Old-fashioned craftsmanship

I’m not a bike geek but one of the most useful things I’ve ever bought is a Brompton folding bike. I got it about five years ago and it was fairly expensive at the time (and is even more so now). But it’s been a wonderfully liberating device. It usually lives in the boot of the car, and gives me amazing freedom from traffic jams in town. It also means that I no longer have to use the Tube when I go to London.

It had one flaw, though: the saddle that it came with was pretty mundane and uncomfortable. So this year when my kids asked me what I wanted for my birthday, for once I had an answer: I wanted a Brooks B17 leather saddle.

It’s a beautiful object which is hand-made in the English midlands.

There’s a quaint but informative company video on YouTube which explains how it’s done.

Oh — and it’s very comfortable.