"Please continue to support independent businesses as they can only continue to offer service and advice if people shop there," says Facebook posting after 21-year-old Aylesbury store ceases trading

"It is with deep regret that after 21 years we have to announce we have stopped trading," says a statement on the Facebook page of Aylesbury-based retailer Buckingham Bikes.

"This decision has not been taken lightly," continues the posting.

The shop was opened in 1997 and, at its peak, employed 12 staff in three locations. 

Reasons for the closure? "Due to the change in consumer buying habits along with the rising costs of running a business and being an employer we find ourselves unable to make the business financially viable," said the shop's statement.

The shop's Facebook posting then made this plea: "Please continue to support independent businesses as they can only continue to offer service and advice if people shop there."

Bike retail is currently in the doldrums, with the worst refresh rate – the number of store openings compared to closures – since the 1960s. A "use us or lose us" feature written by a bike shop owner recently went viral on BikeBiz, racking up 6,600 Facebook shares.

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