Palmer Park Stadium
|Full name||Palmer Park Stadium|
|Owner||Reading Borough Council|
|Opened||23 April 1988|
Palmer Park Stadium is located in Palmer Park, Reading. It contains a velodrome and athletics stadium. Set in acres of parkland, the stadium provides a focal point for a variety of indoor and outdoor leisure activities.
Palmer Park has several clubs who use the facilities:
- Highmoor Ibis F.C. a non-league football club for First team games
- Berkshire Renegades an American Football team for training
- Reading Athletic Club
- Reading Roadrunners
- Palmer Park Velo
The velodrome was originally built at the turn of the 20th century, making it one of the oldest in the country. It has hosted weekly track leagues throughout the summer and many national events and championships such as the British National Derny Championships.
459 metres in length, it has been described as one of the country's best asphalt track surfaces, although until 1955 when it was resurfaced, it was a loose red shale which meant riders often slid sideways in the bankings. The velodrome was closed in 2002 due to subsidence, as the track was built on the location of some old chalk pits. Reading Borough Council had the dips filled and the track surface refurbished for the start of the 2003 season. Palmer Park Velo cycling club is based at the velodrome, it caters for children between the ages of 4 and 18. Past members of Palmer Park Velo include John Paul, who in August 2011 won the World Junior Track Sprint Championship. Other past members include the female professional riders Hannah Barnes and Harriet Owen.
In March 2015 British Cycling issued a statement indicating that they had assessed the track as being unfit for racing, and that they would not sanction competition at the velodrome for the foreseeable future, although it could still be used for training purposes. However the track was approved for racing one month later after repairs and other changes to fencing were made.
- "Palmer Park Sports Stadium". Sports Clubs UK.
- "Renegades Rehoused". British American Football League. 16 November 2009. Retrieved 16 November 2009.[dead link]
- "Reading Velodrome Takes to Cyber Space and the 'Net". British Cycling. February 2004.
- "Reading Velodrome Racing's History". Reading Velodrome Racing.
- "Palmer Park Velo".
- "Palmer Park Velo". Reading Velodrome Racing.
- Bull, Nick (19 March 2015). "Reading's Palmer Park Velodrome deemed unfit for racing by British Cycling". Cycling Weekly. Retrieved 19 March 2015.
- Abraham, Richard (24 April 2015). "Racing returns to Palmer Park velodrome in Reading". Cycling Weekly. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
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