Sir Henry Royce

Henry Royce left school when he was twelve. He found a job as a telegraph operator, and then became a railway mechanic. He was interested in everything to do with machines, and electricity fascinated him. At the age of 19 he became an electrician, and when he was 21 he started his own company, which brought electric lighting to the streets of Liverpool.

1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Brewster Henley Roadster1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Brewster Henley Roadster

Royce was 40 when he bought a small French car, and this was the turning point in his life. He thought the car’s engine and design were so bad that he could do better himself. A year later he did just that: he built the first Royce automobile, with a two-cylinder, ten-horsepower engine. In the same year he met Charles Rolls, who had a car business, and two years later the men established the company that later produced the world’s most famous vehicles: Rolls-Royce.

The two men worked together for four years before Rolls died in a plane crash. Royce could not work without him, and left the company. He died of cancer at the age of 70.
 

Activity

What happened when? Henry Royce was born in 1863. Use the information in the text to find out what happened in these years:

  1. 1933

  2. 1903

  3. 1904

  4. 1910

  5. 1908

  6. 1884

  7. 1875

  8. 1884

 

Activity for the link below

Read the newspaper article at Times Online. Then correct these statements. You will find the information in the first part of the article.

  • The 1904 Rolls-Royce 10hp Two-Seater was made in London.

  • If you see the term “veteran car” in Britain, it means the vehicle is at least 50 years old.

  • The car is in bad shape and will have to be kept in a museum.

  • The car was sold for £10,000,000.

  • Elton John once owned the 1904 Rolls-Royce.


Finally, what do you know about the following? The information is in the last half of the text.

  • Sir Alan Sugar’s bad luck at the auction.

  • Elton John’s opinion of the Bentley S1 Continental Sports Saloon sold at the auction.

  • Edward VIII’s lifestyle.