Classic Lightweights UK
Wally Green catalogue c.1959Bryan Clarke
I have known about the existence of a Wally Green catalogue for some time but have never seen one until acquiring this copy in December 2010. John Bompas has provided us with an insight into the work of Wally Green on the web page devoted to him. It shows that Wally and Harold ‘Pete’ Peters made many frames for the lightweight bicycle trade in London and beyond from the early 1950s until the 1960s, firstly with Mark Hines as Hines and Green and later as Wally Green & Co.
What is immediately noticeable is that Wally Green’s name is not printed anywhere in the catalogue and relies on a hand stamp on the front cover to identify the maker in a blank space provided. This must mean that Wally could send this off to his cycling outlets for them to put their name on it and adopt it as their own. It includes all the technical information needed for a prospective customer to make specific choices for a truly bespoke frame.
What is missing from the choice of lug patterns is the hand-cut fleur-de-lys and curly cut design found on frames supplied to Clarks of Harrow, Pat Hanlon and Youngs of Lewisham around 1960/61. However, the hand-cut lug design that is illustrated in the cataloge was used to build a Stan Miles (St Albans) frame that sold on E Bay a few years ago (shown right) - but Hilary Stone is of the opinion that this frame was built by Bill Hurlow. Also featured is the altered Nervex Pro lug found on Ken Wallace’s bike that appears on the Classic Rendezvous website.
Another curiosity is that there is no mention of Campagnolo Gran Sport ends so that although I have tentatively dated the catalogue to around 1959 it could be much earlier. When John Bompas worked for the firm as a filer in 1959/60 he remembers that the majority of frames were built with Campag ends along with ones made by Agrati and Simplex. Similarly John also remembered some frames being made with Italian style lugs although the majority were made using Nervex of the types shown in the catalogue.
Click on images for larger version
© 2010 Classic Lightweights