Vintage English Bicycle Head Badges

One of the things I love about the old English bicycles are the really cool badges they all had.  Here is a collection of some of these badges and a little info about the company:

Raleigh

Raleigh Bicycle Badge

Founded in 1887 and started with a small shop on Raleigh Street in Nottingham, England.  They would go on to buy up many of the other English bicycle makers and become the largest bike manufacturer in the world.  In 1960 they were bought by Tube Investments and TI-Raleigh was formed.

Triumph

Triumph Bicycle Badge

Began manufacturing bicycles in 1894.  This is the same company that would go on to make motorcycles and cars.  The brand was sold to Raleigh in 1954 for bicycles.

BSA

BSA Head Badge

The Birmingham Small Arms Company was founded 1861 and made bicycles, motorcycles, and firearms.  It began making bicycles in 1880.  In 1957 the bicycle business was sold to Raleigh. 

Hercules

Hercules Bicycle Badge

Founded in 1910 on Coventry Street in Birmingham, England.  They would be a huge competitor and made a more affordable bike than Raleigh.  In 1960 it was merged with Raleigh and became one of their brands.

Royal Scot

Royal Scot Bicycle Badge

This one has a great badge, but I can’t find any history on it.  It would eventually be a brand of Raleigh, but it likely has history before then like the others?

Falcon Bikes

Falcon Bikes Head Badge

This brand was launched in the 1930s by Coventry-Eagle and was relaunched in the 1950s by British bicycle racer Ernie Clements.  In 1995 the brand was sold to Tandem Group and still exists today.

Carlton Cycles

Carlton Cycles Head Badge

Founded in 1898 by Fred Hanstock in Coarlton-in-Lindrick.  Raleigh bought the company in 1960.  Brand lived in different ways till 1985.

Humber

Humber Head Badge

Thomas Humber made a velocipede for himself in 1868 and from that start he built his manufacturing business in Nottingham.  His bikes were considered so high quality that they were called the aristocrat among bicycles.  He retired in 1892, but the brand lived on long after.  Raleigh bought the brand in 1932 and continued it as one of their premium brands into the 1960s. 

Phillips

Phillips Head Badge

Phillips Cycles Ltd “Renowned the World Over”.  The exact founding date is elusive, but it appears to be late 1800s or early 1900s in Smethwick.  For a time, they were the second largest bike manufacturer in Britain.  In 1960 they were merged with Raleigh by Tube Investments.  It appears the brand continued into the 1980s. 

More to come….

7 thoughts on “Vintage English Bicycle Head Badges

  1. My father bought my first two-wheeler, a Philips, while he was on a Med cruise. He brought it back in his stateroom aboard ship. I had that bike for about 12 years until someone backed into it while I was working as a maid at the Torrey Pines Inn. Because the wheel size was usual ( think 22 inches) I was not able to get it fixed and had to buy a 10-speed which was my primary form of transportation at the time. I still have very fond memories of that bike. This is the first info about Philips I have had other than owning that bike. 🙂

    Like

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