“There is scarcely anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse, and sell a little more cheaply. The person who buys on price alone is this man’s lawful prey.” – John Ruskin
All of the bicycles we sell are unique, and most are custom-built. It’s always seemed obvious to us that that’s the sensible way to do things – why choose to settle for the lowest-common-denominator bastard child of a marketing department blindly aping current fashions, a purchasing department trying to shoehorn the latest 17-speed (*future-proofing) groupset onto a bike used to pick up groceries, and a finance department insisting the whole thing doesn’t cost the manufacturer more than £300 to produce, when you could have something suited to purpose, beautiful to look at, and skilfully engineered?
In the face of an industry that sells poorly suited, ill fitting products in blind pursuit of a healthier bottom line (and no, of course that’s not JUST bikes), we made a decision to come at things from the opposite direction.
We specialise in high-quality, small-scale production, British bikes dating from the 1930s to the 1990s. The work of skilled craftsmen in the back of small shops. While this sounds like a cottage industry, it was anything but. It was a trade practiced in every town in the land, and in some places (London foremost amongst them) by dozens, even hundreds, of practitioners.By the time the trade fell into decline from the 1970s onwards, as mass production gobbled up market-share, many millions of high-quality, beautifully made, strong, durable, and lightweight bicycles had already been made (thank god!). These are the materials of our trade. We get to breathe new life into them – to re-imagine and remake them for new owners with new requirements. We think it’s the best job in the world.
If you’re thinking about getting a new bike, head on over to our custom build page for more info about what we do, and why getting a custom bicycle built through us is more economical, and more fun, than popping down to your local Halfords!