THE streets of Hereford remained closed after the carnival and were turned into a race course for cyclists each year between 1972 and 1995.

Brian Nicholas originally organised the event before Ned Potter and Hereford Wheelers took over its running in its later years.

Professional cyclists from across the country descended on the city to compete.

Local amateur riders also got their chance to compete in front of home crowds.

For 23 years following the town carnival crowds were kept entertained throughout the evening with close racing around the tight city centre streets resulting in some spectacular crashes as cyclists pushed their limits.

Some of the professionals that graced the Hereford streets included Barry Hoben, Paul Sherwin and Neil Martin.

The start and finish was outside the Green Dragon before turning into West Street and then Berrington Street before turning back into King Street to complete a lap.

Originally the course used to be even shorter using Aubrey Street around the back of the Green Dragon before turning onto King Street.

However, in 1996 a reverse traffic project around the city with additional traffic furniture meant that the course was no longer useable.

The cost of providing safety barriers was an issue in using a different course.