Friday, December 24, 2010



We're planning on 2011 being a big one, this month has been our busiest ever and we can't wait to see what happens next year.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

5974 cups of tea.

Just over a year ago we started a trial to see if we could harness the power of the sun to generate enough power to run our business.

The first step was to have a really good think about how we did things, what we needed power for, where we got our power from and how we could make this all as efficient as possible.

Our business doesn't really need much power, we need lights and to run some simple things, charge bike lights and laptop batteries and occasionally power some bigger things. But even we could be a lot more efficient about how we do things, instead of strip lamps (80 plus watts each) we could run LEDs (10 watts) and there were lots of other things we could do.

After we'd looked at making ourselves as efficient as possible we applied for a grant. Once we got the grant we started our installation, we changed everything over to 12v power (with inverters for occasional mains stuff but mainly with 12v variable charge adaptors for electrical equipment).

By November we were ready and we plonked our solar panels on top of our offices, and then we sat back and watched something amazing happen. We watched as the sun made enough energy for us to power our things. For us the opportunity to come off the grid was great, it gave us freedom to think about our business model and how it could operate elsewhere and also an opportunity to forecast our costs exactly.

Over the last year we've been diligently recording our figures:

It shows us that there was only 1 week in the entire year where we couldn't generate enough power from just the sun. Fortunately it was windy that month too so we could build some reserves with our wind turbine.

So what does this all really mean?

Well it's a bit of a mixed bag, we've calculated exactly how much power we generated from the sun. All in all about 10372 a/h at 12v, which means we could have outputted 124464 watts for 1 hour and the nitty gritty is we generated 448070kj, in real terms this means we could have made enough boiled water to make 5974 cups of tea OR that we made the same amount of energy that you'd get if you detonated 100kgs of TNT.... BUT really its not that much.

It's REALLY not that much, we could have bought the same amount of power for less than £15. But what we've learnt is to be masters of efficiency and the way to look at this is to say we've managed to make our business so efficient if we needed to buy our power it would only cost £15 per year, so we're making our drain on the earth resources much less. Even better is we're so efficient we can generate out own power for free (ish..)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Intro vid..

Cool little intro vid for Copenhagen Bike Film Festival which features a Bullitt just like ours

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Actual house on fire..

Bit of bad news in Hereford today, a fire in the town centre has blocked everything off and caused a fair bit of damage, thank fully no one hurt and almost all of our deliveries got in on time (if you didn't get your delivery it's because you were shut so you'll get it tomorrow!).

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Like a house on fire.

Matt's settled in now, although the project he is working on for us is remaining secret for a little longer (so far so good though and could lead to much bigger things).

It's great having more people around and also having staff who get on with each other so well. One of the hardest things in businesses seems to be finding good staff, so here's to the workforce!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Stronglight cranks..

Turns out they aren't strong or light!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Mike and Matt

So Mike finished his Pedicab training the other week and I had the pleasure of riding with him for his first night shift, here he is clicking his first customer number on to the bike:
He had an excellent night and did really well!

Also as we're talking new employees here's Matt:
Matt is currently organising a new project which we'll be revealing soon once it becomes established. He's working hard and bringing all of his expert clipboard based knowledge into the company...

Last weekend I also had the pleasure of yet another pedicab wedding so when I got the chance I snapped a photo of the bride at this point she was close to being photographed to death do I figured I'd take a cheeky snap from around the corner.

Back to the grindstone for me, the new project is keeping us super busy, we'll let you know about it soon..

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Holidays, courses, saving lives, training riders and the future!

