The Victor brand was created by Dowding & Plummer Ltd – a domestic electrical appliances and vehicle electrics repairs company established in 1946. At the end of World War II, Downing & Plummer began to manufacture electrical components for domestic appliances, including floor polishers. By the 1950s, the company was producing its own vacuum cleaners.
During the 1960s, the UK’s commercial contract cleaning market began to grow, and Downing & Plummer made the move from domestic appliances to commercial and industrial products. It started producing rotary floor machines, and a durable, reliable floor cleaner – branded Victor – soon became popular, not only in the UK, but across the world.
The Victor name was chosen by Les Davies, former Sales Director and joint Managing Director, from his time flying Lancaster Bombers during World War II. Squadron planes were all marked with the code letters VN, followed by the individual aircraft recognition letter, meaning the phonetic call sign to the control tower on take-off and landing was Victor Nan, plus the letter of the aircraft. Les survived a full tour unscathed, and considered the plane he was usually allocated – VN-F: Victor Nan-Fox – lucky.
The Victor machines produced today are still made in Britain and retain the same reliability and durability as the floor cleaners produced in the 1960s – and continuous improvement ensures the brand still leads in terms of technological development, innovation and customer satisfaction.