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Edwards, Joseph Robert (1908–1997), motor manufacturer and industrialist, was born on 5 July 1908 at 169 Church Road, Gorleston, Great Yarmouth, the youngest son of Walter Smith Edwards, marine engineer and later Lloyds surveyor, and his wife, Annie, née Wilkinson. He was educated at ...

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William Richard Morris, Viscount Nuffield (1877–1963) by Walter Stoneman, 1934 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Morris, William Richard, Viscount Nuffield (1877–1963), motor manufacturer and benefactor, was born on 10 October 1877 in the parish of St John, Worcester, the eldest son of Frederick Morris (1849–1916) from Witney and his wife, Emily Ann (d. 1934), daughter of Richard Pether...

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Napier, Montague Stanley (1870–1931), motor car and aero-engine manufacturer, was born on 14 April 1870 at 68 York Road, Lambeth, London, the youngest of the four sons of James Murdoch Napier, mechanical engineer, and his wife, Fanny Jemima, née Mackenzie. His Scottish grandfather moved from ...

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Petter, Sir Ernest Willoughby (1873–1954), engine and aircraft manufacturer, and his business partner, Percival Waddams Petter (1873–1955), were identical twins born on 26 May 1873 in High Street, Yeovil, Somerset, the third and fourth of the fifteen children of James Bazeley Petter...

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Rolls, Charles Stewart (1877–1910), motor car promoter and aviator, was born on 27 August 1877 at 35 Hill Street, Berkeley Square, London, the third son among the four children of John Allan Rolls (1837–1912), of Hendre, Monmouth, who was Conservative MP for Monmouthshire...

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Charles Stewart Rolls (1877–1910) by unknown photographer, c. 1905 Getty Images

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John Davenport Siddeley, first Baron Kenilworth (1866–1953) by unknown photographer Quadrant Picture Library

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Siddeley, John Davenport, first Baron Kenilworth (1866–1953), manufacturer of motor vehicles and aero-engines, was born on 5 August 1866 at Cheadle Hulme, the eldest son of William Siddeley and Elizabeth, née Davenport. He was no academic, and left school to work in his father's business as an apprentice hosier. The meagre rewards led him to enrol in evening classes, where he developed his mechanical acumen to the extent that in 1885 he began designing bicycles. On 9 March 1893 he married ...

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(William) Miles Webster Thomas, Baron Thomas (1897–1980) by Walter Stoneman, 1943 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Thomas, (William) Miles Webster, Baron Thomas (1897–1980), motor company and airline executive, was born on 2 March 1897 at Garfield Villa, Cefn Mawr, near Ruabon, Denbighshire, north Wales, the son of William Henry Thomas, retired furniture dealer and restorer, and his wife, Mary Elizabeth (Polly), ...

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Wilks, Maurice Cary Ferdinand (1904–1963), motor and aeronautical engineer, was born on 19 August 1904 at Eastoke, Hayling Island, Hampshire, the youngest in the family of five sons and one daughter of Thomas Wilks and his wife, Jane Eliza, née Lovell. He was educated at ...