The Mercedes of folding bicycles he called Andrew Ritchie (b. 1947) designed it. Starting was by trial and error, but now the most popular Brompton folding bike on the market.

The idea

Andrew graduated as an engineer Ritichie off at Cambridge University. He caught a lot of graduates on. He immediately went to work as laborers, switched over to a programmer and then pot seller, but when the horticultural sector him the expected revenues brought he gets there too. Just at that moment he met a friend of his father that financial support for Bickerton folding bike, are trying to decorate. The Ritchie gave an idea: he would be an improved version of the bike design.

The Brompton is born

For years he worked on the project and the first version of which he was satisfied he took a patent (1979). With modest financial support from his friends he could be the first to buy materials and tools to get started. He rented an apartment in South Kensington (London) for his work to start. It was located near the Brompton Oratory, a Catholic church. She would give him the name for his product.

An investor leads to new production to

Ritchie tried to sell his design to manufacturers, but failed so he decided himself to provide a modest circulation. Although his small project would be successful, there's not much he earned and when he was a supplier problem, he was about to shoot his brainchild. If a deux ex machina came Julian Vereker to come, a self-taught designer of hi-fi audio equipment, which was willing to invest in him. Thanks to the unexpected financial contribution Ritchie could hire a business Betford increased production of his folding bicycle. He made a point of honor as personal as possible its customers a favor. Just under half of his customers than opt for a tailor-made product according to its wishes.

A company in full expansion

With 110 employees Brompton is a medium sized company that has become a modest production in 1995 (3,000 copies) to 30,000 bikes per year has evolved. Despite a Brompton no means cheap (prices start at 800 euros and a range up to about 2230 euros for the most expensive models), he is sought after because of the customization, the compact, the soundness and the clever folding technique.


A Brompton folding bicycle, weighs an average of 11.4 pounds, but the bike as light as possible to ensure easy transportation, it continues to seek ways to reduce weight. For example, we now use aluminum components, lightweight handles, lightweight, reliable gear and allows a smooth running Schwalbe Kojak tires.


That less comfortable and only for short distances can be driven turns out to be wrong. Many Bromptonfans sometimes make trips of 100 km and has a Dutch distributor in Barcelona Bromptonfietsers organized a championship, it's become a yearly tradition. Spain came after Britain and the USA's turn.

Typical for this contest is that participants have to sprint to their bikes and expand it as soon as possible before they start.
It is not uncommon for hard-liners since Bromptongebruikers the bicycle the most unlikely localities such as the Arctic, Tibet, Mount Everest.


Folding bike that Ritchie did not go unnoticed shows the prices Brompton has already received:

* 1995: The Queen's Award for Export

* 2009: The Prince Philip Designer's Prize

* 2010: Queen's Award for Enterprise in the Innovation and International Trade Categories

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