Flat helmet: it’s cycle revolution

Bushey inventor Jeff Woolf thinks a more portable helmet is the ideal solution for two-wheeled commuters


In normal circumstances, if your bicycle helmet folds, it’s time to get a new one.

But that’s not the case with the Morpher helmet, created by Jeff Woolf, an inventor from Bushey. It folds flat (pictured above), making it far easier to carry.

“Twenty-five years ago, I had a really bad bike crash in West Hampstead, when I was hit by a car,” Mr Woolf said.

“I got thrown from my bike at high speed into a kerb. I broke my shoulder, I broke some ribs… But I was wearing a helmet, so my head was fine.”

Fast forward a few years and Mr Woolf was working with Serco, the company behind the London bike scheme.

“I realised no one was wearing a helmet — and I thought it was a bit nuts.”

He ran a survey which found that 92 per cent of bike scheme users did not wear a helmet — 82 per cent said it was because they were hard to carry around. So Mr Woolf decided to create something entirely new: a helmet to fit into a briefcase or handbag.

“I visited lots of industrial designers and everyone said it was impossible,” he said. “There were helmets on the market that attempted to fold, but they were complex, unwieldy lumps.”

But Mr Woolf, who received an OBE in 2000 for services to innovation and business, persisted. After five years perfecting the product and acquiring the necessary safety certifications, the Morpher is now on sale.

Mr Woolf is now speaking to organisers of cycle schemes in London, Tel Aviv, New York and Mexico City. “If I save a single life, it’s all worth it,” he said.


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