DR ALEX MOULTON
Few 20th century engineers have made such a contribution to the modern world – particularly in the transportation field – as Alex Moulton. In World War II he worked on the Bristol Centaurus, one of the most powerful piston engines ever to see service in the air. Later he developed rubber suspension systems; his rubber cone units and interconnected Hydrolastic and Hydragas systems were fitted on 13 million cars from 1959 to 2002. In the 1960s, over one-third of the cars sold in the UK were riding on Moulton suspension.
The Moulton bicycle – aside from being a total advance over the conventional in road-holding and ride – revitalised the cycle market to such an extent that by 1970, one-third of bicycles sold in the UK were Moulton-inspired. Today the Moulton bicycle is highly sought-after worldwide; it is both competitive and comfortable, and a widely-acknowledged design icon.
Alex Moulton was the Great-Grandson of the rubber pioneer Stephen Moulton. Stephen was a friend of Charles Goodyear in New York in the 1830s and became his emissary to England, eventually founding the Moulton Rubber Company in Bradford on Avon in 1848. You can read more about Bradford’s rubber industry here.