Oh my, it’s been far too long since I last caught up with you! So much for my plan of monthly blogs eh?! August feels like a world away now and we’ve been ultra busy in the mean time. So here’s a quick catch up to bring you up to speed on all the comings and goings of our wee bike shop hidden away in Galloway;
August was a manic month our busiest yet it was wonderful to see all the tourist up discovering the delights that Dumfries and Galloway has to offer. Speaking of which Dumfries and Galloway recently won the Country File magazine award for the holiday destination of the year 2015/16. http://www.countryfile.com/explore-countryside/places/holiday-destination-year-201516 More proof that we live in an amazing part of the world.
September saw us setting up finance so you can now ride a brand new bike away for 10% deposit and 0%APR for 12 months (subject to stuff and things, terms and other boring stuff).
In October we celebrated our first year in the new shop, what an amazing year it’s been. I must sound like a broken record by now but really we can’t thank our customers enough for all their support and the folk of Newton Stewart for making us so welcome, it’s an amazing wee community.
November saw us, well S-J, get togged up as we were short-listed for the Dumfries and Galloway Life awards in the ‘Most Promising Developing Business’ section. Surprisingly Brian was allowed in despite wearing shorts (what else?!). Whilst we didn't win it was a real achievement to have made the final four and we had a fantastic night out.
We had a very busy December helping Santa out, Brian donned his elf hat and built bikes late into the evenings so they were ready and waiting for Santa on Christmas eve.
The plan for January was to take the bank holiday off as we’ve only had Sundays off since the shop opened. Unfortunately the weather gods had other plans a prolonged spell of very heavy rain saw extensive flooding in Newton Stewart. A vast amount of the high street businesses and a good number of homes were subject to the wrath of a usually docile river Cree. Being set back from Victoria Street and in an elevated position you may have assumed that we’d be lucky enough to have escaped the flooding. The reality was that as we’re at the bottom of quite a substantial slope that starts way up past the Douglas Ewart High School, the drains by the shop were completely overwhelmed by the volume of water and our basement ended up resembling a swimming pool. Luckily most of our stock was stored above the flood line but we spent days pumping water, wading around in VERY cold water and saving stock. In the weeks after we worked with the council to work out which drains were blocked and got them cleared. Brian added additional drainage to hopefully safeguard it happening again. As utterly heart breaking it was to be flooded we thankfully got off lightly compared to some of the other businesses both in Newton Stewart and the UK. We were also lucky to have a warm, dry home to return to unlike some Newton residents who are still dealing with the aftermath 4 months on.
In February we ventured down South to a bike show in Derby, there was an amazing array of goodies on show and we came away with a few new brands that we are very excited about;
Polygon bikes which not only have some major high end mountain bikes as seen at the “Red Bull Rampage” but offer an entry level full suspension for an absolute bargain £850! This has to be one the most affordable ways to go “full bounce” you can get and still have a good quality trail bike.
O’Neal offer a great array of clothing, helmets and kit including a very useful bike cover which is bound to shift quick and keep cars and hallways clean. This is now our premium mountain bike brand of clothing and helmets and we’re expecting it to arrive any day now!
Peugeot really grabbed out attention with their electric bikes from £1200 this season, with a huge range of different drive types, both hub and derailleur gearing and battery capacity, they have a model to suit everyone, even full suspension mountain bikes and “Fat bikes” for the real go anywhere rider.
That brings us up to date, with us now in mid April, Spring is here, it’s an ideal time to bring your bike in for some TLC so you can make the most of all the amazing cycling Dumfries and Galloway has to offer. If you’re stuck for inspiration where to ride pop by and quiz Brian as he knows the area inside out.