Home
Sad news... but bargains on the way as they clear their stock...

A popular bike shop that has been serving the residents of Bristol for 79 years is to close its shutters permanently.

Harveys Cycles on Henleaze Road first opened in 1938, but will be closing for business on October 14.

Owner Graham Masters told the Bristol Post: “It was a hard decision because we have great customers, but my mum and dad are now 85 and 84 and I want to spend more time with them.

“It has been quite emotional but our customers have been terrific and we feel it’s the right decision.”

if you live in the area and fancy picking up some bargains, there will be deep discounting in the coming weeks as all stock is sold off.

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.

14 comments

Avatar
brooksby [2639 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes

It's awful to say, but I've lived in Bristol over twenty years and didn't know this place existed.

I don't go up to Henleaze, so I guess it was a very local LBS.

It's always sad when these long-established places close down, because you can't imagine what will replace them; as little indie or family owned businesses close, all that gets left are the chains.

Avatar
Christopher TR1 [151 posts] 1 month ago
1 like

What a shame! I have fond memories of going in there as a child as well as more recently. It just seemed like it would always be there. Nice to read that it doesn't seem to be closing for finiancial reasons.

On a broader note, it is a sad loss when a LBS closes but, on the other hand, most of us can't afford to treat them like charity cases. I noticed some tyres in my LBS the other day which were about 20 Euros more each than what I had just paid online! Why would I pay 40 Euros more for no extra benefit?!

If the LBS can't compete with online retailers or the big chains on price alone then they have to offer something else. For example I would be keen to buy a bike from a local shop if I felt they would be helpful should I have problems with it.

Avatar
srchar [681 posts] 1 month ago
1 like

My LBS (which isn't very good, by the way) has become more of a cafe with a small bike workshop attached. When I asked them for a Campagnolo gear cable, I got a blank stare, but they do a decent coffee and carrot cake. I wouldn't mourn its loss, but it's a good example of a business evolving to survive.

Avatar
Goldfever4 [378 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes

I've driven and cycled up the henleaze road about 50 times and never noticed it. Never heard of it on the social medias either. Which seems a shame.

 

brooksby wrote:

It's awful to say, but I've lived in Bristol over twenty years and didn't know this place existed.

I don't go up to Henleaze, so I guess it was a very local LBS.

It's always sad when these long-established places close down, because you can't imagine what will replace them; as little indie or family owned businesses close, all that gets left are the chains.

Avatar
burtthebike [1187 posts] 1 month ago
2 likes
Goldfever4 wrote:

I've driven and cycled up the henleaze road about 50 times and never noticed it. Never heard of it on the social medias either. Which seems a shame.

Do you drive and ride with your eyes closed?

Avatar
burtthebike [1187 posts] 1 month ago
2 likes

Harveys is a long established, well respected bike shop, renowned for its personal service and attention to detail, well known as a proper bike shop, not some johnny come lately fashionable place which looks great, but knows nothing about bikes.

Sorry to hear you're going Graham, and I know many people in Cycle Bristol CTC that will be sorry to see you go.

I wonder if this is a reflection of today's society?  Where presentation is everything, and actual service matters nothing.

Avatar
Redvee [363 posts] 1 month ago
2 likes

If you're goting to use Streetview for an image, it might be better if you had an image of the shop.

 

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@51.4873733,-2.6092327,3a,75y,67.28h,91.04t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1snt1hSjRx7O99nn2UN__5Rw!2e0!3e11!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

Avatar
Goldfever4 [378 posts] 1 month ago
1 like

Not normally

burtthebike wrote:

Do you drive and ride with your eyes closed?

Goldfever4 wrote:

I've driven and cycled up the henleaze road about 50 times and never noticed it. Never heard of it on the social medias either. Which seems a shame.

Avatar
Kadinkski [731 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes
Redvee wrote:

If you're goting to use Streetview for an image, it might be better if you had an image of the shop.

 

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@51.4873733,-2.6092327,3a,75y,67.28h,91.04t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1snt1hSjRx7O99nn2UN__5Rw!2e0!3e11!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

 

They didn't - it's clearly not a streetview image.

Avatar
KiwiMike [1310 posts] 1 month ago
5 likes
burtthebike wrote:

I wonder if this is a reflection of today's society?  Where presentation is everything, and actual service matters nothing.

 

Actually, service is ***everything***.

The problem across the LBS industry is stock - shops cannot afford to risk buying and being stuck with it anymore. Everything is available next-day, often for less than the LBS with a trade account can purchase it for. Therefore the only money to be made on stock is from people panic-buying the afternoon before an event, or who need a part replaced right now. I run a small cycle service business, and hold one of each speed of chain plus common disc and rim pad pairs and a few BSA Shimano BB's. That's it. Cogsets, mechs, chainrings, exotic BB's - they all get ordered from Chain Reaction with expedited shipping, usually paying less than what I'd pay trade, espacially Shimano or SRAM parts. Larger places would hold more spare parts, obvs - but the days of an LBS having £500k in bikes, helmets, clothes and the like are fast disappearing. I went into an LBS in Perth last week for a gander. They are a Frog dealer, and have one of each size in the shop. Not to buy, mind - to fondle and sit on. Bikes are delivered next-day if a customer actually wants one. 

I don't and never would sell bikes. Very happy to help a customer choose and order one, and set it up for them, then maintain it. The internet can't fix your bike.

 

Avatar
simonmb [543 posts] 1 month ago
1 like

To be fair, the owner hasn't expressed the reason for closure as being anything other than 'wanting to spend more time with his parents'. I don't know Bristol, but I've had a quick run along the street on Google maps (it's Sunday evening, what are you guys doing?) and - unusally for England today - there don't appear to be empty units, hardly any charity shops, I couldn't see a betting shop (I may have missed it), and there is a post office. Seems like quite a well-to-do area. Busy road. The High Street isn't dead yet, and nor are bike shops - when they're well-located, well-staffed, well-informed and appropriately stocked. 

@KiwiMike - the internet can't fix your bike, indeed. You've got the right business model there for today's independent cycle store. I'd use you.

edit - there's a William Hill.

Avatar
me [92 posts] 1 month ago
1 like

My first bike came from Harveys many years ago.  I moved back into the area not so long ago and have been in numerous times for bits and advice.  Proper bike shop, will be missed.  Was a shock to see the notice in the window.

I see that google have updated their streetview.  The previous one caught me pedalling down Henleaze Road just outside Harveys.

Avatar
fukawitribe [1991 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes

First road bike that was actually mine came from here too, little cracker and a great place. Shame, but all the best to them.

Avatar
tarquin_foxglove [164 posts] 1 month ago
0 likes
Redvee wrote:

If you're goting to use Streetview for an image, it might be better if you had an image of the shop.

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@51.4873733,-2.6092327,3a,75y,67.28h,91.04t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1snt1hSjRx7O99nn2UN__5Rw!2e0!3e11!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

You can have a tour round the shop courtesy of streetview (& cash probably)...
https://goo.gl/maps/q2zoF65FSQn