So I've been away for a bit, I went on an amazing holiday around Wales, soaking up the best that the Welsh mountian bike trail centres had to offer and saw some amazing places. If you ride a mountain bike and haven't ridden any of these trails you should really get out there. I met the guy who is responsible for a lot of them once it was really interesting -
After my stonking week away I joined Ben on a mountain biking course so in the future we can look at the potential of taking groups off on rides, it was an awesome few days and lots of fun was had in great mountain settings After a great course I arrived back at work on Wednesday morning, after unlocking everything and settling down I was greeted by a chap who looked very tired and was brushing his teeth, after some investigation I established that the chaps name was Matt and he was cycling Lands end to John O Groats. He'd slept behind the building that night after leaving his mate who dropped out a 140 miles away the previous day. Matt's bike was in bits, so I let him check the map out and fill his water bottles and fixed it up for him before sending him on his way with some gaffer tape! Wednesday continued to be a good day and then culminated in the final bit of training for our two latest riders Mike and Leon who did a fine job of carting Ben and I around Hereford and being told what they could do and where they'd fit through!Look out for them around town soon!

So lots of stuff going on with us and we've some secret news to tell you soon which is pretty exciting. Also we are working on some new projects and the feasibility of creating a method for operations like ours to operate in lots of other areas, the best bit about this has been hooking up with an old uni mate who's going to the design for us, we cant tell you too much yet but here's a hint.. For the moment that's all, but hold on for some news soon!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

More bags!

Another huge delivery of paper sacks for our recycling for businesses programme. This little lot will be filled up with about 90 tonnes of paper!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Directors Meeting.... pedicab style

Ben and I stuck our heads together last night to have our big grown up director level accounts type meeting.

Bit serious that so we turned it into a Chide - a chat and ride...  although it turned out to be more of a Rat. Still the important things got said (most about Ben's new bike...) and we got a storming xc burn on.

All meetings should be like that..

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Pedicab Riders Wanted!!!

You heard it here first! We need more riders!

Keen to earn some extra cash on the weekend and get super fit?

Over 21 and got a car licence?

Get in touch!!

More info here don't panic about all the grown up licensing sounding stuff, we can help you with all of it, we just need fit, happy people to ride!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Luke's blog

Few of you asking after Luke's blog so I thought I'd post it up.

You can find it here and you can donate money here by all accounts they seem to be having a blast!

We are managing without him and it's been good to see things continuing without his input! Tom has stepped up to the mark and has been doing some serious hours on the bike. Good on him, we're still unsure of his actual nickname but as it currently stands it's understood that Tom is running the 'Ginger Division' or the company.

The summer continues to offer us some awesome weather to ride in, scorching sun and no wind, it also seems to put a smile on the faces of most folk so it's great to be out there riding.

Amazingly (well not for us) the company is still booming, we are, as always looking for Pedicab riders and we've also had a large influx or new customers on our recycling scheme and with paper prices at an all time high everything is dandy!

Must blog more, as you guys are getting left out of the fun!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Luke Leaving - the end of and era.

Way back in June 2007 Ben's brother came to have some training so he could ride our Pedicabs, Luke was back from working on the cruise ships and just wanted a summer job. He was a great laugh and really good on the bike so Ben and I took Luke on.

Luke was the first person who ever came to work for us and signified a huge change in the direction of our company.

The company began to grow and soon we were able to offer Luke a position running our recycling programme and alone throughout the years he has worked for us he has collected hundreds of tonnes of waste and stopped them from being sent to landfill. He has literally moved all of that waste himself and personally been involved in saving many thousands of tonnes of Co2 from entering our environment. Despite all of this very serious work Luke always added his own flare to things.

Luke always paid great attention to his appearance making sure that everything, even his smalls, conveyed professional working practice.

Together Luke and I formed the working practices in the business and built strong foundations for future projects and programmes. We also undertook some other projects, one notable failure for Luke was Movember, where he proceeded to grow the weakest moustache known to man. Sadly during this time Luke was also applying for some other jobs and was firmly knocked back on the grounds of his offensive facial hair.

Luke became part of the woodwork at Hereford Pedicabs and created a great reputation that exemplified all that we tried to create when we started way back in April 2007. Ask Luke to do a wedding on the bike and Luke would put the extra effort in to make sure the customers had a great day.Ask Luke to control the traffic an he did it with style

Ask Luke to help with training new staff and the guy runs in wearing a tri suit and proceeds to take the new recruits on a full groin based pre interview warm up.

