Between 1890 and 1918, 54 manufacturers and distributors are known to have existed within a three-mile radius of The Balham Hotel, where BCC was ‘born’.
Here’s a one-stop-shop of those 54 and links to some of their stories
Unknown bike shop corner of Ritherdon Road and Balham High Road
The corner of Ritherdon Road and Balham High Road c1902-1905. The bike shop is as yet unidentified but it sells Centaur bikes. The Centaur Cycle Co. was a large manufacturer based in Coventry.
The Balham Cycle & Engineering Co.
The Balham Cycle & Engineering Company were located at Balham Grove around 1895/96 but had moved to 1 Ramsden Road by 1898 (pictured here c1902-1904). The company was sole agents for Humber and Swift Cycles and they were makers of the ‘Furore’. AC Hedley was the manager. The buildings on the left still survive (the bike shop is currently Arlo’s restaurant).
The bicycle design of Henri Rey of Balham, called the Balham
Tarver and Bowley was a manufacturer, best known for the extraordinary looking Euclidia, which had a frame in the form of an oval shaped wheel with a central hub connected by spokes made of piano wire.
The Story of Dan Leno, Cycling and the Dan Leno Motor and Cycle Works