Home North East CK Cycles Riding High in North Shields

CK Cycles Riding High in North Shields

l-r Keith Patterson and Craig Armstrong outside CK Cycles in North Shields

The first retail and repair outlet for cycling enthusiasts in the revitalised North Shields town centre has opened its doors to customers, thanks to help from the North Tyneside Business Factory.

Opened by Craig Armstrong (35) and Keith Patterson (29) in April of this year, CK Cycles will help to meet a growing demand for bike maintenance and repair in the local area.

Craig and Keith launched their new venture with a range of bicycles for sale in their showroom in addition to a full range of repair and maintenance services for bike owners. The opening of CK Cycles is the culmination of a long-held dream by both Craig and Keith to run a cycling-focused business to help combine their personal passions and professional ambitions.

Craig Armstrong, co-owner of CK Cycles said: “It feels like it’s taken us a long time to get here but we are delighted to be open and trading from our new North Shields base. We’ve had some really great support in the first few weeks as people have dropped in to the see the range of bikes we have in stock or check out our new onsite repair workshop. It’s been busy but really great to start to get to know the local cycling community and put CK Cycles on the map.”

The business received help and guidance from the North Tyneside Business Factory, supported by the European Development Fund, to assist in their business journey. Delivered by TEDCO Business Support in the Borough, the Business Factory and its team of experienced advisors bring one-to-one support in the form of business planning and financial guidance to guide start-ups to a successful launch.

John Sparkes, Director of Regeneration and Economic Development at North Tyneside Council, said: “It’s great to see local businesses taking advantage of the Council’s business advisory services and benefitting from funding on offer to our Borough. And what better time to promote cycling in North Shields following last month’s announcement of the development of a new seafront cycleway between the Fish Quay and St Mary’s Lighthouse. Visitors to the North Tyneside coast will shortly find their experience safer, greener and more accessible thanks to the permanent, segregated, two-way space for cyclists and pedestrians.”

Helped along the way by the business advisory team at the North Tyneside Council, CK Cycles was able to make use of the innovative professional consultancy service offered by the programme to help new businesses get access to the right skills and experience.

In the case of Craig and Keith, they needed help to secure leased premises in the right location for their business. The Business Factory secured one to one consultancy time with Paul Murphy, an expert in commercial property to help the duo source and lease a unit.

Craig comments: “We knew exactly how we wanted CK Cycles to run and what we wanted to offer as a service but what we didn’t know was where it was going to open. Ideally, we wanted to stay in North Tyneside but we had little understanding of the commercial property market so it was difficult to find the right premises that would work for the business.

“Nick Turner, our Business Factory advisor, recommended we meet with Paul Murphy to help refine our property requirements and help us move forward in the process. Paul was just fantastic, he quickly found us the right premises in North Shields and helped us check through and negotiate the terms of the lease to put us in the best possible standing. I really can’t thank him enough for helping us overcome what was a potential barrier to actually launching CK Cycles.”

CK Cycles is now open for business on Saville Street in North Shields, selling a range of GT and Forme bikes as well as offering repair and maintenance services to bike owners.

Nick Turner, TEDCO and Business Factory advisor comments: “It is businesses like CK Cycles which really benefit from the Business Factory and in turn, the wider North Tyneside economy. By investing in town centre commercial space, CK Cycles are showing their support for retail opportunities in North Shields and we were happy to support Craig and Keith with our unique professional consultancy service. They’ve had many ups and downs on their road to opening but I couldn’t be more delighted for the team and what they’ve achieved with CK Cycles.”