Another LBS disappearing from the circuit.

simongt

Veteran
Location
Norwich
Sad news that Richard Freeman of Freeman's Cycles in Norwich has made the decision to retire at the end of the year after a lifetime in the trade. :sad: Don't blame hm at all; at 66, he's decided to hang up the spoke keys and enjoy his time left. :okay: He's fifth generation of the family in the business and there's no longer anyone in the family to hand the business over to. Such a shame, as his is a delightfully quirky little shop the like of which is now extremely rare and his vast knowledge of bikes more than ten years old plus their techno history will also be sadly missed.
 

AndyRM

XOXO
Location
North Shields
That is sad news indeed. I used to be down in Norwich quite regularly for work and would always pop in for a blether.
 

Oldhippy

Veteran
Photo Winner
Sad to see. Too much to hope that an aspiring younger cycle loving person will come along I suppose.
 
I don't typically use local bike shops myself although love to browse them if passing but always feel sorry when they go out of business. I do my own repairs and buy parts cheaply over the internet and tend to buy bikes s/hand for maximum value.
 
Sad news that Richard Freeman of Freeman's Cycles in Norwich has made the decision to retire at the end of the year after a lifetime in the trade. :sad: Don't blame hm at all; at 66, he's decided to hang up the spoke keys and enjoy his time left. :okay: He's fifth generation of the family in the business and there's no longer anyone in the family to hand the business over to. Such a shame, as his is a delightfully quirky little shop the like of which is now extremely rare and his vast knowledge of bikes more than ten years old plus their techno history will also be sadly missed.
:blush:. I used them for bits and bobs that you cant find in modern bike shops.
 

Oldhippy

Veteran
Photo Winner
Sometimes I would, but mostly I prefer the convenience and choice available on line.

And the trouble for many parts of the retail trade, the majority of people do the same. It is a pity in many ways, but times change.
Not for the better in my opinion.
 
The competition from online sales and the multiple/chain bike shops is killing the independent. In good times the multiples expand and serve the mainstream 80% of the market. In the bad times multiples just contract, dumping stires and staff.
Freemans had a niche as a Sturmey Archer centre of expertise but im not sure if that is enough. Their location is also out of the way.
 

mjr

Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next
Freemans had a niche as a Sturmey Archer centre of expertise but im not sure if that is enough. Their location is also out of the way.
The city end of Heigham Street, on the student side of the Inner Ring, 200m from NCN1 Marriott's Way? I'm not sure how much less out of the way it could be without doing something silly like building it on top of the castle.
 
I always wondered how those who are not good with their hands or require specialist skills survive when there is no LBS nearby. Surely there are hundreds or thousands that need such help. Especially now that bike ownership has taken off.

I found out the revival of Preston ( courtesy of the @Adam4868 and the @theclaud) impressive bringing back commerce and industry on a economical viable front. Maybe councils can plan for these things where there is a demand and there is no need to outsource out of main towns,

Quite interesting that councils are involved with bike lanes and the likes to keep up with Joneses but not the other parts of cycling.
 

PaulSB

Legendary Member
I always wondered how those who are not good with their hands or require specialist skills survive when there is no LBS nearby. Surely there are hundreds or thousands that need such help. Especially now that bike ownership has taken off.
Although an experienced cyclist this describes me. I have zero mechanical aptitude, knowledge or desire. I can change a tube, join a chain and if in deep trouble somewhere very rural could possibly bodge a cable problem.

There's no point in people telling me how simple it is. I've no real interest or desire and when I have tried in the past it ends up with a trip to the LBS anyway!!! :laugh:

I'm reliant on my LBS for everything from basic tweaks to the mech, through servicing and selecting a new bike - this is something we work through together.

I've used the same LBS for 20+ years and they know my cycling interests inside out. I give the LBS first chance to sell me everything I need and never go looking online for cheap options. To do so would be a false economy as I cannot buy the help and support I receive from my LBS and I need to both repay this and contribute to ensuring the LBS is successful.

Yes, if the LBS doesn't stock an item I go online but only if I have to.

If my LBS were to close a new development locally is the growth in mobile mechanics who will come to one's home or accept a bike delivered to their house. We have two who are highly regarded, this is who I would go to if the LBS closed down.
 
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