Finding Number (Click this to view full catalogue structure)ATH/Z/9
Extent1 standard box (comprising 152 items)
Thumbnail (Click this image to open a larger image)


DescriptionArtificial collection of 152 letters relating to athletics. Majority of letters concern the publication of athletics books, magazines and articles as well as comments on the accuracy and information contained therein. The collection includes examples of personal correspondence such as manuscript letters from Roger Bannister and Harold Abrahams, sent to various recipients.

Some letters concern the history of athletics in the United Kingdom. Item /4 describes the formation of the Croydon Athletics Club and the Croydon Harriers as well as road races run prior to World War I. The letter includes a list of the first Croydon Athletic Club members; Item /5 relates to research into physical recreation among women and includes a questionnaire and Item /6 includes a copy of an article published from the research; Item /59 is a letter from the Rhodesia Amateur Athletic Union to Harold Abrahams thanking him for his defence against Rhodesia being expelled from the IAAF [International Amateur Athletic Federation].

Items /97 to /148 are letters written to Harold Abrahams from the general public. The letters are in response to an article written by Abrahams in which he appealed for readers' opinions on the cause of falling attendances at athletic competition, particularly those held at White City, since 1955. The article appeared in the Times, the Daily Mail and the Daily Telegraph newspapers in August 1961.

Individuals named in the letters as either the author or recipient include:
Abrahams, Harold (1899-1978), gold medalist at 1924 Paris Olympic Games, 100m;
Bannister, Sir Roger (b. 1929), first sub-four-minute mile;
Court (nee Brown), Audrey (1913-2005), silver medallist at 1936 Berlin Olympic Games, 4 x 100m relay;
Lloyd, Edgar (1886-1972), world record holder for 50 miles and competed in the 1912 Stockholm Olympic Games.
NotesOld references: NCAL XXV.L47; NCAL LAdd; Athletics Letters Additional
Access StatusOpen