Classic Lightweights UK
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Buckley Bros.

Author Peter Underwood

Buckley Brothers traded at 19 Beresford Street, Camberwell Gate, London  SE 5 and 72 Wells Road, Sydenham, SE 26' in the 1930s.  Established 1919, they had a fine reputation for making high quality lightweight bicycles in the pre-war period and were one of a small group of South London firms that included Selbach and Granby that were building with ‘taper tubes’. In 1924 they advertised their address in Cycling as at 17 Beresford Street, so it appears that they either moved next door or that they took over the next shop to add to number 19. They also later traded at 61 Dartmouth Road, Forest Hill, London SE 23, where post-war frames were built judging by the headbadges.

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1930s catalogue produced by Buckley Bros.
Catalogue images courtesy of the Veteran-Cycle Club online library

More catalogue information below

Pre-war, they were famous for producing one of the lightest bikes at that time which weighed only 13lbs and displayed at the first Lightweight Show as well as a 22lb tandem frame. 


Buckleys were not just cycle makers but innovators, patenting a strut between the bottom brackets of tandems, designing triangulated chain stays and ‘rigidride’ frames. The build quality of each frame was excellent and their attention to detail must have influenced Bill Philbrook, Bill was a highly regarded frame builder whose fascination for bikes’ began with his apprenticeship with Buckley Brothers.


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Above: Details of a 23" Buckley frame sold on ebay, believed to be late 40s - on the seat tube it reads, "Registered Design No. 818615"
and  "Triangulated Chain Stays,". 

The chainstay profile can be seen in the lower image.

Mick Butler supplied the following:

Buckley Brothers prolific South London frame builder had two shops Beresford Street, Camberwell Gate, S.E.5 and Wells Road, Sydenham, S.E.26. They
started in 1919 and survived into the 1950's. Their first lightweight racer weighed 17.5 lbs. They built a special for a lightweight show which weighed 
in at only 13lbs. This model went into production as their famous "Model C" Path Racer. they also built Taper tube
models. All of their time trial frames could be fitted with square to round chain-stays. A feature on their ladies lightweights was that the seat clamp
was fitted in reverse with the bolt facing the peak of the saddle. They were pioneers in using Round Taper Stays on tandems and were very famous for their racing tricycles. As I have said before each individual frame maker was strongly connected with a club  Buckley's was the Rodney C.C.

 Evelyn Hamilton did a lot of publicity shoots for their Model C.

Publicity shot of Evelyn Hamilton with the Buckley Model C as published in the Daily Herald

Steve Walter sent in details of his Buckley, believed to be 1951:


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Above left:: Buckley badge, click on image for larger detail
Above right: Decorative seat cluster and topeye


Above: Image showing triangulated stays


Above: Resillion lever with built-in lock

Chris Green says:
I was a keen cyclist in my youth and also much later in life when I had a small cycle business mainly refurbishing old bikes.
Many years ago late 1950-1970s  I had a lovely British bike, a Buckley. I do remember weighing it and I seem to remember always it weighed 12.5lbs. Not sure if forks were on it though. I bought it late 1950s and used it daily until around mid 1970s when I misguidedly sold it.  The frame was all chrome plated and I distinctly remember picking out the lugs with a fine brush in red. Here is an image of: it:

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