Carrier Cycle FAQ

What is a Carrier Cycle?

Why won’t just any bicycle do the job? Pashley Carrier Cycles (also commonly known as cargo cycles, work bikes, delivery cycles, tradesman’s bikes, butchers bikes or utility bikes) are designed and built specifically for commercial and industrial use, to carry people and loads safely and efficiently throughout the working day.

Carrier Cycles are of a robust construction and are equipped to meet the demands that may be placed on them. Loads are securely retained, and the cycles are designed to have stable handling whether fully loaded or empty. They are comfortable to ride and have good stopping power in all weather conditions, and they do their job day in, day out, for many years of service.

What can Carrier Cycles be used for?

Carrier Cycles have a wide variety of uses, typically where low cost, dependable, load carrying transport is required for tough day-in, day-out use. Such uses include...

Can these cycles be used for day to day personal use?

Our Carrier Cycles are not designed for leisure, sport or general personal usage. However, please feel free to contact us if you have a specific personal requirement and we will be happy to discuss and advise.

How will a Carrier Cycle benefit my business?

Pashley Carrier Cycles are faster than walking, greener than vans, simpler than electric carts, and lower cost than all other vehicles. There are hundreds of companies that use a Carrier Cycle in their operations for a multitude of different reasons; everything from an easy set-up starter ice cream sales operation - with our off-the-shelf Classic No.33 - all the way to nationwide door-to-door postal deliveries using our trusted Pronto bike. Whether you use it for publicity or as a cost saving solution, a Carrier Cycle can benefit your business.

To learn more about the many economic and social benefits to using ‘pedal power’ for your business, and not  just take our word for it, take a look at some of our information pages and customer case studies to see how our Carrier Cycles have benefited existing customers.

Are your cycles safety tested?

All our cycles conform to the current vigorous CE standards for cycle manufacture. We also have very robust design, quality, and testing procedures to ensure our bikes do not just conform to requirements, but often far exceed them. We have over 90 years of manufacturing experience, not just in Carrier Cycles but leisure cycles too. We have also been working with the UK’s largest user of industrial bikes – the Royal Mail - for over 25 years. Our product provenance is globally unsurpassed.

Are Carrier Cycles heavy?

In the same way that a Transit van is heavier than a hatchback. The general requirement from our customers is that these bikes do a load carrying job day in day out, possibly under the control of several different riders and in all conditions. You cannot design a bike or trike to these criteria and make them ultra-light too. The gearing range is sensitive to this fact and that the cycles will be carrying load, so it is suitably low.

Why so do Carrier Cycles have so few gears?

In order to keep our Carrier bicycles reliable and low maintenance we have opted for the tried and tested Sturmey Archer 3 speed internal hub gear. Under all types of usage, this gear set-up provides enough range for efficient usage of the bicycles. For our Loadstar or Classic No.33 tricycles, the requirement for simplicity under the larger loads is even greater so we offer these in a reliable Sturmey Archer single speed.

Why do you use hub brakes?

An internal hub brake provides consistent braking in all weather conditions, and as the brake is enclosed inside the hub and protected from wear, it is very low maintenance and far more reliable than a standard bike caliper or even a disc type brake.

What level of bespoke design do you offer?

The range of requirements for Carrier Cycles we have experienced over the years is massive. We have honed down a product range of cycles that suit the vast majority of customer’s needs. However, we are always happy to discuss your specific ideas and business needs and give you the benefit of our 85 year experience in the commercial cycle industry.

Do you offer electric assist?

Yes, we do offer electric assist for a number of our models. Please call +44(0)1789 292 263 for further information.

Can you brand or put my logos and company livery on your Carrier Cycles?

For cycles that come with a name plate or board, we have the option available to add your company logo or graphics. We offer a traditional hand-painted sign-writing service, as well as vinyl decals and digitally printed boards. 

If you are placing a large order of fleet cycles, we are also able to incorporate custom branding of the cycle frames themselves, within our manufacturing process.

