In pictures | 70 years of the JCB backhoe loader

Black and white picture of a man in an excavator.
In 1957, the JCB Hydra-Digga was advertised as being able to dig through rock (Image: JCB)

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the creation of the backhoe loader by UK excavator maker JCB.

Drawing of a red excavator.
Joseph Cyril Bamford’s design of the first backhoe loader (Image: JCB)

Company founder Joseph Cyril Bamford CBE invented the backhoe concept. The first JCB model was manufactured in 1953 after he combined a lightweight backhoe with a Major Loadall tractor loader. This was the first time a single machine combined a front shovel and a rear excavator arm.

JCB backhoe loader - A black and white picture of an excavator in a field.
In 1963, the 3C backhoe loader became acknowledged as a design class (Image: JCB)

It took JCB 20 years to build its first 50,000 backhoes. To date, more than 900,000 have been made.

A black and white photo of an excavator production line.
Production line at Rochester in 1958 (Image: JCB)

The excavator model is manufactured in the UK, India and Brazil.

JCB backhoe loader - A yellow excavator at work in the 1970s.
A JCB Mk II 3C backhoe at work in Bolivia in 1972 (Image: JCB)

To mark this anniversary, JCB is producing 70 limited-edition 3CX PRO and 4 CX PRO models.

JCB backhoe loader - A 1960s colour advert of an excavator.
A 1960 advert for the JCB 4 machine (Image: JCB)

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