People ask me how I'm going to replace Luke and the answer I give them is I can't, it's impossible to replace someone like Luke because he's so different to most people. An incredible, fun, hard working, diligent, courteous guy, who cheers everyone who he comes into contact with. Ben and I always wondered if it'd be awkward employing his brother, we thought maybe it'd cause problems in the long run, we were wrong and it's been a pleasure to employ someone who is now a great friend.

So what for Luke now? Well in the long term Luke is going to Uni to train to be a Childrens Nurse and we can't support him enough, its a tough day when you see an integral part of your company move on but it's a great day you see a friend progress.

In the mean time Luke and his friend Adam are off to do something amazing, they are going to ride across America to raise money for Help for Heroes. You can donate here and find out some more here

Something great does come out of this and that is we are able to take on a new member of staff. Tom will now ride in place of Luke and so far has shown some great promise. Luke took some special time out to train Tom up in his own special way earlier this year

So for the moment that's that, a true legend of Pedicabs moves on, he never did get the bike over 40mph but he could out ride me any day.

Good luck Luke and thank you.

Will and all the team.

Friday, May 21, 2010


So May has been upon us for some time and what a month it has been!

The weather is truly on the turn, the days are longer and warmer and things are on the up. We've been really busy throughout May, not only with our contract work but with more and more adhock jobs on top of our usual workload. We've even had to do some pretty big miles on one of our first bikes..With '440' back on the road an hauling the big loads we could turn out attention to a challenge which has, and continues to, escape us.. Getting theBullitt over 40mph. So far it has seemed impossible as under braking at speed the front wheel gets a little twitchy and where we happen to do the '40 challenge' there's a gravely corner which needs to be pinned. So.... a few weeks ago I fitted a steering damper to the front wheel..
The damper stops the vibrations from the front wheel and keeps it nice and steady, it's made for a much smoother ride but has also meant we've increased our faith in what the bullitt can do..Not far to 40mph...

In other news a mate of the company and a member of the exclusive 'Team Eagle' race team which we been helping a bit with sponsorship has been doing some mountain bike racing..

When I say some, he's been doing pretty well, here he is just after his winning race run at the Welsh Nationals, we didn't want to put a picture of him up without his helmet because he's hideously ugly.... Well done Chris.Note the swanky pedicargo jacket... not even we have those..

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Pedicab Riders Wanted

We are looking for weekend riders with opportunities for week time work in the summer time!
We are looking for weekend riders with opportunities for week time work in the summer time!

Over 21?
Got a full driving licence?
Interested in a fun part time job that'll keep you fit?
Want to do your bit to save the environment?

Get in touch and let us know why you'd be great for the job.

Call - 07718320195

Thursday, April 15, 2010

3 years old!

On April the 13th 2007 Ben and I stood in front of a bunch of people on a warm spring evening and announced we were launching a Pedicab business in Hereford. There were a few reasons why we were doing it:

1) We wanted to do something positive for the environment.
2) It seemed a cool idea.
3) Ben needed a girlfriend.

There were a pile of other reasons too, we wanted to launch a true values based company in Hereford, launching something people hadn't seen before that would help them and asking them to pay what they thought it was worth to use it.

It was a great success and soon we had our 1000th customer were involved in a police chase, employed some new riders, first luke then Ad and then Daz . From there we ticked over, taking more and more customers. We did lots of weddings that year too.

Building on the success of Pedicabs we soon launched Pedicargo and began delivering freight. At the same time we took our 5000th customer on the Pedicabs. Cargo continued to get busier and busier and we hit our 10,000th item in no time.

We didn't rest on our laurels and began to look for other things we could do, we soon launched a trade waste recycling programme and had to extend our premises.

Things grew and grew, we took on Matt, and Tom and had to throw thank you parties to say well done for all the hard work our staff put in.

Then we won a pride of herefordshire award which was pretty amazing and soon after we got a grant so we could buy the stuff we needed to produce all of our own power.

From here we plugged away, taking thousands more people in our cabs, transporting thousands of items of freight and cargo and recycling hundreds of tonnes of trade waste. In the process we started to clock up quite a carbon saving. We started to total it up for out customers so they could tell their customers what they were doing for the environment. We thought it'd be nice if we gave an award for the biggest savers.

