Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Alldays and Onions

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January 1920. Furnace for the Tool Room.
September 1920.
Exhibit at Armley Mill Museum.
1923. Spring hammer.
1923. Drop hammer.
February 1931.
November 1953.
Exhibit at Finch Foundry
Exhibit at Finch Foundry

Alldays and Onions, of Great Western and Matchless Works, Small Heath, Birmingham, was a manufacturer of motor lorries, cars and vans, cycles and motorcycles, complete outfits for foundries and workshops, hammers, fans, hearthes, forges, cranes, pulley blocks, etc.


1885 Company formed by the merger of William Allday and Sons Ltd with John C. Onions Ltd as Alldays and Onions Ltd[1].

1889 Company reorganised as Alldays and Onions Pneumatic Engineering Co. of Birmingham. The company, Alldays and Onions Pneumatic Engineering Co, was registered on 18 December, to take over and extend the business of Alldays and Onions, manufacturers of bellows, portable forges etc. [2]

1896/7 Directory: Listed under cycles. [3]

1912 Alldays and Onions, which had been engaged in the general engineering trade for a long time, had more recently established separate works for car manufacture; had also acquired the Enfield Autocar Co including manufacturing rights and trade mark; manufacture of the two types of car would be kept separate; motorcycles were also built[4].

WWI Munitions production

1916 Issue of shares to fund expansion for war work[5].

1932 Largely owned by Mitchell Cotts and Co

By 1936 was part of Mitchell Cotts and Co[6].

1969 Mitchell Cotts combined the company with another of its subsidiaries, J. C. Peacock (Engineers) also involved in industrial fans, in a new company called Alldays Peacock[7].

1980s Alldays Peacock was acquired by the Spire Group.

2005 Taken over by the Witt Group


1890 Showed an exhaust blower and pneumatic hammer at the Engineers, Electricians, Builders and Ironmongers Exhibition. [8]

1911 Issued catalogue on Smith's hearths with Roots blowers etc. [9]

1913-1917 For a list of the models and prices of Paraffin Commercial and Agricultural Motors, Tractors, Ploughs, Sprayers, etc. see the 1917 Red Book

1913-1917 For a list of the models and prices of Petrol Motors see the 1917 Red Book

1914 Manufacturers of all requisites for blacksmiths, engineering, foundry and railway companies; also manufacturers of cycles and motor cars. [10]

1920 May. Issued catalogue on oil-firing burners and equipment for boilers. [11]

1940 Advert. Pneumatic power hammers. [12]

1945 Advert. Pneumatic power hammers. (of Great Western Works, Small Heath) [13]

1951 Advert. Pneumatic power hammers. (of Great Western Works, Small Heath) [14]


See Alldays and Onions: Cars


See Alldays and Onions: Cycles


See Alldays and Onions: Motorcycles


Alldays and Onions Pneumatic Engineering Co of Birmingham started building cars followed by vans in 1903.

In 1911 trucks with a 40hp engine began production.

In World War I, West Bridgford UDC situated near Nottingham bought seven Alldays chassis.

The Alldays were chain driven which the war office did not favour. Each chassis cost £595.

The last Alldays were sold by West Bridgford in 1921.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Times, 14 January 1916
  2. The Stock Exchange Year Book 1908
  3. Peck's Trades Directory of Birmingham, 1896-97: Cycles
  4. The Times, 2 October 1912
  5. The Times, 14 January 1916
  6. The Times, 16 December 1936
  7. The Times, Aug 27, 1969
  8. The Engineer of 28th March 1890 p264
  9. The Engineer of 22nd December 1911 p650
  10. 1914 Whitakers Red Book
  11. The Engineer of 28th May 1920 p564
  12. Mechanical World Year Book 1940. Published by Emmott and Co of Manchester. Advert p122
  13. Mechanical World Year Book 1945. Published by Emmott and Co of Manchester. Advert p172
  14. Mechanical World Year Book 1951. Published by Emmott and Co of Manchester. Advert p172
  • [1] Wikipedia
  • [2] CyberMotorCycles web site
  • The British Motorcycle Directory - Over 1,100 Marques from 1888 - by Roy Bacon and Ken Hallworth. Pub: The Crowood Press 2004 ISBN 1 86126 674 X
  • Miller’s Price Guide to Classic Motorcycles
  • Ian Allan - British Buses Since 1900 - Aldridge and Morris
  • The Engineer of 22nd June 1900 p650