Leadgate Ladies Cycling Club

Hi Richard

I sent you a message about the Leadgate Ladies Cycling Club via Facebook. I have very little to go off, other than a couple of newspaper articles.

My Great Grandmother was Esther Elizabeth Charlton and she married Frederick Caswell. According to the Consett Guardian 28th December 1900, they attended the Medomsley Cycling Club annual ball along with a Miss Caswell (most likely Fred’s sister). Attending that night was Mr H. Walton and Fred’s sister, Jann Ann Caswell married a Harry Walton. The arrangements were superintended by Jos Walton and Harry did have a brother called Joseph.

The Consett Guardian (16 Nov 1900) reported a successful assembly of the ‘Leadgate Ladies Cycling Club’. Again my Great Grandmother Esther Elizabeth Charlton is attending with her future husband Frederick Caswell. What is quite interesting about this is that Esther was ‘put out’ by her family because of her relationship with Fred. She conceived her first child Edith out of wedlock, but you can see here that their relationship was very public. She actually ended up inheriting her family’s wealth as her family had all died by 1907.

I have contacted the Warwick University cycling archives and unfortunately there isn’t anything about either club. 

Sheila Hanlon is a historian specialising in the history of women’s cycling so I recommend her blog if you want to know more about Victorian women’s cycling

Sheila Hanlon | Historian | Women’s cycling -Sheila Hanlon | Historian | Women’s cycling |

I would love to learn more about the Leadgate Ladies Cycling Group as cycling gave young Victorian women  independence.

Best wishes


Can you provide any information?

Did any of your family belong to the Leadgate or Medomsley Ladies Cycling Clubs?

Picture from blog article Bicycles Changed the Lives of Victorian Women – Gwen Tuinman
Consett Guardian Article mentioning Leadgate Ladies Cycling Club
Consett Guardian Article re Medomsley Ladies Cycling Club

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.