A brand new independent bike shop with an emphasis on sustainability and inclusiveness is due to open in Sale later this month. Created by local cycling enthusiast Abby Harman, Folk Like You will welcome customers from Friday 18 September at The Square Shopping Centre, close by fellow independents Plant Shop Manchester, Groceries and Beer and coffee house Grapefruit.
For Harman, the decision to open Folk Like You has personal roots. An avid cyclist and healthy lifestyle fan, it was a bad experience shortly after she arrived in Manchester from rural Cumbria that catalysed her determination to change the way locals view travelling by bike. “I realised quickly that cycling in Manchester can be a hostile experience and when in April 2019 I was knocked off my bike by a taxi driver in Ardwick, I was really quite shaken,” Harman tells us. “It was a lucky escape for me but more than that I realised I needed to be bolder if I wanted to see urban transport change for the better. Folk Like You is commercial for sure,” she continues, “but it’s also about empowering people to live a more sustainable life where bikes are front and centre, just like the residents of our European opposites in Amsterdam, Berlin, Copenhagen and Helsinki.”
Harman also hopes Folk Like You will make the cycling experience more inclusive for all those unsure as to whether it’s for them: “Traditional bike shops are often quite intimidating for women, brim-full as they are of enthusiastic men, with a heritage immersed in jargon focussed around cycling as a sport, rather than the marvellous, beautiful, ethical and fun mode of transport that it is,” she adds. “Women in particular need that support, and being a woman behind the counter who knows a thing or two about riding a bike in the city will hopefully encourage others to take that step.”
Folk Like You will be filled with a carefully curated selection of urban bikes and e-Bikes from the Netherlands, Finland and the UK – alongside stylish accessories, luggage options, comfortable saddles and waterproofs made from recycled bottles. Harman also hopes to use the space to host events in the coming months, although at the time of writing, nothing is confirmed just yet. “I like to think it’s a bike shop for a new age of city cycling,” she smiles, “where riding a bike isn’t just for those who identify as cyclists, it’s for Folk Like You.”
- Simon Bland
- Published on:
- Wed 9 Sep 2020