JA Prestwich Industries, was an English engineering company named after founder John Alfred Prestwich, which produced cinematographic equipment, internal combustion engines (for which the company was generally abbreviated to J.A.P.), and other examples of precision engineering.
J. A. Prestwich, an engineer, founded the company in 1895, when he was in his early twenties, initially behind his father's house at 1 Lansdowne Road, Tottenham, London. By 1911 he had moved to new premises in Tarriff Road, within the Northumberland Park area of Tottenham, London, and (which still exists as of 2015 ). Prestwich came to be known as much for his creation of cinematography projectors as his engines. He worked with S.Z. de Ferranti and later the cinema pioneer William Friese-Greene.
The engines were used in many famous motorcycle marques and other devices, such as early aeroplanes,〔(sciencmuseum.org.uk )〕 chainsaws, cultivators such as those produced by Howard Rotovators,〔(British )〕 and light rail maintenance trucks.〔(JAP Motorcycles )〕 The motorcycle engines were associated with racing success and were still used in speedway bikes well into the 1960s. During WWII Prestwich produced around 240,000 industrial petrol engines in support of the war effort, together with millions of aircraft parts, fuses, etc.〔Jim Lewis 1999, ''J.A.Prestwich-Tottenham's Prolific Inventor'', Ch 18 of ''London's Lea Valley'', Phillimore, ISBN 1-86077-100-9〕
After 1945 production was taken over by Villiers Ltd. and the company was completely absorbed by the Villiers Engineering Company in 1957〔(The Villiers Engineering Company )〕 just as Villiers itself was to be taken over by Manganese Bronze Bearings.
The company's engineering works in Northumberland Park closed in 1963.〔
Papers, photographs and publicity material relating to the company are held at the Science Museum Library & Archives at the Science Museum at Wroughton.〔http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/about_us/collections/science_library/new_collections/archive.aspx〕
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