Halfords gets in early on EN standards

Retail chain’s brands to comply with new standards ‘long before’ impending legislation comes into force
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Retail chain’s brands to comply with new standards ‘long before’ impending legislation comes into force

National bike retail chain Halfords has told BikeBiz that it is already hard at work to ensure its bikes will comply with forthcoming EN standards and that its brands will comply with the new legislation well in advance of the deadline.

The pan European standards will replace current mandatory British bike standards – BS 6102
Part 1. The new regulations will bring new requirements for the safety and durability of bikes, including better braking performance for all types of bicycles, among other quality standards.

Chris Hall, Halfords’ head of quality assurance and product Compliance, told BikeBiz: “Our entire cycle range will comply with the new standards, well before the legal deadline. This will include all of our own brands – Apollo, Carrera, Boardman, X-Rated and Trax – as well as all of the other popular brands that sit on our shelves.

“Our desire to apply the most stringent quality and safety standards to our cycles is emphasised by Halfords’ free build and safety check, followed by our free six-week service. Ultimately, the customer receives greater peace-of-mind.”

He added: “As the number one UK and Republic of Ireland bike retailer, Halfords is keen to adopt the most stringent available quality and safety standards, and pass these benefits onto the customer. We also feel that we have a duty to implement the most rigorous standards on the market, even though they may not strictly be required by law for some time.”

Hall revealed that full compliance only required slight changes for the firm: “We have a long heritage and a well-established product development process, which starts with feedback from our customers, via our store cycle specialist network. Our specialist staff take great pride in being knowledgeable about the products they sell, and that they have actively contributed to the improvements in our ranges of bikes. Our EN development programme, built on our long experience of bike design, meant closely working with our suppliers, with careful component selection. We found that our history had served us well, and that there were only relatively minor modifications required to ensure full compliance to the new standards.”

The firm’s East European presence was an added incentive for the retailer to take an early approach to the standards: “We also have stores in the Czech Republic and Poland where, unlike UK and ROI, there is no mandatory national cycle standard. The EN standards were therefore adopted immediately on their issue in these countries, so this also was another reason for us to ensure compliance sooner. The focus in these countries has been, not surprisingly, on the safety elements of the standards for kids’ bikes.”

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