On This Day 1940...

The main Triumph factory at Priory Street in Coventry suffered a devastating blow when it was hit during a raid by the Luftwaffe on the 14th November. The whole factory was obliterated and most of the records were lost.

Triumph had purchased the original building - a disused spinning mill - back in 1907. It was a step up in terms of capacity from their original Much Park Street factory where they had started producing motorcycles five years earlier. By 1940 they also had three other factories and not to mention the Holbrook Lane Works of the, by then, separate Triumph Motor Company. The Blitz did a lot of damage to Coventry wiping out a lot of manufacturing capability, but production was soon back up to speed.

Triumph had been producing motorcycles for the war effort - mainly 3SW side valves. They had been planning the introduction of a new model for the military, the 3TW, but the bombing put paid to that. Nevertheless by November of 1941 the model was resurrected as the 3HW which replaced the 3SW.

Following on from the bombing, Triumph set up production in temporary works in Warwick before moving to their iconic factory in Meriden.