Lawn Mower
Inventor Edwin Beard Budding
Edwin Beard Budding
Born25 August 1796
Died1 September 1846 | Age 50

Edwin Beard Budding 1830

Modern mower
Modern mower

The lawn mower was invented in 1830 by Edwin Beard Budding, an engineer from Stroud, Gloucestershire, England.
Budding was inspired after seeing a machine in a local cloth mill which used a cutting cylinder (or bladed reel) mounted on a bench to trim cloth to make a smooth finish after weaving.

Budding Plaque
Budding Plaque

Budding realised that a similar concept would enable the cutting of grass if the mechanism could be mounted in a wheeled frame to make the blades rotate close to the lawn's surface. He went into partnership with a local engineer, John Ferrabee, and together they made mowers in a factory at Stroud.

Descriptive Patent
Budding Mower
Budding Mower
Budding's mower was designed primarily to cut the lawn on sports grounds and expansive gardens as a superior alternative to the scythe. His patent of 25 October 1830 described "a new combination and application of machinery for the purpose of cropping or shearing the vegetable surfaces of lawns, grass-plats and pleasure grounds. Country gentlemen may find in using my machine themselves an amusing, useful and healthy exercise."

Sumner motorised lawn mower
Sumner motorised lawn mower
One of the first of Budding and Ferrabee machines was used in Regent's Park Zoological Gardens in London Zoo, in 1831. It took another ten years and further innovations to create a machine that could be worked by donkey or horse power, and sixty years before a steam-powered lawnmower was built.

The Budding Foundation.
Museum of Gardening

Grass Graphics

And this is how artistic mowing on grass can be.
Leicester Football Ground by John Ledwidge
Leicester Football Ground by John Ledwidge

Adjustable Wrench
Budding screw wrench
Budding screw wrench
Budding also invented an adjustable spanner or 'screw wrench' around 1842, registered in 1843. An alternative crest headed adjustable spanner was developed by a work colleague Richard Clyburn (Uley UK) in 1843.

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