Cycling in London is more popular than ever, and in rush hour, some key routes into the centre now have twice as many bikes using them than cars. As it becomes part of an urban lifestyle rather than just a weekend hobby, there’s recently been a big growth in businesses to service our desire for health and beauty on two wheels.
With Wanstead Flats and Epping Forest, the Lea river and canals to ride by, Leytonstone is a great place to roadtest a bike. But for Leytonstoners, getting your beloved steel steed for repairs is a pain (try getting a broken bike onto a bus and see the reaction you get).
In fact, neither Leyton nor Leytonstone High Roads can boast a bike shop between them, so it’s good news that a new local business has been set up to come direct to cyclists in need.
The Cycleway is run by Sam Chiedde who, after spending the last year combining a career as a school teacher in Paddington with setting up a mobile workshop at his home in E10, will now be going full time this June to keep Leytonstoners moving.
His well-equipped van means that he can repair and service bikes at your own convenience, on your doorstep. I was able to get a new chain on my bike in twenty minutes outside my house, which was a far better experience than the usual schlep of taking it in to be serviced.
Sam’s business, The Cycleway, doesn’t just deal with commuting pains. He’s also the go-to mechanic for the Lea Valley Cycling Club, and able to refurbish and adapt second-hand bikes to create a bespoke ride, ideal for either getting to work or just admiring against all the other bikes (and their owners) getting their drinks in at Craft Brewery on a summer evening.
But what are Sam’s favourite rides? We asked him, and he obliged, with all the below routes mapped out on the popular cycling app Strava.
Follow on social media @thecycleway. Catch Sam on 19th June Mid-Summer festival at Leyton Jubilee Park, 3rd July Leyton Get Together at Leyton Cricket Ground, 4th September at Leytonstone Get Together at Church Lane