Isobel Campbell, who died in January 2017, at the age of 103, was President of the Club and a remarkable woman by any standards. Her membership of the Club lasted 74 years. Her racing career lasted for around 59 years, she held Club, Scottish and British records and her contribution to cycling earned her an MBE.
In the first 92 years of the Club’s existence we only had two president’s. Our founder-president, Malcolm Smith, who died in 1983 at the age of 97 and Isobel, who died in January at the age of 103. If nothing else, it shows that cycling is good for you.
She moved to Glasgow, from Bo’ness, with her parents before the Second World War and began cycling. She had her first wins, at 10 and 25miles, in 1939. Whether she was a member of another club or unattached we don’t know. However, in 1943 she joined the Glasgow Nightingale and was a member for the rest of her life.
At the end of the war normal racing resumed, as did Isabel’s winning ways, with a string of National and Club records. She set Scottish competition records at 10, 25, 50 and 100 miles and broke the British Women’s 12-hour record twice, in 1946 and 1948. In 1949, Isobel (nee Adams) married fellow Club member, Bill Campbell.
In 1973 she won the inaugural British Women’s Veterans Championship and again in 1982. She was Club B.A.R. Champion in 1977, 1980 and 1983, leaving the male members of the Club in her wake. She didn’t give up easily, riding her last competitive event at the age of 88.
On another level, she was awarded the Scottish Cycling Union’s Gold Medal in 1983 and was honoured with an MBE in 1998 for services to cycling. Also, in 1983 Isobel became President of the Club following the death of Founder-President Malcolm Smith.
She lived quietly in her later years spending much of the winter at her daughter’s home in Mallorca but, until latterly, was able to attend Club functions. We were privileged to have her present the trophies at the Club’s 80th Anniversary Dinner in 2005.