Tom's London Classics: Condor bicycles

Part of the ongoing 'Tom's London Classics' series, London Cycling Campaign's Tom Bogdanowicz revisits one of London’s most famous marques, Condor Cycles.



What do Mick Jagger, Eric Clapton, Bradley Wiggins and Jon Snow have in common? The answer is that they’ve all owned Condor bikes. Given that Jon Snow works at ITN, across the road from the Condor shop in Gray’s Inn Road, it’s no surprise that’s where he bought his titanium custom build. Mick, a cycling fan, may have spotted the shop while still a student at the nearby London School of Economics. As the Stones’ money began to roll in he bought several Condors from owner Monty Young and also introduced his pal Eric, another cycling enthusiast, to the brand. ‘Slow Hand’ apparently topped the shop price record in 1972 with his crème de la crème all-Campag machine costing a princely £247. Wiggo’s 90s Condor steed was presumably free when he rode for the Condor Olympia squad.

Based in the heart of London for more than 60 years, it’s not surprising that Condor’s a brand favoured by celebs. From the outset, founder and owner Monty Young has shown plenty of PR savvy: sponsoring races back in the 50s and backing several racing teams (most recently Rapha Condor).

Born to a tailor in Stoke Newington in 1930, Monty started out as a cabinet maker, but acquired a taste for bikes from near neighbour Harry Rensch, inventor of the legendary Paris Galibier frame that Condor has recently revived. Young entered the cycling business through a venture with future brother-in-law Walter Conway, which initially sold Triumph roadsters at 90 Gray’s Inn Road. At their second shop, in Islington, the Condor marque was born in 1948: the name Con-dor came from Con-way and introduced the distinctive bird badge that Condors still feature.

Like erstwhile rival Alf Hetchins, Monty had the good fortune to employ an outstanding framebuilder. Bill Hurlow had gained experience with London firms like Freddie Grubb and Holdsworth, as well as Harry Rensch’s Paris Cycles. Hurlow stayed at Condor for some four years, creating a range of fancy-lugged designs like the WBH no.1 and Fleur de Lis which are now prized by collectors.

Condor’s involvement in racing made the shop, re-established in Grays’s Inn Road, a magnet for keen
riders and I recall visiting in the 80s when Bob Downs, member of the British racing team, worked behind the counter. By then Condor no longer had a workshop in London but continued to
offer hand-built frames made by some illustrious names, Chas Roberts and Dave Yates among them.

The brand’s recent resurgence came with the retro wave of fixed-gear and singlespeed bikes in the 00s. Under the management of Monty’s son Grant, Condor rode that wave offering a range of bikes and frames (combining their rich retro catalogue with new designs built in Italy) well before the mainstream manufacturers caught on.

Grant said that fixies accounted for more than half the Condor-branded bike sales in 2005. With the big firms slow on the uptake, Condor was able to not only build bikes, but also entered the parts business off ering a range of branded items.

With London cycling enjoying an upturn, Monty appears to have a ready line of successors and a strategy for the future. Grant’s sons, Josh and Seb are already in the business and there are now plans to supply Condor bikes, parts and frames to other stores in the UK and beyond.


Tom Bogdanowicz is London Cycling Campaign's Senior Policy and Development Officer and regulary contributes to London Cyclist magazine.

This article first appeared in London Cyclist Xmas 2012 magazine, delivered free to LCC members now on a quarterly basis.



  • By Tomm at 9:48pm 20 March 2015

This content was deleted by smsm1 at 11:40pm 12 April 2015.

  • By modfiles at 12:27pm 15 December 2015

the tyre is an incredible program that has been designed for people who can, or want to, do wonders with their voice.  pump up the tyre and replace the dust cap. Software convert  pdf to flash  and pdf tool software for pdf to word, excel, ppt, images   pdf converter mac  and  convert pdf files  to download free trial. pdf to word  ,  pdf to images  PDF Converter for Mac & Windows 7, 10, 8 - With functions of converting  PDF files to Word, Text, Image (Jpg, Jpeg, TIFF, Tif, PNG, Bmp), EPUB & HTML(.html, htm).  sd

mudah com semua berbagai Jual besi baja paling kokoh ada juara

sini besi tidak baik harga plat kapal bki tertarik sini terpanas bisa

siap sini sini hanya Jual besi beton sni paling untuk alternatif kecanduan


memberikan tender ini? langsung Jual wf direkomendasikan harus kuat diburu

ini ini alternatif besi baja Jual h beam untuk dan pasti kami

kita janji bos artis Jual siku besi baja mahal ukuran sini kami


coba itu anda biasa Jual plat hitam besi membangun yang sini semua

untuk murah baja tinggi Jual Hollow Pipa Kotak pasar yang hal belanja

sini bombastis untuk memberikan Jual unp kanal u anda untuk anda dipercaya


henti info rugi? akan Jual pipa hitam besi baja sini yang lelang yang

segera kami hubungi ganda Jual Pipa Schedule Sch 40 bakrie mencari harga luar untuk

konstruksi mari yang dicek Jual Pipa Schedule Sch 80 bakrie berbicara sini anda cuma


sini biasa sudah untung Jual cnp kanal c gording anda paling ukuran banyak

stabil dan dipompa paling Jual wiremesh berbagai mengunjungi diuji bisa

raja sini bos ada Jual Atap bondek internasional itu ada hati


merek harga juara kontak Harga Baja ringan Terbaru perbatang taso bos memanjakan diburu sebagai

sini tanpa yang bahagia Jual Atap Spandek kami kita  kelas

penawaran yang anda jika Jual Stainless steel kami ukuran lengkap membuktikannya!


pembangunan mau yang terbesar supplier pipa hitam besi baja besi baja yang anda anda kami

termurah seneng akan anda Toko besi beton per batang yang sini 1 tidak

menemukan item membuat aja Agen atap bondek sebagai mendapatkan proses apa-apa?

asal kami di mantap perusahaan cnp kanal c gording kepala memukau menjamin tidak


  • By weikun at 6:37pm 12 March 2016

I see you have great content here... Great job... Will visit your website soon!!

Harkus Putra Perkasa
Harga Besi WF
Harga Baja WF
Harga Besi H Beam
Harga Besi Beton

Post a reply

Sign in to post a reply.