Adam Purves Galashiels Ltd  1879-2020

Mitsubishi main dealers for the Scottish Borders

Located in the beautiful Scottish Borders we are ideally situated between the main A68 and A7 near to Galashiels and Melrose making for easy road and rail links , our business can be traced back to 1879 making us one of the longest established dealerships in the Borders if not Scotland !

The original Adam Purves was born in 1840 at Gildiesgreen in the Ettrick Valley. He served his apprenticeship as a blacksmith at Lindean Smithy, near Selkirk and after working in Hawick and Galashiels he started on his own account at 20 Bank Street, Galashiels in 1879.

At the start the business was mainly horse-shoeing but an early sideline was making bicycles, a sign of things to come, and by good fortune an example of this early work, a cycle made about 1879 is still in our possession to-day.

The business prospered and as room for expansion was needed, was transferred to Damside, now known as Paton Street, in 1897. The first Adam Purves died and his son, also Adam Purves who had served an apprenticeship with the engineers, Aimers McLean, took over. At this time the first motor vehicles were beginning to appear and the firm’s experience with cycles led him to be a pioneer and become an expert in this new technology. The first registered vehicle he owned was a motor cycle LS 13 and his first motor car was LS 117 in 1907. This was an Argyle 8hp Wagonette and was the first of many hiring vehicles to be run by the firm. in 1910 there were 2 hiring cars and 6 staff and in 1912 a contract was awarded to convey the mail to Selkirk. Taxi hiring was continued by the firm until the 1960‘s.

In 1921 Adam Purves visited the London Motor Show and decided the Morris Cowley he saw would be a winner. He travelled to Oxford to meet William Morris and was given an agency for his cars.

In 1923 he took on an Austin agency and within a year the Austin 7 was launched and became the outstanding success of the period between the two world wars. Thus was begun a unique relationship with Austin and Morris which were to be the best agencies in Britain. During the war years 1939-45 the company made rifle rests and metalwork for targets and had contracts for repairing war-damaged army vehicles for some years after 1945. The company continued to prosper and were Rover dealers until 1995. After over 130 years and five generations the company has diversified but its main activity is still the motor trade.

We also  operate  petrol  throughout the Borders  interestingly Adam Purves are pioneers in the fuel business as they introduced the first electric fuel pump back in 1936, this replacing the traditional hand pump, Adam Purves also introduced a new concept to the Borders by opening the first self service filling station at Wilderhaugh back in the early eighties.

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