Twenty-eight years after opening his first shop, Leigh Durham has taken Leigh’s Cycle Centre to the next level by launching a Specialized Bicycles Concept Store
Pictures josh reid for haydsbrown visual media
“Inviting people to the opening was like putting together a wedding guest list,” Durham reflected. “I opened my first bicycle shop in October 1989 in Pinetown, and some of the guests have been clients since then. Twenty-eight years later there are third generation customers, and I even met my wife, Susan, through the store. She came in to buy a bicycle with a blank cheque and I sold her an Avalanche Mistral,” he smiles.
Since that first Pinetown stor,e Durham has focused on building relationships with his clientele. “When I decided to join Specialized and focus on one brand, I was initially a little concerned at how my regular customers would take the change. But they have been brilliantly supportive. A long-time supporter of Leigh’s Cycle Centre, Guy Cluver commented that he hadn’t bought a Specialized before because I had never sold them, which was fantastic to hear,” Durham continued.
“When you buy a bicycle you are buying more than just the bike, you are buying the support network and that is why I am so happy to join Specialized, their dealer support is second to none,” he concluded.
“We have always admired the way Leigh ran his stores,” says Stuart Weaver, National Sales Manager for Specialized Bicycles South Africa. “Due to circumstances it never worked out for us to collaborate with him before, but we always knew we wanted a Specialized Concept Store in uMhlanga.”
With the massive development taking place in the area, the timing was perfect. “In June Leigh and I talked, and after a couple of weeks he decided to come on-board. In just five months he sold all his old stock, bought new stock and refurbished his store. That illustrates why we were so eager to get involved with Leigh’s Cycle Centre,” Weaver said.
KwaZulu-Natal based cyclists can still visit Leigh’s Cycle Centre in uMhlanga, the same location it has held since September 2015. The store features dedicated mountain bike, road, women’s and kids’ retail sections as well as a bike fitment studio and a world-class service centre.
Due to the overwhelming popularity of mountain biking in the province, Leigh’s Cycle Centre has specialised in serving that aspect of cycling in particular. Pride of place is currently given to the new S-Works Epic, which is the perfect bicycle on which to conquer the myriad of trails and sugar cane roads stretching inland from uMhlanga.
39 Meridian Drive, Umhlanga
031 566 2719