Rupert Hohwieler 26/09/22
London Bike Shops | Saddle Up
If you’re without a bike, getting from A to B in London can be a right pain in the buttocks. There’s toughing it out during rush hour on the tube, sitting on the bus slowly coming to terms with the fact that you’re going to be 30 minutes late to work, or spending too much on an Uber because time-management isn’t your thing.
So to help you avoid those niggly scenarios (and tack on the added bonus of fresh air, burnt calories and reduced air pollution), we’ve assembled a list of the bike shops in London. Whether you want to tear up challenging terrain with a full-suspension mountain bike or be the envy of the office with your cream 1970’s single-speed Bianchi, you can ride safely knowing there’s a bike shop in London just for you…
Rapha Cycle Club | Soho
Follow in the footsteps of cycling’s elite at Rapha’s ultra-clean ‘clubhouse’ in Soho… or at least pretend and dress like them. The brand is behind the decorated jerseys that Team Sky donned during their domination of Tour De France (The Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome years), among other noteworthy riders, and has a strong case for being the pre-eminent apparel provider in all of cycling. Alongside kitting yourself out like a professional, you can also get a decent cup of joe here (beans provided by Workshop Coffee Co) and watch all three Grand Tours live from their big screens.
Details: 85 Brewer Street, Soho, London W1F 9ZN | Servicing isn’t offered | Open daily | Find out more on their website here
Butternut Bikes | Crouch End
If you popped a tyre, don’t sweat it (save that for the actual cycling part). This cheery Crouch End bike shop has all the services to get you swiftly back on the road (puncture repair is £20 quid) and the accessories to help you look the part too: helmets, flash pedals, retro cycling caps, gloves and (don’t laugh) lube… If you’re looking for a new ride altogether, they stock a neat selection of bikes from respected brands like Cinelli, which they then fit and adjust to your preference before you make the purchase.
Details: Crouch Hill Mansions, 143 Crouch Hill, N8 9QH | Services from £15 | Find out more about what they do/provide on their website here
Tokyobike | Shoreditch
This independent Japanese bike brand slings trendy, minimalist two wheelers that were built for cruising smoothly around a big city (Tokyo) and for people that want to look cool while doing it. If those principles apply to you, then head to their bike shop in Shoreditch where you can take their rides out for a test run until you find your perfect fit (the Bisou is most popular model, while the Sport is the fastest). Got an old Tokyobike that isn’t what it once was? There’s a workshop on site that’ll get it back up to speed. Bookings can be made here.
Details: 87-89 Tabernacle Street, EC2A 4BA | Puncture repair £7, general service £60 | Open Tues-Sat | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Cadence | Crystal Palace, Twickenham & St. Paul’s
In terms of customer service, the team at this Crystal Palace bike shop are well noted for going the extra mile. They do the full spread of servicing, can plop you on a Wattbike to measure pedalling prowess and also offer strength training to make sure your thighs are ready for the hills of Kent. On the shop front: you’ve got clothing, footwear, eyewear and a shedload of bicycle bits and bobs. Models of all shapes and sizes are represented here (from sturdy mountain bikes to speed machines made by Giant), and at the heart of it all is a cafe that does a very respectable job at coffee and cake.
Details: 2a Anerley Hill, London SE19 2AA | Services start from £10 | Find out more about what they do/provide on their website here
London Bike Kitchen | Colville Estate
The mechanics at London Bike Kitchen will happily bring your old bike back to full health, but they’ll also lend their expertise to DIY workshops so you can figure out how to fix the issues independently (handy in the event that you’re caught in the middle of nowhere with a dodgy chain). They also value the importance of comfortable seating (no one likes a sore butt) and have their own saddle library.
Details: 28 Whitmore Road, London N1 5QA | Repairs from £10 | Open Tues-Fri | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Condor Cycles | Holborn
Not many bike brands can hold a candle to Condor’s illustrious history. The shop is hallowed turf for cycling enthusiasts (it’s been a staple on Gray’s Inn Road since 1948) and its bespoke bikes, with frames crafted by hand in Italy, have won World Championships, helped riders navigate the Tour De France and enabled celebs like Mick Jagger to safely nip through London traffic. The team are impeccably thorough in making sure you pick the right mount and would probably spend the whole day with you if they could – plus, they also do same day servicing to keep your ride looking spick and span.
Details: 49-53 Gray’s Inn Road, WC1X 8PP | Repairs from £10, service from £80 | Open Mon-Sat | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Seabass Cycles | Peckham
Staunchly independent and owned by two cyclists who wanted to run a neutral bike shop that they’d appreciate if they were the customers, Seabass in Peckham is where to go for a custom bike assembled from scratch. Whether you’re after a vintage that’ll turn heads on the way to work or a new-age one that’ll satiate a need for speed, they’ll help you map your dream bike out – and they work with parts and frames from the some of the most established names in the industry (Cannondale, Soma, Brother and Ritchy). Repairs are their other strong suit and if you’ve got a bike that’s seen better days, walk it in for a service and expect to leave with it looking as good as new.
