I'm 6ft 7" and just over 20st, and am looking for a decent bike to use around suburban west London instead of taking local buses and to replace some tube journeys. When I was a kid I lived in the middle of nowhere and I used to cycle 15-20 miles a weekend. When I moved to London I couldn't take my bike with me, but a couple of years ago bought a cheap 'mountain' bike. I know little/nothing about bikes so while I could sort out any problem with a computer, anything wrong with the bike and it goes to the shop to be put back together. It's far too small for me really - the seat post must be nearly a foot away from the frame and I can feel it or the frame bending when I ride. The original seatpost bent and the handle bars are so low that it does my neck in to use it, so, well - I don't! It's cost more in bits and repairs than it did to buy, and I'm ready to first of all bin it, and second replace it with something more appropriate (and less likely to kill me!), and thirdly, use it! I don't know if it means I've lost my mind, but I am very taken by the Pashley Roadster Soverign - £600 for a 24" frame. I like the idea of a bike more closely related to those that are more common in Holland or Italy where the rider is more upright than leaning forward and craning their neck up to see where they're going, and also that it has the rack on the back and properly fitted mudguards. My local cycle shop (it was a local shop, now it's branded Action Bikes so seems part of a chain or franchise, but the same bloke runs it) doesn't usually sell Pashley bikes but will order one if that's what I want, but they steered me towards a Specialised Expedition Elite. I'm not really bothered about brands or looks (to an extent, though the Specialised looks butt ugly!). On the plus side it's £150 cheaper, but it has no rack or mudguards. The components and technical stuff I've no idea about, but the fact that is has suspension puts me off: on west London's roads and perhaps the occasional tow path it's unnecessary, something else to break, and I think makes the bike more likely to be nicked. £600 is a frightening amount to spend on a bike, but I don't own a car and I guess tax and insurance for one would exceed that after a couple of years, so in the greater scheme of things it's not that much. I'm never going to go on holiday either on it or with it, never off-road or racing, and work from home so daily commuting isn't necessary but it'll be for going up to the bank, the shops, visiting customers locally perhaps, and weekend afternoons in the summer. It'll live in my garage and I've already got a Kryptonite New York lock on my bendy one now (which, comically, cost almost as much as the bike, so with the keys in it, would be a better steal than the bike). Any advice or thoughts gratefully received!