NEW Three Counties Agricultural Society chief, Ken Nottage, is proving that pedal power is just the ticket when it comes to circumnavigating his new working domain.

Mr Nottage, who officially took the helm at the Society’s Three Counties Showground this month, is not fazed by the 90-acre perimeter site at the foot of the Malvern Hills. He is literally getting on his bike, courtesy of a 1957 Royal Enfield, fully restored for him by Nick Trotman of Malvern Cycles CIC.

His new wheels are more economical than a standard car and kinder to the environment.

As a former international basketball player, his new vehicle is also in keeping with a healthy lifestyle.

He said: “I was reading a copy of Three Into One, John Lewis’s excellent chronicle of the society, and was amused to read that, years ago, a former company secretary carried out his ground inspections astride a pony “I was inspired to follow suit but with no equine prowess to my name opted for an arguably safer, and definitely less temperamental, mode of transport. I wanted a bike that was at least as old as me.

“This is a beautiful place to work but it’s also a large area to cover on foot, so a bike is a great way of getting from A to B quickly, without polluting the fresh air.”

Mr Nottage came to the Three Counties Showground from Gloucester Rugby, where he spent 13 seasons, and is credited for remodelling its Kingsholm ground and putting in place an effective commercial structure.

Before that, he was chief executive of Newcastle United’s Sporting Club, with responsibility for its football, rugby, ice hockey and basketball clubs.

At Malvern, he leads a permanent staff of 31 and is tasked with broadening the base of the society’s income and expanding its charitable activities, by developing its shows and venue hire business.