Updated with video: Brompton Junction store opens in London's Covent Garden

Store showcases folding bike brand and follows four others in Europe and Asia

by Simon_MacMichael   October 15, 2013  

Folding bike brand Brompton Bicycle has opened its first UK concept store under the name Brompton Junction. The store, which received its official opening last week, is in London’s Covent Garden.

It is the fifth Brompton Junction to be opened, the others being in Amsterdam, Hamburg, Kobe and Shanghai.

The store, located at 76 Long Acre, WC2E 9JS, is open seven days a week, and includes eye-catching displays of Brompton bikes and accessories and an interactive table on which customers can plan and order a bike to their own specifications.

It also has a canteen and workshop, as well as demo bikes that potential purchasers can take out for a spin.

Here's a video from the company of the store's opening.

Brompton Bicycle’s managing director, Will Butler-Adams, outlined how the store had come about : “Our first Brompton Junction opened in Kobe, Japan, two years ago, driven by the boldness of one of our keen dealers.

“Since then we have been desperate to open one in our home city.

“In London we want to put the Brompton, a humble bicycle, somewhere where people wouldn’t expect it, in famous Covent Garden.

“We want more people to realise that riding a bike in a city is for everyone, six inch Louboutin heels, funky Paul Smith jackets – they all work.

“Through the Junction we want to not only get Londoners on bikes but also show visitors from around the world how the Brompton can transform the way we get around cities.”

Store manager, Greg Sanderson added:  "We hope visitors will be excited and intrigued by the space; the team at Brompton HQ have come up with some typically quirky additions – from a custom made main frame chandelier to a graffitied London scene, there are loads of little details which add to the experience.”

The store will also act as a meeting point for group rides, as well as hosting events including talks from what the company describes as “influential Bromptoneers.”

bromptonjunction.com

16 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

No. Stop right now with the whole boutique-ification of the bike shop... thing. With your oh so carefully coordinated colour matched component displays and infographic wall art.

While I appreciate that the dingy, cluttered slightly intimidating foisty atmosphere of bike shops of yore may not appeal to everyone, I also don't want to go into a minimalised retail space that says to the prospective browser "are you quite sure you can afford anything in here?", where black clad 'product gurus' hover around ready to offer an aromatherapy based saddle fit or body mass specific espresso.

OK, I'll take the espresso but you can stick the saddle fit up your.. er...

joemmo's picture

posted by joemmo [935 posts]
14th October 2013 - 11:56

34 Likes

Think Brompton need to get new marketing people. The all white Apple look is pretty naff these days (unless your apple).
Should have played to their uniqueness.
Think Brunel, think wood paneling, edison lighting, sepia photos and a touch of London steampunk.
So much more could have been done to promote such an amazing bicycle.

posted by belgravedave [231 posts]
14th October 2013 - 12:19

28 Likes

If this gets people buying and riding bikes I am all for it, no matter how boutiguefied it might be!

posted by CotterPin [64 posts]
14th October 2013 - 12:50

26 Likes

belgravedave wrote:
Think Brompton need to get new marketing people. The all white Apple look is pretty naff these days (unless your apple).
Should have played to their uniqueness.
Think Brunel, think wood paneling, edison lighting, sepia photos and a touch of London steampunk.
So much more could have been done to promote such an amazing bicycle.

TBH, anything that gets more bums on cycle seats is a good thing as far as I'm concerned. The interior is hardly Apple-esque; most modern shops have white walls and are well-lit with product displayed properly. I'd say it looks more like the Conran shop.

Oh, and riding in "six inch Louboutin heels"? Everyone knows you only wear those on your Pashley...

posted by Dr_Lex [161 posts]
14th October 2013 - 12:52

24 Likes

belgravedave wrote:
Think Brompton need to get new marketing people. The all white Apple look is pretty naff these days (unless your apple).
Should have played to their uniqueness.
Think Brunel, think wood paneling, edison lighting, sepia photos and a touch of London steampunk.
So much more could have been done to promote such an amazing bicycle.

That sounds more applicable to a Camden branch.

joemmo's picture

posted by joemmo [935 posts]
14th October 2013 - 13:07

17 Likes

from having managed 2 workshops in key Evans Cycles stores in Central London (dealing with huge numbers of Brompton repairs every week), something we understood is that most people buying Brompton are not cyclists?

first and foremost, they want a transport solution for commuting, often integrated with their season pass for rail travel into London

its a very different market to the "cyclist" or even arguably the commuter with a non-folding bike (used journey start to journey end), who are more familiar with the traditional bike shop

the new Brompton store in Covent Garden is fantastic, and should appeal to people wanting transport around London on 2 wheels.

posted by hampstead_bandit [254 posts]
14th October 2013 - 17:46

18 Likes

joemmo wrote:
That sounds more applicable to a Camden branch.

