Dan Rudge was one of the founders of the British cycle industry. After forming the Rudge business, he died on 26 June, 1880. His widow ran the company until November 1880 when it was sold to George Woodcock and amalgamated with the bankrupt businesses of Haynes & Jefferis and Smith Starley & Co. to form the Tangent and Coventry Tricycle Co.
The combined business relocated and traded at Ariel Works, Trafalgar Street, Coventry, Warwickshire, in 1880. In 1885 the business was transferred into a private limited company called D. Rudge & Co. Ltd.
In May 1891 George Woodcock (b.1836) died. This coincided with a reduction in trade as although Rudge had a good name its sales were low as the models were dated. The company was rescued by the Whitworth Cycle Co in 1894, to form Rudge-Whitworth Ltd. Until 1896 there was a combined catalogue showing Rudge-Whitworth, Rudge and Whitworth machines.