1. Cycling, do you need a Brompton?

Are Brompton’s worth the money? Yes… Yes they are.

I am not saying this because it is British, I am not one for British bias for example if a Brompton had the questionable build quality reputation like Land Rover or Jaguar, I would not recommend it to anyone!

This bike has helped me though tricky times; when I got my Orange and Black Brompton; Brompton’s were seen as Noddy/mature people bikes, despite this there was always something about a Brompton that appealed to me.

I have always loved cycling, I do not cycle for environmental, health or financial reasons, I ONLY cycle because it’s FUN and a brilliant way to get around.

I almost gave up cycling for one reason… bicycle theft!

The thefts are getting ridiculous, thieves are stealing bikes in broad daylight with some of the thieves no longer content with robbing the whole bike! oh, no, no, no!… Now they’re stealing bits off it, with the most surprising thing I’ve heard being handle bars.

Bike security is pretty stagnant but the thieves are not, it’s frustrating and becomes a drag on owning a full sized bike in the London; I got to the point where before I would visit friends via bike I would have to find out if I could store the bike out of sight; same of an office that only had outside cycle bays.
I stopped cycling to work and was to ditch cycling all together and stick with the tube, car clubs and Uber but the Brompton kept calling.

I eventually went to Cycle Surgery in Camden to test ride a Brompton despite my scepticism on its looks; my first test ride; I hated the ride, it was wobbly and felt unsafe, when I got back to the shop the guy asked me how was it and I told him it was terrible, he said try this model, the only difference was the handle bar; this had a flat bar not a U bar, I thought what difference would this make? But decided to humour him… flipping heck…… It was like riding a completely different bike and boy was it fun too ride! It was responsive and felt brilliant on the road especially on a decent, I enjoyed the ride so much I ordered one on the same day! (I got it on the 0% finance offer, I did not use the cycle to work scheme) this was arguably one of my best purchases.

During the years I had one or two minor issue with the bike, but I can say this bike became a friend during an unexpected time, when I had to go back and forth for a period of time, it allowed me to arrive early and leave late which I could not have done without it.

Just last week I rode 26 miles and it’s just fantastic it really is; now when I visit friends, I just fold the bike up, put it somewhere and one of two things happen, 1 people forget it’s there or 2 they just ask questions about it, usually followed by a ‘can you unfold it’ request, I have taken it on trains, buses, into offices, shops, everywhere! It has required zero maintenance from me but I will be visiting Brompton Covent Gardens at some point to get it serviced soon.

A great way to find out how fun these bikes are is to rent one, I only found out about this today (13th May 17) when I was at Evans Cycles at St Pancreas, if you’re on the fence try the rental scheme.

I was told (or I probably made up) that all cyclist should have three bikes: A road bike, A single speed and a mountain bike, now I would say (if you’re in a relatively flat city) drop the mountain bike and add a folding bike (preferably a brompton).


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