SS & Chas. M Greenbury memorial handicap for the Bradshaw cup, presented by Leanne and Hutan Ashrafian

The race that wins the prize for the longest name on the fixture card. Explanation required.

Saturday 26 June saw us race over 880 yards (800m) for an event that has been on the calendar for 60+ years.  Sidney and Charlie Greenbury were two of the three Greenburg brothers that joined the club in 1909.  The other was Albert, club President 1935 to 1955, whose direct descendants present the Peter Pan cup each Christmas -  Albert took over from Sir James Barrie in 1933.  A cup in memory of Tommy Bradshaw, who was already a long-standing member when the three Greenburgs joined, has been presented to the winner since 2016.

First home was Yvonne Vanderheul (aka "Squirrel"), followed by Andrew Fuller and Linda Paxton.  The Ashrafian family were out in force to present the cup.

Tommy Bradshaw (middle). Winner of the 1926 Winter competition, sponsored by Bovril.

Tommy Bradshaw (middle).  Winner of the 1926 Winter competition, sponsored by Bovril.

The Bradshaw cup recently came back into the club's possession and has been presented since 2016

The SS & Chas. M. Greenbury Handicap has been a summer fixture for longer than any club member still living can remember

The SS & Chas. M. Greenbury Handicap has been a summer fixture for longer than any club member still living can remember

Albert and his brothers Sidney and Charlie Greenburg joined the club in 1909

Yvonne Vanderheul (Squirrel) received the Bradshaw cup and some chocolates (with which 14 month old Ariabella was reluctant to part)

Yvonne Vanderheul (Squirrel) received the Bradshaw cup and some chocolates (with which 14 month old Ariabella was reluctant to part)

Leanne met fellow "medic" Hutan (watching on) at a conference in 2009. They married in 2015.

Connections with the 19th century, still alive today.

Tommy Bradshaw of South Norwood was a club member for fifty years, having joined in the 19th century.  His journalist son was responsible for getting the Serpentine SC competition results in the national daily newspapers alongside the Test Match score and latest football results. He never missed his dip at 6.00 am in the morning, no matter what the weather.   “To swim and keep fit" was his motto. Club records show he recalled one member who was diagnosed by his doctors at the age of 14 years as “an incurable consumptive” yet was winning 55 yards handicaps at the age of 84, only to be found dead in his bath at home at the ripe "young" age of 96 years. Tommy could also tell of the freezing cold winters of 1894, 1895, 1905 and 1907, when the lake was frozen and covered with ice. Members would break the ice themselves before they could have a dip, having cut a path through the snow just to get lakeside.  Tommy started swimming when he was 9 years old, teaching himself to swim with the aid of some old stocking legs filled with corks, and went on to win a 'Peter Pan Cup' in 1921. 

The 1910 Christmas Day start list shows Tom Bradshaw racing along with all three Greenburg brothers.  Possibly the first of a family tradition that is still upheld over 120 years later by Lucy Harris, Albert's granddaughter. 

The original surname of Albert, Sidney and Charles was Greenburg.  Sadly due to rising antisemitism they chose to change the name to Greenbury in the early 1930s.

Leanne Ashrafian (nee Harling) joined the club in 2002, part of the "Imperial Medics mafia". Elected to the committee in 2017, surgeon Leanne has proved invaluable in her medical knowledge and sensible advice. Leanne has sponsored this race since 2019.

Leanne Ashrafian (nee Harling)  joined the club in 2002, part of the

Leanne was (is?) a very good water polo player, captaining Imperial College and University of London “back in the day”. An excellent club runner (Serpentine Running Club) in 2014 Leanne completed the London Marathon in a fantastic 02:54. Just after first born Persie arrived she clocked a hugely respectable 03:20. Leanne made a valiant attempt at the English Channel in 2009, but became unwell and had to come out after 15 hours 58 minutes, only ½ mile off the French coast. In 2014 Leanne swam the length of Lake Zurich and also completed the 24 miles in 24 hours challenge in Guildford Lido.

Leanne was a Peter Pan cup winner in 2017, emulating Tommy Bradshaw's achievement 96 years earlier.

Leanne was a Peter Pan cup winner in 2017, emulating Tommy Bradshaw's achievement 96 years earlier.

President Robin speaking from on high

It is hard to find photos of Tommy Bradshaw and the Greenburgs in the same shot, but we do have pre-WW1 press cuttings showing they competed together

It is hard to find photos of Tommy Bradshaw and the Greenburgs in the same shot, but we do have pre-WW1 press cuttings showing they competed together

1911

Tommy came second in the 1910 All Clothes Race

Tommy came second in the 1910 All Clothes Race

This photo from summer 1914 shows Tommy Bradshaw in the front centre, arms folded

This photo from summer 1914 shows Tommy Bradshaw in the front centre, arms folded

Two interesting photos taken almost together, Easter Monday 1925. The second captures the cameraman taking the first. Tommy Bradshaw is on the end of the board, arms out. The race was won by Albert Greenburg.

Two interesting photos taken almost together, Easter Monday 1925.  The second captures the cameraman taking the first.  Tommy Bradshaw is on the end of the board, arms out.  The race was won by Albert Greenburg.

Now for Saturday's race. 11 minutes from "go" and Mike Harris is off to a flying start

Now for Saturday's race.  11 minutes from

Shortly followed by the chap in the multi colour hat

Shortly followed by the chap in the multi colour hat

Shy and retiring Jeremy Newton expresses bashful delight at being caught on camera

Shy and retiring Jeremy Newton expresses bashful delight at being caught on camera

Relaxed competitors await their call

Relaxed competitors await their call

Last second adjustment for Rosemary

Last second adjustment for Rosemary

The race is nearing the end

The race is nearing the end

Leanne and Ariabela awkwardly attempt a socially distanced presentation to Squirrel

Leanne and Ariabela awkwardly attempt a socially distanced presentation to Squirrel

Preparations for the presenation

Preparations for the presenation

Persie raising a toast

Persie raising a toast

Strong stuff!

Strong stuff!

"That'll put hairs on your chest"

Alan Nash sponsored the race from 2011 to 2018. His own hand made leather goods were always greatly appreciated prizes.

Alan Nash sponsored the race from 2011 to 2018.  His own hand made leather goods were always greatly appreciated prizes.

Alan Nash was introduced to the club in 1997 by long term friend Alan Titmuss. An ex merchant seaman, Alan served on the committee for many years and was one of our official race starters from 2004. Alan has not been in the best of health for a while and all at the club wish him well.

The Bradshaw cup was first used for this race in 2013. Seen here is Don Paradis, victor in 2016.

The Bradshaw cup was first used for this race in 2013.  Seen here is Don Paradis, victor in 2016.