MILBRO
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MILBRO
Previous trade name of Millard Brothers located in Motherwell, Lanarkshire, Scotland. The name Milbro is derived from "Millard Brothers," a family owned business founded in 1887; apparently the senior figure was David W. Millard.
Milbro began producing airguns in 1949, using machinery and equipment taken as WWII war reparations from the Mayer and Grammelspacher Company (DIANAWERK) in Rastatt, Germany in 1945. Milbro also received the brand name DIANA and even the Diana logo showing the goddess of hunting, Diana, discarding her bow and arrow in favor of an airgun, held high above her head. This resulted in today’s collectors having both German and British airguns bearing the Diana name and logo! In 1950, DIANAWERK again began the production of airguns in their old factory in Rastatt. They were forced to use names other than "Diana." Within Germany the Dianawerk airguns were sold as "Original." The brand "Original Diana" was used for Dianawerk guns in England. Dianawerk repurchased their trademark in 1984 after Milbro ceased airgun production. After 1984 all Diana airguns were again made in Rastatt, Germany (see Dianawerk section). For greater detail on this aspect, see DIANAWERK in the D section of this book.

Milbro produced airguns under both their own name and the acquired Diana brand. Most of these guns were close copies of the German pre-war models; many bore the same model number as their German pre-war siblings. Meanwhile Dianawerk in Germany had resumed production of some of the same models under the same model numbers (but under the Original or Original Diana labels); some with modifications or improvements! Milbro made airguns for other firms in the shooting trade including Umarex in Germany, Daisy in the USA, and Webley & Scott and Phoenix Arms in England. The Webley Jaguar was manufactured by Milbro and the virtually identical Webley Junior may also have been a Milbro product. Some of the Milbro airguns did not bear the Diana name, but were marked "Milbro Foreign" which indicates that they may have been made for Milbro of Scotland by Dianawerk in Germany in the pre-WWII period when German markings were not in favor in England.

Milbro was sold in 1970 to Grampian Holdings who also owned businesses making fishing tackle, golf clubs, and other items. During the mid-1970s Milbro sold airguns to mail order catalog retailers. By 1982, despite the advantage of the famous old Diana trademark, Milbro, using Dianawerk´s old machinery and materials, had ceased making airguns. The machinery was sold to El Gamo. Some remaining guns were sold to a Swiss firm for mail order sales.

Milbro began making airgun pellets in 1950. The pellet business was sold to former Milbro employee Jim Mark. Milbro pellets, under the names of Caledonian, Jet, Rhino, Clipper, Match and TR are still made in Motherwell, Scotland.

The authors and publisher wish to thank Tim Saunders and Jim Mark for their valuable assistance with the following information in this section of the Blue Book of Airguns. Ref.: Dennis Hiller´s British based The Collectors´ Guide to Air Rifles and The Collectors’ Guide to Air Pistols. Much of the following is based on those books. Additional information is actively sought from readers; direct info to guns@bluebookinc.com.

From Blue Book Publications:


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