BIKE shops in Oxford are pledging to do everything they can to keep their customers moving during the coronavirus crisis.

Managers at Bike Zone in St Michael’s Street and Summertown Cycles in Banbury Road say they are allowed to stay open for the time being and want to be available to serve customers who want to buy bikes or get their bikes repaired.

Warlands staff in Botley Road are also working hard to keep their customers on the road and are among businesses that are backed by the Oxford Mail’s #StillopeninOxfordshire campaign.

Oxford Mail:

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The Bike Zone and Summertown Cycles website said: “We want to make you all aware that we are planning to stay open for as long possible through the coronavirus crisis.

“We are of course keeping a close eye on government advice and have put in place measures to keep you and our staff safe. This includes regular hand washing, working in gloves, wrapping contact points on bikes coming in and out of the shop, wiping down of surfaces, and giving customers the option to have a staff member come outside the shop to talk to them at a distance on the shop forecourt.”

Oxford Mail:

Tim Harris, a spokesman for Bike Zone and Summertown Cycles said: “It’s very quiet in the city centre so from today we are planning to close Bike Zone - the Handle Bar cafe closed a couple of weeks ago.

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“Summertown Cycles will be staying open because we want to support key workers whose main mode of transport is cycling.

“For everyone, cycling is a safe and healthy option and social distancing is easier on a bike than it is on a bus or in a shared car.

“Staff are wearing gloves and doing everything they can to wipe down surfaces and keep them clean. Our opening hours are staying the same for the time being and we are sending emails out to all our customers on our database.”

Steve Stuart, one of the owners of Warlands bike shop in Botley Road, said it was also planning to stay open but from Thursday it would only open in in the mornings, from 8.30am to 1pm.

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Mr Stuart said: “We have a sense from people coming through the door that they consider their bikes to be essential transport and they need us to be available to carry out repairs. By the weekend we will assess what is going on.

Oxford Mail:

"We want to keep our service going for customers who would otherwise be up the creek - punctured without a pump.”

Mr Stuart said shop staff were also supporting cargo bike businesses including Pedal & Post and Oxwash.