Wiltshire

Small-wheeled bicycle inventor Dr Alex Moulton dies

Dr Alex Moulton CBE
Image caption Dr Alex Moulton is credited for revolutionising the suspension system of British cars including the Mini

A leading engineer and inventor who pioneered the small-wheeled bicycle in the 1960s has died at the age of 92.

Dr Alex Moulton CBE specialised in suspension design and his bicycle is recognised as a "design classic" by industrial designer Sir James Dyson.

He is also known for revolutionising the suspension system of British cars most notably the Mini on which he worked with Sir Alec Issigonis.

Described as an inspiration, he died at home near Bradford-on-Avon on Sunday.

The great-grandson of rubber pioneer Stephen Moulton, Dr Moulton was educated at Marlborough and later at King's College, Cambridge where he graduated in engineering.

In the late 1950s, he worked with Sir Alec Issigonis - the man who designed the Mini - to create a suspension system which allowed the car's overall small size.

Image caption in 1962 Dr Moulton launched the Moulton Bicycle

And in 1962, at the Earls Court Cycle Show, Dr Moulton launched his "iconic" bicycle.

The Moulton bicycle, according to Dr Moulton, was "born out of my resolve to challenge and improve upon the classic bicycle, with its diamond frame and large wheels, which has locked bicycle design into that form since the pioneering work in England of Starley and others at the end of the 19th Century."

At the 50th anniversary of the Moulton Bicycle, celebrated last month, it was described by Lord Norman Foster as an icon "synonymous with the Mini, the mini-skirt - the mini bike".

And Sir James Dyson paid tribute to Dr Moulton for setting a "good example to our [Dyson] engineers".

Dr Moulton passed away at his home in Bradford-on-Avon on Sunday evening.

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