Anyone with even a passing interest in bicycles knows Brooks England, one of the most famous brands in cycling. The company has been manufacturing leather saddles in Birmingham since 1866. John Boultbee Brooks, a saddler by trade, became a 19th century innovator after he borrowed an early wooden-saddled bicycle and felt an opportunity. He went on to file numerous patents to improve riding comfort.
The company has been producing it’s most successful designs virtually unchanged for many decades. They are examples of perfect product design; well thought-out concepts utilising robust materials and simply manufactured. Used daily they can last for many decades, how many other products can make the same claim?
Now the company is innovating again, the newly launched Cambium saddles combine vulcanised rubber and organic cotton in a typically elegant design. This new saddle is on the wish-list although we already have a Flyer on the town bike, a pair of B66’s on the tandem, Mrs A’s B17 on her Brompton and a Swift for the racer something will have to wear out before the Cambium appears. Better get riding then.
Why the factory visit? We’re doing some design work with Brooks. Not a collaboration, more like sharing some of our ideas with likeminded folk. Watch out for the results in a few months.