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London's roadside puncture repairer


Tony awaits his next client

Plenty of stock, but don’t bother ringing his mobile

So, there you are, in a bit of a hurry to get to work, hacking across the broken road bricks that threaten the lightweight tyres of road cyclists riding along Upper Ground, London SE1, when one of them blows. Within a few metres you are riding on the rim, forcing you to stop. Only as you grope for your saddle pack do you realise you put it on the other bike at the weekend and forgot to return it to its proper place…

Instead of walking the last couple of miles and arriving late, however, you remember seeing one of London’s mobile roadside puncture repair outfits a bit further along the road – and there he is, just past the empty hulk of King’s Reach Tower.

From his vast store of spare wheels, suitcases, tyres and tubes, Tony Jose – for that is his name – pulls a tube that will fit. Without a second’s hesitation he seizes your machine, extracts the wheel and sets about substituting his patched tube for your flatted example. Before you know it, you are back on the road and Tony is five pounds the richer as he heads off for a well-deserved brew. He reckons to repair some four or five punctures every weekday, and can usually be found somewhere around the junction of Blackfriars Bridge Road and Upper Ground if you need him…

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