Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Batteries Limited of Hunt End Works, Redditch, Worcestershire. Telephone: Astwood Bank 4. Telegraphic Address: "Batteries, Redditch"

1918 The Swedish battery company Svenska Ackumulator AB Jungner [1] started a subsidiary company in the UK under the name Batteries Ltd to manufacture alkaline batteries using the brand name NIFE, operating at Hunt End Works, Redditch, on a site that had been previously occupied by the Royal Enfield Cycle Company.

The new company initially imported batteries from Sweden[2], later assembling batteries from components made in Sweden. Some 3 or 4 employees were involved.

1920 During 1920 the facilities expanded.

1920 October. Exhibited at the Commercial Motor Exhibition on the Ransomes, Sims and Jefferies stand at Olympia with their new NIFE battery.

1922 Pritchetts and Gold considered buying an alkaline battery business and, having tested the various products, decided that the Jungner battery was superior to others.

1922 Chloride Electrical Storage Co acquired controlling interest in Pritchetts and Gold[3].

1923 Pritchetts and Gold made an agreement with Jungner under which it acquired one-third of the capital of Batteries Ltd and agreed to have no other alkaline battery interests. Pritchetts and Gold's interests in Worsnop and Co and Alklum Electrics were sold to Batteries Ltd.

1924 Manufacture of complete batteries started in UK[4].

1926 and 1928 Joseph Lucas Ltd gained exclusive sales rights for automotive alkaline batteries.

1929 Joseph Lucas Ltd took a financial interest in the company, purchasing the shares from Pritchetts and Gold and Jungners[5], with an entitlement to two directors.

1933 The Chloride Electrical Storage Co acquired a controlling interest in Batteries Ltd and renamed it NIFE Batteries Ltd. The purchase included the NIFE brand name for use in the British Commonwealth. The Swedish company, Jungner, retained a minority holding and use of the NIFE brand name elsewhere and use of the the brand name Jungner in the British Commonwealth; Joseph Lucas Ltd also retained a minority shareholding.

1936 Chloride Batteries acquired Britannia Batteries Ltd. This gave them the Union Street premises and the Britannia and Alklum brand names.

1937 Electric batteries. NIFE Batteries. [6]

1937 Listed Exhibitor - British Industries Fair. A complete range of "Nife-Neverfayle" Emergency Lighting Equipments incorporating the "Nife" Nickel Cadmium Alkaline Battery. Batteries for all purposes. Complete range of Portable Lamps, including the Miner's Safety Lamp. (Stand No. Cb.613) [7]

1947 NIFE Batteries Ltd and Britannia Batteries Ltd were merged to form Alkaline Batteries Ltd operating from the Union Street area.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. History of Jungner [1]
  2. Competition Commission report [2]
  3. Competition Commission report [3]
  4. Competition Commission report [4]
  5. Competition Commission report [5]
  6. 1937 The Aeroplane Directory of the Aviation and Allied Industries
  7. 1937 British Industries Fair Page 332
  • [6] Mining Memorabilia
  • The Engineer of 22nd October 1920 p400