Following Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s order to stay at home last night there has been some debate over whether the government was right to include bike shops in the list of stores allowed to remain open to provide an “essential” service.
Cycling UK, a membership and lobbying organisation, applauded the decision but urged cyclists not to abuse the move.
“Cycling UK urges people to distinguish between essential and non-essential shopping trips. This is not the moment to go out and browse for a nice new bike,” said Roger Geffen, policy director.
However it’s another matter if you’re getting that neglected bike out of the shed so you can make essential journeys without relying on public transport or a lift in someone else’s car and you therefore need to get a replacement tyre or inner tube, or to get the bike repaired by a professional mechanic.
It is for this reason we think the government is to be applauded for keeping bike shops open.
Cycling is a great way not only to make that one bout of exercise each day, but also to make those essential journeys. Just remember when visiting the bicycle shop to follow public health social distancing and hygiene advice.
Mike Ashley’s retail company Frasers, owners of Sports Direct and Evans sought clarification from the government over the move, taking to Twitter to ask if they should open their stores this morning.
— Sports Direct (@SportsDirectUK) March 24, 2020
To which Cabinet Secretary Micheal Gove responded, speaking on Good Morning Britain to Piers Morgan:
‘I can’t see any justification for Sports Direct remaining open.’
Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove says Mike Ashley should ‘rescind’ what he said and should make sure the employees stay at home. pic.twitter.com/AWznU4wgTz
— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) March 24, 2020