Posted by: Hourglass PJ15 MAY 2013
If you are allergic to grass pollen you will not be spending the summer cutting your lawn. But you might still be interested to learn that 18 May 1830 was the date on which a man named John Ferrabee reached an agreement with British inventor Edwin Budding to acquire the rights to manufacture and sell lawn mowers and to license other manufacturers in their production.
Budding got the idea of the lawnmower after seeing a machine in a local cloth mill which used a cutting cylinder mounted on a bench to trim the irregular nap from the surface of woollen cloth and give a smooth finish.
Budding’s lawn mower was designed primarily to cut the grass of sports grounds and extensive gardens, as a superior alternative to the scythe. The first machine was pushed from behind with the motive power coming from the rear land roller, which drove gears to transfer the drive to the knives on the cutting cylinder. Another roller, placed between the cutting cylinder and the land roller, was adjustable to alter the height of cut.
As with many modern mowers, the grass clippings were hurled forward into a tray-like box.
One of the earliest of Budding’s machines to be sold went to Regent’s Park Zoological Gardens in London.