Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 129,767 pages of information and 204,807 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
of London, SW6. Head Office and Works. Branches throughout the United Kingdom. Telephone: Fulham 3333. Telegraphic Address: "Vacuumiser, 'Phone, London". (1937)
The idea of a vacuum cleaner originated from the mid-19th century. The first vacuum cleaners had to be operated manually. Two persons were needed for this: one to operate the bellows and the other to move the mouthpiece over the floor. The dust was blown into the an attached bag - like modern machines.
1860-1900 Crude bellows operated machines and unsuccessful experiments with suction sweepers.
1902 Company founded by Hubert Cecil Booth and the first cleaners introduced to the UK market.
1903 Public company - British Vacuum Cleaner Co
1903 Wealthy society ladies threw 'vacuum cleaner parties'. Guests sipped their tea and lifted their feet for Booth's uniformed attendants to vacuum the carpet. After giving a vacuum demonstration at the Royal Mint, Booth, on leaving, was promptly stopped by the police. He had forgotten to empty the dust bag, which contained a large quantity of gold dust from the Mint.
1910 Professor Stanley Kent of University College, Bristol found 355,500,000 living organisms in just one gramme of dust extracted from Marlborough House, the home of HRH The Princess of Wales.
1926 Booth's British Vacuum Cleaner and Engineering Co (BVC) branded all their domestic vacuum cleaners under the famous Goblin trade name.