At this point something really cool happened. We won an award from the Prince's business network in recognition of the work we were doing to save carbon. It was a real pat on the back for us and spurred us on to push for bigger and better things.

And that's what we have been doing. We've been growing slowly and strongly now for three years, putting in to place the groundwork for the future. There are lots of articles about why businesses fail in the first 3 years, some mention business plans, some mention cash flow, some mention poor marketing but we think it's a bit simpler than that. You have to do something you enjoy and you have to be realistic about its potential. There is a big difference between optimism and potential and I think sometimes that's where people get confused. It hasn't been easy getting to this stage and we have asked for plenty of help to get us here, we think what we are doing is the right thing to do and what's more we've stuck true to our values.

The company is growing up now and we're taking on more riders and staff and some of our team are moving on to other things , it's been a great journey so far and we've enjoyed it.

This week we interviewed some new staff for various jobs so things are still growing and evolving. Who knows what the next three years might bring!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Pedicab History Lesson

Found the following on a web forum, really interesting stuff......

"Not all that exciting but a potted history goes thusly:

They were started in about '98 by a Simon Lane, an entrepreneurial cambridge drop-out who'd worked on the punts on the river before buying a pedicab from San Francisco. He then moved to London and set up in an arch near southwark street. When I started, aged 21, there were 6 heavy old bikes and a rotating pool of about 10 riders. Real characters. A mate of mine has made a documentary about a couple of them and a few are still riding. I've got tons of stories stashed away somewhere from those early days. We were all self employed and rented the cabs by the night (or week) and generally worked from 7pm to 4 or 5am (then drank till dawn and cycled home though rush hour, pissed as wizards with pockets stuffed with pound coins). There were only a few of us and we were all pretty close, super competitive and really quite naughty. It was fucking hard work but quite possibely the most fun I've ever had.

I don't know who this chump is but the pic shows one of the original 6 bikes. They had three speed Sturmey Archers and weighed about a ton. They were tough as anything though...and you could ride them on two wheels.
On my first ever shift, right after my first ever fare I got stopped by the BTP in Leicester Square and was charged with a whole host of taxi licencing related things. The black cabs union had been leaning on the BTP for a test case and I was it. I got issued with a summons a week later. As a full time student I got legal aid and Simon sorted me out with an excellent lawyer who sepcialised in environmental law. Around this time the company was taken over by Chris Green who rechristened it "bugbugs" and it all got a fair bit more professional. They bought about 20 of those nasty flimsy yellow trishaws you still see around and kitted out the arch with compressors, chargers for lights, sofas, gave us ID badges, brought in rules and fines and even organised a "rider of the year" award dinner. That ended in a full on chair-throwing drunken brawl in the Firestation at Waterloo. Happy days!
I started attending court regularly as the case plodded on over the course of a year. The charges were all things like "Trading as an illegal Hackney Carriage", "Plying for hire without a license" etc. Luckily our cheeky cambridge drop-out originator had really done his research and our case was based on a clever little loophole. Basically, when you hire a black cab you hire the entire vehicle and driver. When you hire a pedicab you hire only your seat in the vehicle. That way we came under the Victorian "Stage Coach and Carriage" licensing laws and not the Hackney Carriage laws. All we had to do was charge per person, and we were gravy. All the cabs had legal notices in them stating that you were hiring your place in the vehicle, not the vehicle, quoting the relevant legistaltion and displaying evidence of our insurance details (all passengers were insured). The case plodded on for over a year and eventually after nine seperate appearances at Bow Street magistrates all charges were dropped.

Bugbugs was growing fast and getting a bit too organised and restrictive for some tastes a few of the original guys defected back to Simon who'd hooked up with the lovely Rob Brock to provide a pair of his new invention, the Brox. Sadly Rob died last year (I only just found out having not seen him for a while).

Lovely bloke.

