Prince Philip opened the new Brompton Bicycle Factory in Greenford in West London, celebrating British engineering and ingenuity, on Monday, 28 November 2016.
Founder Andrew Ritchie gave the Duke of Edinburgh a tour of the factory. Prince Philip viewed the processes involved in designing and building the famous Brompton folding bike and he met a range of skilled craftsmen and women who engineer and manufacture the bike.
The Duke unveiled a hand-brazed plaque on the factory floor.
Andrew Ritchie first created the Brompton bike in his South Kensington flat, opposite the Brompton Oratory Church, in 1975.
The collapsible bike has become one of Britain’s great manufacturing success stories, designed for use in the city. The bike folds up to a portable, practical size so it can be taken on public or private transport, or inside homes, offices or bars, so it is less likely to be stolen.
Brompton Bicycles has won several awards including The Prince Philip Designers Prize in 2009 and The Queen’s Award for Enterprise: International Trade (2015).
Prince Harry used a Brompton bike to cycle between venues at Queen Elizabeth Park during the Invictus Games in 2014.
Brompton Bicycles are now sold in 1,300 bike stores in 44 countries worldwide, including Australia, so the company moved to a larger site to expand production and to meet growing demand.