1936 Rudge-Whitworth Roadster Model No 77


King George V died on 20 January, 1936. This bicycle has a Sturmey-Archer ‘K6’ hub, which came out the same year, so presumably the bicycle was made in 1936. I assume it was too late for the company to replace the transfer (decal).

The King had been an avid fan of Rudge-Whitworth bicycles, hence the inscription above. As a result of his death, preparations were made for the coronation of his eldest son King Edward VII the following year.

The accessory clip-on rear mudguard white tip fitted to this bicycle (below) celebrated the coronation of King Edward VIII. However, King Edward abdicated and his younger brother George VI was crowned in his place, in May, 1937. As a result, the accessory white tip showing Edward’s name became redundant, which I assume is the reason why it has survived. It is now a rare and interesting vintage cycle collectible.


 1936/1937 Rudge-Whitworth Roadster Model No 77

Sturmey-Archer ‘Model K6’ Three Speed Gear

Rudge-Whitworth Patent Celluloid Handlebar and pedal cranks

Rudge-Whitworth Patent ‘All-Rubber’ Pedals

Rudge-Whitworth Patent Proportional Coupled Brake System

Phillips Saddle with patterned top

24″ Frame

28″ Wheels

Accessory rear mudguard white tip celebrating the coronation of King Edward VIII

(Now sold)

Rudge-Whitworth was one of the world’s top bicycle manufacturers over many decades. With the introduction of lightweight bicycles in the 1920s, Roadster bicycles became outdated. However, Rudge-Whitworth had pioneered lightweight bicycle design in the early years of the twentieth century and, even with an oil-bath chaincase, as fitted to this model, their roadsters were not heavy. So this earlier style of R-W roadster continued to be popular with the public at home and abroad throughout the 1930s.

Rudge-Whitworth offered various options, which included their patent ‘coupled brakes’, celluloid covered handlebars and pedal cranks, ‘all-rubber’ pedals and stainless wheel rims. All are fitted to this machine.

This 1937 Rudge-Whitworth Roadster is resplendent in its original black enamel with bronze lines, and all its transfers (decals) well-preserved, including the famous logo ‘By Appointment to His Majesty King George V.’ As well as cosmetic excellence, this beautiful 85-year-old bicycle is mechanically sound and ready to ride.








1937 Rudge-Whitworth Roadster 41 copy

ABOVE & BELOW …you can see the bolt between the two fittings that enables the coupled brakes. When either brake is enabled, it activates the other brake.





















































PRINCE ALBERT, Duke of York— ‘Bertie’ to the family — was the second son of King George V. He attended the Royal Naval College, Osborne, as a naval cadet in 1909. The following year, with the death of Edward VII and his father becoming George V, he became second in line to the throne. In 1914 he began service in WW1, and was mentioned in dispatches for his action as a turret officer aboard Collingwood in the Battle of Jutland (May-June 1916), the largest naval engagement of the war). He transferred to the Royal Air Force upon its establishment in 1918 and was the first member of the royal family to be certified as a fully qualified pilot. He married Elizabeth in 1923, and became King George VI unexpectedly in 1936 as a result of his older brother Edward’s abdication. He died in 1952, and was succeeded by the current Queen Elizabeth in 1953.

PRINCE HENRY, born in 1900, was the third son of King George V, and his title was H.R.H Prince Henry of York. Unlike his brothers who joined the Royal Navy, Prince Henry joined the Army, attending the Royal Military College at Sandhurst in 1919. He later served with The King’s Royal Rifle Corps and the 10th Royal Hussars before retiring from the active list in 1937. He became H.R.H the Duke of Gloucester in 1928. With the outbreak of WW2, he joined the British Expeditionary Force as Chief Liaison Officer, and was slightly wounded when his staff car was attacked from the air. He became Governor-General of Australia in 1944, serving until 1947.