Wincobank cycling memories on eve of Le Tour’s visit to Sheffield

Constance Wheeliker's mum waiting at the front door for her to come home''Constance Wheeliker, 331 Newman Road, Sheffield S9 1LW
Constance Wheeliker's mum waiting at the front door for her to come home''Constance Wheeliker, 331 Newman Road, Sheffield S9 1LW
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The news that the Tour de France Grand Depart was coming to Wincobank prompted some lovely memories from a Retro reader.

The aptly-named Constance Wheeliker, who still lives in Wincobank, wrote this: “Watching Look North on television this morning, I was interested to hear Jenkin Road will be on TV this evening. It is a steep climb and will be one of the last hills the cyclists in the Tour de France have to deal with.

“I thought you may like to hear of my love of Jenkin Road and cycling. I met my husband out cycling in the early 1940s. I used to come over Jenkin Road from the crossroads at Brightside with a friend who lived on Tufton Street.

“I loved freewheeling down the side of Jenkin Road and straight through the gate at 180 Wincobank Avenue. Dad made sure the gate was open for me to ride through.

“My mother was always on the lookout for me coming home. Here she is at the front door looking for me.

“I move on now, maybe the 50s or 60s, winter time and all the young ones are on their sledges coming down this lovely hill. 7pm they all disappear. 7.30 they are back enjoying the snow.

“You may wonder why they went home at 7pm. It was to hear Valentine Dyall, the Man in Black. No TV in those days and not many cars but life was fun.

“On the Saturday they re-opened The Chapel on Wincobank Avenue. Brendan Ingle and I were paired together.

“The man filming us for the website asked why we liked living in Wincobank. Brendan gave his answer – only because it’s home.

“If you read this, Brendan, you will know I have so many happy memories, good friends and neighbours in Wincobank. Seems unbelievable now but I have run up Newman Road when tracer bullets were trying to shoot barrage balloons.

“I have had love, laughter and tears in Wincobank.”