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the original Cheylesmore factory of the Coventry Machinists Co.

The Coventry Machinists Company were a sewing machine and cycle company once based at Cheylesmore.

Beginning as the European Sewing Machine Company in 1861 in Coventry, by 1868 they changed their name to the Coventry Machinists when they took the decision to manufacture velocipedes of French design.

Many key individuals began their cycle careers here including James Starley, William Hillman and George Singer among many others, before starting up their own cycle businesses in Coventry.

The first British company to manufacture cycles, over time the physical form of the machine began to develop with improvements to the Ordinary or 'Penny Farthing' to 'Swift' Safety machines in the late 1880s.

In 1897, the Company became the Swift Cycle Company and the following year they began making motorcycles as well as cycles. By 1902 they had developed single-cylinder motorcars and by 1905 a four-cylinder model, followed my others.

In 1915 they ceased the manufacture of motorcycles to concentrate on car production which lasted until 1931.

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