Get Fixed was created by husband and wife Simon and Angela Bendall. Simon always had motorbikes and was a dab hand at restoration, so had a good head start as a bicycle mechanic.
After starting a workshop out of his home, with a customer base that steadily grew, in 2016 he had enough business to leave his day job as an engineer for Fuji Xerox.
Angela takes up the story. “In 2017 we approached the Council with the idea of opening a bicycle café at the base of Rangituhi – this didn’t go anywhere but Council came back to us with the opportunity of opening a pop-up on the harbour’s edge.
Despite Covid and all the challenges running a business in a pandemic brings, Simon and Angela have expanded from one container in 2018, to now having eight.
The business is community-focused and have a loyal customer base, allowing them to thrive. Along with the core activity of fixing bicycles and serving great coffee, they have worked with Porirua Alternative School to employ young people who are struggling to start out in the workforce, sponsor not for profit organisations in the city like Titahi Bay Scouts and schools, and provide a space for Aotea College music students and Porirua City Brass to show off their talent.
Each year, Get Fixed Bicycle Café ask the community to donate bikes they no longer have use for so that Simon and his team can get them up and running for less disadvantaged people in Porirua to use.
Angela says customers are always encouraged to help keep the nearby beach clean.
The business separate all plastic, tins, glass and cardboard for recycling, while food scraps are composted. Single-use coffee cups are not an option – customers are offered a discount if they use a keep cup.
Any packaging used is recyclable or eco-friendly, the menu is largely plant-based, and in the workshop Simon works with the Green Bike Trust to reuse and recycle where possible.
Porirua business Poi Creations is supplied with free inner tubes to create jewellery.
In July 2021, Get Fixed Bicycle Café was announced as the year’s Porirua Small Business Awards supreme winner. They were recognised for their resilience and innovation, surviving and thriving among Covid times.
Clare Nolan, the Council’s Senior Commercial Advisor, says Simon, Angela and their team were rewarded for their passion, being a sustainable, eco-friendly business, and giving back to the Porirua community.
Recognising and celebrating small business excellence and resilience through Covid-19 in Porirua.