Royal Enfield and Eadie Manufacturing Co
Eadie Manufacturing Co
Townsend and Co got into financial trouble in about 1890 and called in some financiers from Birmingham. Unfortunately, they didn't quite see eye to eye. So Townsend parted ways with the financiers leaving the company to them. The financiers then brought in Albert Eadie and R.W. Smith. They took control of Townsend's in November 1891. They improved the business, stopped making sewing machine needles, and changed its name in 1892 to the Eadie Manufacturing Co.
The directors Albert Eadie and Robert Walker Smith displayed ten machines at the 1892 Stanley Show (including two Eadie front drivers and six safeties). Smith was a former designer at Rudge responsible for Perry parts and fittings; Eadie was manufacturer of Perry parts and fittings.
In 1892 Eadie won a contract to supply rifle parts to the Royal Small Arms factory at Enfield, near London, and to celebrate this a new bicycle design was named 'The Enfield' from October that year. A new company was created to market these bicycles called "The Enfield Manufacturing Co.", in October 1892.
The new Company was registered on 24 February 1893. An office with showroom was opened at 166 Edmund Street, Birmingham (from December 1893 at 94 Snow Hill, Birmingham). The badge was a shield with a smaller shield inset containing a field gun facing left.
In 1893 'Royal' was added (from the Royal Small Arms name) making the model name the 'Royal Enfield', which would be the name of every product the factory made. At the 1893 Stanley Show the firm showed a front-driver and a tandem but the latter received some criticism.
For the 1894 Stanley Show there were 19 safeties on display, plus two tandems. A main feature of their lady's machine for 1895 was the frame which was adopted as a distinctive marketing feature at the instigation of Albert Eadie.
By 1895 Eadie Manufacturing was a publicly quoted company.
Initially the company sold machines made by the Eadie Manufacturing Co Ltd and moved into the former works of Townsend, George & Co. at Givry Works, Hunt End, Redditch, Worcestershire from 1896. There was a London showroom at 6c Sloane Street and a Dublin showroom at 73 Grafton Street.
In 1896 The New Enfield Cycle Company was registered on 1 July to take over from the Eadie Manufacturing Co certain works for cycle manufacture as a transitional business.
1897 the New Enfield Cycle Company became the Enfield Cycle Co Ltd. Eadie Manufacturing Co Ltd then moved to other premises, and the whole of the Redditch works became the premises of the Enfield Cycle Co Ltd.
In 1898 Albert Eadie adapted a quadricycle design by Enfield to create a motorised tricycle powered by a 2.25hp De Dion engine. The firm also used Minerva and MMC (Motor Manufacturing Co of Coventry) engines. It proved to be popular but then slipped from sight as Enfield progressed.
In 1907 BSA took over the Eadie assets and Eadie's Redditch factory. Albert Eadie subsequently became the Managing Director of BSA.
In 1957 Raleigh Industries acquired BSA Bicycles Ltd, which appears included Eadie Manufacturing Co.