


This was followed by the "Giro d’Italia" – the "Vuelta a Espana" – and many more countries who also created a similar cycle race through their countries. Stamps, covers, postmarks, cachets, postcards galore illustrated these.


Many more items illustrated the World Cycling Championship through various years and different routes.


There was also a postcard, issued in 1905 in Germany, showing a race on "penny farthing" cycles! Even earlier, in 1885, in Springfield, USA, there was a "tandem" race!


Ian also had postcards and stamps showing famous cyclists through the years – including Tom Simpson who died of exhaustion on the 13th stage of the Tour de France on 13th July, 1967. Also, Ian Steel, the Scottish cyclist who won the 1952 Peace Race – an Eastern European Race run from Warsaw to Berlin to Prague. He was shown on a postcard issued by a Glasgow newspaper and available to purchase for 2½d!



Paul McGowan gave warm thanks to Ian for his most illuminating evening.


Our next meeting in St Andrews Parish Church Hall, Avon Street, Hamilton, is on Friday, 30th September, 2010 at 7:30pm when, society member, Gary Cheyne will give his display on West Germany.


Anyone with an interest in stamps, postal history, postcards etc is very welcome to attend.