Victorian Cyclist – The Book!

Realise it has been quite a while since I last posted anything new. Happily, however, I have been busy doing other things Victorian cycling related in this time. In particular, I’ve been researching/writing a popular history book on cycling in the Victorian period, which is due to be published by Duckworth Overlook in May next year.

With the pressures of getting this done and wanting to keep my weekends relatively work free I let the blog slide a bit (well, completely). However, with the book now handed in I’ll look to get back to posting – one of the good things about doing it is I now have a lot more material!

As a very quick overview, it focusses on the 1870s up until the turn of the twentieth century, with most attention being given to the 1890s and what occurred after the invention of the safety/pneumatic tyres. Rather than writing it chronologically, I thought I’d instead structure it around the different social uses/areas of public life the bicycle fed into in this period. These form its five chapters, which are about fashion/showing off, racing/competition, sociability/club life, romance/courtship and travel/adventure.  Needless to say, a fair bit of blog content was re-purposed in the writing of these!

A preview of the book can be found in Duckworth’s Spring 2018 catalogue, available on their website: Although I should point out the title/front cover/blurb are still a work in progress – we are still working on ideas for the title, so any ideas gratefully received! And if anyone wants to get in-touch about the book more generally will be more than happy to answer any questions.

Finally, just to say a very big thank you to everyone who has read/followed/commented on and shared the blog. The opportunity to do the book actually came about from the publishers finding it online, and the interest people have taken was a real source of encouragement when writing it. I promise to be more pro active in posting/responding to comments in the future!


Book Cover

Current book cover – happy to hear thoughts!