When I’m working in the shop I enjoy sharing stories with customers and listening to their own adventures.  One lady has recently lent me a book that she has written about her experiences whilst cycling from coast to coast. It is an inspiring story full of fascinating anecdotes and pictures.

When she gave her book I decided to keep a diary recording all my cycling trips during July. At the end of the month I was surprised to find that I had covered in excess of 750 miles. I don’t currently have a car so, as you may know from previous articles, I have been using a Specialized Vado electric bike to commute to work on. During July I clocked up over 350 miles simply commuting. I have found that the morning commute really allows me to focus on the day ahead and the return journey has helped me to unwind. Whilst I try to get to work as quickly as possible I have been known to stop on the way home to watch farmers harvesting their crops and on two occasions I have been lucky enough to observe deer grazing in the fields.

Aside from the commuting rides I have also had some great days out. These normally include a café stop either for lunch or afternoon tea. But in July my favourite stop involved Bacon sandwiches and a pot of tea sat on the cobble landing in Filey, whilst watching a few early morning fishing boats come in with their catch.

If any of you have interesting cycling stories to tell or cycling photo’s you are willing to share you can email them to me at;

stories@leedsbicycle.com

We are going to publish some on our website and will award a gift voucher to anyone who’s picture or story we publish. (Please do not send them if you do not wish them to be published).

In general customer stories are positive but it has to be said that I have been disappointed by the number of people I have spoken to recently who have had their bicycles stolen. There certainly seems to be a spate of thefts based around Leeds city centre, so do take care.

Unfortunately a determined thief will usually be successful if they have sufficient time and suitable tools. However, there is plenty that can be done to make their life difficult. It goes without saying that a good cycle lock is important and you should expect to pay at least £40 to get a lock with a SOLD SECURE verification. This verification certifies that your lock will have been independently tested. We sell suitable locks from market leaders: ABUS, Masterlock, Kryptonite, ON-Guard and Hiplock, to name just a few.

You should aim to lock the frame, the front and back wheels together and it is recommended that the lock is well away from the ground so that a potential thief cannot use a sledgehammer to break the lock against a solid surface. It will also help to deter thieves if your bicycle has a visible security marking on it and many local police forces can help with this. It is also advisable to leave your bicycle in a well lit place and if you are regular commuter do not to leave your bike in the same place every day.

We have been working with specialist bicycle insurer  BIKMOPLUS for a number of years and if you purchase insurance through their website: www.bikmoplus.com and enter the code BIKLDS you will receive a discount off your premium.

Have a great month and don’t forget to send your photo’s and stories to: stories@leedsbicycle.com

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