In which case maybe Cyberdog could do the cycle clothing line... that would put the hi into hi-viz Big Grin

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [8665 posts]
14th October 2013 - 18:07

23 Likes

If anyone should be designing clothing for Brompton it should be Tom Ford.

posted by belgravedave [231 posts]
15th October 2013 - 0:44

14 Likes

joemmo wrote:
No. Stop right now with the whole boutique-ification of the bike shop... thing. With your oh so carefully coordinated colour matched component displays and infographic wall art.

While I appreciate that the dingy, cluttered slightly intimidating foisty atmosphere of bike shops of yore may not appeal to everyone, I also don't want to go into a minimalised retail space that says to the prospective browser "are you quite sure you can afford anything in here?", where black clad 'product gurus' hover around ready to offer an aromatherapy based saddle fit or body mass specific espresso.

OK, I'll take the espresso but you can stick the saddle fit up your.. er...

Someone has to employ the people with aromatherapy/physio degrees with barista experience.

But I'm glad you enjoyed your experience at the shop we do deep tissue latte infusion Thursdays if you are keen to join.

posted by faqibg [15 posts]
15th October 2013 - 7:51

24 Likes

Didn't say anything about not lighting or displaying product correctly? Just mentioned complete lack of originality in doing so.
The Conran Shop (I'm guessing you mean the one on Sloane Ave) is a perfect example of this.

posted by belgravedave [231 posts]
15th October 2013 - 9:18

24 Likes

faqibg wrote:

Someone has to employ the people with aromatherapy/physio degrees with barista experience.

But I'm glad you enjoyed your experience at the shop we do deep tissue latte infusion Thursdays if you are keen to join.

Only if you use alpaca milk of known provenance in the latte. I simply can't abide the bovine variety.

joemmo's picture

posted by joemmo [935 posts]
15th October 2013 - 12:04

25 Likes

I think there is some soya kicking around can milk it for you but the tea the coffee shop uses is made in the UK(sort of cool?)

posted by faqibg [15 posts]
15th October 2013 - 18:32

13 Likes

British tea? Whatever next - coffee beans from the Highlands?

In all seriousness, I'm not that offended by it all and the point about selling Bromptons to non-cyclists is one I hadn't really considered. It's just the kind of shop that couldn't really exist outside the rarefied atmosphere of central London, which is a rule unto itself.

During some time in Montreal recently I used to pass a boutique du cyclisme that sold everything you could need as long as it was made by Argon 18 or Assos. It never seemed to have anyone in except the carefully sculpted assistants who would hover by the door like gatekeepers to the carbon kingdom beyond. I presume they must have sold things occasionally to stay in business

joemmo's picture

posted by joemmo [935 posts]
16th October 2013 - 12:32

11 Likes

Added a folding bike to my fleet 18mths ago as I was spending more time with my bike on the train and didn't want the risk of not being able to get on if the bike section was full. I was pretty keen on the Brompton but the LBS (folding bikes being their specialist area) steered me towards a Mezzo D9. A better ride (9 spd) and cheaper when you find out that things like mudguards, rack etc on a Brompton are all at additional cost. The Mezzo won the contest when the LBS said the waiting list for a Brompton was 3 mths and described the supply of bikes as atrocious. The Mezzo is going strong and I can 'pimp it up' with standard parts rather than having to use Brompton specific spares. My 'rose tinted' view of the Brompton was somewhat modified.

Shades

posted by Shades [246 posts]
16th October 2013 - 14:38

10 Likes

Can you imagine if you dropped in with your bike after an hour's sweaty ride in the rain to see if they had a spare 'something or other' to get you home. One of the staff would probably faint!

They're probably waiting for Rapha to come calling. A Rapha branded Brompton. How much would they charge for that....and someone would buy it (the bloke that bought the Rapha espresso tamper).

Shades

posted by Shades [246 posts]
17th October 2013 - 13:43

9 Likes

I wouldn't faint just politely explain that I have no spares for anything else other than a Brompton, but would use my general cycling sense and experience to help you.

We still like to see people on bikes regardless of brand or style, whatever works for you Smile

posted by faqibg [15 posts]
20th October 2013 - 12:05

7 Likes