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Woman charges cyclist £3 after filling water bottle - then tips it out when he can't pay

Yorkshire rider says he got a bit of a shock after asking stranger for help

A Yorkshire cyclist who was running low on water while out on a ride got a shock when a woman who refilled it for him asked for £3 – then tipped out the water when he explained he didn’t have that much money on him.

Neil Holloway, who is a member of Leeds & Bradford Triathlon club, posted an account of what had happened on Twitter, saying “Staggered this happened in Huby this week." It’s not clear whether he is the cyclist involved.

The post read: “Just getting this off my chest … 60km ride out on my new road bike this evening. 40km in and realisation that two bottle cages would be better than one as I run low on water.

“I pulled up near a row of cottages near Huby where a middle aged lady was digging the garden. I politely asked if she could refill my water bottle which she duly did.

“Upon handing it back to me she said: ‘That will be £3’ …

“Shocked, I explained I only had about £1 in loose change. She stared at me and without breaking gaze she emptied the bottle over the garden and handed it back empty.

“I was shell-shocked and speechless as she retreated into the house.”

The author added: “Morale of the story … God help us or bring more water in future.”

Granted, not all cyclists would feel confident enough to approach a stranger and ask them to fill a water bottle, and might prefer to have enough money on them so they could pop into a shop, café or pub instead.

But while charging someone to fill their water bottle may seem unusual in the first place, filling it up then tipping the contents out when the money demanded isn’t forthcoming sounds quite frankly bizarre.

Have you come across anything like this before – or any other bizarre behaviour when you’ve asked someone for a helping hand while out riding?

Let us know in the comments below.

Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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