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Olympic Cycling Hero Tommy Godwin to be honoured on the Walk of Fame on Sunday 18 May

Double Olympic cycling medallist Tommy Godwin who lived and owned a cycling shop on King's Heath's Silver Street is to be honoured with a pavement star on the Walk of Fame on Sunday 18 May.

Tommy was a double Bronze medallist at the 1948 London Olympics before becoming Britain's first paid national cycling coach in 1964. He carried the 2012 Olympic torch through Solihull and attended the London games before sadly dying in November that year.

A great family fun day out has been organised centred on Fletchers in York Road between 12 noon and 5 p.m. Local residents and cycling enthusiasts will be able to view an exhibition of his life and a collection of vintage cycles. They will be able to take part in a Watt Bike Challenge and try and break Tommy's 1 km Olympic speed record. They will be also be able to be photographed with the 2012 Olympic Torch Tommy so proudly carried through Solihull.

As part of the afternoon's activities Tommy's daughter Kay Jones will be presented with a replica of the pavement star at an Award Ceremony at 4 p.m. by Carl Chinn and Olympic Siver Medallist Harry Reynolds

Tommy's daughter Kay Jones said, “We are delighted that Tommy is being honoured by the King's Heath Walk of Fame. He spent over 30 years running his cycle shop in Siver Street and was proud to provide a service for everyone from the elite peformance cyclist to children wanting their first bikes. He loved being part of the vibrant King's Heath community and it would be marvellous to see as many old friends as possible marking this auspicious occasion. How he would have enjoyed the recognition”.

Ken Whittaker, one of the co-organisers of the King's Heath Walk of Fame, remembers the help Tommy gave him and his brother-in-law when they were involved in a Land's End to John O'Groats charity bike ride in the 1970's. He says “ I went to see Tommy at his cycle shop in Silver Street for advice, having not ridden much since my teens and he took us under his wing. He advised us on the training we should do and was kind enough to loan us bicycles. We decided to ride north to south, that's Jon O'Groats to Lands End because in our heads that made it all 'down hill'. Tommy found this amusing but encouraged us to do it 'our way', if that helped to keep us focused. He went to the trouble of keeping a check on our progress by phoning the agreed over-night stops, and he advised people in each area what we were doing and they were consequently very welcoming, many of them allowing us free accommodation and doing raffles to raise even more money for the charity. Tommy's kindness and professionalism got us through, we are sure we could not have done it without his help. He was one of the nicest gentlemen I have ever met”.

Bob Prew who co-organises the Walk of Fame said, “We want as many people as possible to come and join a host of local and national cyclists in honouring a true sporting legend who made such a contribution to the King's Heath community. We want the afternoon to be a wonderful celebration of Tommy's life and achievements. There will be lots of fun activities for all the family to take part in”.

Below: 1959 Advert for Tommy Godwin's Cycle Shop in Silver Street

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