Tim Wilkey worked in 4 bike shops shops, as a media manager for Bike Radar and as a messenger before he opened Forever Pedalling two and a half years ago. He went cycle touring and started a blog, aptly named Forever Pedalling, the blog continued when he got back to Bristol, the city in which he grew up. He made a few t-shirts and stickers with graphics inspired by the skate and surf scene which were popular. All of this happened at a stage in life where he wanted his own project and a creative outlet and so Forever Pedalling was launched in a small shop in East Bristol.
It's not a bike shop but a brand, an identity and something that people can be part of and connected to, a bicycle lifestyle brand thats focused around rides, races, events and people. Forever Pedalling has become much more than just a shop in the Bristol scene, it's reinvigorated a stagnant cycling culture and brought a younger audience into the sport around the South West city.
"One of the aim's for the future is to build a strong and successful race team that represent the brand in races across the country."
The Bristol scene has emerged massively in the past few years with the growth of the Bristol GP becoming a premier calendar event, Full Court Press speciality coffee shop has become the main post and pre ride hangout and the Spoke and Stringer restaurant recently worked with Tim to host the first Pedal festival with a series of talks, rides and exhibitions.
The shop layout and brand continues to be inspired by the skate scene and American cycling culture, companies like San Francisco's Mash and the Team Dream Bicycling Team and brands like Supreme with their one off, limited edition product runs. "Buying the same jersey that hundreds of other people are wearing isn't what you want, having a limited run of just 10 t-shirts, that are recognisable but gone when there're gone is special, with simplicity and quality over quantity".
The workshop is a new addition to the space and has taken off amongst his customers because of his knowledge and quick repair turnaround time, high end road bike repairs is something he's keen to develop further.
There are a number of small independent brands producing great products in and around Bristol including Bristol Butt'r and independent bicycle luggage manufacturers Naffsacks and Mack Workshop, who I met earlier in the year at Tim's Bespoked Bags exhibition that ran on the same weekend as the Bespoked handmade bicycle show.