Follows & Bates 'The Manchester'

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Clive1997
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Follows & Bates 'The Manchester'

Hello all

Well that was exciting watching the final bids on the Follows & Bates 'Manchester', I assumed it was going to be a sought after mower & had planned to put in a bid last night but as my numbers in the Euro Lottery failed to win the £60 Million! I decided to let it go.

I hope a member secured it & can anyone out there give us a bit more info on it, date manufactured etc ?????? as I have not seen this model mentioned before.

Cheers

 

Clive

brummy_joe
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Follows & Bates 'The Manchester'

Indeed, Clive, that was a humdinger.

I know nothing of the model but my understanding is that Follows & Bate machines were produced from 1869 (the Climax) until 1945 (7 years after they were taken over by Qualcast who went on to use the Folbate brand). If that's correct, then there is a huge time span during which this mower could have been produced, but looking at the very detailed pictures in the listing, it does appear to be quite early. Perhaps someone with more knowledge could pin this one down?

If anyone missed the auction and wants to see some very detailed pictures of this mower, the completed listing can still be accessed at:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ANTIQUE-FOLLOWS-BATES-THE-MANCHESTER-LAWN-MOWE...

Joe

hillsider
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Follows & Bates 'The Manchester'

Yes that one did run away, I would be about as popular as the euro if I paid that amount for a mower. On the serious side it is good that it has been saved and some history would be good to know.

Ray.

stonethemows
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The Manchester

Greetings Gentleman,

I would refer you to the ever useful OLC Lawnmower Directory and I quote : ' Manchester ' - A product of Follows and Bate c.1880, this was a sidewheel mower with enclosed gearing available in 8, 10, 12, 14 and 16 inch cutting widths. in 1881 prices ranged from 35/-d to 90/-d.

By 1890 6 and 7 inch mowers had been added to the range and prices ranged from 21/-d to 105/-d.

My own comment - interesting to note that in this ten year period they were managing to produce and sell the smaller machines more cheaply apparently.

 

Regards,

Colin

hillsider
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Follows & Bates 'The Manchester'

Hello Colin,

Thanks for the reminder, I should have looked in there before I commented. 

I just hope that the mower has gone to a good home it looked rather good for its age. 

Ray.

Seb
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Follows & Bates Manchester

Hello all

very interesting reading the forum on the 7" Manchester, as I was the member that bought it,it has arrived and I have noticed that there is xxxxIII on the underside on the blade holder, also I have noticed that it is not a 7"  as advertised but actually a 6". does anyone know the meaning of xxxxIII?

I am planning to show it at WESES in Cornwall together with the collection of another lawnmower club member, and hopefully it will also go to the Great Dorset this year.  If I am able to I will bring it to the annual rally in 2013. 

I know that there is a 6" Manchester in the national trust "Trerice" collection and also that Bernard Robinson has one although I do not know what cutting with his is, does anyone else know? . Are there any others out there or is there only three?

Also does anyone have any photos of Manchesters? I know there is a photo of Bernards in one of the "Grassboxes" and obviously there are photos of mine on the link on this forum.

cheers

Seb

Keith Wootton
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Follows & Bate Manchester Images

Here are a couple of other Manchesters belonging to club members as seen at our annual rally in recent years.

Keith Wootton
Founder & President

Christopher Pro...
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Joined: 11/07/2010 - 18:45
Follows & Bate Manchester

I can add to that that in 1883, when the Manchester was still being advertised as 'New', it was made in 6 and 7-inch sizes and then on the even numbers up to 16 inch.  The 6-inch cost 21/-, and the mower was consequently advertised as a 'guinea' mower (Greens also had a small model for a time known as the 'Guinea' from its price). The grass box, as usual with side-wheelers, was extra (4/- for the 6-inch size).  It was a 'back delivery' type (it hung on the roller brackets), so no delivery plate was needed.

I don't know when the Mancester went out of production, but it was still included in an undated catalogue, alongside the Speedwell and the Runaway, which cannot be earlier than 1901 because it refers to King Edward VII and the late Queen Victoria.

Follows & Bate continued as a separate company in the Qualcast group until the late 1960s (some Folbate mowers carry the full Follows & Bate name on their wheel centres, though their castings were from Qualcast).  They also made the 'Magic' from about 1933, which had pressed steel side-frames and was a favourite catalogue mower - examples with the Magic name are relatively rare.  The replacement handle on the £500 machine is, ironically or appropriately, held in place with a large hand-nut from a 'Magic'!  After Qualcast rationalised their factories, the last Follows and Bate roller mower, the Falcon, became part of the Suffolk range and the cast iron Folbate became a Suffolk Viceroy Mark 2; the Magic was re-vamped and had a new existence as the Qualcast Q7.