In addition to custom graphics, we have a large range of paint colours in-house that you can choose from to customise your cycle(s); other colours can also be bought in to order if you wish to match to a specific company colour.

How much are the Carrier Cycles? why is price ‘given on application’?

Our Carrier Cycles are commercial products that we sell direct, business to business. There are often options and accessories available that are tailored to each cycle and its intended application. The best way for us to advise on the options and costs, and make sure you select the product that is right for you, is to talk through your requirements with you. Please call +44(0)1789 292 263 for further information.

Do you export your Carrier Cycles outside the UK?

Yes. We have existing customers for our Carrier Cycles in over 40 countries around the world.

Can I visit your factory to discuss a purchase or test the bikes?

Yes of course. However, we are a busy working factory so please do ring ahead to make an appointment. We can then arrange the right range of cycles in our test area for you to try out.

I have an old/second hand Carrier Cycle. Can you supply spares for it? 

Unfortunately, we generally are unable to do so. We have found that there are just too many variations, types and age of Carrier Cycle for us to keep a comprehensive spares stock. A good local bike shop should be the first port of call for any servicing requirements for an old or second hand cycle. 


I wish to run a fleet of Carrier Cycles but I am not technical and wouldn’t know how to maintain them. Can you help?

The benefit of Pashley Carrier Cycles is that they are very low maintenance and once set up and running, require the minimum of mechanical intervention.  We do recommend a general service regime however, and you will occasionally need to make a repair or renovation if a cycle gets damaged in its day-to-day use; this will be affected by the intensity and type of usage for each cycle by each business. We can advise on any volumes and types of spares that would generally be required to keep a fleet running day-to-day. We can also advise on local mechanics and repair workshops that can help on the more technical aspects, or any repairs that might be required. In any event, maintaining or fixing a cycle is a lot cheaper than doing the same for a car, van or motorbike.


What standards and regulations do I need to be aware of if I run a fleet of Carrier Cycles?

Checking with local authorities, trading standards and health and safety authorities is always advisable if you are changing your existing business practices or setting up a new business. Despite their generally bad press, health and safety regulations are there to protect rather than restrict, and are mostly just common sense. If you are intending to make Carrier Cycles available for use by your employees, the requirements of P.U.W.E.R. (Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations) come in to play. In essence they cover the following areas:

  • Fitness for Purpose – the piece of equipment to be used must be suitable for the task. At Pashley we have over 85 years’ experience in the design and manufacture of Carrier Cycles. All our products are hand-made in the U.K. using tried and tested materials and manufacturing methods. Designs ensure stability and ease of riding, loaded or unloaded, and all-weather braking systems and carefully selected components ensure Pashley Carrier Cycles are fit for purpose.
  • Maintenance – as with any piece of machinery, it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure it is kept in a safe operating condition. We provide maintenance regimes for our products and supply Life History sheets for maintenance records. We can also assist with training of your mechanics or help organise local cycle dealers to undertake the maintenance for you. Properly maintained and used, a Pashley Carrier Cycle will offer many years of safe and reliable operation.
  • Operator training – P.U.W.E.R requires that operatives be trained in the correct use of machinery - but everybody knows how to ride a bike, don’t they? At its simplest, we can supply leaflets giving simple hints and tips for safe riding.


I am looking at running a commercial hire fleet for the public. Are these bikes suitable?

Our Carrier Cycles have a number of characteristics that make them ideal for hire fleets such as their reliability, adaptability, and ease of use. A conversation with ourselves would be the best way for you to describe your requirements and have us provide honest and unbiased advice from our experience in this area.

What is the guarantee on these products?

Our Carrier Cycles are put to a multitude of uses by customers around the World and so whilst we do not offer a standard warranty on these group of cycles, we do expect to advise customers on warranty, maintenance / service / training in relation to the intended use. For example, with postal delivery bicycles it is usual for Pashley to guarantee frames for a period of five years and the fork for a period of 2 years, and Pashley will honour those warranties offered by component suppliers in relation to manufacturing and/or material defects. The warranty does not cover such things as failure due to improper storage, misuse, abuse or lack of maintenance.