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Curly Pattison - The Story - 'A Ratae Legend'


Colin 'Curly' Pattison  ( 1927 - 2012 )

Photograph by Courtesy of Dave Binks

Colin Pattison, known affectionately as ‘Curly’, died on 24 February 2012 following a short illness.  He is survived by his wife, Audrey, and his two children Martin and Helen.  Curly was a loyal servant of the Ratae Road Club, of which he was a co-founder and life member.  He served as club president on two separate occasions and was actively involved in its running right up to the end, only relinquishing the job of membership secretary in 2011.  He was a dedicated racing cyclist, still competing only 18 months before his death, and holds the Club’s Veteran Time Trial Record at 25 miles.  Although he eschewed the cycling helmet, which he thought made you look silly, he was known to don the streamlined version to help ‘shave few seconds off’ when time trialling! 


As expected, the north chapel at Gilroes Cemetery, Leicester was full to overflowing with family and old cycling friends on 6 March 2012 to help “push off” Colin on his last ride.  A well crafted humanist ceremony, punctuated with his favourite jazz music, provided a fitting celebration of Curly’s life both in and out of the saddle.  As well as his family, the congregation included two current members of the Buckshee wheelers, with whom Curly raced in the late 1940s in Egypt and more recently in the annual Bully Beef 25, winning the event in 2010.  There were also several veterans of the infamous Wednesday run to Redmile/Sedgebrook in the Vale of Belvoir and, of course, his friends from the Ratae and other cycling local clubs.  The picture of Colin on his time trial bike and in full race kit, that adorned the catafalque, came from his last race a few months previously!  This was its own tribute to Curly’s determination, or as some might say stubbornness, and will to win.



Curly - Winner of The 2010 Bully Beef Trophy 

However, Curly was also a kind hearted and considerate person, always keen to welcome new people to the Ratae.  He was a good organiser, which was illustrated by the dinner and traditional jazz concert that he had arranged for 1 March in the training restaurant at Leicester College.  Unfortunately he was unable to attend this in person but it is typical of him that he insisted to Audrey that the event should go ahead with or without him.  Despite the sadness that surrounded the occasion, the evening was a complete success and served as a ‘wake’ before the actual funeral; Curly always had his own way of doing things!  Everyone present had a really good time, which is what Curly would have wanted and he is greatly missed by all his friends and family.
















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