The approximately 6.5 million people in the UK who take part in cycling, either for sport, leisure, or travel, are being urged to pedal down to their local bike shop this coming Saturday, April 29, as the sector gets ready to mark Local Bike Shop Day 2023.
Local Bike Shop Day 2022 saw more than 500 bike shops getting involved in the campaign, while the Association of Cycle Traders (ACT) believes that thousands of people engaged with the campaign by shopping at, using the services of, or promoting local Independent Bicycle Dealers (IBDs).
The ACT is hoping for an increase in those numbers this year.
“Local Bike Shop Day is the one day a year when independent bike shops across the UK can come together to celebrate their distinctive culture,” said Jonathan Harrison from the ACT.
“Whether it’s for accessories, for servicing or repairs, for accessories or just for specialist advice, independent bike shops provide a knowledgeable and invaluable service to cyclists of all ages, and this is a chance to support them and celebrate them. We hope bike shops will get on board and use the day to reinforce their customer relationships and promote themselves to new audiences.”
This year’s campaign is being supported by Cytech, the international training and accreditation scheme for bicycle technicians.
Cytech has delivered more than 22,000 technical training courses to cycling industry personnel and cyclists since being developed 40 years ago.
One shop that will be taking part is RedSky Bikes in Thirsk, which has a packed schedule for the weekend.
The shop’s co-founder Gemma Thompson said: “Having opened six months ago, this weekend is our first Local Bike Shop Day as a business and we’re very excited to connect with customers old and new alike on the day.
“On the day, we’ve got lots going on. We are running a Social Road Ride from the shop and then a bike maintenance Q&A session at 1.30pm. We’re offering 3 for 2 across all parts and accessories as well as free prize giveaways – our spring bike sale is still live too.
“Our friends Fred & Bert’s Coffee will be serving up hot drinks and bacon butties from 10am-3pm, to keep everyone pedalling.”
Speaking about their Local Bike Shop Day experience last year and plans for this weekend, Joanne Mahon, CEO of Get Cycling CIC, a York-based not-for-profit that helps people of all ages and abilities get on a bike, said: “Last year, Local Bike Shop Day helped us promote our Spring Sale and us being a local independent bike shop that specialises in disability and adapted cycles.
“We really enjoyed inviting our customers to see the importance of recognising and supporting local independent bike shops.
“This year we will be highlighting the incredible work we do getting all kinds of people on all kinds of cycles – and that you can cycle even if you thought you never could, due to abilities or limitations in your movement. We truly have a cycle for everyone.”
Katie Legg, newly appointed commercial director at Cycling UK, said: “Everyone has a story to tell about their favourite bike shop. As recognised by the Government during the pandemic, local bike shops are businesses that play a vital part in our communities and deserve support.
“They don’t just fix and sell bikes, but often act as hubs for local cycling which help encourage people to ride. This Local Bike Shop Day, I’d encourage everyone who can, to pop by and continue to support our small cycling businesses which literally keep the wheels spinning for so many of us.”
Local bike shops can download this year’s poster for use in store and on their social media by clicking here.