Set back from the hustle and bustle of Durham’s picturesque student city, Langley Moor may go somewhat unnoticed to many but for cyclists, and Cube owners in particular, it could become a source of many a pilgrimage.
The German brand threw open the doors to their first UK store on Saturday (November 18), on the site of Cube dealer, Infinity Cycles; a potentially significant development for cyclists in the North East, given Cube’s position among the biggest cycle retailers in Britain.
Opting to open their first dedicated UK premises in the North East, set against some of the country’s most picturesque, rolling countryside, the new shop occupies 300 square metres.
Infinity have occupied the site since 2010, ensuring it is already a well-known and well-visited haven for the region’s cyclists. Cube’s involvement may well take that to another level.
Head of marketing and communication Job Deibel said other concept stores may follow the opening of the Durham shop, with a store in the capital among their long-term goals. Cyclists in the North East are the first to experience the brand’s concept store, however, with a healthy interest shown on its opening day.
The Durham store, which opens from 9.30am to 5.15pm from Monday to Saturday, was filled with a sizeable array of mountain bikes and road bikes on display.
Many of the road bikes from the brand’s model year 2014 range, launched at Eurobike, are present at the Durham store with the Litening, Agree, Peloton and the women’s WLS ranges all on display.
The super-light, double-moulded carbon Litening Super HPC SLT Di2 tops the billing while at the lower end of the price-scale the aluminium-framed Peloton Race looks set to sell well come spring, according to Diebel.
The brand has made their name for simple innovation – two-coloured handlebar tape for example – and the shop fits with such a trend.
It follows a simple lay-out, with understated decoration – a handful of greenery and the odd photo – but it is obvious much thought has gone into the uncluttered, but well-stocked floor plan.
There is plenty of room to manoeuvre machinery in and out of the store, it is well-lit, the staff are polite and friendly, and if the mix-tape at the launch is anything to go by, the soundtrack to your browsing also contributes to the welcoming environment.
As major European brands fight for a slice of the surge in popularity of cycling in Britain, Cube are the latest to test the water.
All eyes will be on Yorkshire for next year’s Tour de France Grand Depart but look even further north and this quiet corner of Durham will be one well-worth keeping an eye on.