The Hercules Cycle and Motor Company Limited
1956 Tube Investments were forced to make 1,250 employees of the British Cycle Corporation redundant, following a disagreement with the unions. Many of the workers were from Hercules factories.
1956 The firm produced a moped fitted with a 49cc JAP engine, which, to begin with, sold as the Grey Wolf. Soon this name was changed to Her-cu-motor. The two-speed gearbox and bevel box with chain final-drive had an engine with the crankshaft set along the machine. The unit hung from a spine frame with leading-link front forks. The overall effect was quite sleek.
1958 Production of the moped came to a close when supplies of the JAP engine dried up.
1958 Tube Investments bought the Nottingham-based Raleigh Cycle Company in 1958 to form TI Raleigh Industries. Combined, they controlled 80% of the British bicycle market.
1960 A new moped model was introduced. Fitted with a 49cc French Lavalette engine in a simple, rigid frame with telescopic forks, it was known as the Corvette.
1961 Moped production came to an end.
1961 Manufacturers of Hercules cycles.
Management of the British Cycle Corporation was handed to the Raleigh management, as that company with its greater domestic focus, was now the larger and better known. Raleigh quickly decided to cut the number of brands, and move to using Raleigh designs and standards.
Production was concentrated in Nottingham in 1960, and by 1963 there was little left of a distinctive Hercules.
2003 The original company - still part of Raleigh - was eventually dissolved on 2 December 2003
Source: Graces Guide
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