What are two of the simplest ways we can improve our fitness? All of the evidence points to the same answer – regular walking and cycling. Now a study from the National Heart Foundation provides solid proof of the economic benefit which flows from making cities walking and cycling friendly. It gives a compelling argument for donning those runners or getting on your bike, in one hit you can improve your cardio health and contribute to the economic revitalisation of our city.
If you are now convinced to bring a two-wheeler into your life for the first time, or if you are already a lycra-clad cycling pro, there is even more good news ahead. The West End is blessed with two first-rate bike shops, so you can get everything you need right here without leaving the neighbourhood.
Thinking of entering the Tour de France? Marek Jankowski, owner of Two Wheel Industries, can kit you out with all you require to take you from Hunter Street to the French countryside. He should know he’s a second generation expert road racer and a former mechanic for professional cyclists. The evidence is everywhere in his shop, especially on the wall covered with entry numbers from European cycle races; nearby a jersey signed by Cadel Evans urges the Two Wheel Industries boys to ‘keep spinning’. The shop has recently undergone a slick makeover and has a streamlined new look. But even if you are only a novice don’t be intimidated, Marek says with a smile that they cater to everyone. And dreams of cycling glory have to start somewhere don’t they?
Brian Birrell and Shaaron Moore are the co-owners of Civic Bikes which has been matching people to bikes for nine years. Their colourful eclectic shop can even solve the problem of a non-cyclist who finds themselves stuck with someone hell-bent on a bicycle tour of Newcastle – hire a tandem! Every adult bike sold at the shop gets a two year complimentary service, so those wheels of good health can just keep on turning. The business is also home to Molly and Toby two gentle border collies who have become Civic Bike furry fixtures in their own right. Molly appears just as I am leaving and fixing me with a canine smile, sits down and elegantly crosses her front legs. Shaaron laughs “This is why we call her The Princess”.
Two Wheel Industries, 679 Hunter Street, Newcastle West phone: 4929 4252 www.twowheelindustries.com.au. Civic Bikes, 822 Hunter Street, Newcastle West phone:4927 6277 www.civic-bikes.com.au. Copies of the National Heart Foundation of Australia’s report Good for Busine$$ by Dr Rodney Tolley is available from the Newcastle Now office or from the Heart Foundation www.heartfoundation.org.au/active-living/active-travel/Pages/default.aspx 1300 36 27 87.
Have you chosen the West End as your home or as the perfect place to run your business? Do you have a West End tale which deserves a wider audience? What inspires and infuriates you about the West End? If you have a story to tell I would love to talk to you! Here’s how to find me: firstname.lastname@example.org; 0413 250 155.