What's more disappointing than a mid-ride mechanical? Probably finding out that you don't have the part you need to fix it with you, and that you're miles away from the nearest bike shop. But a novel scheme involving cycling Pit Stop boxes deposited at local cafes in the Peak District might signal a way to make this forlorn experience a thing of the past.
The Peak District is well known as one of the best cycling destinations in the UK, with plenty of stunning ride options for road cyclists and mountain bikers alike. It's also a favoured riding destination for the staff of cycling clothing brand Polaris, and the Pit Stop Boxes are its way of celebrating 25 years of local business, and giving back to the cycling community it came from.
Each box contains a selection of essential cycling spares which can be bought for a small fee, plus essentials tools such as a pump and tyre levers. Cafe owners look after the box and can, when they run low, replenish the contents:
- 3 x 29in inner tube
- 3 x 27.5in inner tube
- 3 x 26in inner tube
- 3 x 700c Inner tube
- 2 x mountain bike brake cable
- 2 x road bike brake cable
- 2 x universal gear cable
- 2 x split link for nine-speed chain
- 2 x split link for 10-speed chain
- 2 x split link for 11-speed chain
- Cable ties
- Set of three tyre levers, multi tool, mini pump and spray lube (for on-site use only)
Even better, all the money generated from the Pit Stop Boxes goes straight to the Peak District Mountain Rescue Team.
The Pit Stop Box contains products such as inner tubes, cable ties and gear cables which can be bought for a small fee
With coffee, cake and cycling regularly going hand-in-hand, having emergency cycling spares in cafes seems like such a brilliant and obvious idea that it's strange it hasn't been done before.
"We get loads of cyclists coming through our doors, and it's fantastic to be able to provide yet another service to them. Hopefully we'll be able to sort out any problems and get them back on the road in the time it takes to drink a cup of tea!" said Pete Sparks, the owner of Bank View Cafe in Langsett on the edge of the Peaks.
The boxes will be located in six cafes across the Peaks initially, with plans for expansion in the future.
- Bank View Cafe, Langsett
- Norfolk Arms, Ringinglow
- Eyam Tea Rooms, Eyam
- Penny Pot Cafe, Edale
- Palmers Cafe, Calver
- Longshaw Cafe, Longshaw Estate