We'd had two of these early designs of his at Bugbugs and always bickered about who got to ride them as they were so much fun:So Rob and Simon started out all over again with two new Brox cabs in a shed on Battlebridge Road behind King's Cross. The idea was that an individual or pair of riders would take "ownership" of their particular cab. We paid a monthly rent, came and went as we pleased, were responsible for the maintenance (parts were provided free issue) and worked where and when we felt like it. There were four riders initially,it was me and my friend Guigs and the other "team" were Richard and Zero. Zero was a mostly toothless bald courier from leeds with a penchant for du-rags and hoop earrings. Supersweet guy. Richard lived with him, big tall black guy with a bleached beard. Comulsive liar as it turns out. Hey ho. Lost touch with both of them sadly. We used to take the heavy bodywork off the cabs and hammer round town on just the chassis during the day. They started out like this:But by the time we'd finished with them they had skinny high pressure tyres, no body and would endo when you hit the front (disc) brakes. They were so much fun. Especially in the wet, you could drift them, ride up and down kerbs, hammer round hairpins without letting up for a second. In fact I think part of the reason I started to edge out of the scene is that I was having far more fun riding than making money. Making money meant you had to put the seats back on and the massive canopy and plod about ringing your bell and yadda yadda yadda. It was far more fun to go racing round the underground carpark under St Pancras, which is where we moved to next.

The plan with that little enterprise was that riders would save money and eventually buy their own bike and start up on their own. Most of us didn't have the sense to see this though and just carried on riding but a few really went for it and as that operation started to grow a few guys set out on their own. One of the riders, an Kiwi guy who was one of the originals and consinstantly the highest earner in any given night started up with a couple of these monstrocities: They turned out to be very reliable though and the riders liked them. The original "manager" from the the early days, "Spider", set up his own company called Chariot Bikes with those weird backward trikes. I think he abandoned them after an accident and went over the the above Cycles Maximus bikes too. He's still going strong. As is Bugbugs, Simon, and a dozen other small operations.

Around that time Simon sold the operation again and we moved into a creepy "barn full of sharp things" straight out of a horror movie in the catacombs under Bagley's Warehouse. Which is where as we got up to about seven or so bikes (and as one of half a dozen seperate operations) I bowed out after three years of service. I was sick of the nights, living hand to mouth, cash in hand. But mostly I was fed up with dealing with the customers (all drunk, mostly girls, screeching and treating you like a comedy slave). I just needed a change.

I pottered round the fringes for a bit, renting the odd bike, doing some Ad-Bike stuff and pondering my next move but I never went back. It had changed quite a lot and their were scores of riders out there fighting over the same fares. No-one knew anyone else any more and all the good spots were teeming with cabs, blocking the roads and annoying other road users.

The cabbies brought the case again a year or so later and my case was referred to. As far as i'm aware (despite an ill advised campaign featuring a massive billboard of a black cab ploughing into a pedicab full of innocent crash test dummies on the side of London Bridge) the charges were thrown out again.

And that, in a very long rambly nutshell, is it. Or my involvement with it anyway. I have a few General Lucifer-esque stories about the original crew of riders stashed away somewhere. I'll try and dig them out soon."

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Copenhagen Style

So over in Copenhagen I was inspired by the use of bikes, seeing mothers with a bunch of children in a cargo bike and seeing cargo bikes carrying loads which I guess I'd thought weren't possible. It's funny for us I think as we just don't see any other cycle couriers or anyone doing anything remotely like what we are doing. No butchers, bakers or florists delivering, no cafe's delivering coffee or sandwiches. Seems daft really, surely it'd make total sense. We certainly think there's been an increase of cycling in the last 3 years, which is a great thing and maybe as that increases other people will begin to think about what's possible with bikes. For the moment we've been taking inspiration from our friends across the fjords and pushing our bikes harder which has fitted well with a few interesting deliveries this week.
Deliveries aside now the clocks have changed and we're heading in towards April we're hitting some great weather and some not so great April shower style weather!Wet roads mean less stopping distance which means we have to be more vigilant especially on some of the junctions in our town. Every day I face this, a contraflow cycle path crossing a t-junction which is joining a one way road, todays example of horrific road terror features two vehicles crossing our right of way, one of which is turning the wrong way up a one way street. Amazing!Hoepfully we'll avoid any crazy situations!