Treat yourself to a bespoke bike

A made-to-measure bike is not as expensive as you might imagine, says Mick Sharp.

950-toys-Swallow-bespoke-bike

© Robert Wade

You almost certainly wouldn't get Jeremy Clarkson to agree, but there is a stack of evidence to suggest that cycling is "a good thing". According to independent pro-cycling organisation Cycling UK which has championed the cause of cycling for 140 years in excess of three million bikes were sold in 2016, with the UK accounting for more sales than in any of the other 27 European Union countries, apart from Germany (four million). If cycle use rises from its current level of 2% to 10% by 2025 and 25% by 2050, the cumulative benefits in terms of savings from reduced congestion and pollution and accidents and improved health and so on "would be worth £248bn between 2015 and 2050 for England".

If you're serious about biking then a made-to-measure machine is the way to go. Artisan makers Peter Bird and Robert Wade say their understanding of what is required of "a living, breathing bicycle" is second to none "because we not only design them, but also hand-build the frames that's the difference". They will custom-build your bike at their Shropshire-based company to your precise measurements, down to the millimetre, to get the exact sizing of frame, seat-post, saddle, handlebar stem and crank length to suit you.

The duo's "exquisite attention to detail and the sheer creativity involved in their builds" is seriously impressive, says Oli Woodman on bikeradar.com. The frames are designed to fit you and respond to your riding style, and each comes with a solid silver head badge and a hallmarked solid silver number plate. "We encourage each customer to have as much involvement in the process as they would like," Peter Bird told Cyclist magazine.

This kind of specialist cosseting doesn't come cheap, but may not be quite as expensive as you'd imagine either expect to pay in the region of £2,900 for your very special bicycle. There's also a waiting list to contend with, so plan ahead if you fancy treating yourself or a loved one on their next birthday.

See bicycles-by-design.co.uk

Recommended

Art auctions bounce back as rare Leonardo da Vinci sketch sells for £8.9m
Alternative investments

Art auctions bounce back as rare Leonardo da Vinci sketch sells for £8.9m

A rare Leonardo da Vinci drawing shows up at auction – and goes under the hammer for £8.9m. Chris Carter reports
16 Jul 2021
Why equities are better investments than art
Art

Why equities are better investments than art

We’re often told that buying art is a good way of diversifying your investment portfolio. But, says Merryn Somerset Webb, art has no income stream and…
12 Jul 2021
Grab a piece of art – or music – with fractional ownership
Art

Grab a piece of art – or music – with fractional ownership

Fractional ownership allows you to buy shares in assets such as stamps, paintings and music royalties, says David Stevenson.
21 Jun 2021
The high-end art market is still on fire
Art

The high-end art market is still on fire

The art-market billionaires are coming out of lockdown. Chris Carter reports
21 May 2021

Most Popular

Shareholder capitalism: why we must return power to listed companies’ ultimate owners
Investment strategy

Shareholder capitalism: why we must return power to listed companies’ ultimate owners

Under our system of shareholder capitalism it's not fund managers, it‘s the individual investors – the company's ultimate owners – who should be telli…
24 Jan 2022
Three innovative Asian stocks to buy now
Share tips

Three innovative Asian stocks to buy now

Professional investor Fay Ren of the Cerno Pacific Fund highlights three of her favourite Asian stocks to buy now
24 Jan 2022
Temple Bar’s Ian Lance and Nick Purves: the essence of value investing
Investment strategy

Temple Bar’s Ian Lance and Nick Purves: the essence of value investing

Ian Lance and Nick Purves of the Temple Bar investment trust explain the essence of “value investing” – buying something for less than its intrinsic v…
14 Jan 2022