Herne Hill Velodrome will finally have a new pavilion to replace the existing building which has been out of use for years.
Designs for the new pavilion at the velodrome, which was built in 1891 and is used by around 34,000 cyclists a year, were approved by local councillors last week.
The Hopkins Architects designs were presented by the Herne Hill Velodrome Trust, who are the driving force behind improvements to the site which is a base for many London track cyclists.
Funding agreements are yet to be completed, but the building work will probably be funded by Sport England, and the London Marathon Charitable Trust, plus the Southwark Council.
The building will house a multi-sports room, training and office space, as well as bike storage – and it’s hoped that it will be ready for the track’s 125 birthday in 2016.
The London training ground was the first place Sir Bradley Wiggins rode a track bike, and it’s hosted some of the greatest track riders, whilst also facilitating beginners.
Hillary Peachey of the Herne Hill Velodrome Trust said “For far too long, visitors and riders at Herne Hill have had only basic facilities that do not do justice to the site. Herne Hill has been vital to the cycling history of Great Britain and now, with this final piece of the jigsaw secured, will play a role in the future”.
Bob Howden, President of British Cycling, added: “This is fabulous news for cycling in London. The planning consent for the new pavilion will… ensure that cycling’s rich history continues in the long term. As one of the only surviving venues of the London 1948 Olympic Games the future has never looked brighter for Herne Hill”.
The decision to approve the designs was unanimous, and local MP Tessa Jowell, said: “I’m delighted… The new pavilion will ensure this fantastic asset remains as popular as ever, and as Patron of the Herne Hill Velodrome Trust I look forward to helping plan for a successful future for the track”.
Want to have a go on the track? Here’s our velodrome guide and some tips for beginners from Paralympian Helen Scott.
(All images Hopkins Architects)