Details: Co Operative House, SE15 4UR | Service from £12 | Open Mon-Sat | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Brick Lane Bikes | Shoreditch
You can’t really call yourself a proper Shoreditch commuter if you don’t own a stylish single-speed bicycle from here. Along with a pair of horn-rimmed glasses, it’s a crucial part of nailing the look. It’s one of the best London bike shops for those seeking a one-cog city slicker that can be ridden straight out of the store – especially from their own range of in-house BLB models. The team also know how to repair a broken-down bike (strangely enough), so if yours requires surgery, hand it over to the workshop and they’ll aim to get it back to you within the day.
Details: 118 Bethnal Green Road, London E2 6DG | General maintenance from £15, basic service £70 | Open daily | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Hackney Cycles | Hackney
Hackney Cycles put together some of the best looking fixies (fixed-gear bikes) in London; classic in design and state-of-art in performance – the kinds that’ll get you compliments at every red light. Even better, for the first year, your purchase comes with a free service every four months, so it stays in tip-top shape. They can also pimp your old ride out with bull horn handlebars, mag wheels or even a shiny new lick of paint – and yes, there’s a workshop where you can put your full trust in the mechanics to finally get to the bottom of what’s causing that squeaky chain.
Details: 507 Hackney Road, London E2 9ED | Services from £6 | Open daily | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Pedal Pedlar | Islington
Open by appointment only in Islington, Pedal Pedlar is handy for nostalgic cyclists in the market for a classic Cinelli mountain bike or say, a suede leather saddle from Chesini. The store specialises in retro frames and components from the glory days of the mid to late ‘90s, all kept in mint condition, and while they don’t do tune-ups, they’re very capable of building you a vintage bike that’ll make even your Dad a little bit jealous. Be sure to check out the online store as well, for what is a seriously commendable collection of old-school jerseys and cycling shoes…
Details: 106 Balls Pond Road Islington, London N1 4AG | No services | Open Tues-Thu, call ahead for bike appointments on 02036758003
Brixton Cycles | Brixton
Bike fixing feels like more of a hobby than a job to the guys at Brixton Cycles – the shop is the oldest worker-owned bike co-op in London. The friendly staff (all keen cyclists themselves) know their forks and frames better than anyone in the area and have a rep for solving the trickiest of problems as well as uncovering (and then solving again) new ones that you might not have even noticed. They’ll take the time to walk you through buying a new bike (the inventory stocks something for every type of rider: adventures, mountains, hybrids, BMXs and urban road bikes) and they also run their own cycling club, just in case, you know, you’re looking for an excuse to take your new prize out for a spin.
Details: 296-298 Brixton Rd, London SW9 6AG | Services from £10, tune-up £50 | Open Mon-Fri | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Get a Grip Bicycle Workshop | Clapham
Got a chain that won’t stop falling off? Urgh. Or perhaps a wheel that’s a little too wobbly? Double urgh. But no worries, husband & wife duo Sarah and Troy, who run this bike shop together over in Lavender Hill, have the midas touch when it comes to mending bikes. They also display the full set of bike toys (helmets, shoes, locks, lights et al.) and sell a nice range of bikes themselves. You can pick their brains for servicing issues every day of the week except Sunday, which they keep free for riding.
Details: 19 Lavender Hill, Clapham, SW11 5QW | Mini service from £35 | Open Mon-Wed, Fri-Sat | Call them on 02072234888
Hackney Peddler | Hackney
Besotted by all the dapper vintage bikes darting about East London? There’s a good chance a fair chunk of them came from this bike shop in Hackney. Steel frames are the speciality, the ones that were all the rage back in the day, and the shop, ahem, peddles stunning models from the some most desirable brands in Britain and Europe (Dawes, Raleigh, Hetchins, Paganini etc). The team can also build unique custom bikes to your liking and in terms of customer service, they’re hard to beat. Full quotes are given before any adjustments are made and there’s never any grump here no matter how trivial the issue.
Details: Shop 5 Hackney Downs Studios, Amhurst Terrace E8 2BT | Half service £45, additional jobs from £8 | Open daily | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
The Bike Project | Camberwell
Buying a new set of wheels from this South London bike shop does more good than just saving a bit of cash and reducing your carbon footprint. They sling second hand bikes (anything from single speeds to mountain climbers) that have been restored in their workshop, with all sales going directly towards the charity’s tireless mission in doing-up pre-loved bikes so they can send them onto refugees and asylum seekers. Got an old, rarely-used bike that’s crying out for a second chance? You can follow instructions on how to donate here.
Details: 170-172 Camberwell Road, SE5 0EE | Small repairs from £10, basic service £45 | Open Mon-Sat | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
Lunar Cycles | Kentish Town
Forget the fancy showroom faff: for a no-nonsense independent bike shop in North London that won’t charge you through the teeth, look to Lunar Cycles – conveniently right next door to Kentish Town West station. The staff – experts and enthusiasts in equal measure – offer the whole shebang, from general spring cleans to fixing more intricate issues like hub gears. They’ll even lend you a courtesy bike while you wait to be reunited with your real one. If the repair process is just an hour or so, there’s also option to use Camden Town Brewery as a waiting room (it’s also conveniently right next door…).
Details: Unit 66 Wilkin Street Mews, NW5 3NN | Safety check £49, general service £79 | Open Mon-Sat | Find more about what they do/provide on their website here
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