this Sparkbrook was placed at the Museum by the BMCT

Sparkbrook was a name once used in the production of cycles and motorcycles in Coventry.

The Sparkbrook Cycle Company began in the city in 1883, after William Hillman had salvaged a separate business in Birmingham. The first factory was at Much Park Street, before moving to purpose built works at Payne’s Lane.

Much later in 1912, the company began to experiment in the development of motorcycles, fitted with various size JAP motors, but it wasn’t until 1914 that they made a serious start with the release of a 269cc two-stroke light touring machine, known as the ‘Model A’. The outbreak of War slowed production but by 1919, Sparkbrook continued with their Villiers touring range.

In 1920 their sales catalogue stated: ‘The Sparkbrook light motor cycle, since its introduction in 1914, has taken a place in the front rank of its class’, and by 1923, ‘specialising in lightweights of the 250cc and 350cc classes fitted with JAP, Villiers and Barr & Stroud engines’.

Their final motorcycles came in 1926 when all production ended.