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Conor helping re-live speedway's golden days
9:30am Wednesday 8th February 2012 in School Sports
A schoolboy has been given extra history homework – but this time his teachers are not to blame!
Conor Murphy, aged 13, is helping his father, John, in putting together an exhibition that will showcase landmark speedway moments including two World Finals held at Odsal stadium.
Conor, who attends Queensbury School, has conducted hours of painstaking research to ensure the exhibition – called the History of Bradford Speedway – is a success.
The event will be held at the Bradford Industrial Museum from August 25 this year for three months.
The father and son duo have been delving through 30 years of speedway magazines like Speedway Star and Speedway Express and collating materials.
John Murphy, 53, of Cooper Lane, Buttershaw, Bradford, said: “Conor’s interest in the exhibition is remarkable as he belongs to a generation which is not very inclined towards magazines.”
The magazines themselves are special as they were given to Conor’s grandfather, Danny Marlow, by former Dukes rider, Sean Wilson, who in turn had received them from a fan while recovering from a serious track injury.
Mr Murphy has asked people to come forward with interesting speedway memorabilia that they have preserved over the years.
When asked about the response he had received so far, he said: “The people I’ve been in touch with through mail and Facebook have been very enthusiastic. I’m waiting for an advertising poster to come through which I really think will get the message across.”
Talking about the interesting memorabilia that some speedway enthusiasts have volunteered to share, Mr Murphy said: “There are loads of badges, photos, scarves jackets, etc. The memorabilia also includes a flag which a supporter had taken from England to Poland and back.”
Bradford has had an historic connection with the motorcycle sport, with two World Finals being held at Odsal Stadium in 1985 and 1990. The sport was discontinued in the city in 1997.
The event will coincide with the 20th anniversary of the biggest achievement of any Bradford rider – Gary Havelock winning the World Individual Champoinship in Wroclaw, Poland in 1992.
Events lined up to promote the exhibition include an informal display in Bradford Interchange in February, and inclusion as part of the Bradford Bulls heritage celebration in Spring. Any supporters who have mementoes of Bradford speedway are asked to contact John Murphy by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org