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The Stairlift Story: Who invented the Stairlift?

If we track its beginnings, the first concept of the stairlift emerged in the heart of the 16th century. It is believed to have been used by none other than King Henry VIII, after an unfortunate jousting accident.

His model, a basic one, was completely servant-operated and back-breaking work, given the King’s sizable stature of around 30 stone. King Henry VIII’s stairlift functioned through a rope and pulley system, enabling his servants to hoist him up and down the staircase within his Hampton Court Palace.

Even though it’s basic, this early idea of a stairlift served a fundamental purpose – assisting individuals struggling with mobility challenges in overcoming the stairs. 

Who invented the Stairlift? King Henry VIII stairlift

The first stairlift was invented in the 1920s. That’s when a man from Pennsylvania, called C.C. Crispen, invented the “Inclin-ator“. Crispen was an entrepreneur and self-taught engineer, who saw that his neighbour was having trouble moving around his home because of the stairs, making him confined to his bedroom.

This both motivated and inspired Crispen to create a seat that could move up and down the staircase. During this time he also began the process of patenting his idea. This style of lift is not that much different from those you would see today.

Crispen designed it with rollers and a track that ran alongside the stairs. His stairlift design was adaptable, modern, and most importantly, helped people, like his neighbour, to be more independent in their own homes.

Stairlifts were first manufactured for domestic use in the 1970s, around the time that our Managing Director, Coral Affleck-Major was born. Of course now, there is no need for ropes and pulleys, no hauling family members up and downstairs. Stairlifts now give independence to anyone who needs to get around their home safely.

We offer a full range of stairliftshome lifts, and wheelchair lifts to suit most homes and clients needs from various top lift manufacturers. We will also take on any maintenance of products that have already been installed even if we were not the original installer.

If you’d love our team to help you or a loved one to become independent and stay in the home they love with the help of a lift, then please don’t hesitate to give us a call for a friendly chat on 01249 470401 or 0808 175 6407, or via [email protected]

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