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Excelsior 125 Fire Brigade


1932 Excelsior 125cc motorcycle adapted for NFS (The National Fire Service) use.

[img] NFS was created in August 1941 by the amalgamation of the wartime national Auxiliary Fire Service (AFS) and the local authority fire brigades (about 1,600 of them). It existed until 1948, when it was again split by the Fire Services Act 1947, with fire services reverting to local authority control, although this time there were far fewer brigades. NFS was composed of volunteers who performed fire suppression and other related emergency services after bombings.

Below: NFS brigade in Great Yarmouth. Photo from


Excelsior is the oldest and one most famous British motorcycle manufacturers (not to be mistaken with American company of the same name, based in Chicago and closed in 1931). If not the Great Depression, 1930s would be Excelsior's best decade. The company put a lot of effort in competition and racing. It built a series of famous racers: „Silver Comet”, 1000cc world record machine at a speed of 163mph (262 km/h), „Mechanical Marvel”, Isle of Man TT winner and its successor, famous Manxman model. Unfortunately the worldwide economic crisis decreased sales of exclusive sports machines and Excelsior, like any other motorcycle manufacturer in 30s, had to rely mainly on simple two-stroke bikes. In pre-war time Excelsior made a range of motorcycles from 98 to 1,000 cc, mostly powered by JAP, Blackburne and Villiers engines, plus an 850 cc Condor engine. More information: see Excelsior Motor Company

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