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PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2012 11:30 am 
Dirt Disciple
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Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:01 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Southampton
I have just finished giving this machine a spruce up. It has been passed down to me from my great uncle Walter, and he bought it new from Cliff Peters Cycle Shop in about 1955. Walter was a keen cyclist all his life, and only stopped a few years ago. The bike has very few original fittings left as my uncle upgraded it several times.

I need to quiz my Uncle on what he remembers about Cliff Peters next time I see him, but I was under the impression the bike was made for him by Cliff? Anyway, I'd like to do some homework on the bike and it's maker, but there is so little out there of him or his cycle shop in Aston. Was he a frame builder? Or did he get his frames made elsewhere, and by who? Were his bikes badged up as "Cliff Peters"?

Anyway, any info, especially from the time this bike was made, would be interesting.

Thank you!


Image
Cliff Peters getting tlc by zombikombi1959, on Flickr

Image
Uncle Walter's 'Cliff Peters' rejuvinated by zombikombi1959, on Flickr

Image
Brooks Honey Bar Tape by zombikombi1959, on Flickr


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2012 11:36 am 
Dirt Disciple
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Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:01 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Southampton
Most of my searching so far leads me to Major Nicolls ...

http://www.blackcountrysociety.co.uk/ar ... cholls.htm

"Major has been reported by several people as making racing and high quality touring frames for other cycle traders as well as for sale under his own name. For instance, David Clement knows that during 1962/3 the firms listed below ordered frames from Major and then provided him with their own transfers and painting specifications which, he then carried out applied before delivery.
Wilson Cycles of Aston, Birmingham
Southgate Cycles of Gloucester
Cliff Peters Cycles of Aston, Birmingham
Criterion Cycles in King Street, Dudley
A cycle shop in Hall Green, Birmingham, whose name cannot be recalled
Bob Mansell Cycles of Hallam Street, West Bromwich. This shop later moved to St Pauls Road, Smethwick on the way to Oldbury"


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2012 12:18 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2012 2:08 pm
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Location: Shrewsbury
Very nice looking bike :)

I can't be much help with Cliff Peters but I've encountered Major Nicholas, who was reknown as one of the top framebuilders. More info about him here: http://www.classiclightweights.co.uk/bu ... chols.html

I'm trying to find out more information myself about Tom Crowther, who founded Mercian and later set up a cycle shop on his own at 165, Ulleries Road, Solihull.

There's so much frame making history in Birmingham and yet not much of it is documented. It could all be the subject of a very interesting book!


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:31 pm 
rider | rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 1:42 pm
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Location: Wakefield, Yorkshire
As well as the shop, Cliff Peters had a small production facility making wheel carriers and shoeplates - and possibly other items? I still have a pair of the wheel carriers made from Aluminium as were the shoeplates, probably a custom extrusion that he had made to his specification. Cut to length and drilled for the fixing pins. They used to feature in the Holdsworth 'Aids' catalogues.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2012 8:44 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:51 am
Posts: 254
I would love to get a major Nichols bike, interesting and sad history there.

The major Nichols bikes go for a fair bit on eBay when a proper auction runs, now and then though someone puts a high buy it now price and they don't seem to sell then.

A lot of history is in brum for bikes, in my own family history the bicycle trades pop up regularly, especially around the Small Heath area.

Of course there is still brooks and Dawes, and is Reynolds still based here?


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 Post subject: Cliff Peters Cycles
PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 8:10 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 7:57 am
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Cliff Peters was my father's cousin and got me interested in cycling. I have two frames in my garage that he got made for me but this was after the shop (which I visited once) was closed. He was known more as a wheelbuilder than framemaker and went as a mechanic on the Tour of Britain/Milk Race for over 25 yeras. He was a big supporter of local riders - Gil Taylor and Neil Martin for example (I remember seeing a picture of Neil on a Cliff Peters bike in Cycling at one point.) Cliff manged the Midlands team when it was regional teams in the Tour of Britain (the mid 1960s) and I still have a green Midlands racing vest. I think Hugh Porter was in that team. The shoeplates/wheel carriers were made by his father Cyril in his backroom!

Kind regards

Brian


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 9:37 pm 
Dirt Disciple
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Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:01 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Southampton
That's great info, cheers for sharing Brian. I'm going to pop over to my Uncle Walter's at the weekend if I can, and quiz him some more on what he can remember as well.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:11 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:59 am
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Location: Birmingham
When I was a teenager I occasionally worked in Cliff Peter's shop making lamp brackets, wheel carriers, shoe plates or assembling wheels for Cliff to true up. I had a Cliff Peters bike for a number of years until I rode it into the back of a car that had decided to back up a one way road just around a right angle bend. This unfortunately pushed the front wheel back a couple of inches and bent the frame beyond repair. I have memories of the shop that I think has now been demolished.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 2:35 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2013 2:04 am
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Thanks for bringing back back some memories. Visited Cliff Peters shop on many occasions and spent many hours 'in the back' having cups of tea with Mum. Had Cliff build me my first track frame but as previous comment, it was built at Major Nicholls with Cliff Peters decals. Left Cliff with a very badly damaged Condor (No 1 lugs) after a serious accident to see what he could do with it. Sadly, too much damage, and sadly too as he was one of the last of people I said goodbye to before moving overseas to sunny Australia. Fond memories. And, thanks to all the posts. Chris W


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 4:20 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 11, 2013 6:23 pm
Posts: 2
[/img]-23_1s1.JPG[/attachment]I recently found this photo of Cliff working on the 1966 Milk Race.


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