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Cycle Speedway Teams Down the Ages

Kent: Hawkhurst Hawks

About the team

Track opened in April 1952.

Track was adjacent to the Oak and Ivy Public House, Rye Road, Hawkhurst, Kent.

The team included two of the Landlords son's.

Floodlights were powered by electricity from the pub.

Crowds would spill onto the road(the main road to Rye) during the racing, and in September there would be an influx of hop-pickers down from London, for what many considered their annual holiday.

Rode in the Sedlescombe League 1952-1956.

Team Colours: Red and White.

Club had girls races during their meetings.

A local dignitary was the club president.

Club Secretary: N. Knight.

Team disbanded due to lack of riders at the end of the 1956 season.

Club Honours.

1953 won the Sedlescombe League, runners-up Battle Bulldogs, 3rd Sidley Cyclones, 4th Hellingly Lions. Other teams in the league were: Cobbs Wood Eagles; Hollington Hammers; Rye Aces; Udimore Tigers; Robertsbridge Rockets; Horsmonden Hawks; Ticehurst Terriers; Peasmarsh Panthers; Rolvenden Rockets; Sandhurst Invictas; Wadhurst Lions; Lydd Lions.

1954 won the Sedlescombe League with 24 points, runners-up Cobbs Wood Eagles(22 points), 3rd Horsmonden Hawks(22 points). Lower positions were: Rolvenden Rockets(12); Sidley Cyclones(11); Hellingly Lions(9); Wadhurst Lions(7); Broad Oak Acers(4). They ended the season  beating a "Rest of the League" side 48-36.

Interesting Facts.

Brian Edwards, proud owner of two medals, recalls that the entertainment did not end with the last race, as there were often post-match visits to the local hostelry, with a sing-song round a piano or organ, to the skilled accompaniment of Ken Pantrey. The length of time spent in the pub after away matches was the subject of one rather heated committee meeting. At one pub in Peasmarsh the pub ran out of glasses after a visit by the Hawkhurst Team and their supporters!!

Riders

  • Charlie Bennett
  • Alan Best
  • Dennis Best
  • Alan Burchette
  • Brian Edwards
  • Richard Harrison
  • Tony Kerry
  • Chris Moore
  • John 'Jackie' Ovenden
  • Gerald Pantrey
  • Jim Parker
  • Cyril Taylor
  • Robert Taylor
  • Tom Taylor