Saturday 21 February 2015

Daily Bread, Cambridge. Even 'ethical' shops don't get it.

I'm a regular at Daily Bread. They used to be quite big on the 'Christian' element of their ethics, which never really floated my boat, but they're not really emphasising that now and who wouldn't want to shop somewhere that offers value and gives a big chunk of their profits to causes like this?

I cycle there. Because this is Cambridge and that's how we travel here. And this is where Daily Bread falls down. Actually its more of a plummet than a fall. Here's the bike locking for what is effectively a giant warehouse full of wholefoods, conveniently located for cycling to from nearly anywhere in Cambridge.

Yep. Amazing, eh? Try to contain your excitement. Tesco do better than that. Budgens do better. Frankly, pretty nearly everywhere in Cambridge does better than that.

This morning, as ever, the exit from the shared use route from Kings Hedges rec ground was blocked by a Chelsea Tractor driven to and I suspect illegally parked in front of Daily Bread - getting out from there with a bike trailer was a fuss. You'll notice that there's nowhere in what laughably passes as a bike locking area to put a trailer, so I had to lock up on a low railing, in the long grass. For once, at least, I didn't step in any of the cat muck there.

When I got out of the shop I found I couldn't get the bike back out the way I came in, there were cars blocking me in there.

I raised this with the staff as I've done before- I've been putting this as a concern in their suggestion book for about a decade and it hasn't worked. At all. Even a bit. I've been asking politely in the shop for nearly as long, and after years of this today I found the staff there getting really rather defensive about it - its like they'd rather I just didn't ask any more. They've blamed lack of communication with their landlord, they've said the landlord said no, they've said its too expensive (so I dropped off paperwork for a free scheme they could have used), they've incredulously expressed that its impossible for people like -me- to cycle there because if you're buying as much as I am I must need a car (!), they've claimed that it isn't up to them to deal with the ethics of how people shop (a peculiar thing for an 'ethical' shop to say - if that's the case you'd sell the same crap as Tesco or Poundland)... In fact over the years, and years I've been asking for better bike locking they've shifted their reasoning time and time again. Enough. Enough. Just... Enough.

Sorry, Daily Bread, its time to call bull on this. You've done nothing to improve bike access because its not important enough for you to have dealt with it - its that simple. Helping to reduce the carbon footprint of visits to your shop isn't a key ethic for you so you've not done it. You've had long enough such that no excuse is reasonable. For pities sake, Daily Bread, there are branches of Waitrose who'll loan out bike trailers, and they're the most useless pile of environmentally damaging scum-buckets you'll ever encounter. You can't, on a decades notice, even give us a good place to lock up? This is nonsense. 

I want to be your customer way more than I am, but we restrict our shopping with you because its so bloody difficult to lock our bikes up there. You're losing trade, and you can't claim to be ethical until you support those who choose to reduce their carbon footprint as part of their daily lifestyle - to only favour motorists over everyone else appears to be a cynical facade of ethics, which I know isn't wnat you want. Please, please, please, sort it out!

1 comment:

  1. Retailers everywhere seem to believe that only cars buy goods!