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Philippa York mural unveiled in East Dunbartonshire

Will Strickson
15 Jun 2021

Tribute funded by East Dunbartonshire Council depicts an image of York, originally by Graham Watson, in the polka dot jersey she won in 1984

A tribute to Scottish cycling legend Philippa York has been unveiled in East Dunbartonshire.

The mural, recreating an image taken by Graham Watson showing York – then Robert Millar – in the polka dot jersey she won in 1984, has been funded by East Dunbartonshire Council to recognise York's achievements and inspirational story.

Painted by Scottish artist Rogue Oner on the side of a building owned by Campsie Golf Club at the foot of the Crow Road in Lennoxtown, it will act as a gateway to the Campsie Fells, where York would train in her heyday.

The idea for the mural came from Drew Wilson, a former pro cyclist who represented Scotland at three Commonwealth Games and now owns VisualBikeFit, and was supported through the process by councillor Stewart MacDonald and ward councillor Gary Pews.

York, now a journalist, said, 'I love it. It's a really striking piece of work and full credit to Rogue Oner for capturing the essence of the moment.

'When I wanted an extra hard finish to a training ride then I'd include a visit to the Campsies and a climb of the Crow Road before heading back into Glasgow, so for the mural to be placed at the foot of the climb is rather fitting.

'I think, or at least hope, people will see it as inspirational. Cycling can be for pleasure, fitness, travel or sporting competition, but the important message is that it is accessible to everyone.

'I started cycling because I wanted to get out of the city and see things. I didn't intend to be a racer. You can enjoy cycling and go whatever speed you want to go. For me it was a way to see outside of where I was, then I ended up racing... and history was made.'

York's records, winning the King of the Mountains and finishing fourth at the 1984 Tour de France as well as winning the same classification alongside a second place finish at the 1987 Giro d'Italia both stood as the best place British finishes at Grand Tours until 2011.

She was the first British rider to win a major Tour classification.

Councillor Vaughan Moody, joint leader of the council, said, 'We're delighted to officially unveil this stunning tribute to a genuine sporting legend. Philippa is an inspiration and this mural will help to encourage people of all ages to follow their own paths to success and happiness.'

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