HISTORIC MOVE: After nearly 103 years in the same location, Harris Cycle Co is moving from Keen St, Lismore, but owner Darryl Pursey and partner Jo Bonaccorsi are excited about their new space at 63 Bridge St, North Lismore. Photo: Alison Paterson
HISTORIC MOVE: After nearly 103 years in the same location, Harris Cycle Co is moving from Keen St, Lismore, but owner Darryl Pursey and partner Jo Bonaccorsi are excited about their new space at 63 Bridge St, North Lismore. Photo: Alison Paterson

Beloved bike shop on the move for a new beginning

For nearly 103 years the Harris Cycle Co has been the go-to bike shop at 85 Keen St, Lismore.

Now Darryl Pursey who has owned the Harris Cycle Co for the past 35 years has announced their tenancy of the space is over and that they will relocate a short walk, or ride, across the Wilson River to 63 Bridge St, North Lismore, near the Terania St roundabout.

In 2020 the property which was listed for $320,000 (plus GST) was sold for an undisclosed amount and the new owners have announced their intention to occupancy the space.

Opened in 1918 in Keen St by Harold Wotherspoon and Cecil Harris, the shop has been owned by members of the Wotherspoon family ever since.

 

The Harris Cycling Co was founded in 1918 by Harold Wotherspoon and Cecil Harris. It is thought to be one of the longest owned family bike shops in Australia.
The Harris Cycling Co was founded in 1918 by Harold Wotherspoon and Cecil Harris. It is thought to be one of the longest owned family bike shops in Australia.

Mr Pursey has been working in the shop at 85 Keen St since 1985 and bought the business in 1991 from his then father-in-law Si Wotherspoon, the son of one of the original founders.

Back when the shop first opened, bicycles were so important in daily life there was even an Australian Cyclist Corps in operation in France during the World War I.

And the recent impact of COVID-19 has seen bicycles back in favour as a mode of transport which combines fun and fitness.

Mr Pursey said it's a new era for the bike shop, which is one of the longest continuously operating velo stores in the country.

His partner Jo Bonaccorsi said it's an exciting time ahead for the business.

"The response from customers has been really positive," she said.

"We will have more parking there and while they are sorry to see us go we are very a destination store."

 

HARRIS 100: Guests including past and current staff, customers, suppliers and friends and family celebrated beloved Northern Rivers bike shop, Lismore's Harris Cycle Co first centenary on November 9, 2018. Photo: Alison Paterson
HARRIS 100: Guests including past and current staff, customers, suppliers and friends and family celebrated beloved Northern Rivers bike shop, Lismore's Harris Cycle Co first centenary on November 9, 2018. Photo: Alison Paterson

Ms Bonaccorsi said the Keen St store will break from trading on March 19 and reopen shortly after Easter at the new premises to allow for moving and sorting through over a decades of ledgers and paperwork.

"The fit-out in Bridge St will be a similar fit-out which has that old bike shop charm and history," she said.

"We are looking forward to the new space which will have a similar floor space."



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